Frequently asked questions

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Frequently asked questions

We are often asked questions by our Customers, and as a result, we have put together the following information based on the most common questions asked. If you have more questions that you need the answers to, just ask – we are always here to help.

I want to learn to dive – do I have to be fit and healthy?

Diving is a physical activity, and you will need to be in relatively good health. The PADI regulations require every diver to complete a medial questionnaire (click here) before diving. You complete this in resort, but we recommend that you look at the document and check with your GP if you are in any doubt BEFORE you travel. If you answer ‘Yes’ to any of the questions, your GP will need to declare you as fit to dive. Being referred to a Doctor in resort is often a very costly and time consuming affair!

Should you have any physical disabilities, please let us know – diving is an inclusive sport, and we will strive to accommodate any physical disability, but we will need as much notice as possible. Several of our scuba partners speciailise in diving for the less-able. Still got doubts? Contact Us.

What about equipment – can I hire it locally?

You can hire top quality, regularly serviced equipment – anything from a full outfit to a mask. When diving with our partners Marlin S.A. in Cuba, full equipment (comprising wetsuit, mask, fins, regulator and cylinders) is all included in the price of your dive package. Tanks and weights are available in resort for divers who have their own kit. Still got doubts? Contact Us.

What extra baggage allowances are there for divers on the plane?

Each and every airline has their own policies, with the majority offering additional baggage allowance on the production of a valid scuba qualification card. With our specific airline partners flying to the Caribbean, we can provide a personal baggage allowance of 35kgs. Flights to the Red Sea Riviera typically allow 15-20kgs per person, with a 5kg additional dive equipment allowance. Ask your Travel Advisor for details of your chosen airline. Still got doubts? Contact Us.

I am qualified as an Open Water Diver, but have not dived for a number of years. Does this matter?

No, although you will have to complete a check-dive under the guidance of one of the Instructors to demonstrate and polish up on your skills before undertaking more dives. We will be happy to pre-book this for you. Still got doubts? Contact Us.

Insurance – do I need specialist insurance to dive?

As part of our booking conditions, it is imperative that you have sufficient travel insurance. We would recommend that you check that your insurance covers you to both learn to dive and/or to dive as a qualified diver before you depart for your holiday. There are many specialist insurers that you can find on the web – just ‘google' "scuba diving insurance" and take your pick. Still got doubts? Contact Us.

I don't want to spend my whole holiday learning to dive – can I shorten the course times?

Yes – through various routes. The typical Open Water Diver course is completed over 4 days (approx. 6 hours per day) and comprises pool sessions, theory sessions, and of course open water sessions. We can assist you in shortening your course time in resort by offering an E-Learning route, a Fast-Track route, or a Referral course.

The E-Learning route enables you to conduct all of the theory elements in the UK before arriving in resort, thus leaving just the diving in the sun (3 days). Alternatively, the Referral route enables you to complete the theory and pool sessions in the UK before departing, leaving you with just the Open Water dives (done in 2 days) in resort before graduation. The Fast-Track route is only available with certain diving centres, and entails you completing the theory on a self-study basis before you arrive in resort - similar to the E-Learning, but using manuals instead. Still got doubts? Contact Us.

I am holidaying with my family and don't want to leave them every day. Can they get involved? What facilities are there available for our children?

There are many answers to this! We can get the kids and family involved too – either as divers (from 8 years old +) or as spectators. We can arrange for your family to accompany you on your dive boat where they can snorkel while you are diving, or just take in the scenery and sun – you will only do two dives of c.40 – 50 minutes, so they are not going to be left unaccompanied for too long, and the boats all have toilets, and provide lunch and drinks too (payable on-board).

Sightings of dolphins and flying fish, and the occasional turtle are not uncommon, and this makes a great excursion away from the hotel too. Alternatively, and for example, if you are learning to dive or diving from our two flagship hotels in Sharm El Sheikh (Hyatt Regency and Ritz Carlton) there is no reason why the family cannot watch you take your first underwater ‘steps' as the jetties and beaches from which you dive are accessible to all residents. There are also superb kids club facilities and spas at these hotels too. Still got doubts? Contact Us.

I want to learn to dive, but want one on one lessons. Can this be done?

Typically, the groups of new divers under instruction are made up of 4 or so people – small groups to ensure quality of instruction and maximum safety. We can also provide private tuition – one on one instruction – to all divers wishing to take a course. Pre-Booking is essential. Still got doubts? Contact Us.

Can I book for a group of divers – perhaps even a live-aboard holiday for my dive club?

Yes – whether it be in or from a hotel in Sharm, a live-aboard in the Red Sea, or a custom tour or package in Cuba for example – one of the worlds greatest reef systems with some amazing history too. Just ask your Travel Adviser, or challenge us to build an itinerary for you! You wont be disappointed. Still got doubts? Contact Us.

How long does it take to do a PADI Open Water Diver course?

Typically, and through the in-resort route to qualification, an Open Water Diver course takes 4 days. We can offer shorter in-resort durations through the PADI E-Learning or PADI Open Water Diver Referral routes – just ask your Travel Adviser for more details. Still got doubts? Contact Us.

What does an Open Water Diver course consist of? What will I have to do?

The PADI Open Water Diver programme and the American Canadian Underwater Confederation (ACUC) Open Water Diver programme (Cuba) are globally recognised qualifications that certifies you to dive in open water to a depth of 18 metres. No more try dives, no more resort courses – you are now free to dive your own agenda (within the limits of course of your ability and qualification, and with a suitably qualified ‘buddy').

The course is divided into 3 areas – Knowledge Development, Confined Water Dives and Open Water Dives.

Knowledge Development – is the starting point, but runs throughout the course – you will learn about the environment you will dive in, the equipment you will use, safety for you and your buddy and the science of diving. This is conducted in the classroom through practical instruction, demonstration and active participation. Alternatively, we can arrange for you to do this on line (PADI E-Learning route), or at a dive centre in the UK (PADI OWD Referral route). Knowledge reviews are conducted at the end of each learning section.

Confined Water Dives – your first breath underwater! You will, in the swimming pool, undergo instruction of how to get the basics right so that you are comfortable and safe underwater – even learning skills such as clearing your mask of water without surfacing, ‘buddy-breathing' and safety drills. What is more, you can stand up if you get flustered!

Open Water Dives – accompanied by a Professional Instructor, you will venture into the clear warm waters of the Red Sea, completing the skills you have learnt in the pool and building on them each time. With a de-brief between the four dives required, your learning will be gradual and continuous, ensuring that you build your skills at the right pace for you. You will also explore your new environment, taking in the fantastic colours of the reef – learning whilst having fun is the only way! A Knowledge Review will be required at the end of the Open Water dives and you will graduate, becoming a qualified PADI or ACUC Open Water Diver, a license that qualifies you to dive to 18 metres deep anywhere in the world!. Still got doubts? Contact Us.

I have my own kit and want to take it with me. What extra baggage allowances are there for divers on the plane?

Each and every airline has their own policies, with the majority offering additional baggage allowance on the production of a valid scuba qualification card. With our specific airline partners flying to the Caribbean, we can provide a personal baggage allowance of 35kgs. Flights to the Red Sea Riviera typically allow 15-20kgs per person, with a 5kg additional dive equipment allowance. Ask your Travel Advisor for details of your chosen airline. If you need to take more, why not consider upgrading your flight to Premium Economy or Business Class? These seats typically come with greater baggage allowances – just ask your Travel Advisor for details. Still got doubts? Contact Us.


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