Firsts, either they’re terrible and you don’t ever attempt a second or they’re amazing and you become forever addicted.
I’m talking about scuba diving of course!
Mine was neither if I’m honest; I went down for the first time in a freezing cold lake, on a snowy bank holiday weekend, where maximum temperatures were around 14 degrees! But when it ended I couldn’t wait for the next dive to come around.
Not quite the crystal blue waters & shorty I was hoping for!
So what makes a first dive a great dive? Well in my opinion it’s a mixture of several things, but the most important is a good dive instructor with a great sense of patience. It’s not just crystal blue tropical waters, although I won’t deny that helps, but great guidance. Let’s face it, the underwater environment is not our natural place to be! Even the heavy and very technical looking equipment we need to survive down there can be daunting the first time!
What can you expect from a first scuba dive experience?
Well firstly I would recommend you shop around for a good dive centre. Do a little digging, check out their Facebook & Tripadvisor reviews, and particularly look at what people are saying about try-dives and first dive experiences.
Whether you want to just do a DSD (Discover Scuba Diving), or go straight into a scuba diving course such as an Open Water Diver check that the school or centre operates within the rules and instructors are fully trained and licensed to teach diving. Don’t be afraid to ask to see their credentials!
Think about what type of dive centre suits you best. If you are nervous, and a little hesitant, you don’t want to choose a centre which is too big and has large numbers of divers passing through. However, if you are the opposite and love the hustle and bustle of a busy school then there are many larger outfits to start your adventure with. The most important thing is to make that first contact. Call them, message them, you should feel at ease from the outset! A good rapport with your instructor is paramount to a great and safe first-dive experience!
If you have the chance before your first dive, check out the dive equipment. You are looking to see if it’s in clean maintained condition. It’s easy to see from looking inside a dive centre whether or not they are serious on health & safety issues. That goes for the boat too! If the dive operation uses a boat to access dive spots this is also an indication of their policy on safety!
Last but not least comes the options personal to you. And this boils down to personal choice: hot showers, changing rooms, valet service etc. the list is as endless as your wishes …
So your dive is booked! You arrive at the centre, and despite all of your research something still doesn’t feel right? Perhaps your dive instructor is late or the planning doesn’t match what you were previously told! If in doubt you still have the right to go somewhere else!
Your first dive experience should be fun, should be memorable but most of all it should be safe!
Should you need advice on trying scuba diving then don’t hesitate to contact us. Or if you would just like to share your first scuba diving experience then we would be delighted to hear from you!
And to leave you with a little idea of how a first dive should look like here's a short video - enjoy!
A little taster of a Martinique style first dive experience!