Frequently Asked (very good) Questions:
Why not just join a SCUBA diving live-aboard as a snorkeler? There are several reasons why this isn’t a good idea for a snorkeler. To no ones fault and understandably so, sites are chosen with SCUBA divers in mind and tend to be deeper, or with strong current, or wavy. And if the reef is further away from the dive site the boat may have to bring snorkelers back on the boat for safety reasons while they follow the divers. And, of course, now that there is a live-aboard boat dedicated for snorkelers, this question becomes a bit moot :-).
What about staying at a resort? A resort is a good option, but for the avid snorkeler and in places like Raja Ampat, staying at a resort is very limiting in terms of seeing and snorkeling in a variety of habitats, and over different types of reefs. Raja Ampat is nearly 50,000 sq. miles in size and having a live-aboard simply allows greater exposure to all that Raja Ampat has to offer.
How are the prices so low compared to similar trips offered by other tour operators? It’s what we don’t include that makes us special. There are no additional costs associated with group tour leaders, group resort-stays before and after the trip, and expensive travel itineraries. We charter the entire boat, which includes local guides, and offer it to independent traveling snorkelers at fair prices based on the cost of the boat.
Why go with Snorkel Vacations? We have over 20 years of combined experience designing snorkeling tours and have personally guided over 50 snorkeling trips in Raja Ampat. We chartered a quality boat, designed and will run a fantastic itinerary that offers snorkelers the best of Raja Ampat, and all at very good rates.
Does the lower price reflect a sacrifice on the quality/safety of the boat? Absolutely not. Sea Safari Cruises has been successfully operating live-aboard boats, five boats including the Sea Safari 8, in Indonesia for over 30 years. Sea Safari 8 has been working in Raja Ampat for nearly 15 years and possesses more than the required compliment of safety equipment and keeps several crew on watch 24/7. For more information about the Sea Safari 8, click here.
Will there be an agent in Jakarta that guests can contact? Yes. We have an agent in Jakarta that can assist travelers with logistical issues. Please note that we will not have booked any pre, post, or internal travel or accommodations, thus our agent may be limited in what he can do.
What is the cancellation policy? 91 – 150 days prior to departure: 50% of trip cost. 90 days or less prior to departure: 100% of tour cost. If the tour gets cancelled due to COVID-19 restrictions imposed by governments of either or both of the originating and destination countries, we will reschedule the tour at no additional cost. We cannot be responsible for any penalties or costs associated with international or local travel, or accommodations that may result from the cancelled departure.
Will there be guides on the boat? Yes, the boat carries three dedicated SCUBA/snorkeling guides and a cruise director that often jumps in the water as well. Two dinghies bring guests from the main boat to the snorkeling site and the dinghies remain to assist snorkelers with whatever they need.