Beginner's Guide To Scuba Diving For Travellers

So you want to get a taste of the notorious diving bug? Say no more! While on charter at any of our epic Sunsail destinations, your time on the water is instantly amplified by the opportunity to not only crusade across dreamy blue waters but also discover the magical depths below them.

Trying an introductory diving course opens the door to breathing underwater and the sense of exhilaration that unfailingly accompanies it. Tasting the sport’s underwater freedom can catalyse a real passion and requires no prior experience to get started. In like manner to sailing’s fellowship, diving invites you to stamp a one-way pass into a supportive, gregarious scuba community teeming with others who share a love for unending, ocean-infused adventures. These like-minded diversions go hand in hand and share many zealous fans.

As you open up the book on scuba, know that each diving company operates under a certain certification agency or governing body. Thankfully, at the un-certified level, keeping the agency in mind when choosing a beginner course doesn’t matter as much as introductory choices are comparable across the top training agencies (PADINAUISSIBSACCMASRAID, and SDI).


So if you’re hooked on adding underwater sights to your charter’s itinerary but don’t feel you are quite ready for the full certification experience, check out these quick and easy beginner options to get your fins wet on your next Sunsail sailing escape.

“Discovery” Beginner Courses

Can be called: Discover Scuba Diving, Try Scuba Diving, Try Dive, Trial Diving, Resort Diving
Minimum age: 10 years old


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Discovery diving programmes are about taking off a bite of diving’s thrill, one fin-kick at a time. While getting your bearings swimming and breathing underwater in dive equipment, there is no pressure to feel the ease of underwater weightlessness at any pace other than your own. Under the supervision of an instructor, you experience diving in the most ideal conditions, with a maximum depth of 12 metres, a low instructor-to-student ratio, and a confined pool-like dive site environment. The key takeaway of the programme is to have a blast and explore more while learning the fundamental skills and equipment that are used during every scuba dive. The lack of a certification component within introductory diving courses allows beginners to test the waters and fall for the sport’s buzz without risking discouragement from a bombardment of theory. Check local shops for half-day and full-day outing options to take your crew on an escapade you’ll never forget.


Could also be called: Hookah diving
Minimum age: 8 years old


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SNUBA is a huge hit with charter parties wanting to maximise their adventures together below sea level at the beginner level. SNUBA cranks snorkelling up a notch, enabling participants to experience the thrill of diving without the complication of heavy equipment.

You’ll breathe through a simple-to-use regulator while the air supply floats on a support raft at the surface. Under the supervision of a highly skilled, certified SNUBA guide, you’ll feel more liberated to choose your own adventure hovering between depths of 0 to 6 meters. Swimming with a breathing apparatus comfortably underwater is a telling first step to understanding if the full scuba experience is right for you.

“Bubblemaker” Courses (For kids!)

Minimum age: 8 years old

For our small but mighty aqua-holics, Bubblemaker programmes are a perfect opportunity for young diving aspirants to take their first breaths underwater in shallows no deeper than 2 metres. These programmes offer a basic, fun-filled introduction to the sport and its equipment without too much difficulty and under the direct supervision of a professional.

Referral courses (If you’re ready to get certified!)

Minimum age: 10 years old

Holiday time on charter is without a doubt precious, so if you’re ready to take on full scuba certification and looking to maximise your learning efforts both locally and on holiday, a scuba referral course may be the best way to go. Entry-level referral courses split the learning process into distinct segments — theory, confined water sessions, and open-water dives. New divers are able to complete their theory and pool skills with a local dive centre, which then provides referral forms to allow the student to complete the open-water section of their course while on holiday. Going the referral route prioritises your holiday time in and under the water without losing the vital emphasis needed for the classroom setting back at your local shop.


PRO TIP: No matter the dive course you wish to pursue, when finalizing your travel plans it is important to remember to allow 18 hours to pass before flying after diving activity.

And as you discover the underwater activities that best compliment your next sailing getaway, check out these Sunsail destinations that offer pristine underwater playgrounds for beginners to jumpstart their love for diving, fins-first.


Author Name: 
Ryan Smith



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