Vacation Tips » Cancun Tips


Here are a few things that everyone should know before coming to Cancun on vacation. These tips will help you make the most of your vacation in Cancun.

Buses

Cost $8.5 pesos (NO American coins) per person each way. You get a ticket, just hang onto it while on the bus. There are many bus routes, the most popular buses are the R-1, R-2, R-15 & R 27. If you are traveling within the hotel zone then it really does not matter what bus you take (Wet'n Wild is the exception. It is in the hotel zone but only half the buses go there so ask before you get on). R-2 & R-15 go to Wal-mart & Mercado 28. R-1 you ask! Well, it now goes almost everywhere. You have to read the front right window of the bus as it lists where it ends up. R-1's will go to Puerto Juarez, Wal-mart, Plaza 2000, Mercado 23, the bus station & places I have never been. The R 27 turns left on Tulum Ave & goes to Plaza Las Americas (the local's mall).

Bus Tips

a) Last man standing does not win anything. It means you will be flying soon. If you are the last person to pay the driver then before you can think about where you want to sit he will be going 78 miles per hour. b) Telling the bus driver where to get off is a good start but not always will it work. Most do not speak English well enough to understand you. Have an idea of where you are going before you get on. Look for landmarks. c) They will not stop to let you off unless you ask them to. Don't assume they stop at all the stops. d) To flag a bus down you need to wave one of your body parts. e) Cheapest tour in Cancun so enjoy it. f) Get on in the front and off from the back door whenever possible. g) Don't bring drinks on the bus as they will most likely end up on someone else. h) When getting off NO ONE moves for you so if the bus is packed, put your head down and push.i) 'The 'Official'way to alert the driver you want off is to press the Red Button on the handrail by the back door.

Get the CanDo Cancun Map & Guide It is a Great Resource for Seasoned Travelers as well as 1st Timers to Cancun.

Exchanging money

All stores, restaurants will take US dollars and travelers checks. Odds are however that the exchange will be in their favor. It is best to exchange your money first in either the bank (best options), exchange places (casa de cambio) or in the hotel (check to rate as most do not give you a good rate). NO ONE takes US coins, bills that are ripped, written on, taped up or glued back together. Helpful money converter

Live Music

Salsa: Shrimp Bucket, Batacha, Azucar, Mambo Cafe Rock'n Roll: Hard Rock Cafe, Carlos'n Charlie's, La Ruina Jazz: Blue Bayou (Fri/Sat), Roots Mariachi: Ok Maguey, Perico's

Just the way it is...

Many times a day I just shake my head and end up walking away. The average employee makes about $400 US a month. Today I was in a store where the lady working in the store could not read off the menu. Just remember that the ocean & the beach are 2 of the very best in the world. I often shake my head at their beauty. One other point...everyone here works on commission so the odds are they have a hidden agenda. Just takes things as they come.

Don't drink the water even if the hotel has a purified water syste, it tastes funny. Mexican bottled water is 1/3 the price. Tim: I disagree with Amigo Brant on this. Cancun has a water purification plant. Many of the hotels, malls & restaurants have further filters. If the sink at your hotel says Potable Water, trust it. Tourista is caused primarily by to much sun, to much fun, and a change in diet. Stay hydrated and you'll be fine.

Avoid people on the street say " YO VIVO A KEY" means, I live here.

Set taxi fares before getting in. If you have a problem, take his number off the car & report it to your hotel.

You can only use bio-degradable sunscreen on the reef and in the cenotes.

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Hard Rock Cafe is not downtown. Go explore. Prices are better downtown.

Most people speak 'JOB English' meaning they get by when you ask them questions that they answer daily. Speak slowly & clearly. Don't use uncommon words. Don't expect everyone to understand your accent.

Ocean temperature year round is 80F so, jump in

Crossing the street is not a right; it's a challenge. YOU DO NOT have the right of way even in a cross walk or at a red light. Be on the defensive. Taxi & bus drivers do not have any education and think that the road holds 3 things; 1) Their vehicle, 2) Their garbage & 3) Their right of way. So RUN when crossing the street.

Use sunscreen even on an overcast day

If you where 2 hours from the pyramids in Egypt would you go? If yes, go to Chichen-Itza.

Ice is safe in the drinks. All restaurants wash the vegetables in purified water. Even the taco guy on my corner.

Always carry change! 5, 10, 20 pesos. Amazing how many stores don't have change and it will be your fault.

ATM machines, credit card slips are in pesos so DON'T PANIC when you see all those zeros

Watch out for hot salsa! It's the next day that bites. Well, bites...

How to speak better Spanish? Drink more tequila!

Best thing to do? Get up at 6:30 am & walk on the beach. THE BEST!

If someone says 'I understand', they don't. It is that simple.

Tip your maid daily; a buck or 2.

Exchange your dollars in exchanges houses, maybe your hotel or banks. You will get a better rate than the stores & restaurants. The best rate in the hotel zone is the Bancrecer bank in Plaza Flamingo.

* Want to save money? Look for discounts on resort accommodations and timeshares in the Hotel Zone during the "low season" (between May and mid-December). Another plus: you'll avoid loud and often obnoxious spring breakers.