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Discussion in 'Basic Scuba Discussions' started by OnTheMark, Aug 9, 2020.

  1. Angelo Farina

    Angelo Farina Marine Scientist

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Parma, ITALY
    What matters it to have a good instructor. There are many very good or excellent instructors running PADI courses.
    There are also a minority of not-so-good instructors which are not teaching so well. PADI tolerates them in their ranks, if they provide a decent number of certifications per year. Also other agencies tolerate such sub-par instructors.
    Probably PADI is more tolerant.
    But from the consumer point of view, what matters is to find a good instructor, whatever the agency he is operating with. And for assessing a good instructor, reputation from previous students is the most reliable source.
    So just ask around, and you will easily spot the best instructors of your area. Then probably they will cost slightly more than others. But that is money spent very well.
    Regarding the "value" of your certification, actually PADI is the best: recognized worldwide everywhere. You will never have a problem with it...
    My sons have been trained and certified by me and my wife, as we are CMAS instructors. But at the end we also had them re-certified by PADI as AOW, as that is the card which allows them to travel the world and dive everywhere. Our Italian CMAS certification has not the same degree of acceptability, despite the fact that a Cmas (or BSAC) course is longer and more challenging than the same-level PADI course.
    So PADI has got my money, which from a certain point of view is nonsense, as I am a full instructor, I can release certifications myself. But PADI is some sort of a brand, low level but worldwide recognized. So I did find worth to spend my money having my sons certified by PADI.
    And, surprise, we all learned something new!
    The WHEEL: a completely mechanical computer system for repetitive dive. Ingenious!
    There are excellent brains also at PADI: working for profit, sure, but not the last ones arrived in the world of diving...
  2. David Novo

    David Novo DIR Practitioner

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Porto, Portugal, Europe
    This may have been the case in the past but PADI has been losing market share to SSI (at least in Europe).

    In Portugal, the majority of dive schools converted from PADI to SSI.
    markmud and AfterDark like this.
  3. Wookie

    Wookie Secret Field Agent ScubaBoard Business Sponsor

    They have not done so in Southeast Asia. And while many have in the US as well, most of those SSI instructors are PADI as well. PADI does not require a facility to teach through as SSI does.
    chillyinCanada and KWS like this.
  4. AfterDark

    AfterDark Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Rhode Island, USA
    Don't give'em any ideas!! :)
    dead dog likes this.
  5. seeker242

    seeker242 DIR Practitioner

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Pompano Beach, FL
    People who hate padi usually do because they are more interested in making money than they are in training good divers. ****** instructor, no big deal, he's bringing in money. Want to learn how to use an SMB? Give us more money and we'll teach you... Want an e-card? Give us a $37 subscription fee.., etc, etc.
    RFlys and KWS like this.
  6. The Chairman

    The Chairman Chairman of the Board

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Cave Country!
    The 'hate' is thinly veiled jealousy. No more and no less. Every agency is concerned with profits so that criticism is pretty moot.
    Doc, Colliam7, abnfrog and 4 others like this.
  7. Angelo Farina

    Angelo Farina Marine Scientist

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Parma, ITALY
    Well, albeit this is certainly true for US-based agencies, here in Europe we have a long-time-running network of no-profit organizations (clubs, national federations, and the CMAS) where, by definition, all the activity performed is NOT for profit:
    I spent the first 10 years of my career in one of these clubs, and I did never get a penny for my long hours in the pool or on the boat...
    In these organisations the goal is the "success" of the club, having more inscriptions and organising memorable events.
    These organisations are also doing volunteering in the Civil Protection, together with other clubs (motor bikers, 4x4, dog training, cliff-climbing, radio-operators, boat operators). All these voluntary forces are very useful when some bad natural event occur (earthquake, inundation, tsunami, etc.)
    Albeit I know that for Americans this is hard to grasp, here in Europe a lot of activities are NOT for profit, and people devote happily their time for free in what we perceive as a "good cause".
    I trained more students as a not-paid instructor than as a professional instructor, which I did after leaving the world of not-profit.
    Furthermore, when working at resorts, I was teaching just plain basic OW.
    When operating inside my diving club, I was teaching at all levels, including deep dives with deco and CC rebreathers...
    So definitely the not-for-profit instruction was far more challenging than when I became a pro.
    Esprise Me, -Moe and Mmx06 like this.
  8. kelemvor

    kelemvor Big Fleshy Monster ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Largo, FL USA
    When I first started diving I had heard a detailed story about PADI getting started for all the wrong reasons. Greed primary among them. For example, seemingly useless certifications offered by PADI seem to support the idea. Zombie Apocalypse Diver is the most obvious one. Boat Diver certification, Shore Diver certification etc. I can't quite remember where I heard it first as I certainly wasn't involved in scuba back then.

    Fortunately, there's a member here @boulderjohn who actually knows the deal. He posted a detailed account of what actually happened. After reading the true story, it didn't really seem like they did anything wrong to me. Search for posts about PADI and/or NAUI history posted by boulderjohn and you'll probably find it.

    Other comments you've seen here are also accurate. Other than on the internet, nobody knows who you certified with and nobody cares who you certified with. I don't think I've ever had a face to face conversation where certification came up except with people who weren't yet certified and were considering a class. Most uncertified people probably don't even realize scuba certifications aren't government issue - I know I didn't.

    Edit: I found the post I was thinking of. Boulderjohn didn't actually post the history. He posted a link to an 67 page ebook written by Al Tillman on the subject. There are, however, a number of posts where John elaborates on certain points. The link is this: http://www.divinghistory.com/sitebuildercontent/sitebuilderfiles/nauihistory.pdf

    Yes, I'm aware that book is a history of NAUI. If I remember what I read in the book correctly, PADI sprung from the loins of NAUI more or less. For those espousing the virtues of non-profit scuba training across Europe vs our for-profit system in the US... NAUI is non-profit scuba training in the US.
    RFlys, maj2 and Esprise Me like this.
  9. KatieMac

    KatieMac Photographer

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Small town Ontario, Canada
    Certainly PADI pushes courses and pushes productivity from dive shops. They are a business that won't survive without income. But PADI doesn't really teach you anything. Good dive masters do.

    As for the padi-hate … it's easy. Everybody likes to attack the leader. Nobody attacks last place.

    And "Pay And Dive Immediately" is sort of like "Found On Road Dead". Everybody has heard this and many people say it. But there are still a ton of Ford drivers out there
  10. HKGuns

    HKGuns Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: Merica
    As with everything in life, you usually get out of it what you put into it. College is another great example.

    Interesting all the shade thrown at the one organization probably THE most responsible for keeping diving accessible and alive globally. I doubt there are any altruistic agencies out there.

    I've never felt pushed into anything by PADI, in fact, I'm happy to have a wide variety of course material to consider.
    Colliam7 likes this.

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