Go Pro with a Simply Scuba’s Divemaster Internship programme in Singapore and Tioman

Are you thinking about becoming a PADI Divemaster? Would you like to eventually live the life of a PADI Instructor? Are you looking for a new challenge? Do you want to develop your diving skills further and feel a sense of great accomplishment? Maybe you just want feel more confident when you to take groups of friends and family diving. The PADI Divemaster program is one of the most rewarding PADI programs to take – what ever your reasons are. The PADI Divemaster certification is also your first level of professional certification and the initial step towards PADI Instructor training.

What Can a PADI Divemaster Do?

There are many highlights of becoming a PADI Divemaster. Here are the two most significant of things you’ll be able to do:

  1. You’ll be able to independently organise, supervise and conduct recreational diving activities from both the shore and from boats. From a career perspective this means you can work in diving – either for a dive shop by taking out fun divers, or you can work independently by organising group dive trips of your own. On a personal level you can organise trips with your buddies with confidence.
  2. PADI Divemasters can assist PADI Instructors in conducting PADI Courses. So you’ll be able to apply for jobs at dive schools and become a part of the dive crew!

Are there any other benefits?

Absolutely – Yes! If you organise group trips, many operators will give the group leader free diving and accommodation (if staying in a dive resort), providing you meet their minimum group number required.

Most dive operators offer a “Pro Discount” on diving and sometimes on shop purchases too. Ask if there is a Pro discount each time you make a booking.

Being a PADI Divemaster is one of the pre-requisites for training to be a PADI Assistant Instructor or a PADI Instructor.

As you progress through the program you’ll find that more than just your diving skills and diving knowledge improves. You’ll become more confident in your abilities, in handling pressurised situations and you’ll be able to deal with problem in a calm and rational manner.

As a PADI Divemaster other divers will look to you for guidance and assistance. You’ll be in a position to role model excellent diving skills and shape the next generation of scuba divers!

Why Take a PADI Divemaster Internship programme with Simply Scuba?

At Simply Scuba we understand that life in Singapore can be busy and often stressful. We aim to provide solid professional training which fits around your existing commitments instead of you having to fit around your training. We have our own pool for confined water training and we spend 5 weekends in Tioman so you have ample opportunities to practice and develop your diving skills in open water.

Tioman offers beautiful diving, diverse marine life and it gives you the chance to really “feel like a Divemaster” in a world renowned diving destination. The Island vibes create a wonderful escape from the city and you’ll be doing what you love – diving!

At Simply Scuba we have 30 years of experience so you can rest assured of the best training available. Your Internship will be headed up by Christopher Lee who is a leading PADI Course Director (The highest Instructor rating possible). Christopher also teaches our Instructor Development Courses so if you are thinking of progressing and becoming a PADI Instructor you’ll already be building a relationship with your Course Director now.

Are There Any Prerequisites for Taking the Divemaster Internship?

Yes – you’ll need the following:

  • To be a certified PADI Rescue Diver and Advanced Open Water (or equivalent from another diving agency – if you are not sure, contact us to check your equivalent PADI level)
  • Have a minimum of 40 logged dives with experience in night diving, deep diving and underwater navigation – If you do not have enough logged dives to start the program let us know – we can make a schedule for you to get your dive numbers up before you start!
  • To be at least 18 years old
  • A signed medical statement from a doctor stating that you are fit for diving. We can email you the form which you need to have signed by your physician
  • A sense of adventure, willingness to learn and a passion for diving!

Are you ready to Go Pro, challenge yourself and become a PADI Divemaster? Why wait? Stop dreaming the dream and start living the dream!

For more information about our PADI Divemaster Internships, contact us on: chris@simplyscuba.com.sg and we’ll get right back to you.


We are looking forward to being a part of your journey to becoming a PADI Professional!

Why PADI’s Instructor Development Program?

If you have the passion for SCUBA, why not make it your lifestyle and teach it? One of the most rewarding aspects of being a PADI scuba instructor is the joy of teaching others to dive. There’s an unparalleled satisfaction in introducing people to the underwater world, witnessing their first breaths underwater, and guiding them through the adventure of becoming certified divers. It’s more than a job, it’s a journey of sharing the excitement of underwater exploration.

