Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best season to interact with the dolphins?
WILD about DOLPHINS’ operates trips year around. The most optimal conditions are April through October due to consistently calmer seas, warmer water and better visibility. However, the trips throughout the winter months provide a wonderful experience as well.
I have not snorkeled before - can I participate?
If you can swim and are comfortable in the water I will be happy to give you a snorkeling lesson. I provide top of the line snorkel equipment for both children and adults. There are a variety of mask styles and sizes, Snorkel flotation vests are available. Non-swimmers will find the trip a rewarding experience as well.
Am I likely to get seasick?
Seasickness is very unlikely aboard our vessel. Due to the fact that we travel through the backcountry we are very seldom in rough water. The dolphins generally stay in the shallow waters near the islands. If you are highly prone to motion sickness you may want to take an over-the-counter medication such as Trip-Tone or Dramamine. Sea Bands and ginger offer a natural alternative to medications.
Where do we go to see the dolphins and snorkel?
The course of our journey varies according to weather and sea conditions. Years of experience direct our routes. We are intimately familiar with the travel paths and home ground locations of the dolphins. Our journey typically takes us into the coastal Atlantic waters, the Gulf of Mexico and the backcountry waters around Key West. We very seldom venture far offshore as this is not where the dolphins make their home.
Are dolphin sightings guaranteed?
While dolphin sightings occur on nearly every trip, they are not 100% guaranteed. Sightings of the dolphins depends on the nature of their activity, weather, and sea conditions. No refunds will be issued in the event that we do not encounter dolphins.
Will we swim with the dolphins?
Our wild dolphin tour takes you to the Dolphin Playgrounds to watch dolphins as they display an exciting array of behaviors – hunting / fishing, playing / socializing, mating, sleeping / resting, caring for their calves and much more. As the Florida Keys Wild Dolphin Alliance Director / Founder, I conduct educational, respectful, environmentally sensitive tours.
Federal regulations and the Marine Mammal Protection Act in the U.S. prohibit swimming with wild dolphins. However, we do spend time snorkeling at different areas during the excursion. Some of the new Key West Dolphin Tour companies may suggest that they might give you the opportunity to swim with the dolphins. Reputable dolphin tour companies in Key West offer the opportunity to observe / watch the wild dolphins, not to swim with them. I highly recommend that you choose a wild dolphin tour company that is a member of the Florida Keys Wild Dolphin Alliance for your Key West excursion.
Do we extend discounts for children, seniors, military, locals, and/or repeat guests?
We do offer Key West locals, military and repeat guests a 10% discount with verification. We are a small owner-operated company that takes a maximum of 6 passengers per trip. The large multi-passenger tour companies may offer discounts for children and seniors. Wild About Dolphins excursions offer the most professional, quality tour.
Which trip is better - the morning or the afternoon?
Both trips are great. The dolphins do not adhere to a regular schedule in terms of their behavior.
How far / long to the dolphins 'Playground'?
Each trip is different and depends on weather conditions and where the dolphins are most likely to be. We often see dolphins along the way to one of the ‘Playgrounds’. Typically travel time to one of the playgrounds is 30 to 45 minutes.
How deep is the water?
Dolphin sightings typically occur in water averaging depths of 5 to 20 feet. The snorkel sites average 5 to 15 feet in depth. There are also several great sites with shallow sandbars about 3 to 5 feet in depth. These sites are ideal for children, novice swimmers and non-swimmers.
Will children enjoy the trip?
The trip is a wonderful experience for children of all ages. I highly recommend scheduling a private charter for your group if you have a toddler or infant. US Coast Guard regulations require children 6 years of age and younger to wear a life preserver throughout the trip, which will be provided by WILD about DOLPHINS. Infants are required to wear a life preserver appropriate for their size and weight provided by you. An adult and/or a snorkel liability release signed by a parent or guardian must accompany children 16 years of age and under.
How does a wild dolphin journey compare to a captive dolphin experience?
Observing and learning from wild dolphins in their home ground habitat is a special opportunity. WILD about DOLPHINS is committed to offering you the opportunity to observe the wild dolphins in a highly respectful, nonintrusive manner. All observation is based on the dolphin activity observed. In the event the dolphins are feeding, sleeping or mating we will observe activity from a respectful, non-disruptive distance. The dolphins know and trust Captain Sheri and her boat Amazing Grace II. Over the course of several years a mutual relationship of trust and communication has been fostered.
Can we bring our dog(s)?
Wild About Dolphins warmly welcomes dog(s) of all breeds and sizes on our private tours. We offer 3-hour and 4-hour private tours for you and your canine companion(s). We provide dog life jackets, spring water & bowl, water toys, grain-free treats, and a Wild About Dolphins dog tag.
What happens if Wild About Dolphins cancels our tour due to inclement weather conditions?
Wild about Dolphins monitors weather and wind conditions on several local marine / weather forecast sites. Please keep in mind that forecasts are subject to change and predictions more than 24 hours out are not reliable. In the event of potentially poor conditions, we will try to contact you in advance. We request that you contact us the day prior to your tour in the event of possible high winds or thunderstorms. Please provide us with telephone contact details for your party and / or call us direct at (305) 294-5026.
Please Note the Following Terms of Agreement/Consent:
1. If you booked online and paid in full at time of booking, you will receive a full refund in the event of a 48-hour cancellation notice with your email notification. Wild About Dolphins reserves the right to cancel your tour in the event of high winds, thunderstorms, and all unsafe conditions. You will receive a full refund if your tour is cancelled by Wild About Dolphins and you are not able to reschedule. An awesome online company — Fareharbor – processes all online Book Now / Prepaid tours. Refunds for prepaid tour cancellations can take up to 14 business days to process.
2. If you booked direct by calling Wild About Dolphins you will not be charged in advance. In the event of a 48-hour cancellation notice or inclement bad weather conditions, the credit card you provided to confirm your trip will not be charged. Wild About Dolphins reserves the right to verify and authorize your credit card prior to your tour. While this is not an advance charge for your trip, you assume full obligation for tour payment if you cancel your confirmed tour outside our 48-hour policy. Trip payment is due in full prior to your tour; you are welcome to use the credit card used to confirm your tour or pay with alternate credit card, traveler’s checks, or cash.