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Rent or bring own snorkel equipment


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That's a coin toss on if they clean it satisfactorily or not depending on the vendor.  Question is:  How much of a chance are you willing to take?

 

Perhaps a compromise on just bringing the gear that will be on your face/mouth?

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16 minutes ago, Luckiestmanonearth said:

Trying to limit baggage for an upcoming cruise and really don’t want to bring my own equipment (vest , snorkel stuff, fins)

 

If I rent, do you think they clean the equipment sufficiently ?

 

In light of Covid, is it safe to rent or should I bring my own 

How would we know whether “they” clean the equipment sufficiently? As with so much in life, it will really depend on the vendor.

Even pre-Covid, we brought our own masks/snorkels both for fit and hygiene. We also have float vests (deflatable/weighing a few ounces at most) and multi-purpose/lightweight “reef runners”and rash guard tops. What we don’t bring are swim fins which are bulky/heavy and usually unnecessary.

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Bring your mask, snorkel and vest, leave flippers home.  I've seen venders "wash" their equipment in sea water by just sloshing them a bit in the ocean.

 

Now perhaps post COVID, there may be more stringent measures in place, but then there may not be, so why take the chance?

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We bought ours and will bring it. After doing the Amazon thing for top rated gear and sending all 3 sets back, went to one local dive company. They were just like "Here, buy this, its $250, and your set". Walked out when they didn't offer any real help. Went to another one that has a pool. They let me try the gear on, see how it fit, see if I didn't like something. The craziest part is how difficult it was to find fins that worked. The general ones that all snorkel excursions have do not work with my feet. I had severe cramping and nerve pinching. I had to get the one that require a bootie. Yes, a little more expense, but the mask that worked the best was only $20 vs $120. It was about $200 for mask, fins, and snorkel. They said the gear will probably out live me.

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We own our own equipment (including a decent prescription mask) and have a solution.  When we have an issue with packing too much we will only pack our masks and snorkels and depend on tours/rentals to supply fins.

 

Hank

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I like the way my mask fits. More to the point, I hate the way rental masks don’t fit. And there’s not a chance in hell I’m putting a rental snorkel in my mouth and breathing through it. I could go either way on rental fins and vest. 

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On 7/24/2021 at 2:05 PM, mnocket said:

If you have vision problems you might consider buying your own mask with a prescription lens.  Not terribly expensive and makes a big difference.

I can't agree more! Being extremely nearsighted, I never got the appeal of snorkeling until I spent $50 on a prescription face mask. Where before I saw a gray/blue mass of dense water, now I could see the multicolored fish, coral, and so much more!!!! 

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 7/29/2021 at 10:38 AM, gizbywife said:

I can't agree more! Being extremely nearsighted, I never got the appeal of snorkeling until I spent $50 on a prescription face mask. Where before I saw a gray/blue mass of dense water, now I could see the multicolored fish, coral, and so much more!!!! 

I remember being so impressed the first time I wore contact lenses with goggles swimming… obviously contacts may not work at dive depths but they definitely work for snorkelling if you don’t want to go through the expense of a prescription mask. Before I had LASIK my prescription changed every couple of years and it wouldn’t have been worth the expense to get new lenses in a mask every time. Daily disposable contact lenses were my go-to for sports. 

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  • 1 month later...
On 7/29/2021 at 5:38 AM, gizbywife said:

I can't agree more! Being extremely nearsighted, I never got the appeal of snorkeling until I spent $50 on a prescription face mask. Where before I saw a gray/blue mass of dense water, now I could see the multicolored fish, coral, and so much more!!!! 

You all have my attention here. Where do you find prescription masks? I have a bad astigmatism and don't wear contacts. This would make things so much better but I have not seen anything for me.

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7 hours ago, BoozinCroozin said:

You all have my attention here. Where do you find prescription masks? I have a bad astigmatism and don't wear contacts. This would make things so much better but I have not seen anything for me.

Go to a full service dive shop in your area, with your vision prescription.  They'll be able to show you your options.  At the shop where I teach, we have the lenses in stock, but many shops will have to order them in for you 

 

Harris

Denver, CO

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5 hours ago, omeinv said:

Go to a full service dive shop in your area, with your vision prescription.  They'll be able to show you your options.  At the shop where I teach, we have the lenses in stock, but many shops will have to order them in for you 

 

Prescription masks that I've seen have been very basic, such as putting prescription -X.00 in one eye and -Y.00 in the other.  A small subset of masks in a dive shop will be made to accommodate the lenses.  Years ago, in a dive/snorkeling location, I heard about an optometrist who would put your actual prescription into your mask, but it was pretty expensive.  I bought my most recent prescription mask online from Leisurepro.  It's a Cressi mask--can't remember the model name.  I agree that it's better to go to a dive shop to check out your options when you haven't previously had such a mask.  

