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Old 12.01.2011, 14:23
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Scuba Diving Certification / Training

Hello all,

This is my first post here in the english forum.

I am looking for a Geneva area Scuba dive shop that offers diving certification. My wife and I are going to do some diving in Asia this summer and we were hoping to do the certification before we leave so to save time while we are actually in the water there.

Any ideas?

Cheers
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Old 12.01.2011, 15:34
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

Hi and Welcome to the forum.

I also Scuba Dive, but haven't been since I've been in Switzerland.

I found a shop in Zurich just by typing both 'PADI' and 'Scuba' into google (but you should add Geneva).

Something will pop up for sure.

I was surprised how many dive shops there were.


Go with a BIG bag full of cash. Nothing is Switzerland is cheap. Diving isn't cheap even in cheap countries. I shudder to think what it will cost you guys.


In all honesty, it maybe cheaper to just extend your holiday another 3 days and do the training over there.

Good luck, but surely it won't be too hard for you.... if not, just ask at a sports shop. Those guys usually know as well.

Someone will post something more directly shortly.
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  #3  
Old 12.01.2011, 17:27
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

I have some friends that have taken the class here in Geneva, but think it was just over the border on the French side of the lake, ie. cheaper. The good news is you can get the certification here, the bad news is you have to do the open dive stuff in Lac Leman/Lake Geneva which is very cold and murky and not so nice, but then again you will look forward to your next vacation after that.

This may be one of the places, googled on lac leman, it is just over the border in Thonon France.

http://www.aquaventure.fr/bienvenue.html

Last edited by runningdeer; 12.01.2011 at 17:29. Reason: add link
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Old 12.01.2011, 19:12
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

you have 2 options on mian certification... PADI and SSI. i prefer SSI as its not so commercial. both are perfectly accepted evrywhere in the world.

oh and with SSI you do not need to buy the books.

where in asia are you going? TBH i would forget about doing it here, the cost is insane and it will be far more fun and comfortable to do it in warm clear waters.
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Old 12.01.2011, 19:27
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

I wanted to suggest Egypt for a week or less as the Red Sea is warm also in the winter (20-21 at the coldest).
I had 24 once in December and 22 in April.
The Adriatic sea is also warm in June (you would not dive under 10 meters as a beginner).

A dive course does not make you a diver, you will need dives (practice) and for that you need to be on open water.
And it is much more fun!
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Old 12.01.2011, 19:49
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

would recommend red sea , but avoid sharm... it is a complete hole.......

think of blackpool, benidorm and ibiza combined. your wife/girlfriend can not walk in town without some form of abuse or comments, also lone female on the beach will get hassle and rude comments.

that is apart from someone trying to sell u crap every 2 minutes.

dahab, is a "bit" calmer BTW

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The Adriatic sea is also warm in June (you would not dive under 10 meters as a beginner)
can you clarify what you mean... do you mean they would not go deeper than 10M? dont see how that is possible and still have a OW certification.
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Old 12.01.2011, 19:51
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

I can recommend doing the PADI/SSI in Switzerland.

I fact, I did my PADI at the lakeZurich 2 years ago. It was beginning of May and thus f***ng cold and we had almost no visibility. We directly started diving in the lake, and did not do any dives in a pool before.

Sure doing the PADI in Switzerland is more expensive as doing it in Asia or Egypt. But the education was very good. I feel confident and save when I am diving now. And this is the important thing, right?

When I did my first dive (after the PADI) in Malaysia we had very bad visibility because of a thunder-storm in that area. We had some more experienced divers (20—30 dives) with us, which had difficulties diving in this condition. For me it was great, I was used the cold and dark LakeZurich.
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Old 12.01.2011, 20:04
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

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Sure doing the PADI in Switzerland is more expensive as doing it in Asia or Egypt. But the education was very good. I feel confident and save when I am diving now. And this is the important thing, right?
doesnt matter where you do the training, there are good and bad schools everywhere, if the training is crap at a school and you are being taught by an instructor it must be reported.

ALways do research before doing training at a school, one very well known school in koh tau has classes of 8 people and is like a production line, other schools have 1,2,3,4 per class.

I did some courses in sharm at a well known school, the instructor was not really interested so i stopped the dive and demanded a refund.
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Old 13.01.2011, 10:11
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

Thank you very much everyone...great answers!!! I truly appreciate it!
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Old 13.01.2011, 11:26
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

I dive and spent most vacations of the past years diving...