I have been teaching SCUBA and actively running my own dive centre namely Simply Scuba Pte Ltd for more than 30 years, I was a RAID and SSI instructor trainer for 12 years before I decided to move to PADI and becoming a PADI Course Director eventually. Please don’t get me wrong, all dive agencies, be it PADI, SSI, IANTD, GUE, NAUI, SDI or RAID, just to name a few, they all teach safe diving. The saying “same same but different” applies here. I guess it all boils down to the instructor and the comfort of the students whether they are successful in any particular dive course they embark on. Not to mention the support from the individual dive agencies in terms of training programs, material support, marketing and so on, that is also crucial.

For me the bottom line is this…..if I want to teach diving, why not offer something that a lot of divers and non divers know about? It may differ from country to country, but go to the internet, you will get your answer.

Part time or full time program? That really depends on the individual. Being entrenched here in Singapore, I believe a lot of us spend a great amount of time working and with family commitments as well, leaves little time to embark on the IDC program full time, hence I have offered part time programs since I started teaching IDCs, it has worked out quite well so far. Full time take about 3 weeks, part time is two months. Evaluations by PADI staff is conducted two to three times per calendar year here in Singapore.


What do you need to be before embarking on the PADI IDC program?

  • Have attended a good open water, advance, rescue and dive master program, this will help you in fully understanding the courses offered as you will be teaching them!
  • 100 logged dives, more will not harm you though.
  • Trained in CPR and first aid. Physically fit as well.
  • A solid foundation for dive knowledge which you should get in the dive master program.
  • Lastly, a sense of pride, a willingness to learn more, coupled with a strong sense of responsibility, fun loving and a love for the environment is also a must!


What you will learn in this program?

  • Extra dive theory knowledge.
  • Dive skills at the instructor level.
  • How to prepare and present a good and fun theory, confined water and open Water teaching presentation for any PADI courses you can offer, from basic to Dive master and certain dive specialties.
  • Risk management.
  • PADI system and administration.
  • How to market and keep divers interested in dive courses.
  • Dive Industry overview and what keeps us going.

Embarking on the path to becoming a PADI scuba instructor is a thrilling and rewarding adventure that allows you to explore the depths of the ocean while sharing your passion for diving with others. It’s not just about teaching, it’s about embodying the essence of a true diving professional.

Let the ocean be your classroom!

Yours In Diving.

Christopher Lee
PADI Course Director #466479
Simply Scuba Pte Ltd $6720


Planning to take up Scuba Diving lessons? Here is how to choose a reliable dive operator.

Not all dive schools and operators are the same, and differ in their business models and levels of service. So what do you look out for?


Most, if not all, entry-level and recreational diving courses are sold in Singapore as an all-in package comprising three components:

(A) Theory lesson and examination
Either e-learning, classroom lectures, or a combination of both.

(B) Confined water training sessions
Usually held at a swimming pool or from the shore, in pool-like conditions in clarity and depth. “Confined” means the training is done in shallow water, where the student can stand up in, and also in deeper water, where they can’t.

We recommend doing the training in a swimming pool in Singapore. It is difficult to promise good conditions from the shore, there can be surf and waves, and you may be ‘bobbing’ up and down while trying to learn and perform your skills for the first time. If you face problems then, you may not be able to carry on with the deeper sea dives. Of course if you feel very confident about the confined water sessions, then by all means.

During this segment, a basic waterskills assessment will be done, and students have to swim 200m in the swimming pool, without pausing. Frogstyle, freestyle, butterfly, it’s all up to you! Time to get back in shape!

(C) Open water training dives
To fulfil the last requirement, many dive operators bundle their open water diver course with a trip to Malaysia, such as to Pulau Tioman (located off the the east coast of the Peninsula). These are usually run as a weekend getaway, leaving Singapore on Friday evenings, crossing the border by bus and heading north to the coastal town of Mersing, before transferring by boat to Tioman. The open water training dives are completed over two days, on Saturday as well as Sunday morning, before making the return journey home.

