I was on the March 24th-29th cruise to Cozumel/Grand Caymen aboard the Inspiration this year. As you can see from the date of my post, I didn't waste any time to post about this excursion.
The dolphin swim and excursion is fabulous. You and your kids will enjoy it. It had to be at least 30-40 minutes and we interacted a lot with the dolphin. You get to shake its fins, swim with it, interact in open water with it, pet it, and more. It's amazing and truly worth the money.
The little shop in there where you go to buy your overpriced pictures and DVD is ridiculous. Of course, they speak just enough English to bamboozle you. Example - 4 pictures and a DVD is XXX Amount. So I pick out 4 pictures. Guy in broken English tells me since I picked 4 different people in my pictures that I have to pay the MAXIMUM price. Even though it does not say that any where. So, fine. Let me out of this hell hole already with people swarming the Kodak machines. So, I pay. My DVD comes. He inserts it long enough into the DVD player for me to see it running then takes it out. I did not see any people nor did I stop to think - hey, buddy, this whole deal is costing me $125 extra, let me see the whole DVD -
So, we get home yesterday and pop it in for a stop the in-laws. It is a TWO MINUTE DVD with the WRONG group! 2 minutes for $50USD! Thankfully I did not use cash with these fraud-makers. I called American Express and had the whole thing refunded and they are investigating it. I'll have to post later on the outcome from that. I asked the rep at AmEx if they can dispute it and she said sure, but they'd have to prove I got the correct DVD.... well of course they can't do that.
Moral of the story is the excursion is so different than the rat-race souvenier shop. I am the guest who has paid a lot of money already to see the dolphins and swim with them ($186 USDx3). They should have trained staff in that shop who know that the hell they are doing. They had people unorganized, trying to order pictures, waiting on CDs. It was a nightmare. Then to get home and not even have the right DVD and it was only 2 minutes! It was a shot of the dolphins kissing each group member and a couple of them swimming with it. That was IT!
So, demand to watch the entire DVD BEFORE you pay. Do not use cash in these overseas places. Use your handy credit card. They all understand "Visa and Mastercard". $126 may not be a lot to some people, but it is to me. And if you know any fluent Spanish, then when they change the rules on you as you're set to go and pay, then try and debate it or ask to speak to someone who understands fluent English. To me, that shop is fraud. The excursion and our leader was amazing but beware.
In hindsight, since you're not allowed to bring underwater cameras or anything on your person besides your life jacket and goggles, I wish I had offered a kid in the bistro eating lunch $20 to take pictures of us while we were on the excursion. I saw a post earlier that said you could bring the cameras.... well, not at this place.
Courage is only fear that has said its prayers.