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Future of PADI?

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New Member
Aug 9, 2003
I'm a PADI Master Instructor and up until I got my MI rating, I was in love with PADI. After becoming MI, going to a few member forums and status updates and simply watching the business side of PADI as compared to other industries, I have become disillusioned.

I realize now that PADI isn't out there to teach people to dive, but instead to make money. And I have a feeling a lot of money is made.

Now I wonder, what with the death of our CEO, what is the long term future of PADI in other people's opinions?

We've seen large services, such as the airline industry, go broke and smaller providers, such as Southwest, rise to highly profitable levels. This phenomenon happens regularly in a wide variety of industries; the big dog gets too big to be easily manageable and the smaller dogs take over.

I would not personally be suprised if some of the slightly smaller agencies began a more head-to-head battle against PADI and since there's already a large amount of animosity towards PADI already, I think it would be a relatively easy battle for other agencies.

Just wondering what other people think. Should I become an instructor for another agency? Or blow the dough on becoming a Course Director?

Whatever happens, have fun underwater.
Here's my take - I left scuba diving a few years back because of exactly what you described.

Personally, I think the old dog, NAUI, is going to make a strong come back in a short time - they have revamped their teaching methodology and I have been looking at their pro level courses for awhile now.

PADI has name recognition - no doubt about it, but as you said - things aren't as great in PADI land as they would have the general public believe.

My $0.02 worth
PADI has had their run,time for it to endI'm happy being a NAUI instructor (proud also)
I am a PADI Dive Master - was to be instructor, but i quit for the same reasons.

PADI - Put Another Dollar In !

I quit scuba diving all together less than a year after being certified!
I was a PADI instructor for three years and then did some technical courses with IANTD... to discover that I actually knew nothing about diving at all.. rofl rofl

PADI is great to teach for tourists, money turnover, hell if I owned i a dive centre i would teach PADI courses for the sheer easiness of earning bucks with relative safety... PADI dive centres in Dubai make a killing, if you have all the training toys it's an easy way to make yourself a comfortable living :D
Yep ''Put Another Dollar In'' Dont ya just Love em.
I was part of the Padi Machine 10 years ago and they sucked back then.
I to found all they were was a money making machine who really didnt care about their Students or Instructors.
Some of the Instrucors i have seen them pop out well i wouldnt let them teach snorkling, and the Biggest point they teach to instructors is to Sell More Coarses '' Do the deep dive and then your on your way to be a Dive Master "" and get the next poxy badge for your sleeve
What a load of Crap

Thats my Bitch for the day

careful the PADI police are online on DB ;)
rofl rofl (just teasin' Sam!)
Although I agree with some of the comments above, you can not criticise a business for making money. There are so many people in the dive industry that forget that you still need to earn a living even if you do get to dive every day.
Just because you make diving a life style choice it does not mean you should resent the sucess of those that make it a serious business.
The postings above could apply to all of the professional agencies, PADI, NAUI, SSI etc.
Regarding the future of PADI, well if you were a real cynic you could say that they will always progress due to the sheer amount of "churn" in the diving industry. ( Churn is the term for new people coming in and disillsioned people going out, in this case ).
Maybe you have just outgrown the recreational training side of things and look for different avenues?
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You guys are in cuckoo land if you think a business can be run without making any money. As for not caring about instructors or students who else has the range and quality of educational products available to its members and their students. Its time you people realised this is a business and stopped treating it like play time.
I figure the more profitable the dive industry is the better. The issue for me is where it goes from there. Seems to me that the prices are fair but the company that runs the industry should be nonprofit. Profits should be reinvested in education, lobbying, and enviromental projects.
Hmmm, this is an interesting one isn't it? I'd be surprised if anyone, even at reaching DM level hasn't been a bit disillusioned at some point! ... but....it does depend a huge amount on the philosophy of the dive school you teach with & the instructors that surround you. Maybe I've just been incredibly lucky learning to dive in the UK with some excellent Instructors that pay attention to details...

