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Thread: My week

  1. #1
    Senior Member Chadd's Avatar
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    My week

    Considering that most of our trip was thrown together at the last minute, it went fairly well. There were a few things that got on my nerves though.

    For the flight down we were booked on the first flight of the day to Charlotte, but as an airline employee we only get to go if there is an empty seat. The first flight is weight restricted as there was fog in Charlotte and the plane needed to take extra fuel. Fortunately there weren't a lot of bags in the hold and they managed to get us on the airplane. Got my biscuits and gravy for breakfast in Charlotte and on down to Aruba with no problems.

    While waiting for our flight in Charlotte, we booked a rental car with Amigo. It was ready and waiting when we got there, just a few hours later. The only problem was that it had been in an accident at some point and had an airbag deployment. The horn would go off every time you hit a bump, so we had to bring it back and get it disconnected.

    Despite booking a "run of the house" deal at the Divi just a couple days before leaving we ended up with a room in the "vista II" building. The ocean view and proximity to the beach makes that building my favorite accommodation on the island. We had to change rooms at the last minute but we knew that ahead of time, no rooms were available from Saturday to Saturday and it beat going ot another hotel. The room on the last night was on the back side of the building and was very musty and dank.

    I thought the service at the Divi and Tam was significantly worse than in the past. I tend to tip very well for good service, yet I found myself somewhat reticent to tip many of the people during this trip. Several times I had to go to the bar to get a refill on a coke at the buffet or bartenders would disappear for long periods of time. I also really don't get the lunch service hours. People would start gathering around the pizza bar at 10:30 or so waiting for it to open at 11. If you waited until 11 to get there, it would often take 30 minutes or more to get a drink and even longer for pizza. The buffet was closed from around 10 until 12 or 12:30 and the pizza bar was the only place to get something to eat during that time. It seems like very bad planning at a common time to eat.

    I booked my dives with Red Sail on Sunday. The woman at the desk didn't tell me that a number of the dives that I wanted to book were canceled or sold out until after charging my credit card for the eight dive package. I ended up with a very different program than I had intended, but the dives went well overall. I met some great people and did my first night dive. On that one dive alone we saw a 20-ish pound lobster, a large puffer and a couple turtles including one that was at least 3-4 feet long.

    We did a four hour tour with Cerry and learned even more about the island that we love so much.

    Stopped at the rum shop in the large green and white building on the main street and got an education on the many versions of Palmera rum and left with more than we had planned. Best part is that it was significantly cheaper than at the airport duty free.

    The only off-site dinner on this trip was at Wacky Wahoo and the food was excellent as usual. Service was much faster than in the past, despite having late reservations. Significant improvement to the one aspect of the experience that had been slightly lacking in the past.

    Coming home we could have been through the gauntlet in less than 30 minutes had we not stopped to shop for so long at the duty free areas.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Arubalisa's Avatar
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    Sorry to hear about the service at the Divi/Tam. We had some issues at the Tam as well in June. We did find out at the end of our stay that they were short 3 bartenders, but still no excuse.

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    Chadd great report! I would suspect the service issue is one that we all might find all over the island as everyone is cutting costs/services due to the economy. Not an excuse though but a very sad reality!
    happiness is going to Aruba with your adult kids because they still want to come with their parents

  4. #4
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
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    thanks for the trip report chadd

    never been in that rum place, maybe we should take a looksee sometime.

    for a long time, i thought it was a distribution place and not open for retail business.

    glad that your concussion was not bothersome and did not interfere with your trip.

    andrea

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    Senior Member Chadd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Randi View Post
    Chadd great report! I would suspect the service issue is one that we all might find all over the island as everyone is cutting costs/services due to the economy. Not an excuse though but a very sad reality!
    When a waiter sees that you have an empty drink and avoids making eye contact so he doesn't have to come over to your table, it has nothing to do with staffing levels. There were a couple excellent bartenders and waitstaff, but the poor ones make a bigger impression most of the time.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Chadd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrea J. View Post
    thanks for the trip report chadd

    never been in that rum place, maybe we should take a looksee sometime.

    for a long time, i thought it was a distribution place and not open for retail business.

    glad that your concussion was not bothersome and did not interfere with your trip.

    andrea
    The door on the left (as you look at the building) is the shop. Very friendly folks, the guy will give you a lot of background on the rum and help you pick out the flavor that fits you best.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Arubalisa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chadd View Post
    When a waiter sees that you have an empty drink and avoids making eye contact so he doesn't have to come over to your table, it has nothing to do with staffing levels. There were a couple excellent bartenders and waitstaff, but the poor ones make a bigger impression most of the time.
    Oh sounds a little familiar...from my June trip report...
    "Our dd had a problem our second day at the resort. She went to the pizza bar to order a pizza and after fifteen minutes gave up and came back to our palapa crying saying that they, the bartender and his assistant, ignored her.

    Dh and I walked with her back to the pizza bar. Felix and Rudy were both working and though there were people at the bar, everyone was being taken care of.

    Felix came over and asked me what I needed and I told him what had happened. He seemed very surprised and questioned Rudy about it. Rudy gave it very indifferent shrug of the shoulders, Felix glared towards him and pleasantly took the order and we all moved on.

    Dd did not have any trouble the rest of our stay.

    Dh late the same day walked up to the bar to get he and I each a drink and Felix was alone tending bar. Rudy was busy counting the tip money and refused to come out from behind the back counter to assist Felix.

    Dh went to the front desk and explained what had transpired and Rudy was never seen again at the pizza bar during any of the other 11 days of our stay."

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chadd View Post
    When a waiter sees that you have an empty drink and avoids making eye contact so he doesn't have to come over to your table, it has nothing to do with staffing levels. There were a couple excellent bartenders and waitstaff, but the poor ones make a bigger impression most of the time.
    You are so right on both accounts!!!
    happiness is going to Aruba with your adult kids because they still want to come with their parents

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