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Low Cost Certification Vacation?

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New Member
Aug 19, 2002
Any advice on a low cost certification vacation. I promised my daughter that she could get certified when she turned 10, with my wife, and then we would go to a place like Cozumel for vacation. I was thinking maybe it would be less money to get certified on the vacation. Any recommendations?

There will be four of us, with two getting certified. I will be happy if I can freedive and snorkel from the shore with the other child. What is there to do there for children, when not in the water?

Low cost is definitely important.

Utila has the reputation for being one of the cheapest places on earth to learn how to dive.

There are many different levels of hotels to choose form. Some of them are as little as $4 a night- you get what you pay for there. Some of the other places are a bit nicer and there are instructors everywhere you go.

There is also the added bonus of having a chance to dive with whalesharks.

Cozumel is a bit more upsclae and has nicer places to stay and eat. Even so, itis still about half the price of Cayman or Bonaire.
One trick when in Cozumel is to eat your meals at the smaller places in town and not at the hotel. The last time I was there I walked out of my hotel to the place next store and paid half of what the hotel wanted for breakfast and lunch. Going into town saves on dinner.

In Utlia people spoke English everywhere we went. In Cozumel you need to call ahead to find out.

hi everyone
you get what tou pay for and you cant put a price on yourdaugherts life.dont be like me and get certified in a weekend with no real classroom time or real instruction.i almost killed myself doing stupid thins because i didnt know better.i finnaly listened to some friends of mine and thru further education and instructors who care a bout diving instead of $ i now enjoy diving 100% more.im not trying to bash anyone just trying to help;)

happy diving
Certification Vacation

I agree with Aquadog, but you may be able to have you training and vacation too. Get your class room training in an accredited dive class to get the proper class room lessons. Then get a referral to the dive resort of choice to complete your OW skills and certs. :)
Your basic training is often the most important one. Go some place GOOD. take your time. a 2 day cert is asking for trouble. hell - most resort courses are asking for trouble. I agree with the boys - get your classroom/pool training out of the way out home with a reputable diveshop when time is NOT a factor. then decide if you want to do your cert dives down south.

cert @ 10yrs old?

anyone else see "safety issues" with this?

maybe I'll just stay out of this one.....

There is this place on the southern end of Africa called South Africa, looking for a low cost vacation, this is the place to come to. Current rate of exchange USD 1.00 = ZAR 8.50, McDonalds exchange - Quater Pounder McMeal = ZAR 18-50 or about USD 2.20. The diving here is relatively undiscovered by the international dive community. We have great facilities, NAUI, PADI, CMAS, SSI certification and from my experience like to think that the standards are good. For you guys earning dollars and pounds, ZA is cheap, great climate and more to do than just diving.

I do however have to agree with Amphibious, 10 is a little young!

Now maybe I can go and ask SA Tourism for my sales commission!!
Thanks for the input. My job situation is up in the air right now, and I don’t know if I can afford or have time this year, but there are some places worth checking out here.

As for my 10-year-old daughter, I can understand some concern, but 10 is the age PADI and NAUI allow certification. She has been a SCUBA Ranger since turning 8, which is certification to scuba in swimming pools for children. She is mature for her age, an excellent swimmer and is very comfortable in the water and beneath it, and is intelligent (all most a straight A student). I can’t see her having much problem with any of it.

I bought her a mask, fins, and snorkel when she was 5 and she learned to dive to the bottom of the pool, come up, and clear her snorkel in the first two weeks. I have a 6-year-old too, who is not as advanced at her age as the 10-year-old was, but still loves to snorkel.
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