Getting your scuba certification should be fun and easy. Remember these tips before you take a scuba course to maximize your scuba experience.
1. Know the prerequisites for diving
There are some age requirements you must meet before starting a scuba class. You must be over the after of 10 years to start an Open Water Scuba Course, and pool only classes are available for younger children from 8 years old. You also want to be physically fit and have no health condition that precludes you from diving. Check with a doctor to make sure you can dive. If you have any health concerns, the dive center will ask you for a doctor’s note before you can dive.
2. Choose the right dive center
Although most dive centers will offer scuba diving courses, some are more specialized in teaching. Find out how many courses the dive center does each year, how many instructors they have on staff and how many people will be attending each dive course. You want to find the right balance and choose a dive center which has enough instructors and dive staff that you won’t feel rushed through your course.
3. Book ahead
Many new divers often sign up for a dive course that coincides with a tropical vacation. Make sure you check with the hotel/dive center before you arrive to make sure they have availability during your stay. Make sure they have a pool or shallow confined water area for you to practice your dive skills before your open water dive.
4. Complete the course work at home “Referral Course.”
Dive courses can be broken down into three sections, classroom/dive theory, pool/confined water sessions, open water dives. Save yourself some time during a dive holiday by completing your class work and confined water session at a local dive shop, and finish your open water dives on a warm tropical reef.
Talk to your local dive center about signing up for a ”referral course”, and double check with your holiday dive shop that they will accept referral students. If you do attend a referral, make sure it is within six months of your planned open water dives, or better yet choose to complete your referral work at home a few weeks before your open water course so everything will be fresh in your memory.