1. Prices
Diving is expensive, no matter where you do it. I was diving in Bali two weeks ago and while beers and food is much cheaper there than here is a good dive operator expensive. Same for all the other places I have been. So honestly: The Swiss prices will not be much higher at all from what I have seen. So the price will be more or less the same, but you can then of course dive more during the vacation.

2. "Swiss Quality is superior"
I made all my certifications (from the open water over the advanced to some specialities and Nitrox) in various resorts on the Maldives and Indonesia. All tourist resort have plenty of dive instructors who are fully qualified... why do you guys think that a Swiss one is automatically better? In my experience were actually the "locals" typically better and far more experienced than the Western instructor who just comes there for a gap year... Padi offers a "rating" system which I do actually trust: If the school has not only a Padi sign, but is a five star center, maybe even with a "gold palm", you can be pretty sure you are in good hands.
On the contrary: One of the Swiss schools I had a look at teached entirely with Mares equipment that was non-standard. I personally find it outright dangerous to teach beginners on a special pneumatic buoyancy system and as soon as the are in Egypt or elsewhere they see a deflator hose for the first time...

3. "Wasting time on a course during vacation"
I actually enjoyed it. Here, I would spend a weekend in a pool for my first steps. On the Maldives were the "confined water" beginnings in a sandy bay where I still could watch fish instead. The course is fun and otherwise I would read some novel instead of a course book in the evenings... I have seen people who came just after their course with five dives or so to the resort and I personally think that "trusting the guide" is the most important thing at the beginning. So if you start a course with a teacher and then make some dives with the same one, it is maybe easier as well.

4. Shopping
I guess I went to most dive shops in Zurich... they are VERY expensive and I bought my entire equipment by mail order. I do not think you really need or should buy yourself an own set as a beginner - give it a try and have a look if you actually enjoy diving. If you do, you by then already know what you want. I got our regs and more here and found them very professional and thanks to the Euro offer good prices: http://www.tauchversand.com/

Last edited by Treverus; 13.01.2011 at 13:10.
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  #11  
Old 13.01.2011, 11:49
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

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would recommend red sea , but avoid sharm... it is a complete hole.......

think of blackpool, benidorm and ibiza combined. your wife/girlfriend can not walk in town without some form of abuse or comments, also lone female on the beach will get hassle and rude comments.

that is apart from someone trying to sell u crap every 2 minutes.

dahab, is a "bit" calmer BTW



can you clarify what you mean... do you mean they would not go deeper than 10M? dont see how that is possible and still have a OW certification.

The dive club where I learnt had a platform at 5 m and we did all the practice there.
There is no added value in going deeper just to do a superman.
We did some dives under 10 meters after all these exercises (hold my hand! hold my hand!!! ) but that was really at the end of the course.
And the water gets so cold at 10 m.
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Old 13.01.2011, 11:49
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

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doesnt matter where you do the training, there are good and bad schools everywhere, if the training is crap at a school and you are being taught by an instructor it must be reported.
Most of my mates who are dive instructors take full advantage of their skills and travel to live on remote Islands as instructors. They mix it up with people from all over the world doing the same thing.

Location isn't important, but agreed.... the instructor is.

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I was diving in Bali two weeks ago and while beers and food is much cheaper there than here is a good dive operator expensive. Same for all the other places I have been. So honestly: The Swiss prices will not be much higher at all from what I have seen. So the price will be more or less the same, but you can then of course dive more during the vacation.
Yep, Bali diving is more expensive than Australia (in some places). Basically the bigger the tourist Mecca.... the higher the prices.


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2. "Swiss Quality is superior"
I made all my certifications (from the open water over the advanced to some specialities and Nitrox) in various resorts on the Maldives and Indonesia. All tourist resort have plenty of dive instructors who are fully qualified... why do you guys think that a Swiss one is automatically better? In my experience were actually the "locals" typically better and far more experienced than the Western instructor who just comes there for a gap year...
Well said.

Besides, an open water course isn't that difficult anyway. It's a pretty fun course, so you should enjoy it whereever you are.

I wish you guys all the best with your diving... it's a truely amazing and life changing experience.
(not so sure about these Swiss lakes, but some clear vis >30m in an ocean..... you'll forget to breathe).

Google "Palau Diving"
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Old 13.01.2011, 11:49
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

I haven't been diving for a while but basic Open Water cert includes 2 dives, right--plus pool time? It might be worth it to just do the training at the destination (hopefully a 5-star PADI resort if you have the scratch) you will learn the basics, and everything will be fresh, and you get a few dives down to 30 feet.