Others can also include a live aboard departing directly from Singapore, without the hassle of going through immigration, example like going onboard MV Mega Explorer, they usually cost more of course. Some dive shops also conduct their open water training dives in Singapore waters, at the southern island of Pulau Hantu.

An entry-level scuba diving programme, like the PADI Scuba Diver and Open Water Diver Course, is the gateway for beginners to the underwater world. Upon successfully completing and passing the theory and practical portions of the course, students are given an open water diver licence, which is internationally recognised and gives them the opportunity to dive in other locations worldwide. Some training agencies are more recognised in other parts of the world, outside Singapore.

#1. Travel essentials

Before signing up for a dive course, it’s good to ask how the trip to Malaysia or other places are being run. Some dive operators have their own coaches and dive boats, which means that the trip runs according to their schedule and timings. Once you reach Mersing, the dive boat is ready to depart.

Other dive companies also tap cross-border bus services which operate from Singapore to Mersing, and scheduled ferries from Mersing / Tanjong Gemuk to Tioman, such as the Bluewater Express or Cataferry. While ferry timings are fixed, they can be delayed, and sometimes horrendously late on the way back.

As Singaporeans, we love our food! Some dive resorts will offer buffet style meals while others have shared-table dining options where dishes are shared among diners (for example 10 diners to a table). Other packages do not include meals at all. So ask your dive operator what the dining options are. After all, we need “fuel” to scuba dive!

#2. Carrying gear

Humans are not designed to breathe or see underwater without aid, so before you take your first breath underwater you will need to assemble and don some equipment, like a scuba tank, buoyancy control device (a jacket-like contraption), a regulator set, mask, fins, a weight belt with weights, and a wetsuit. You should be using the same or similar equipment during your confined water and open water training dives.

Some dive operators require their students to carry the scuba gear (with the exception of the tanks and weights) with them, from Singapore up to Tioman. Other dive companies have sets of scuba gear both in Singapore and Tioman, so divers don’t have to lug the equipment with them.

Besides its always a joy to travel light, and have luggage space for the extra swimsuit or beachwear!

#3. Ratios

Every diving training agency, from PADI, SSI, SDI, NAUI, TDI, SDI, CMAS, PDIC and GUE just to name a few, has a set of training standards which dive Instructors and their companies have to adhere to. One of these is the student to instructor ratio, which ensures that training is conducted safely, and the students are given sufficient attention. So it’s important to ask the dive operator: How many students to one instructor? Will there also be divemasters to assist the instructor in a class with more students?

#4. Google the dive operator

Do some web research. Does the dive company have a website of its own, or is it only relying on social media channels to establish its presence? Does the dive operator have an established history and track record? Do they claim to be the “best” or the “most preferred”? Are they really? Do more likes on Facebook mean they are better?

Also check out the profiles of the dive instructors the school has. While everyone can follow the curriculum, a great dive instructor – who has good personal character traits, loves to dive and is serious about the sport – can make all the difference to showing you the right habits and attitudes in scuba, and a lifelong love for the ocean and diving.

Check the ratings on Google, TripAdvisor, Instagram and Facebook and read what customers are saying about their experience. Look at how the dive company markets itself: Do they emphasise on only having fun and a good time? Look at how their divers appear in photos: Do they show good diving habits – such as taking care of the environment and being respectful of marine creatures? While online reviews are not always the most accurate indicator of how reliable or good a dive operator is, they do help with the decision- making.

#5. Licences

Because dive operators run trips to Malaysia, they are essentially travel agents. As such, they are required to have a Travel Agent (TA) Licence from the Singapore Tourism Board. In November 2018, a dive operator was fined $14,000 by the tourism board for running more than 50 trips without a TA licence.

Why is this important? It all boils down to accountability. If the whole package runs smoothly, then there is no issue. It is when incidents crop up, then you will be asking yourselves where you can, as a consumer get compensation? Dive trip insurance should also be bought, a 2d2n trips costs only $26 from AIG, as an example.

So I hope this gives those wishing to take up scuba diving a quick guide into how to choose a dive operator and some factors to consider, other than price.

