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Thread: February 2016

  1. #1

    Default February 2016

    Already counting the days until we can return "home". February 25 to March 3, 2016. Anyone else already booked?

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    We go on February 7 to February 14.

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    We finally booked our next trip. We are going February 17 - 27.

    Only 174 more days until we return to paradise

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    Default can't wait!!

    Quote Originally Posted by Northern gal View Post
    Already counting the days until we can return "home". February 25 to March 3, 2016. Anyone else already booked?
    We are first time travelers too this resort Feb 27 too mar 5 any recommendations on room types?

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    We are excited too be going Feb 27 too mar 5. First time coming here!!

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    Anyone going during our time frame please message us thanks!!

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    Anyone going Feb 27 too mar 5 feel free too email at lancetrihub342288@gmail.com

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    Very excited to be spending out honeymoon at CSA Feb 25th to Mar 5th

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    Hi Karlaann. We arrive the same day as you. Is this your first visit to CSA? Number 8 for us. Congratulations on your upcoming wedding.

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    We have stayed in both Garden Verandah Suites and Atrium Suites. Both are lovely. Atriums are very romantic. Love the hammocks on the balcony. You are going to love CSA

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    Northern girl do you use Club Mobay at airport?? Is it worth it

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    Quote Originally Posted by Robbyred View Post
    Northern girl do you use Club Mobay at airport?? Is it worth it
    We have never used Club Mobay. Sometimes it has taken a bit of time to go through Customs but there have been other times when we have breezed right through.

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    We have used Club MOBAY on our last two trips and have both the arrival and departure service booked for our upcoming trip in February. In our opinion it is worth the money. Think of it as insurance, at least for the arrival service.

    We tend to travel to Couples in mid February. This is right in the middle of peak tourist season for Jamaica. A few years ago I started tracking the flights into Sangster International Airport during February. On average, there are up to 10 aircraft arriving within 30 minutes before we arrive. Assuming an average of 175 passengers per aircraft, that's up to 1700 people that need to process through Immigrations and Customs within 30 minutes of our arrival. The Immigrations and Customs staff at Sangster is efficient, but that's still a lot of people. On past trips we have hit the line to the Immigrations and Customs area at the top of the ramp and waited in these lines for well over 2 hours. Yes, over 2 hours. An eternity knowing what is waiting on the other side.

    NOTE: Checking my tracking from last year, Tuesday and Thursday are the least busy days and averaged about 45 aircraft per day. Saturday is the most busy with about 60 aircraft per day.

    In our last 2 trips, using Club MOBAY, we walked right past these long lines to a special booth where we were next. While we were processing, the Club MOBAY escort retrieved our luggage. We went to the front of the next line. About 15 minutes from the aircraft door to the Couples Lounge in the arrival terminal. For us, this was worth it. However the amount of people arriving at Sangster can vary depending upon the day of the week and time of day you arrive so others may feel it is a waste of money. But thinking of this as insurance may help.

    The departure service is different. You get past security much quicker but the time saved isn't as big of deal. Couples will get you to the airport in plenty of time to make your flight. What makes the departure service worth while is the Club MOBAY departure lounge. A nice place to wait for your flight. One last chance to pamper yourselves before you return to reality. The desk will take your flight information and announce your flight over an intercom when the flight begins to board. They have lockers to keep your carry on bags so you don't need to lug them around if you decide to cruise the shops in the departure terminal. Food and drinks are included. A nice place to wait for your flight.

    I hope this helps

    Enjoy your stay in paradise

    Only 126 more days until we return to CSA
    Last edited by Mad Jack; October 14th, 2015 at 12:45 PM. Reason: Minor corrections
    Jack and Kathy
    CSA 2007, 2010, and 2016. CTI 2012, 2014. CN 2016 (Trading Places only), 2018, 2020. 2022?

  14. #14

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    Thanks Mad Max, very help full. I don't travel this will be my first time flying in 20 years and I'm scared to death so looking for anything to make my travels less stressful. 102 days to go. Any travel tips are welcome!!

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    Northern gal this is indeed our first time to CSA but I am already in love Can't wait! We shall see you there! Leaving a Minnesota winter behind won't be missed. :P

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    53 more days getting excited!!!! For the ones that have been here before. What to take clothes?? What do I need??

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    Quote Originally Posted by Robbyred View Post
    53 more days getting excited!!!! For the ones that have been here before. What to take clothes?? What do I need??
    On our first trips to Couples, we had a tendency to over pack. Here are some of our observations.

    We tend to spend most of our time on the beach so most of our time we are wearing beach attire. Bring more than one swimsuit. For the women, also bring several cover ups. For the men, bring more than one shirt that can be worn with your beach attire. For most of the restaurants on the resort you can wear your beach attire for breakfast and lunch as long as you both have something on your feet, women use a cover up, and men wear a shirt. I think all of the resorts have a beach grill which all you need is your swimsuit and something on your feet. So unless we are going on an off resort excursion, we spend most of our time in our beach attire. Some advice. I am not getting too bald but the hair is thinning a bit. I always wear a hat on the beach. Not fun to burn your scalp.

