Tropical Open Water Referral course 


Single diver: $700     Buddy pair: $1,200

*  Prices include all taxes, all gear, transportation from downtown Vancouver and all PADI Open Water Diver course materials. We'll shoot underwater video while you're training in the pool and post it to You Tube to enhance your learning experience. 

Get a 20% discount off everyday prices for all your tropical gear purchases at partner dive shops !

Do the academics and pool work in Vancouver...then take your certification dives in the tropics

The PADI Open Water Diver course is taught in over 150 countries. You can start the course here at home and seamlessly transition to another PADI instructor anywhere else in the world. All you'll need to bring is your official course record, which we'll give to you in a logbook.

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  • Don't waste precious vacation time studying manuals and working in a pool. Go straight to the ocean.

  • It's the ideal course for Vancouverites who don't want to dive in cold water.

  • Start the academics a month or two before your vacation... or cram and be ready for the ocean within a few days. We work with your schedule.


VSds private training vs dive shop group training

In our private Tropical Referral course, you'll have the instructor's undivided attention throughout the academic segment, on the pool deck, and in the water. We augment the course manual with practical and useful readings gleaned from about 30 years of tropical diving experience, and we strive to fully prepare clients for the challenges they will face in the ocean.

Pool sessions are held at the UBC Aquatic Centre on weekday evenings and weekend days, subject to pool availability. During these pool sessions, you'll have about 8 hours of quality time with the instructor. Compare that to a typical group course, where you can expect less than 1 hour of direct personal interaction with the instructor at the pool before you travel to the tropics.

We believe that everyone ought to progress through the course and all it's challenges at their own natural pace. And we're there to support you and give guidance at every step of the training process.

Course Details

The PADI Open Water Diver course is segmented into three parts:

  • Dive Theory and Knowledge 

  • Confined Water Dives 

  • Open Water Dives

In the Tropical Referral course, you'll complete the first two segments - academics and pool dives - in Vancouver, then take the ocean dives at your tropical destination.

Dive Theory and Knowledge

  • PADI has structured the academics for independent home study. No organized classroom sessions are needed and we will never pressure you to buy equipment.

  • Read a new, updated manual, watch the course DVD, answer questions, and write multiple choice quizzes and a final exam.

  • Time commitment is about 20 hours. Move through the academics at your own pace.

  • Contact as you work through the manual is by email and telephone.



Confined Water Dives

  • Five confined water dives are to be completed in two or three sessions, at the new UBC Aquatic Centre. PADI's training methods and techniques have recently been modernized and updated. More skills are taught, to better prepare you for ocean diving.

  • Two-three hours on the pool deck and 5.5 hours of in-water pool time are included in the course price, which is enough for most students to learn the basics and prepare for going the ocean.

  • Some students develop at a slower pace, requiring more pool sessions, which are at an additional charge of $100 per hour of pool time.

  • Pool sessions are designed for you to learn, practice and gain confidence in a wide range of fundamental diving principles and skills in a safe, warm water environment before you go to the tropics.

The Referral

At the end of the course, we'll give you an original student record in a log book to bring with you to your tropical destination, where you'll seamlessly sign up for the ocean dives with a PADI  instructor of your choice, usually at a cost of about $300. 

You'll also get a 20% discount on any gear purchases at partner dive shops while enrolled in the course.

Contact Us to inquire