C O M M O N L Y A S K E D Q U E S T I O N S
Why choose Georgian Bay Divers?
Our courses are completely exclusive, just your small private group and an Instructor, no hectic pool sessions or annoying parking arrangements allowing a very relaxed atmosphere and learning experience. Our training location is about as good as it gets locally for learning to dive; clean & clear water, sandy bottom and an average temperature of 18oC. All of this amounts to more time working on your buoyancy skills, trim and actual dive experience. We are all about sculpting good and confident divers, we are not a scuba factory, this gives you more of our energy and attention. Please read our trip advisor reviews to see previous student experience.
How do I get certified?
The first true certification - PADI Open Water (OW) diver can be conducted over 3 days here at our private cottage location. It is broken up in to 3 sections – on line theory (eLearning), confined water skills (2 shallow water sessions) and then 4 Open Water check out dives. On completion of this course you will be licensed to dive independently all over the world to a depth of 18m / 60ft. Junior Open Water divers (under 15) will have a depth restriction of 12m / 40ft and have to dive with a parent or dive Instructor until they reach 15. Our rate for private OW certification is $800 pp for 2 or $1150 for 1:1 training.
What is PADI eLearning?
Once you are signed up with us, you will receive an access code from PADI. You can then work through the knowledge development sections via online presentations and exam at your own pace for up to one year. You will need to have adobe FLASH player installed on your computer and it is NOT compatible with IOS mobile or tablet devices. Alternatively, the PADI eLearning TOUCH is an offline application (mandatory for 10-13yr olds) which can be downloaded to your android tablet or phone device. This saves time with your instructor, time better spent in the water, actually diving. The cost for PADI eLearning is $200 that we pay direct to PADI, we include this fee in the price of each course, and is 100% NON refundable. For more information please click on this link: PADI eLearning
Do I need to complete the theory before arriving?
YES!! You will need to print the completed course record sheet and bring this to your Instructor prior to any underwater training. It is always prudent to start the theory early to avoid a mad rush the night before your course. Generally it takes about 12 hours to finish, please leave at least 1 week to conduct the theory prior to any scheduled course. You will also, be expected to pass a short quiz (20 questions) on the first day of your training to ensure you understand the theory.
What if I do not have a computer or internet access?
We are able to send out a manual and dvd as learning materials and you would conduct the knowledge reviews and final exam onsite with an instructor.
Can anyone learn to Scuba Dive?
NO! Scuba Diving is not for everyone. To learn how to dive and gain your PADI Open Water certification you must be comfortable covering your face with a mask, breathing from a regulator, and wearing a tight fitting hood in cool water. You will also wear the scuba unit (tank, jacket and regulator), 7mm wetsuit, boots, about 20lbs of weight, and sometimes gloves. Of course, we promote learning at your own pace, privately, in very small groups, but it is prudent to know your own capability or have tried scuba in the past prior to enrolling in the OW course. A great option is to conduct the PADI Discover Scuba program (Basically the first day of the OW course), to figure out your comfort and if you really want to learn how to dive.
How fit do you need to be to learn how to dive?
You must be comfortable in the water and be able to swim at least 200m or snorkel 300m, and tread water for 10 minutes. You will need to pass a simple medical questionnaire, and have any issues cleared by your physician prior to any in water activity. You will also be expected to wear your scuba unit and weight system (approximately 50lbs combined) to and from the water.
What if I need extra time to complete the Open Water Course?
While most people can complete this course over the scheduled 3 days, some students may need extra time to get to OW standard. I charge $250 pp /day for 2:1 additional training and $350 pp / day for 1:1. Payment of any course does not guarantee certification, diving has inherent risks and can be dangerous. You will need to demonstrate good skill mastery, comfort underwater and dive awareness to pass the course.
Can I just come and try scuba diving?
Absolutely, we also conduct the Discover Scuba Diving course which is basically the first step of the OW course and is done over a single day. Although not a true certification it allows you to make subsequent dives over a short period of time with a dive instructor, sometimes called - the resort course. We can credit this as the first step toward the OW certification if you decide to continue learning with us. You will need to pass a simple medical questionnaire to be able to conduct this course, priced at $250 pp or $350 for 1:1 training.