    By about 5PM or so we will go back to our room to get ready for the evening. A good time to shower off the beach sand. For us, most of the evenings I will wear some dress shorts along with a light button down shirt with a collar and some nice sandals, not flip-flops. A nice polo shirt will also work. But I prefer a the button down shirt because it is lighter and breathes better. You are in a tropical paradise and the evenings can be warm. My wife will mostly wear some nice shorts, a light blouse, and some nice sandals. We will usually wear this for dinner and for the evening entertainment. To be honest, since we are only in these clothes for a few hours per day, if we didn't sweat too badly, we may wear these clothes a second time, especially the shorts. This is up to you.

    There are also some upscale restaurants (Feathers) that will have a dress code. We will dress nicely for these restaurants but we really don't go overboard either. I will wear some dress slacks, a nice button down shirt with a collar, and some dress shoes. No hat, especially no baseball cap. Show a little class. My wife will usually wear a light dress and some nice sandals. Remember you are in the tropics so take this into consideration. Shortly after dinner at one of these upscale restaurants, we will return to our room and change into our normal evening attire. Since we spend so little time in these nicer clothes, we can also use them more than once if needed.

    We travel from a northern location and the winter can be harsh. The last time we left for Jamaica the temperature was -10F (-23C). Meaning that we can not board our flight to Jamaica in shorts, sandals, and a light shirt. We will usually pack some shorts and sandals in an outside compartment of our luggage. Also, we will wear a light jacket on the shuttle bus from our motel to the airport. The jackets will get put into our luggage before we get to the check in counter at the airport. We will get the shorts and sandals from our luggage as soon as we get to the Couples Lounge at the arrival terminal and change in the restroom in the lounge. We won't need these clothes again until we take the sad bus ride from the Couples resort back to the airport. But it is also handy to have a light jacket on the rare occasion when the evening is cool. We have only needed these light jackets once or twice in 4 trips to Couples.

    A tip. Everyone remembers the sunscreen. But don't forget something for your lips. Bring some lip balm with a decent SPF rating. On our first trip our lips got very sunburned.

    Some people will bring along their own snorkeling gear. Only do this if you have some very nice gear as Couples will provide some decent gear for their snorkeling trips. You may want to save this space and weight for something else. Especially for the return trip where you may be bringing home some souvenirs, Rum Cream, or possibly some coffee.

    Another tip. Something else we do before we leave for Jamaica. On our first trip to Couples, another couple traveling with us had their credit card frozen because the credit card company was seeing charges from an unusual location (Jamaica). Fortunately they had another credit card. On a previous trip we had something similar happen. Each time we used our credit card our house sitter received a call from our credit card company. Each time she had to explain that we were in Jamaica and these charges were legitimate. If we wouldn't had someone to take these calls, our card may have been frozen also. Since then , a few days before we leave for Jamaica I will make a stop at our local bank that has our credit card. I will explain that we will be in Jamaica and give them a rough itinerary including our arrival and departure dates. They somehow put a note on the credit card account and we haven't had any problems like this again.

    Bring along enough small bills for tips. You should not tip a Couples employee but everyone else you encounter will be expecting a tip. We use a park and fly motel at our departure city. $5 - $10 for our shuttle bus driver. I will usually carry our luggage into the terminal but some people may use a porter who will be expecting a tip. We use Club Mobay and will tip our escort $10. There is a porter who will take your luggage from the Couples lounge to the shuttle bus to the resort and I usually tip him $5. All bus drivers are not Couples employees. On a long trip like from Montego Bay to Negril I will tip $10. Maybe $5 for a short trip. If you take an off resort excursion you will generally have a tour guide on the bus. I will tip about the same as I tip our driver. And once you get to the off resort attraction you may have another tour guide who will also be expecting a tip. If you take the catamaran cruise they also expect a tip. I will usually give the Captain $10 as we depart the boat. The only exception to the No Tipping policy on the resort is the SPA. I guess these people are not actual Couples employees and tipping is acceptable. Also, Jamaica will accept most foreign currency almost anyplace. We have never had problems using US dollars in Jamaica although the exchange rate can be a little confusing. If you run out of small bills you can visit the cashier's cage on the resort. Last time we were there it was located above the main lobby.

    Couples will also invite vendors on to the resort on certain days. We will generally use cash for these purchases although some can take a credit card. Don't be afraid to negotiate. There are also some unofficial vendors and entertainers on the beach. You may want to bring some cash for this also.

