Frequently Asked Questions
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ABOUT PUERTO RICO
WSSM SURF HOUSE
SAFETY & MEDICAL
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Do I need a passport?
Puerto Rico is a US Territory, thus NO PASSPORT is needed for US citizens.
Should I purchase travel insurance?
Puerto Rico experiences the Atlantic hurricane season, similar to the remainder of the Caribbean Sea and North Atlantic oceans. Because PR is a US territory, it is well equipped with detection and advanced warning systems, so you will definitely know if a hurricane or tropical storm is coming, just as you would in any other US state or territory. However, these, among other natural disasters, are things that are beyond our control, so we DO recommend that you purchase travel insurance, so that your hard earned vacation investment won't go to waste.
While we do not offer refunds, should your travel plans change for the above or any other reason, we do allow re-booking of your stay with us, for up to one year of your original booking date- at no charge. No cancellations or re-bookings are offered within 48 hours of your arrival date.
TIP: When purchasing travel insurance, make sure it includes coverage not only covering cancellations, but also lost or stolen property, injury, and illness. And confirm whether you are partially or completely covered.
Can I rent a car?
Yes. Driving in Puerto Rico is relatively easy. Hazards do include roads that are narrower than you are probably used to, and lack of street names and signs. BUT, renting a car is very easy, and can be done at the Aguadilla Airport, located only 7-10 minutes from the WSSM Surf House. Be sure to bring a copy of your insurance card, drivers license (most rental companies require you to be 25yrs+), and your passport (if you are not a US citizen).
TIP: Charlie Car Rental offers the most economical rates on the island, and an easy cancel-anytime policy. They also rent surf racks for $10- just call them a few days before your rental date and let them know what size of rack you need.
What is the water & air temperature? Do I need a wetsuit?
Water temperatures averages between 77 and 81 degrees Fahrenheit, approximately 25-28 Celcius. Air tempuratures average around 80 degrees, but can be hotter or cooler depending on the season. Wetsuits are not needed, but if you get cold easily, you may want a springsuit (1-2mm), especially during windy, rainy, or evening sessions.
What is the local currency & language?
U.S. dollar is the local currency. Both English and Spanish are the national languages of Puerto Rico, and most Puerto Ricans speak English.
What's the legal drinking age?
Are drugs legal in Puero Rico?
NO. No illegal drugs are permitted at the WSSM Surf House, on premises or in our vehicles. If you are found with ANY illegal drug, or attempt to purchase any, they will be confiscated and destroyed and you will be immediately removed from the premises. No exceptions!
Can I bring donations for the local kids and schools?
Of course! WSSM is happy to drop off your donations to those in need in the local communities and schools. Pencils, pens, colored paper, construction paper, glue sticks, highlighters, stickers and other craft supplies are always appreciated. Clothing is also a highly valued item in Puerto Rico... so feel free to clean out your closets, and help those less fortunate!
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Where is the WSSM Surf House located?
In a gated and fenced property, we are centrally located in Aguadilla... only 7 minutes from the Aguadilla Airpor, 7-10 minutes from popular beaches and surfing spots like Wilderness, Bridges, Surfers Beach and Crashboat, 15 minutes from the north shore (Jobos beach), and only 20-25 minutes from world famous Rincon surfing beaches, making it easy and quick to surf anywhere the waves are breaking. For the increased security of our guests, the exact address is not released until payment for your booking is received.
What if I need to cancel or re-book?
CANCELLATIONS: ALL Sales are final, no cancellations are accepted and no refunds issued.
RE-BOOKING: Should your plans change for any reason, you have up to 48 hours before arrival to re-book your stay with us for a future date, for up to one year of original booking date. No re-bookings are permitted 48 hours prior to scheduled arrival. PLEASE PURCHASE TRAVEL INSURANCE to protect your travel investment. Please call us at 808.383.8323 if you have any questions or concerns.
What time is check-in & check-out?
Check-in: 1pm / Check-Out: 11am
Early check-in (includes breakfast) is available for $50per room, beginning at 1am, AND ONLY IF a room is available. If you are arriving on an early a.m. flight, we recommend you reserve the previous night so that your room is guaranteed to be available to you upon arrival.
Does WSSM provide snacks or refreshments?
Filtered water is always provided free of charge. Juice and coffee is available during mealtimes, free of charge. Additional snacks, sodas, juices and more are available for purchase at the WSSM Surf House, and during daily surf transfers. All purchased refreshments are added to your tab, and payment is due upon checkout. Cash, credit cards and paypal payments are accepted.