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6 hours ago, jaga04 said:

Prescription masks that I've seen have been very basic, such as putting prescription -X.00 in one eye and -Y.00 in the other.  A small subset of masks in a dive shop will be made to accommodate the lenses.  Years ago, in a dive/snorkeling location, I heard about an optometrist who would put your actual prescription into your mask, but it was pretty expensive.  I bought my most recent prescription mask online from Leisurepro.  It's a Cressi mask--can't remember the model name.  I agree that it's better to go to a dive shop to check out your options when you haven't previously had such a mask.  

Yes, the first thing you want to do is find a mask that fits, ideally verified by taking it in the water (at least a pool), then spend the money for the lenses. 

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  • 1 month later...
On 9/24/2021 at 1:52 PM, jaga04 said:

Prescription masks that I've seen have been very basic, such as putting prescription -X.00 in one eye and -Y.00 in the other.  A small subset of masks in a dive shop will be made to accommodate the lenses.  Years ago, in a dive/snorkeling location, I heard about an optometrist who would put your actual prescription into your mask, but it was pretty expensive.  I bought my most recent prescription mask online from Leisurepro.  It's a Cressi mask--can't remember the model name.  I agree that it's better to go to a dive shop to check out your options when you haven't previously had such a mask.  

Cressi masks are the gold standard of snorkel masks with a wide variety of styles (some with fog free lenses) to fit pretty much every face.

The challenge is to find a dive shop that stocks  a good variety to try on. Cressi also makes quick connect dry snorkels.

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  • 2 months later...

Btw a note on whether or not to bring flippers, I will be bringing my own from now on after having been given heel-strap fins when I tried snuba and the blasted things kept slipping off my heels. I have awful trouble with ski and snowboard boots too, my heels are just too narrow for most standard rental kit. So if you have trouble with the width of your heels or arch height with footwear I’d suggest considering bringing your own fins. 

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6 minutes ago, tborntreger said:

Any advice on where/how to get a prescription mask?

Came across by accident.  
One’s advice is take your optician’s prescription to a reputable Dive Shop, where one can try for fit and comfort from all the brands that offer prescription lenses.  Better the comfort, more confidence, more enjoyment.

Additional

A ‘dry’ snorkel is a must.  Also consider a small bottle of anti-fog spray.

After every swim, wash throughly with plenty of cold water, to preserve the rubber etc.
 

 

 

Edited by PORT ROYAL
Dry
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2 hours ago, tborntreger said:

Any advice on where/how to get a prescription mask?

I bought my mine on Amazon.  My mask isn't available now,  but if you search for "prescription snorkel mask" you'll find several options.  Only cost $80 and included a snorkel.  Works great!

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6 hours ago, PORT ROYAL said:

Came across by accident.  
One’s advice is take your optician’s prescription to a reputable Dive Shop, where one can try for fit and comfort from all the brands that offer prescription lenses.  Better the comfort, more confidence, more enjoyment.

Additional

A ‘dry’ snorkel is a must.  Also consider a small bottle of anti-fog spray.

After every swim, wash throughly with plenty of cold water, to preserve the rubber etc.
 

 

 

Skip the anti-fog spray and buy an antI-fog mask (Cressi has them and several models can take prescription lenses). On second though, perhaps the actual script lens could use anti fog spray. But just don’t put any on the  lens in an anti-fog goggle.

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  • 2 weeks later...

First snorkel in almost 30 years was on our cruise over Thanksgiving. We had initially canceled our excursion because the time difference wouldn't get us there. Then, we got off 30 minutes early, but couldn't get back to the cabin to get our snorkel gear. Let me just say, it was not a good experience. Then, our own beach day in St Thomas, we took it. Much better fit, but low and behold, we didn't get the chemicals close to off the masks enough. But, it was extremely clear (pun intended maybe), that I will not use an excursions snorkeling gear again. It is more work than enjoyment.

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4 hours ago, bigrednole said:

First snorkel in almost 30 years was on our cruise over Thanksgiving. We had initially canceled our excursion because the time difference wouldn't get us there. Then, we got off 30 minutes early, but couldn't get back to the cabin to get our snorkel gear. Let me just say, it was not a good experience. Then, our own beach day in St Thomas, we took it. Much better fit, but low and behold, we didn't get the chemicals close to off the masks enough. But, it was extremely clear (pun intended maybe), that I will not use an excursions snorkeling gear again. It is more work than enjoyment.

If you’re going to invest in snorkel gear, consider getting a “no fog” mask. Cressi (a top manufacturer of dive gear) makes several “no fog” versions and (trust me) they work! You only need to remember to not wipe the madk’s interior coating - instead, just rinse them with fresh water. Cressi makes excellent snorkels and fins too. But, fins (perhaps almost as much as the mask) need to fit YOU. 
 

I recommend finding a good “dive shop” so you can try on stuff and get expert advice.
 

But, one thing is for sure: The last thing you want to do is stick a rental or tour-provided snorkel in your mouth (no matter how much you’re told they’re “sanitized” between uses).

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