Start right, learning is a journey. Dive safe, have fun and love the environment. Your friend is waiting for you!

Yours In Diving.

Christopher Lee (PADI Course Director) and Adrian Lim (PADI Staff Instructor)
Simply Scuba Private Limited.

Since the early 1990’s Christopher Lee, the owner and a PADI Course Director at Simply Scuba, has been teaching PADI scuba diving courses full time. Chris opened Simply Scuba to ensure that Singaporean divers have a professionally managed and organised dive operator which provides options for those based in the city.

Chris understands the importance of feeling comfortable in the water and, as a passionate dive instructor, makes it his mission to help divers develop skills to achieve this.

Simply Scuba are dedicated to not only certifying divers, but to helping divers to become able, capable and confident underwater. Simply Scuba offers a full range of PADI courses from beginner to advanced levels – including professional levels.

When you take a PADI course with Simply Scuba you won’t just leave with a certification, you’ll leave with a sense of achievement and a whole new skill set. Having these skills and confidence is so important as you’ll truly be able to enjoy the incredible underwater environments in which you dive.

Simply Scuba is passionate about marine life and we understand that’s why people generally want to learn how to dive – to see coral reefs, tropical fish and all of the wonders of the underwater world. If you learn, or continue to develop your skills, with Simply Scuba you won’t just receive a certification card – you’ll receive a lifetime of diving opportunities around the world because you’ll feel as at home underwater as you do on land – that’s the foundation on which Chris has built Simply Scuba.

Are you having problems with buoyancy? Are you finding you go up and down throughout a dive? Are you struggling with depth control? Do you feel generally “out of control”? These are all factors that prevent certified divers from continuing in their diving journey and therefore missing out on phenomenal opportunities to see parts of the planet that so few are privileged to see with their own eyes. If any of these factors relate to you then come and see us – we can help.

If you want to learn how to dive, we offer courses which are based around your schedule – not ours. We understand that people have busy work schedules, family lives and study commitments throughout the day and so we offer evening sessions and even online learning which you can complete at home. Of course, you’ll need to dive in the ocean to get certified, so we make that an extra special occasion and convenient too. We use both dive sites in Singapore and Tioman on a regular basis. 

If you are already certified but unsure about what to do next, then our advice is not to give up – come and join us for either a PADI course or a diving weekend and we can convert your fears to confidence. We can show you how diving can be a life changing experience and not just something to check off your bucket list.

We will hope to hear from you.

We offer from beginner to instructor level. Weekly programme.


Develop Your Diving Skills with Simply Scuba Singapore


Are you a certified diver? Do you want to develop your diving skills but are not sure what is the next PADI Course for you to take? At Simply Scuba we provide the full range of PADI Courses through to Instructor level and we provide the most professional dive training in Singapore. Not only do we have our own pool to use here in the city and a full service dive centre, we also combine our courses with weekend trips to Tioman in Malaysia! We know how busy life can be here in Singapore so we structure our courses around evenings, online learning and weekend water sessions – meaning you don’t need to take time off work or change your schedule.


To find out what’s next for you, find you current PADI certification level in the list below and read on!


I am Open Water Certified:

Great! You are already certified and know the basics of diving. The next step is to take your PADI Advanced Open Water Course. The Advanced Course includes making 5 phenomenal dives in Tioman – which can be done in one weekend (2 days and 2 nights).

You’ll need to take the Deep Dive and Navigation Dive, and the other 3 dives are for you to choose. Once you have completed the course you’ll be certified to dive to 30 meters!


I am Advanced Open Water Certified:

As an advanced diver we know that you can take care of yourself so now it’s time to start learning how to take care of other divers through the PADI Rescue Diver Course. During the course you’ll learn how to prevent accidents from happening and how to act should an accident occur. We run the diving sections of this course over a 2 day, 2 night stay in Tioman and the theory can be taken online.

To become a PADI Rescue Diver you’ll also need to be certified as an Emergency First Responder (EFR). The EFR course teaches you how to perform CPR as well as first aid procedures. The EFR course can be taken at our dive centre here in Singapore. The course applies to diving and non-diving situations and is a great addition to your professional CV.