Depending on time, desire and cash-flow Advanced Open Water might not be too hard to get..you can use any extra dives for educational purposes.
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Old 13.01.2011, 12:04
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

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Google "Palau Diving"
Never made it that far yet, but if you ask me for the most exciting place I have ever been - not only diving... it would probably be Hanifaru bay: I found myself in the middle of some 20 Mantas (which are aound 800kg each) who would swim up to you so closely that you could touch them...

http://www.divephotoguide.com/underw...manta_madness/

When I was there, visibility was terrible (thanks to the plankton, which is of course why the Mantas go there in the first place). So photgraphing them like this gentleman from NatGeo did is incredibly difficult. Awesome pictures:


The whole thing happens within five to ten meters, so beginners or even snorkles can see all of it!
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Old 13.01.2011, 21:28
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

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The dive club where I learnt had a platform at 5 m and we did all the practice there.
There is no added value in going deeper just to do a superman.
We did some dives under 10 meters after all these exercises (hold my hand! hold my hand!!! ) but that was really at the end of the course.
And the water gets so cold at 10 m.

I asked as for the most basic OW certification you should have gone to 18 M.
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Old 17.01.2011, 12:19
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

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I asked as for the most basic OW certification you should have gone to 18 M.
No. As you mentioned, PADI is probably the most commercial organisation I have ever seen... and there is actually a license which goes to 12M called "Scuba Diver" which is one step less than OW Diver. Most people never bother to do it but go straight to the OW, but especially in holiday resorts you find people diving only to 12 M.
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Old 16.02.2011, 14:26
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

Has anyone gone for the instructor program as a bundle instead of just completing the courses?

I´d kinda hate to throw my money in the wastebin, so i wanted to make sure before i make any decisions. Fact is, gonna leave geneve to become a diving instructor, and there is a five star training facility at koh tao, thailand.

They are offering a change of lifestyle package, for some 5000 francs (since i already have completed some courses) but especially the insurance that comes as a part of the deal isn´t that good looking, so i am applying for DAN membership.

Anyone? Any ideas which way i should go?
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Old 16.02.2011, 16:03
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

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Has anyone gone for the instructor program as a bundle instead of just completing the courses?
No. I am no instructor. But my advice would be: The dive bases are all relatively small businesses and you are working really closely with each other. So the team is the thing that makes the difference between an awesome time and a nightmare. I have seen both only from a customer perspective... but if you work there for some months I would want to make sure I like the people and even be willing to spend some more just to have a test-vacation there before.

Over new year I was diving in Bali with a pretty professional operator. They had a lot of interns on their way to become instructors. Making diving safaris per bus and boat all over Bali is surely more stress and not as nice as relaxing on a dream beach in Thailand, but therefore you have a lot of different experiences... the interns were all the back-packer types, so I do guess that the prices of the IDC part were competitive (the ones for divers were on the upper side, but that is the very thing I do not compromise on): http://www.baliocean.com/en/
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Old 29.08.2012, 15:43
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

Thread resurrection, but...

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Has anyone gone for the instructor program as a bundle instead of just completing the courses?

I´d kinda hate to throw my money in the wastebin, so i wanted to make sure before i make any decisions. Fact is, gonna leave geneve to become a diving instructor, and there is a five star training facility at koh tao, thailand.

They are offering a change of lifestyle package, for some 5000 francs (since i already have completed some courses) but especially the insurance that comes as a part of the deal isn´t that good looking, so i am applying for DAN membership.

Anyone? Any ideas which way i should go?
I and some friends just did both the PADI Open Water and Open Water Advanced back-to-back in Ban's Diving Resort in Koh Tau, Thailand. We loved the Open Water course so much that paying the paltry extra 200CHF for the Advanced (including accommodation) just seemed to make perfect sense... we figured we may as well get it all done while we were in the right time and place than worry about doing it later. Plus, with an Advanced cert under your belt you can join the good fun dives at 30m+ anywhere you want. Oh yeah, and we got to swim with a Green Turtle... win.

It only took 5.5 days and consisted of 8 major dives altogether, but it was an amazing experience (with a comedic instructor), and one that I now really want to continue and gain more experience with. I'm already mentally planning some short trips to the Red Sea.

I would consider a dive in Zürich though as practise inbetween... has anyone here done it much, and is it worth the inevitable Swiss cost? Do you actually get to see much down in Lake Zürich?
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Old 29.08.2012, 15:48
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Re: Scuba Diving Certification / Training

ah Bans, the diving cert conveyor belt school.

consider an SSI course if you decide to go further as SSI is less commercial and you dont need to buy the books.

if red sea then be aware that sharm is a total hole but some of the best dive schools are there.

camel, werner lau i have used before.

have a look at tony backhurst for package deals.
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