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Overseas Travel Advice
Dive1Unlimited - 6/19/2013 9:09 AM
Category: Travel
Replies: 6

I have a dive trip planned for the Cayman Islands in July. I have never traveled outside the US. Can anybody please give me some advice? My questions are, what can I expect at customs? Can I pack Advocare vitamins that I will use while Im on vacation? Once I get to Treasure Island Resort, everything is set up according to resort. ANY and ALL advice will be appreciated. I need the good news and the bad news.
Agojo - 6/19/2013 9:45 AM
The return to US portion is quicker if you have nothing to declare (alcohol, food, etc.). Go to US Customs website and it will specify what you can bring back without having to pay duty. You still have to declare dollar amount and some specific items that have been purchased outside the US regardless of owing duty on them. Keep all medicines in original bottle.
Dive1Unlimited - 6/19/2013 9:59 AM
Thanks Diver. If you think of anything else, it’s much appreciated.
Rich-D-Fish - 6/19/2013 10:29 AM
I bring ALL my scuba gear with me every time I travel overseas. Both my wife and I prefer the comfort of our own equipment. Most tropical destinations will give you shorty wetsuits, and we prefer full. One trip to Cancun we were the only ones on the boat not using vinegar to help with fire coral burns to our legs. And I have had only one problem so far going through customs. I thought for sure my camera bag would get flagged for the multitude of batteries for camera, strobes, and various dive lights, but it never happened. The only thing that did get flagged was my very expensive set of mini tools (screwdrivers, allen keys and mini crescent wrench) that I used to keep in my camera bag to break down my gear, but are now property of the Mexican customs. But they let me keep my nail clippers...go figure! I’ve also never had any of my medicines questions, so I’m guessing your vitamins won’t be an issue. I would definitely take at least your own mask, since it’s not always easy to get a good fit from a loaner. My personal preference is to also have my own fins and booties, since most tropical resorts let you scuba dive with snorkel fins, which tend to hurt my feet. And lastly Sea Sick patches (scopolamine patches prescribed by your doctor) if you need them. Sometimes you can find over the counter stuff like dramamine or bodine. Hope some of this helps. Have fun!
John_giu - 7/06/2013 4:06 PM
if you own you equipment you can get it all in one carry-on suit case. I have a 16’ samsonite roll on that fits, regs computer wet suit BCD you name it. Make sure to use a rolling bag, the gear get heavy walking through the airport. Security at airport are used to see scuba, a cursory glance will get you through. And you wont have to worry about your gear getting banged up or manhandled. Just remember to remove your dive knife and shares from your BCD.

As for meds., my wife is a traveling pharmacy, being a Girl Scout she is always prepared. Prescription drugs should be in the bottle in which they were dispensed with the script on it. We have never been questioned about patent meds. You can but a hand held luggage scale cheap here> After collecting swag on your trip you don;t want to go over-weight on your return trip and pay a $100 baggage fee. I keep the scale in my suitcase year round.

Dive1Unlimited - 7/08/2013 5:41 PM
Thanks diver Good advice. Hope all is well with ya’ll. See you underwater somewhere.
John_giu - 7/09/2013 3:34 AM
OH and, as silly as it seems. A couple of pens or pencils on-board the plane to fill in you customs forms.

It’s amazing how many people are begging pens just before landing, no the flight crew doesn’t have any to lend.

breakfast at the airport and a few snacks for the plane. It may be a short flight, but snacking passes time. if you take a laptop, maybe pack your favorite movie or diving DVD. Slip on sandals or shoes to get through security, although many US airports are now allowing you through without removing shoes. you can check the State Department website for travel alerts, but the Caribbean is generally safe. Use online check in and airport kiosks for seat assignment and boarding passes,

consider a isle seat. If you sit at the emergency exit door you get leg room. You can find the type of aircraft and seating charts at the airline website. Don’t worry about the price of the on board cocktails, you’re on vacation. Have a JD on the rock on me.