There is often a misconception that planning your own dive trip is only applicable to very experienced divers. This may be absolutely true for certain dive sites that requires advanced skills and comfort level with underwater settings. However, on the premises that you are well aware of you
r level of scuba diving, anyone is eligible to plan their own dive trip instead of following a given package itinerary by many dive shops and centres.
1. The best of the perks - You get to pick your own dive destination!!
Need I say more? Depending on you and your dive buddy(s) objective of the dive trip - to see whale sharks, wreck diving etc - DIY trips give you complete liberty to choose your own destination, timing and the number of dives.
2. Experience diving at a spot that suits your level and interest with a dedicated Dive Master by your side - undivided attention to you whether you like it or not!
Unless explicitly requested by some advanced divers, all divers are encouraged to have Dive Masters by their side throughout all diving experience. Dive Masters not only ensure your own safety, but they also know where and how to navigate for you to see the best corals and marine life underwater. In group dives, usually two Dive Masters or instructors are allocated per group of 4-10 divers. Upon having your own dive trip scheduled, you will have one to one guidance by the dive master so you can have an even better and smooth dive experience tailored to your own level and skillsets.
3. You are at liberty to join specialty skill courses/advanced courses with leisure dives, thanks to the flexibility of your own DIY trip.
We often hear frustrations from divers that they would like to enjoy leisure dives in the middle as well as completing their specialty skill courses or advanced courses, but the inflexibility of preset trips hinders them from doing so. Planning your own dive trip resolves these issues, as you are the one in charge of trip planning and can include courses or leisure dives, night dives as you would like.
4. If you are travelling with members of family or friends that do not have diving experience or any certificates, you can still enjoy your dive whilst they do snorkelling or trial scuba dives.
I personally have number of instances where I went to a great place for diving with friends, but my friends had no experience in diving nor the interest. Having a customised plan really helps in these cases, as you can all still be on the same boat as a group to go out to the sea, but the non-divers can still enjoy other marine activities such as snorkelling, fishing or even parasailing while you enjoy your own dive.
5. Discover the underwater wonders at a less crowded dive site.
Majority of preset dive trips often have the same destinations even if they are organised by different dive centres. It's not so difficult to go to a dive spot and see a number of boats embarked around the same reef. Whilst you can still enjoy great diving sessions in these spots, it is without doubt that less crowded dive spots have a lot of perks. You can experience less disturbed corals and marine life, and really feel 'zen' underwater, instead of fins and gas tanks bumping into each other.
6. Dive at your own pace.
Especially for those who always have almost 100 bar of air left but needed to end the dive due to group settings (sounds familiar?), you can enjoy slightly longer dives. It also provides great practicing ground for newbies and experienced divers alike, where you are not affected by any peer pressure to follow along or rush the process faster than your own comfortability.
First time to plan your own dive trip? Check out our Free DIY Dive Planning Itinerary Template!