What is your cancellation policy?
It is very seldom that we would not be able to dive as we do have a couple of private shore dive options offering shelter from winds coming from the South, East and West. If we get a strong NW wind it is possible to be affected at both training sites and in these unlikely circumstances I would offer alternative dates in advance. If a student decides that scuba diving is really NOT for you during any course then we only charge the daily rate of time spent learning with us, a fee of $250 pp 2:1 or $350 pp 1:1. The deposit is non refundable and set up to cover the PADI eLearning, administration and other expenses.
I need my own Equipment?
No, we have everything that you might need for your scuba course and the price includes all gear rental. Please note that while we have most generic sizes of suits and masks, if you fall between sizes or are out side normal sizing, very tall and thin for example, you may want to have your own perfectly fitting suit and personal mask.
Are you a retail establishment?
No, we are only a dive training and guiding facility. We use well maintained and top branded equipment and can offer advice on where to purchase your first scuba unit. Occasionally we do offer to sell our rental gear when we renew at the end of the season.
Can I just drop in and go for a dive?
NO. We are a by-appointment-only establishment and run private courses and charters. You will need to pre book your course or boat excursion to guarantee your diving with us.
How do I sign up?
We need to draw up an invoice and book you into our dive calendar. A deposit will hold your time slot (may need adjusting for bad weather) and we will process your eLearning with PADI so you can get started on the theory.
Can you organise accommodation?
There are a few accommodation options in our local area that range from camping, Air B&B, to private luxury cottage rentals. We can rent out an affordable waterfront cabin-style accommodation that many of our clients have enjoyed in the past. It does not have TV, WIFI or Phone, only the picturesque views of Georgian Bay. It is also possible to dive from this cottage, allowing us to come to you! Please check these links:
Please enquire about our package deals combining accommodation and dive courses.
What time should we arrive for training?
Please arrive at 9am on the first morning of your course. Generally we conduct two dives a day, one before lunch and one after. Please plan to spend the whole day at our location; bring lunch, a towel and warm clothes. We provide tea, coffee, drinking water and normally are finished around 4:30pm.
Do you offer equipment rental?
We only offer this service to our private guests on guided charter dives or local shore dives. We charge $75 per day for a complete scuba package including weight and 2 tanks of air. All of our PADI courses already include equipment rental in to the price.
How does the local wreck charter work?
Each month we aim to schedule boat charters out to our local shipwrecks on board the comfortable dive boat RUN TIME and skipper Rick. We need a minimum of 4 divers up to a maximum of 6. This day trip cost $150 pp including the dive guide, and $200 including gear rental. We always strive to dive the Mapledawn and the Marquette combination, weather permitting. There are a handful of wrecks to choose from making 2 day charters possible. This is also a great way to complete the Advanced OW course or to gain specialty ratings. Charters normally run on Fridays and Mondays with courses taught between Tuesday and Thursdays. Please contact us for up and coming charters.
Do you teach PADI specialties?
Yes! We can teach a multitude of PADI 1-2 day specialty courses with the most relevant ones to this area being; Sidemount, Enriched Air, wreck and photography. We can also teach dive safety courses such as the emergency first response course, oxygen provider and PADI Rescue diver. On request we can also teach the PADI DIVEMASTER course. Please contact us for more information on these courses.
Are there adjustments due to COVID -19?
Yes! Unfortunately during these times we will NOT allow anyone to enter our main cottage. As such, we encourage our guest to use the WC facilities at the public beach just 2 minute walk away, we also will NOT be offering coffee / Tea / drinks from the main house during this time, we will of course still have drinking water available. There will also be some slight adjustments to some of the training skills to minimise exposure, these will be discussed during the course. We will continue to only accomodate very small private groups of friends and family, and encourage the use of masks during briefings. We will have hand sanitiser available, and heavily sanitise all of our regulator mouth pieces, masks and snorkels between courses. There is also a new medical form, that touches on COVID-19, please be honest answering this form, as having / had COVID-19 and scuba diving can seriously affect the lungs.