Every company, no matter what base, has to make money to stay in business. We have to make money to pay the bills...it's no different is it? ... it's just that to be a diving instructor you have to be passionate about what you do and sometimes deadlines don't always allow you to be as passionate as you might like....so it's not surprising that we get a bit fed up along the way.... having said that...it's up to Course Directors and Instructors to make sure that things are done correctly... If you don't like the way a centre teaches...why not go somewhere else!

PADI has pushed forward constantly with excellent training materials, new courses, more information.... It has lead the way with training materials... Project Aware has become huge now too, supporting a mass of environmental projects worldwide...

Having just done a search on the NAUI site for dive centres, there's not even a listed option for the UK! PADI, whether you agree with the 'put another dollar in' thing or not, makes learning scuba diving, and the resulting marine awareness, an option to many that would not otherwise get to experience being underwater ...

To anyone a bit fed up with instructing or DMing...go do some Technical diving or some IAHD Pro Training (and put it into use)...that'll spice things up a bit for you! rofl Not surprisingly, the DSAT Tec Rec materials are some of the best!

Nesim said:
I quit scuba diving all together less than a year after being certified!
That's the saddest thing I've read for a while! :waterwork Mate, come to the UK, we'll go dive somewhere!

nbostic said:
Should I become an instructor for another agency? Or blow the dough on becoming a Course Director?
Would you get better course materials with another agency?
Future of Padi? just look at how well the McDonalds franchise has done.....
Well, I don't know what to say about that. I'm just starting in Technical Diving & have looked at course materials for TDI, IANTD, PSA & DSAT....I'm open to some more advice on this if you'd like to start another thread up....

...perhaps I should have said, "from what I've seen so far, the DSAT materials seem to be OK...but I'm open to more advice" :)

Best wishes
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All the DSAT divers I've dove with were incompetent to the point of me not diing with them anymore. from my limited amount of Tech experience I tend to lean towards the GUE/DIR methods and have had good impressions with the TDI & Naui crowds. I won;t Comment on IANTD as I have never dove with or taken a course from any one associated with them.

the GUE/DIR folks may seem a little elitest and snobish at first, but with mixed gasses there is so little margin for error you might as well dive with the best. their Elitest for a reason. due to some surgeries (knee issues) and my current location, tech diving for me is on hold.
Many thanks Amphibious. I hope that your knee is soon on the mend & you're back in the deep soon.

Yes, I see your point about DIR. I have been looking at a site for DIR/GUE over the last few months while I've been researching and I do like the method but I'm not so keen on the elitist attitude. Having said that, I've not dived with a DIR diver so will do before I make any further comment...

I'm doing some TDI Cavern dives in Wales early next year and the TDI divers I have dived with have been excellent. A few of these have done DSAT training aswell as TDI.... so, so far, I've not met or dived with an incompetent DSAT diver to make comment on that either....!

I feel ridiculously lucky again to have been able to dive with guys who have done a mixture of training and have huge experience with different agencies including IANTD so I guess they tend to take the best of all of it....

Gone off topic...apologies.

Best Wishes & good luck with the knees.
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anniew said:
I feel ridiculously lucky again to have been able to dive with guys who have done a mixture of training and have huge experience with different agencies including IANTD so I guess they tend to take the best of all of it....

thats the best advice so far. "demo" a few different agencies and find out which training methods you're most comfortable with. good luck, tech can be a bunch of fun if your wallet can support the habbit! 2 of everything is never cheap :)
It seems that the whole scenery is changing. Ofcourse PADI is a profit oriented organisation. But lets not forget that it is a very well organised company with lots of material to offer. Nevertheless, lets not sacrifice divers enjoyment and safety, for some more dollars.

By the way [ame=http://forums.deeperblue.net/showthread.php?t=63941]Check this Out[/ame]

It seems that some more competition is entering in Europe where legislation about recreational diving is very strict
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