I've dived with several operators in numerous countries and have to say Simple Life offered the worst experience I've had anywhere.
Staff were unhelpful - told complete rubbish on the phone the night before diving. I wanted to make sure I was with divers of similar experience and had rang a few shops who could not accommodate me at short notice, which was fair enough. Simple life said it would be no problem, they had a busy boat etc. No offer of pick up from my hotel.
I ended up with an open water diver, meaning we were then limited to depth & sites. I felt I was looking after him the entire dive as the dive leader checked air ONCE in the entire dive and was going so fast there was no chance to stop and actually look at anything. Not that the guide bothered to point anything out.
Went to busy, uninteresting local dive sites, despite being told they were doing Chumpon Pinacle. Seemed more concerned with how quick we could get the dives over & done with.
Was told to meet at shop 2 hours before we actually left, staff were uninterested and the divemasters there were quite frankly lazy. Shop didn't seem to have anyone in charge, just a 'make it up as you go along' type of operation.
Equipment was broken - had a broken zip on the wetsuit supplied, BCD had a cracked LPI hose and the regulators looked (and tasted!) like they'd not been rinsed from previous salt water use.
Boat itself was chaos - nobody directing customers where to set up, no rinse tanks, tanks filled to 160 bar as standard(!!) when I queried this I got fobbed off, saying this was normal. (200 bar is standard.) Staff/interns completely ignoring customers in favour of talking about the previous night's drinking, no boat brief, no designated wet/dry areas. Smoking all over the boat and no regard for where the cigarette butts were going. Several staff flicking them overboard.
One of the sites we went to had around a 4m wave height and we had a junior open water on board. Not one of the instructors or divemasters, or boat crew, were helping customers on board. I felt this was a particularly dangerous site to have visited given the weather and junior on board. The ladder on the boat was unstable and coming away from the boat in the waves. There was no line thrown out to assist customers getting back to the boat.
The only time one of the divemasters bothered to do anything was when I asked them to take my camera off me given the waves. I got out to find it slung in the weight box! NOT happy about that.
I had booked to do a full days diving, but cancelled the afternoon as the incompetence was unbelievable. One of the instructors didn't know what a scorpion fish was - how you can get to teaching status (as in fact I am) and not know hazardous marine life is beyond me. How can you tell your students what to avoid? I'm not convinced those portraying themselves as instructors were actually qualified.
When I raised my concerns I just got fobbed off. I'm sure if you've never dived before then you may well have had a good experience, but as an experienced diver I would not recommend this place to anyone. there are much more reputable companies on the island, unfortunately I trusted the incorrect information given to me by this shop. I'm lucky I was able to cancel the afternoon as I had not paid up front.
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