Learn To Scuba Dive In
All Bahamas land based diving operators offer learn to dive vacation opportunities. Many of the liveaboard operators also offer learn to dive opportunities but prospective passengers should check with them to make sure their needs can be met. Learning to dive on a vacation is a great experience for an individual or an entire family (kids over 12 can get certified and dive under adult supervision) and it's certainly one of the finest ways to enjoy all of the natural beauty of The Bahamas.
Before we describe the different learn to dive opportunities The Bahamas offers, it's important to note that all dive operators listed in this guide are members of the Bahamas Diving Association (BDA). The members of the BDA belong to international diving certification agencies. These agencies set standards and policies to ensure all operators worldwide meet strict safety standards.
There are three different ways to learn to dive on a vacation:
Resort Course - Often called Discover Scuba or Intro. to Scuba, this short course is designed to get you diving, safely and quickly. It can be completed in a couple of hours and usually includes a short lecture, pool session and a dive on a shallow reef in very calm conditions. You are constantly under the direct supervision of a qualified diving instructor. This is not a diving certification course!
Full Certification Course: Often called a certification vacation, this is the alternate of the resort course. You undergo classroom, pool and actual open water training to complete your full certification. It takes anywhere from three to five days from start to finish. There are textbooks quizzes and a final exam.
Resort Referral Program: Luckily, there is a middle ground between the resort course and certification vacation programs. You complete all the class work and pool sessions with your local dive store back home, then travel to The Bahamas for a long weekend or week's vacation. Once there, you do the open water portion (the actual dives) of your training and are usually certified in about two days. After that, of course, you get to enjoy all of the wonderful dive spots The Bahamas offer.
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