I am a PADI Rescue Diver:

PADI Rescue Divers can choose to continue as recreational divers and become a PADI Master Scuba Diver – which is often referred to as the “black belt of scuba diving” or decide to become a professional diver by becoming a PADI Divemaster.

  • PADI Master Scuba Diver: To become a PADI Master Scuba Diver you’ll need to complete 5 PADI Specialty Courses. You can choose from an entire range according to the types of diving you like most. PADI Specialty courses are usually weekend courses and it’s often possible to complete two specialties in one weekend Tioman trip. You don’t need to take all 5 at once, you can spread them out over as much time as you like.
  • PADI Divemaster: The PADI Divemaster certification is the first level of professional diver. As a PADI Divemaster you’ll be able to organize dive trips, guide certified divers and assist PADI Instructors when they are teaching PADI Courses. This is the first step in turning your passion for diving into an income. If you don’t want to work in diving, the PADI Divemaster course is still an extremely challenging and rewarding program to take. For more information about the PADI Divemaster course, check our Divemaster information page here.


I am a PADI Divemaster:

You have already taken the first step toward becoming a PADI Instructor – the most sought after job in the diving industry! Becoming a PADI Instructor means taking the PADI IDC (Instructor Development Course). At Simply Scuba our IDC’s are taught by our Course Director Chris Lee who has decades of experience in the diving industry. Our IDC Singapore programs are carefully structured to fit around your working time and your schedule. We run our courses over evening classes and weekend trips to Tioman. We know your time is important and Chris has developed the schedule over years of understanding people’s needs. If you are thinking about taking your IDC in Singapore, contact us and we will give you more information and answer any questions that you have. If you’d prefer to send an email you can do so to: chris@simplyscuba.com.sg


Whatever your level is now, and wherever you want to go next, we are here to help you get there.

We hope to meet you soon!

Why Learn to Scuba Dive with Simply Scuba

Are you looking for adventure? Are you ready for a challenge? Do you want a way to get out of the city and explore? Perhaps you just want a new hobby and the chance to make new friends? The PADI Open Water Course is the first level of scuba diving certifications and it is your passport to dive here in Singapore and all over the world!
The PADI Open Water course involves three key phases; Knowledge Development, Confined Water and Open Water – this means you’ll spend some time studying the theory of diving then you’ll move on to learning diving skills in a swimming pool before heading out to the ocean to put your skills to use.
At Simply Scuba we have our own facilities here in Singapore so you’ll complete the theory and pool sessions around your existing schedule. Our theory sessions are on Tuesdays at 7.00pm at our dive centre. You can also opt to study from home with PADI eLearning – whatever works best around your schedule. Once you’ve completed the theory you can join a confined water pool session and these are held at Orchid Country Club at 10.30am on any Saturday.
Once you have completed these two elements we’ll take you for an incredible 2 day / 2 night trip to beautiful Tioman Island (Friday evening departures). This means you can complete your entire PADI Open Water Course without needing to take time off work or away from your studies! By the time you arrive in Tioman you’ll have confidence in your skills and you’ll be ready for your first exciting dives in the ocean!

Why Choose Simply Scuba in Singapore?

Simply Scuba is a PADI 5 Star IDC Training Facility with more than 30 years of experience in the diving industry. We have highly trained professional staff who are passionate about dive training, safety – and still having fun. We have a 100% safety record at home and in Tioman and we offer flexible schedules which you can fit around your existing commitments.
Don’t just believe us, here’s what our recent student says:
“Very happy taking OWD with Simply Scuba – everything from theory, pool session to real dives very well executed, high quality and good social fun people. Great equipment as well – highly recommend, and I will surely be continuing my diving journey with these guys”.
By: Lars Myrhøj Jensen / Facebook 5 Star Review

Completing the PADI Open Water course is just the first step to a lifetime of possibilities. As a certified PADI Open Water Diver you can sign up for our dive trips at any time. Diving in Singapore is varied and exciting – and it’s the perfect way to escape the city and forget about your busy schedule. For those with a thirst for travel, here in Singapore we are ideally located on the edge of the “Coral Triangle” which is the marine area that has the most abundant and varied marine life on the planet! Getting your PADI Open Water certification is your to ticket to start exploring some of Asia’s best diving destinations so what are you waiting for? Sign up for your Open Water Course with Simply Scuba today!