Is WiFi available?
WiFi is available free of charge at the WSSM Surf House whenever there is power. However, as in most 2nd & 3rd world countries, it does occasionally go out, but Puerto Rico is very good about getting it up and running again quickly. Thankfully, the Aguadilla area rarely experiences power outages-- unlike other parts of the island.
Is a surf guide included in my all-inclusive package?
No. WSSM offers surf transfers to the surf breaks only. Your driver is very knowledgeable about the local breaks, and will suggest where to paddle out, where to sit, and how to get back in, and may join you for an occasional session. However, you will not have a guide sitting with you in the lineup, 100% of the time. If this is something you need or want, a surf guide is available upon request for an additional charge. Please contact us so we can arrange a surf guide for you, based on your skill level and budget.
Is there a surf photographer available?
Yes. It is not included in your package, but is available for booking. A minimum 2 week notice is required to book a local photographer. The WSSM photographer, Gabeto Fernandez, is available with approximately 4 weeks' notice. Rates vary, and you can contact one of Puerto Rico's local photographers here, to discuss with them directly your needs and budget, and to coordinate the details.
May I invite guests back to the WSSM Surf House?
No. No unregistered guests are allowed on the property at any time. No exceptions. However, you're not required or expected to stay on property at any time, and are free to hang out and visit with anyone you wish... off property, at your own risk.
Is the WSSM Surf House co-ed?
Yes. We welcome all surfers, of all surfing abilities, and their loved ones and friends at the WSSM Surf House. However, we cater to the average, everyday surfer, so if you love to charge barrels, get tow-ed in, enjoy surfing over razor sharp reef in 30' surf, etc., then you may want to stay somewhere else.
My travel partner doesn't surf. Can they come?
Yes, of course they are welcome to come! However, we do suggest non-surfers bring beach chairs, towels and reading materials for entertainment. TV and WiFi is available in the lounge area at the WSSM Surf House as well.
Is there a discounted rate for non-surfers?
Are there nightlife options available?
Taxi service is available upon request to local nightlife, eateries, etc. The WSSM Surf House is located in Aguadilla, so we recommend that you research the options nearby online, and we're happy to call you a taxi!
Do I need a converter for my curling iron and hairdryer?
Electrical outlets in Puerto Rico are the same as in the USA, and use 110 to 120 volts AC. Those traveling from outside the US should bring their converters with them, as they are extremely difficult to find.
safety & medical . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Safety tips for traveling to Puerto Rico?
According to the Puerto Rico Board of Tourism "Robbery and theft does happen occasionally as any place else, but you need not be concerned. Just don't be too careless. Always keep a copy of your documents with you. Take precaution and make copies of your important documents. Keep a copy at home. Take a copy with you and leave the originals in a safe place in your hotel room or wherever you are staying. Swim wear is fine for the beach and leisure wear for the resorts, but elsewhere a little dressing up is in order. "
However, as always when traveling, we recommend that you also employ the following precautions.
- Do not dress provocatively when shopping, dining or out on an excursion. Bikinis are fine for the beach, but not elsewhere.
- Do not flash lots of jewelry or cash.
- Do not invite guests back to the WSSM Surf House
- Do not give out the location of the WSSM Surf House (ever!)
Not following the above guidelines not only puts yourself in danger, but also endangers the lives of others in our group as well as the WSSM staff, by allowing yourself/us to become a target.
Are there medical facilities nearby?
According to the Puerto Rico Board of Tourism "Health standards in Puerto Rico are generally comparable with those of the United States, its medical facilities are among the finest in the Caribbean. There are physicians and hospitals in all cities. For more information contact the "Departamento de Salud" (Department of Health) at (787) 766-1616."
A basic first aid kit is kept at the WSSM Surf House as well as in all our vehicles, but trained medical staff in case of an emergency is not on-site.
Should I be afraid of a shark attack?
Absolutely... as well as ALL sorts of other dangers that lurk in the ocean. However, according to Wikipedia's online records, the last fatal, unprovoked shark attack in Puerto Rico was in November, 1924.
If you are allergic to Jellyfish, Portuguese Man-O-War or other sea creatures/species, we recommend you bring medication with you for treatment. A basic first aid kit is provided at the WSSM Surf House & vehicles, but trained medical staff is not on-site.
Is surfing dangerous?
