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Scuba diving shops?

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montreal
posts: 167
reviews: 3
Scuba diving shops?

Hi how many scuba shops are there in samal I'm looking to get the best price to finish my open water I've done the book quizzes training just gotta finish the 2 dives and proceeding with padi

Baguio, Philippines
Destination Expert
for Philippines
posts: 3,430
reviews: 234
1. Re: Scuba diving shops?

Hi,

If I remember right, there are not many.... Unlike other beaches and islands in Philippines, like Malapascua, Bohol, Boracay, Puerto Gallera, etc where the resorts tend to line up along the beach and many have dive shops, Samal garden island has very little beach and instead, it has tall hills covered with foliage. Resorts tend to extend fromt eh water (with a narrow strip of white or creamy sand) uphill till the top.

I recollect a few dive shops at the jetty in Davao (near China town) - they did not impress me.

Most resorts have a tie up with a dive shop which comes with the gear and picks you at your resort. Sadly, I cannot recommend any to you due to my limited memory and knowledge of them.

I have always felt that for either a Padi Open water or advanced course, a good instructor is the primary factor (Must have) - while the waters, corals and marine life are "good to have", but secondary.

If I were you, I would do my OW in a place like Balicasag island, or Bohol alona beach or Apo island.

montreal
posts: 167
reviews: 3
2. Re: Scuba diving shops?

I was just in paradise resort and once again did the intro dive was fine and cheap 1200. As for my last 2 dives and padi processing ect they want 10,000, u think it's fair? I was thinking it should be cheaper as I've already done all the excersizes and tests

Baguio, Philippines
Destination Expert
for Philippines
posts: 3,430
reviews: 234
3. Re: Scuba diving shops?

@ Brtiffdog...

Most dive shops charge between 15 k to 18 k for the complete OW course. Just 2 normal certified dives would have cost you 3500 pesos, so 10k sounds reasonable to me.

I always feel - if a course is too cheap, they obviously are missing out on giving you something.

By the way, did you already finish the one day of sessions that are done in the swimming pool, prior to the sessions in the sea ? I mean, descending and ascending, buoyancy control, locating a knocked off BCD mouth piece, removing / putting back and then clearing the snorkel mask underwater, etc? The Padi course needs these and a few more exercises to be done - first in the swimming pool, and later in the sea. Of course, there are also the extra things done in the sea - like pulling / pushing your buddy, etc...

Some dive shops and dive students underestimate the importance of these and try to breeze past these - a terrible idea.

montreal
posts: 167
reviews: 3
4. Re: Scuba diving shops?

In Canada I did the course in a 5 week class finished all the pool

Exercises and the final exam I just have to do the sea exercises and dives that's all, so u think I shouldn't finish it up here in samal?

Baguio, Philippines
Destination Expert
for Philippines
posts: 3,430
reviews: 234
5. Re: Scuba diving shops?

@ Brifdog

Ah ... Now I understood ... so you have finished all the practical sessions in the pool - plus you mention a five week class, so I assume that this was spread over 5 weekends. right?

In that case, no issues - since you have already done all the practical sessions, Samal too is ok.

Here are some salient points of Samal -

1) Excellent Corals, very colourful tropical marine life

2) The dives are vertical descent - not shallow

3) Number of peopel - bare minimum (at otehr more popular destinations, like Cebu / Visayas / etc, there are lots of people who come to do their Padi. This is both - an advantage and disadvantage)

If you have not already chosen a dive shop , then I would have advised you to do this part of the Padi course at Alona beach - bohol. The corals and house reef are just 5 minutes by bangka fromt eh shore, and there are LOTS of dive shops to choose from. Most are run by expats (esp. Germans, Swiss, Austrians)

Plus Bohol Alona has a nice beach :) to enjoy when you are not underwater!

Prices wise, there is not much difference, neither is there much discernible difference in the corals and marine life (there ALWAYS will be SOME differences), the dive equipment too is among the best - brands like Scubapro and aqualung...

montreal
posts: 167
reviews: 3
6. Re: Scuba diving shops?

Do u think it would be good to finish my ow in Boracay and or peurto Galera I'm thinking about heading there only for the rest of my trip?

Singapore, Singapore
Destination Expert
for Philippines
posts: 10,467
reviews: 229
7. Re: Scuba diving shops?

Yes, you should try to complete your open water at one location.

After that you can start diving as a certified diver.

Oslo
posts: 11,819
reviews: 108
8. Re: Scuba diving shops?

do not expect to save a lot in terms of money because you did your book stuff elsewhere or online work, but you will save in terms of time. Dont forget your pic card and other info that you will need to prove what you have done.

Edited: 6:27 am, April 02, 2013
Baguio, Philippines
Destination Expert
for Philippines
posts: 3,430
reviews: 234
9. Re: Scuba diving shops?

Puerto Gallera is, imho, a better place for OW (or for that matter even advanced) than Boracay, mainly because it is a more professional diving destination and this is usually reflected in the dive instructors. Boracay still tends to cater to the, "hey, now that we are in Boracay, let's try something fun! why not learn diving" kind of casual diver. PG has far better marine life and corals to watch .

Having said that, for any dive course, it is the instructors that matter most, + instructor to student ratio. PG has a larger variety of this. However, if you get that In Boracay, so be it. (Incidentally, Blue Mango in Boracay has a rather good dive instructor... ziggler or some such name. A Filipino from Cebu. you often would have a 1:1 instructor ratio there)

I don't think costs differ much.

montreal
posts: 167
reviews: 3
10. Re: Scuba diving shops?

Thank u, I still haven't had a chance to finish but I'm going to Palawan tomorrow should I finish my ow course in el nido or coron