Make an online reservation here or if you have any questions about learning to dive in Singapore contact us and one of our professional team will get right back to you.

We are looking forward to exploring our underwater world with you soon!

Become a PADI Instructor with Simply Scuba in Singapore:

Live the PADI Pro Dream

Do you want to change your life and become a PADI Instructor? Are you short on time and unable to take an extended period of leave from work? Are you keen to fit your Instructor Development Course around your life, work and family here in Singapore? This is where we can help, it’s actually what we specialize in at Simply Scuba – helping you to achieve your dreams with a schedule that works for you. At Simply Scuba we understand your time is important and that’s why our PADI Instructor Development Courses fit around you, rather than you having to fit around the program.

For your convenience, all of your theory sessions will be here in Singapore, in the evenings, so you don’t need to take any time off work. Our Simply Scuba IDC program in Singapore includes 8 evening theory sessions which all start at 630pm – giving you enough time to finish at the office without having to leave early.

During the evening sessions you’ll cover the following subjects with your PADI Course Director, Christopher Lee: IDC Course Orientation, Learning Instruction and the PADI System, General PADI Standards and Procedures, Marketing Diving, Start Diving, Teaching in Confined Water, Developing Knowledge Development Presentations, Conducting Open Water Dives, Risk Management, the 4E’s and Keep Diving.

Of course, during the evening sessions you’ll also be taking an in depth look at all of the PADI Courses you’ll be able to teach as a certified PADI Instructor and these include: PADI Discover Scuba Diving, PADI Open Water, Adventures in Diving (PADI Advanced Open Water), PADI Rescue Diver, Emergency First Response, PADI Divemaster and PADI Specialty programs. To ensure you feel confident and prepared for the Instructor Exams you’ll also take mock exams so we can gauge where you are at and you know what to expect.

In addition to the 8 evening sessions you’ll need to set aside one weekend in Singapore to complete a confined water session which includes the 24 skill demonstration workshop, the 800 yard snorkel and confined water presentations 1 and 2. On the second day you’ll complete Confined Water presentations 3 and 4 and a Rescue Exercise workshop.

Once all of the hard work is completed in Singapore you’ll be almost ready! By this point you’ll have a great sense of achievement – and so you should, Instructor training is challenging yet rewarding.

To complete the Instructor Development Course you’ll make a weekend trip to Tioman – this is what you have been working towards! This is a 2 day, 2 night trip conducted over a weekend thereby minimizing any time away from work. Tioman offers excellent training conditions and the trip gives you two days to be 100% focused on your Pro development. In Tioman you’ll complete your Open Water Teaching Presentations and Skills and you’ll participate in a Discover Scuba Diving Workshop.

Once the Tioman trip and all IDC components are successfully completed you’ll be signed off as successfully completing a PADI Instructor Development Course which is your ticket to enrol in the PADI Instructor Exams. Where you take your Instructor Exams is your choice between here in Singapore or in Tioman. Wherever you choose to take the exams you’ll be well prepared and ready for life as a PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor!

So are you ready to change your life and start making your dreams a reality? There’s no better time than today! If you’d like to join one of our PADI Instructor Development Courses here in Singapore please contact us on: chris@simplyscuba.com.sg or fill in our contact form or give us a call on +65 9387 6383

Pre-Requisites: Please note that you will need to be a certified PADI Divemaster or Assistant Instructor, other agency dive pros are also welcomed, have 100 logged dives which includes night, deep and navigation diving, be a minimum of 18 years old, hold a current EFR certification (within the last 24 months) and be fit for diving with a signed medical statement from your doctor.

We look forward to meeting you at Simply Scuba soon!

I think it all boils down to budget, experience and time.

