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Worth pursuing AOW?

Discussion in 'New Divers and Those Considering Diving' started by Orestis82, Aug 20, 2019.

  1. Altamira

    Altamira ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Canyon Lake, TX
    1,639
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    I am likely an outlier here, but personally have not seen a need to get an AOW card, and have not done so. While I don't plan on doing any of the deep Florida wreck dives, or do a liveaboard, that requires AOW, I have not been restricted or prevented from doing any dives I have wanted to do. Because of my age, when I am diving with an unfamiliar dive op, I am sure of being looked at pretty carefully during the first part of the dive, but DMs soon realize that I won't likely be the problem diver in their group. I am not saying that there is not learning to be achieved in an AOW course, but think it would generally be a waste of time and money for me at this stage of my diving hobby. For a new diver, AOW might be a good option, but should not be considered something to be rushed into, or necessary to be completed (unless the AOW is needed for a certain desired dive).
     
  2. DeepSeaExplorer

    DeepSeaExplorer Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: North Florida
    1,157
    278
    83
    AOW is one of the more meaningful classes you can take because it opens up more dive opportunities. That’s why everyone eventually breaks down and takes it.

    There’s no avoiding it, and it will continue to be a roadblock to more advanced and more interesting dives.

    Don’t let them sidetrack you with other specialty classes. AOW is card you need. The others aren’t required, and you can always do them later.
     
    happy-diver, Johnoly and TMHeimer like this.
  3. George Monnat Jr

    George Monnat Jr Divemaster (DM) ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Austin, TX
    213
    121
    43
    My vote is yes, especially if you have little to no experience with deep or night dives.
     
  4. wetb4igetinthewater

    wetb4igetinthewater Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Seattle
    3,711
    1,971
    113
    Oh come on, AOW is a money maker that provides very little value in itself. It makes far more sense to take the complete courses with good instructors and circuitously reach the AOW rating.
     
    eleniel likes this.
  5. DeepSeaExplorer

    DeepSeaExplorer Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: North Florida
    1,157
    278
    83
    I can’t tell if you’re serious or joking...
     
  6. Barnaby'sDad

    Barnaby'sDad ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: Virginia
    612
    311
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    This is likely one of those “Your Mileage May Vary (YMMV)” things. I got interested in taking AOW early on because some dives that I wanted to complete required the cert. If that wasn’t the case, I would not have completed the course when I did.

    For someone like you with hundreds of dives that’s never had a need for the cert, it’s probably of little value.
     
  7. wetb4igetinthewater

    wetb4igetinthewater Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Seattle
    3,711
    1,971
    113
    I'm absolutely serious. I did mention that no boat captains in the Puget Sound have any respect for AOW certification. Some instructors only take students down to 61 feet for their AOW "deep" dive. That is within standards....
     
  8. TMHeimer

    TMHeimer Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Dartmouth,NS,Canada(Eastern Passage-Atlantic)
    12,131
    2,618
    113
    Agree. Similar for me. I did AOW with very little experience (OW + 6 dives) simply because it was the only way I could get out on a charter in winter on the FL panhandle. I benefitted from it and went on to Rescue later that year. Had I had 100 dives I would not have gained as much taking AOW. Side note--you needed 20 dives back then to take Rescue and I had 26. I breezed through some things and had trouble with others, probably due to inexperience diving. But, I gained the rescue knowledge.
     
  9. Bob DBF

    Bob DBF Solo Diver

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: NorCal
    6,536
    6,682
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    It depends on the instructor how meaningful the class can be. The value is to the diver that he would be excluded from dives requiring AOW by a dive op. Although doing complete courses may develop one as a better diver, it will cost more, take more time and might restrict your choice of dive trip for quite a while depending on your schedule.

    Is it like Ca boats, OW and a credit card is all you need. Of course that's only four dives, but who's counting. And let's face it, who respects a plastic card anyway.

    I don't know that the dive op's that require AOW respect it either, but without it you won't make the dive.



    Bob
     
    DeepSeaExplorer and jonhall like this.
  10. wetb4igetinthewater

    wetb4igetinthewater Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Seattle
    3,711
    1,971
    113
    Bob,

    Yes, WA boats are similar to CA. There is the issue of site selection. They tend to want to know you before taking you to advanced sites.

    However, there is one charter that trusts me to fill a boat with competent divers to do the Tacoma Narrows when the current is ripping. I've done it once with someone else who was given the same trust and it was fun. I did it a second time when the skills were suspect, and it was super boring.
     

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