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Hello, Being from the corpus christi area I have recently looked into this myself there are 4 "schools" to choose from the first being
" Ascuba Venture " $300 They do SSI certification, my cousin and his wife were certified through these folks and have nothing bad to say. Draw backs is your going to need at least 800 dollars when you walk in to sign up for the class because they require that you purchase a wetsuit,mask,fins,reg mouth piece. Your going to need them eventually but its a rather large investment for something you have no idea if your going to like. Indoor Heated salt water pool. And unlimited free pool time after paying for the class.Open water cert is at lake travis.
" Copelands Inc " $300 Also a SSI cert pretty much the same as Ascuba with the main differance no pool Once again your going to need about 800 bucksto get sarted. Dont know where they do open water cert.
" Frogmans Dive Center " $300 Port Aransas - Mom and Pop dive shop.SSI Cert Buying all gear up front again. 800 dollars -- open water cert is rig diveing COOL. Beware I have heard stories of people not getting their cards after certifying through these people. Rumer but beware none the less.
" Bryans Scuba Locker " $250 PADI cert - Private individual. Im useing this guy. Hes a cool cat, but so are the people at Ascuba. Hes a crossover from SSI so I feel like im getting the best of both schools. Pluses are since hes just one guy your going to get alot of face time. As of right now im the only one in his current class. All he requires you buy is a wetsuit. Its a big plus for me as I dont make alot of money. And have to save to buy big ticket items. such as 200 dollar fins and 100 dollar masks.
He uses a private pool, for your CW dives. And I really dont know where we will be doing our open water at yet. I forgot to ask him. phone #361-229-DIVE www.bryscuba.com . If you choose this guy tell him Jeremy sent you Ill get a 25 dollar discount.
As for recommendations I would go with either Ascuba Venture ( Yellow Pages under DIVERS )
OR Bryans Scuba
People have bad reps for a reason and copelands gave me a farm feel