The cheapest option, dive our very own back yard! Pulau Hantu that is. No long travel times, no over night stays. You get 2 day dives for under S$150. Do note, water visibility can be quite challenging here.

Please do know that most dive trips for under S$500, you are limited to venues that are nearby and does not involve any flights. Malaysia comes to mind, this country has so much to offer, along the eastern coast of Peninsular Malaysia, islands like Redang, Lang Tenggah, Perhentian in the northern states, and Tioman, Aur / Dayang with the rest of the southern islands of Malaysia under Pahang and Johore states, these are choice dive destinations for time constrain and budget divers. High season is from March to October though. A 4d3n, 3d2n or 2d2n package is the most popular. Most divers who have time constraints, prefer the most popular option of going to Tioman, Aur or Dayang on a 2d2n package, where land and sea travelling is done at night, saving the day time for diving, but do note that these trips tend to be quite tiring, and not for the faint hearted. Accommodations here range from five star to no stars! So the more you pay, the better the accommodations. Self driving up is another option.

From $500 to S$1000, you may also opt for live aboards, there are a few running from Singapore, here, normally doing a 2d2n trip to those islands in the south of Malaysia, including those islands mentioned above and of course the numerous wrecks scattered over the South China Seas. There are pros and cons for both land or boat based dive trips, the biggest I think is the dread of going through any of the causeways linking Singapore and Malaysia if you are doing a land based trip, whereas on a live aboard, you can start relaxing the moment you board, weather dependant that is!

Another place for mention is the Riau Islands near Batam or Bintan, visibility may be quite challenging at times, but the travelling distance makes up for it.

Bali has always and will always be a good option, so many budget airlines go there on a daily basis. Most dive packages start from 4d3n. Accommodations also range from five to no stars. A lot of dive sites are situated in the north eastern area and also in the southern parts of Bali, the south may get quite cold during the seasons, I am talking about the waters being 22 degrees C or less. Popular is the sun fish, sighted during August to October.

Manado is another good option, but flights there are limited. Indonesia has so many islands that you can dive from, you get the drift.

Philippines comes to mind also in this price bracket, with most flights landing in Cebu, there are also land based trips to see special creatures like tresher sharks and so on. Malapascua and Puerto Galera are popular choices.

From S$1000 and above, nearest again is Sipadan, Mabul and Layang Layang in Eastern Malaysia namely Sabah. Here you get lots of wall dives and many large pelagics. Getting there is via KL or KK, most need two flights to get there. So I recommend at least 5d4n trips. Try to be at least advanced trained and above for these sites.

Then you have Maldives, budget airline has started flying there. Most divers do live aboards there, advantages are obvious as the vessel travels to more dive sites versus land based operations where the resort only dives around the atoll where they are situated. Starting from 5d4n to 8d7n. Most vessels are of high quality, so prices may also vary.

Thailand itself also offers much. From the Andaman Seas, places like the Similans, Rich. Rock, to the southern side Phi Phi, Hin Daeng and Hin Muang areas from Phuket. A good mix of day trips and live aboards. Direct flights land in Phuket itself.

Other very nice world class places to dive in include Rajah Ampat and Komodo in Indonesia.

We just got back from Palau, amazing!

Obviously, there are so many other dive destinations I did not mention here, these are the norms and trends that I see, I believe you can start with these. More dive shops do offer many other places and at different price brackets.

The internet is filled with so much information, what you need to think about is whether to book directly with them or through your local dive shop, you weigh the pros and cons yourself. Local shops tend to have more information pertaining to that particular place as they have been working well with the overseas operations, nothing is worse than being unpleasantly surprised when you get there.

It is a requirement from Singapore Tourism Board that all establishments selling out bound trips from Singapore require a travel agent’s license, reasons being to protect you as the consumer in the event that something goes wrong you are not left alone to take proper actions against that particular establishment. Of course, there are many who prefer to go for trips with their friends, so relying on them to organise the whole thing is not wrong as they can book directly with the overseas dive shop, the questions will arise when something goes wrong.

Travel insurance is strongly recommended, especially those that covers diving. Don’t save on this!

So start planning and saving! Let the dive adventures continue!

Safe Diving….