Humans cannot survive underwater, although we have all come from the seaway back when. Across the sands of time, we have managed to crawl back into it as well, with the discovery of the aqualung. Going away on a scuba diving vacation is a godsend – the chance to dive deep into the calm deep blue waters. You might as well be on another planet. However, the best things often require a certain amount of planning. Let us look at what you can do to make this process painless and fruitful.
Where do you go?
The first step on your journey towards the underwater sights is the choice of destination. With so many awesome spots available around the world you are only limited by your budget and your preferences. Perhaps you are into the warm but somewhat overfished Mediterranean? Maybe you have always wanted to swim with sharks in the Pacific Ocean? The world is your oyster.
What do you bring with you?
You have got to pack smart for this journey. If you are not travelling far, and especially if you are not flying, it would be a good idea to bring your own stuff. However, if you are going far away, it is always a better option to source your scuba diving gear once you arrive at your destination. Make sure to check beforehand whether the diving resort (if you are staying in one) has everything you might require.
Are you (all) experienced?
If you are bringing along some beginners, you have to make sure they also have fun, even when you are doing more serious diving. Choose a spot that can offer the beginners enough room to practice. Perhaps you could combine a location, where you would scuba dive with them snorkelling above you – that could give them an overview of how things are done. Other times, schedule diving near a nice beach, where they can chill out while you dive and you can all hang out afterwards.
No diving before flying!
It is tough to have to give up on a dive because there was a change of schedule, but you should think better than deciding to do it before your flight. Most professional organizations recommend a minimum of 12 hours between the dive and the flight, with US Air Force recommending 24 hours. Better to be safe than sorry.
Keep the drinking to a minimum
You might be at a gorgeous tropical paradise island, but keep those cocktails to a minimum the night before the dive! Remember that most dive shops frown on diving when visibly hungover and they might decide not to rent the equipment to you or even prevent you from using the diving spot if it is owned and operated by them. So think twice before ordering that 4th Daiquiri!
Medical checks and insurance – check!
Since you will be putting your body through some paces by going underwater and experiencing pressure changes, it is always a good idea to go through a medical check-up just before going for the trip. This can help you with the insurance as well, some travel insurance might require you do the check-up before signing it off. It is certainly much easier to organize at home than before the dive itself on some island.
Don’t forget to relax
The best plans of mice and men often go awry. Don’t take it to heart. There might be complications with your equipment, with the flights, with the weather, but these things are out of your control. If you love diving you will forget about all the mishaps the moment you go back to blue depths.