Advantages Hot and sunny, beautiful setting
Disadvantages Poor entertainment, cold food
This review is all about the Bhia Principe complex near Sosua and how I could not help thinking I was in Butlins a lot of the time ....Now depending on your experiences of Butlins the above comment could be construed as either being positive or negative. It’s not really meant to be either, its just that walking around the complex the manner of the set up reminded me of an up market version of this popular English holiday camp. This was mainly based on the way the apartments were set out and the way the “entertainment” and main areas were all in a central location. However, I will explain more similarities as I go through the review but first of all I want to take you back to the airport and the transfer where there is some information which you will find useful if you visit this place yourself.
First of all, when you actually arrive in the Dominican you have to pay an immigration tax, this has to be paid before you go through passport control. Believe me when I say you would be well advised to rush to the counter where you pay for your form, it’s on the left as you go in and the queues are horrendous. This can be paid in sterling, US dollars or Dominican pesos. It costs either £9, $10 or 200 pesos per person. As you can see from these prices it is marginally cheaper to pay in dollars.Once you have your form it is then a bit of a pain to fill in with quite a bit of info needed. There are only a couple of tables provided for this (but no pens) so like I said above try and get in the queue first otherwise you end up sitting on the floor doing it.
You then go through customs in the normal way showing your passport and this form, they then stamp it and give you a section back … DO NOT LOSE THIS !! You need it to get back out of the country (which incidentally costs you the same again)As with most foreign airports there are numerous porters around willing to carry your bags. Usually you can just tip these what you want but in the Dominican they are expected to be paid a set price which is £1 per item, they are not as pushy as most places and a polite no will ensure they don’t hassle you too much.
Once on the bus a rep from the Bahia Principeresort will place a plastic band on your arm, this denotes your level of all inclusive (there are 2 – more about that later) They will also at this point actually allocate you a room number which I found quite unusual. I thought perhaps this was to speed the booking in process up but it isn’t. Basically what it is for is for you to put the room number tag on your cases as soon as you leave the bus, these are then left where they are, porters then load them onto little buses which deliver them to your room.The actual booking in process is much the same as you experience in normal resorts and didn’t really cause us any problems, they were pretty helpful and seemed to have a good understanding of English. They also supplied a very detailed map which showed exactly where our apartment was, finding it was therefore not the nightmare you sometimes experience.
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