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Old Jul 25, 00, 7:00 pm
  #13  
MisterNice
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Bryn Mawr PA & Wailea HI
Posts: 15,726
A couple of nice things to remember......and the elevator problems are definately part of the native culture. I have had elevator problems at every PR Hotel (over 6) I have stayed in including my condo. The worst was the Condado Plaza where all except one were broken for 2 weeks. Again, it is part of the native culture.

The public busses run quite often, and the last time I used them it was 25 cents (exact change) to the airport, Isla Verde or Old San Juan. They run on the main E-W street and although a schedule exists, it is not followed after the first bus in the morning. You can get an west-going bus (to Old San Juan) about a block or two from the Hilton and an east-going bus 2-3 blocks away (I forget the main E & W street name near the Hilton). A route map is at most bus stops, or the hotel concierge can usually provide one.

Taxis will rip-you-off about 95% of the time. Easiest con is to hit the "night fare button" for day-time trips. Or they insert their own faster "special" gears. You can "negotiate" fares to almost anywhere.....do it upon entering the taxi and agree in advance on the price. Pay on arrival and tip some too. Again, it is part of the native culture.

Rental cars are pricey, and the local drivers are really wild and crazy guys, the streets twist-n-turn and the locals start boozing VERY early in the PM so they are juiced from 400 PM on AND until breakfast. It is best to use rental cars for out of town trips only. Again, it is part of the native culture.

Minimise walks after sunset in all but the well-lighted main streets. Petty crime is present as in most cities, but the huge drug trade that abounds in PR has led to increasingly more violent crimes over the years. A couple of things to remember......and the elevator problems are definately part of the native culture. I have had elevator problems at every PR Hotel (over 6) I have stayed in including my condo of a few years back. The worst was the Condado Plaza where all except one were broken for 2 weeks. Again, it is part of the native culture.

The public busses run quite often, and the last time I used them it was 25 cents (exact change) to the airport, Isla Verde or Old San Juan. They run on the main E-W street and although a schedule exists, it is not followed after the first bus in the morning. You can get an west-going bus (to Old San Juan) about a block or two from the Hilton and an east-going bus 2-3 blocks away (I forget the main E & W street name near the Hilton). A route map is at most bus stops, or the hotel concierge can usually provide one.

Taxis will rip-you-off about 95% of the time. Easiest con is to hit the "night fare button" for day-time trips. Or they insert their own faster "special" gears. You can "negotiate" fares to almost anywhere.....do it upon entering the taxi and agree in advance on the price. Pay on arrival and tip a little too. Again, it is part of the native culture.

Rental cars are pricey, minor dings common and EXPENSIVE to repair, the local drivers are really wild and crazy guys, the streets twist-n-turn and the locals start boozing VERY early in the PM so they are juiced from 400 PM on AND until breakfast. Highway signs are in KM or KM/hr. Gas is pricey and in $/liter. IMHO it is best to use rental cars for out-of-town trips only. Again, it is part of the native culture.


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