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Anyone thinking about learning to dive is bound to have loads of questions, so to help you out we've tried to answer some of the more common ones...
What's involved in learning to dive?
The basic qualification is the PADI Open Water Diver Course - the most widely recognized and respected diving certification in the world. This involves classroom sessions, during which you learn diving theory, and swimming pool sessions, where you'll learn and practice your diving skills. Once you've mastered the fundamentals there's a short multiple choice exam, and then you just have to demonstrate your skills during four "Open Water" dives at the coast - spread over two different trips.
How much does it cost?
The Open Water course costs £375. This includes all the classroom sessions, four "confined water" sessions in the pool, your qualifying "open water" dives and also your PADI certification. We also offer the course on a referral basis and our own Open Water PLUS course which includes a mask, snorkel, fins and boots for you to keep after the course. Please see the Open Water course page for further details.
How long does it all take?
Normally we space it out over about six weeks - one classroom and one pool session each week for four weeks, and then two trips down to the coast for your qualifying dives. Having said that if you need to get it done quicker (maybe you've got a holiday already lined up?) then just let us know - we'll always do our best to help.
What if I'm not sure...?
The best way to find out what it's like is to give it a go, so why not come along for a "Try Dive" session? For just £30 you get a couple of hours in the pool with one of our instructors, (plenty of time to see if you like it), and we'll even lend you all the Scuba equipment you need.
What do I need to bring with me?
For the classroom sessions just bring your 'Crew Pack' (the course manual which we'll give you when you sign up for the course). For the pool you'll need your swimming costume and a towel. If you already own a mask and fins then by all means bring them along too.
Can I hire the equipment while I'm learning?
No need to hire it - it's all included in the price. We'll lend you everything you need to complete your Open Water course, except mask, snorkel and boots.
Do I have to be a really good swimmer?
No. You need to be "reasonably proficient", so we'll ask you to swim 200 metres and tread water for 10 minutes, but other than that you just have to be comfortable in the water.
Have I got to be fit?
You've got to be healthy, but you certainly don't have to be an athlete!! We will ask you to have a short medical just to check that there aren't any medical reasons why you shouldn't be diving - you can either have this with your own GP or else we can arrange it for you.
What about more Advanced courses?
To further your diving career you'll need to develop both your skills and your understanding of diving theory, so why not have a look at the Advanced Open Water Diver course outline to see what's involved?
What should I look for when choosing a dive centre?
Even if you choose not to learn to dive with us (and we sincerely hope you do!), we recommend that you do some research into the dive centre or independent instructor you are thinking of using. Try searching the web for the dive centre name and phrases like "accident" or "HSE". As all paid UK dive instruction is covered under the UK Health and Safety Diving at Work (1997) regulations we also recommend you visit the HSE website and look for any issues that may have been reported.
And Diving Holidays?
We luv 'em!! We organise several trips a year, and recent trips include the Red Sea, Indonesia, Antigua, Kenya, the Caymans, Malta, Mexico, the Maldives ... need we go on?! Check out the holidays page to find out what's coming up, and for the very latest info, or even to reserve a place, just give us a call.
So what do I do next?
Easy - either give us a call or pop in to the shop for a chat ... we hope to see you soon !