Yes. You may get hit by your board, run over by other surfers, cut by your fins, the reef, or you may get stung or bitten by sea life. As with any sport, there are many dangers that you should be aware of. Please research the dangers of surfing if you feel uncomfortable, or need additional information. We suggest researching the following sites for more information on safety: NOAA, SurfingHandbook.com, Surfing-Waves.com, Hawaii Beach Safety
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Can I fly into another airport and still receive a free shuttle with my all-inclusive package?
No. The shuttle service included in your package is ONLY from/to Aguadilla / Rafael Hernández Airport (airport code: BQN). If you wish to fly into San Juan or Mayaguez, we recommend you book a shuttle service from the airport, or rent a car- which is quite economical in Puerto Rico. Please drive safely and at your own risk.
How far away are the airports from the WSSM Surf House?
-- Aguadilla (Rafael Hernandez / Airport code: BQN) is approximately 7 minutes away.
-- San Juan (Luis Muñoz Marín International / Airport code: SJU) is 2 1/2 hours away.
-- Mayaguez (Airport code: MAZ) is 25-35 minutes away.
What is the all-inclusive package airport shuttle schedule?
WSSM airport shuttle service (All-inclusive packages only) to/from Aguadilla airport run from 7:30am - 11pm. If your flight arrives earlier or later, please wait in the arrivals area INSIDE the airport, until the shuttle arrives during those times, For a fee, you may also book the early AM WSSM shuttle.
Is a red-eye airport shuttle service available?
Early AM arrivals and departure shuttles can be booked at $20 each way, for a maximum of 6 passengers per trip.
A 48 hour notice is required, and shuttle charges are payable in cash upon arrival/departure. Please call 808.383.8323 to book your red-eye shuttle.
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What should I bring with me?
Besides a surfboard, we highly recommend:
- surf booties... sea urchins and reef are common in Puerto Rico, especially if you are prone to standing up on the ocean floor after riding a wave, or have "tender feet".
- extra leashes
- rashguard/springsuit (if you get cold easily)
- beach towels (WSSM Surf House towels are not allowed to leave the property)
- basic toiletries such as toothpaste, shampoo & conditioner (if you prefer a certain brand of shampoo/conditioner)
- BUG SPRAY!! The mosquitoes can be persistent here at times
TIP: If you like to travel light, these items are also available in local surf shops, but because Puerto Rico is a small country, we do recommend that you purchase these items, especially the surf booties, before you arrive, to ensure their availability and better pricing.
The WSSM Surf House provides bed linens, a pillow, 1 towel and handtowel, hand soap, and basic shampoo and conditioner. Beach towels and surf towels are NOT provided.
Are there surfboard rentals available at the WSSM Surf House?
Yes. We have a small quiver of shortboards and longboards, of varying sizes available. Pricing ranges from $25-$35 per day, or $125 for the week (7 nights).
Our current quiver includes*:
(3) 9'0 longboards (Bellasol Surfboards and others)
(1) 7'10" funshape (Bellasol Surfboards)
(1) 6'5" Hawaii shortboard thruster (Keoki Surfboards)
(1) 6'0" shortboard thruster
(1) 5'10" shortboard thruster
*Inventory is subject to change without notice. Please call us for our current boards at 808.383.8323
Let us know what size you're looking for at least 2 weeks prior to arrival and we will try to have it available for you in the WSSM quiver. If you do not like the board, we are happy to take you to local surf shops to browse for others for an additional charge of $10 per surf shop. Average rentals at local surf shops are approximately $25-$45 per day.
What if I damage my surfboard rental?
DAMAGE TO WSSM SURFBOARDS: A $300 - $500 deposit is required for all board rentals, depending on size and quality of board chosen. Basic ding repair charges and replacement for broken boards are assessed at check-out, and are comparable to other ding repair & replacement rates in the area.
DAMAGE TO SURF SHOP BOARDS: Deposits and ding repair policies for surf shop rental boards vary from shop to shop. However, most will require a credit card deposit.
When and where will we be surfing?
Surf spots are selected by the WSSM staff daily, based upon local knowledge of surf conditions and locations. Surf transfers leave at pre-determined times, and guests may choose to surf, or stay and relax at the house.
Is it difficult to learn to surf?
Yes. As with any new sport, learning is the most difficult part. But we believe YOU CAN DO IT! We're happy to arrange surf lessons for you from a local surf shop (pricing varies), where they will teach you the basics of surfing. Once you have completed at least one lesson, we will gladly take you to a beginner friendly surf spot.