    Enjoy your stay in paradise

    We will be there 9 days after you. Only 62 more days to go.
    Last edited by Mad Jack; December 20th, 2015 at 10:35 AM.
    Jack and Kathy
    CSA 2007, 2010, and 2016. CTI 2012, 2014. CN 2016 (Trading Places only), 2018, 2020. 2022?

  18. #18

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    Staying feb 5-15 been going for years. Has all we need and want
    For those going first time here is our suggestions. Not everyone agrees but it works for us and we make adjustments every year
    -club mobay. Not much value have used and not and personally it saves no time during the week. Likely does on a Saturday but where've used it then too and all it does is alter WHERE you wait. The buses tend not to leave till they get those booked on them and they factor in the usual wait via customs.... Personally the money is better spent elsewhere but it's up to you
    -you will bring way more clothes than you need in general. So take half out. You need beachwear and a couple of evening nice clothes if you plan to go to feathers... If not you need shorts and tee/polo tops and they will do laundry and it's cheap. We have actually brought had luggage equivalent for 3 days and had laundry done 3 times for less than $60. Checking in our bags would have cost More !!!!
    But that's a fine point .....
    Other than beach wear you need two nice changes for evenings
    -bring more sunscreen than you think. It's stupid expensive
    -bring big towel clips to put on your chairs and towels so you can find them after 8 drinks
    -people say the chair game starts at 5;00am. NOT TRUE. it actually starts just after midnight for the palapas which actually ate the worst places to sit !!!! It's a game and the ignorant few who think they've achieved something special and won a lottery by getting up at stupid o'clock in morning to get a "good chair".... And go back to bed till 11:00 and with just a shoe and book on a chair really haven't won a thing. Chairs and shade are readily available all day long !!!! The "game" is not worth the effort. For 10 years we get good chairs in shade at anytime of the day and the guys who run the sports will with a kind word (and a few ...) find you a chair and pad and some shade ..... No tipping but well.... Appreciating their assistance if you really can't find a chair at 10:00 or after golfing is not hard to do
    -people do respect saved chairs but they don't respect chairs saved at 6:00am and left till 11:00 am. I've seen them taken and no arguments given.
    -food. It's great EVERYWHERE. yes feathers is nice and classy and fancy and you need to dress up and why not !! But it's the same food you can get everywhere so don't sweat it if you only get in once or twice ....
    - having seen the evening shows for 10 years some are good some cheesy but they have good evening entertainment
    -if you are there for super bowl it's about the best party I've been too !!!
    Any more advice let me know. I'm biased but it's a great trouble free 10 days....and we still over pack
    They have everything. All you need are clothes. Bugs aren't a problem either unless you come from over the pond. The Brits get eaten alive

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    Mad Jack thank you for all your help your advice us Very helpful. Sorry you visit after us.

    Birdman We appreciate all your advice. Hope to meet you when we are there. We arrive on 2/7-14.

    If you think of anything else please let me know.

    Thanks again, From Ed and Robyn

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    We also arrive day of Superbowl. Looking forward to this sense you say it a Great!!!!

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    We (Greg and Therese) will be at CSA from 2/20 to 2/28 - who else will be there this week. We are travelling from chilly Wisconsin and looking forward to the tropical break during the last part of winter!! Any SCUBA divers planning to be on the boat this week? You will definitely see me (Greg) on it daily! Only 48 more days if my math is right...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tallman2nd View Post
    We (Greg and Therese) will be at CSA from 2/20 to 2/28 - who else will be there this week. We are travelling from chilly Wisconsin and looking forward to the tropical break during the last part of winter!! Any SCUBA divers planning to be on the boat this week? You will definitely see me (Greg) on it daily! Only 48 more days if my math is right...
    We will be there between the 17th and the 27th. We are from Northern Wisconsin, by the Michigan border. No scuba for us. But we do a lot of snorkeling.

    Enjoy your stay in paradise

    Only 44 more days until we return to CSA
    Jack and Kathy
    CSA 2007, 2010, and 2016. CTI 2012, 2014. CN 2016 (Trading Places only), 2018, 2020. 2022?

  23. #23

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    I like this quote "k. We are travelling from chilly Wisconsin and looking forward to the tropical break during the last part of winter!! Any SCUBA divers planning to be on the boat this week?"

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    We will be there from Feb 6 to 12 then off to Couples Negril for another 6 days! Can't wait!

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    Hi there! We will also be at CSA 2/25 through 3/3. We are celebrating our "first" anniversary as we were married on Leap Day 2012!

    We are looking forward to relaxing on the beach and meeting fun couples. Is anyone planning to do the One Love Bus Bar Crawl? Or going to Floyd's Pelican Bar? We're a little more interested in the Pelican Bar, but would love to join in on the One Love tour if someone is currently planning this and has open spots to fill.
    35 MORE DAYS!! YEEESSSSS!!!

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