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How to Become a Boat Diving Specialist

There are many reasons why adventurous scuba divers should have the Boat Diver certificate. But, getting easier access to remote dive sites is one of the most popular.

This guide explains how to make the two required training dives with a PADI Instructor and get certified as a Boat Diving Specialist on the same day.

PADI Boat Diver Course | Table of Contents

Important: The Boat Diver Specialty certification may count towards the PADI Master Scuba Diver Rating. Check out our PADI® Specialty Courses List for further details on more than thirty other specialties (listed from A to Z) that might also 'float your boat'.

What is the Meaning of Specialty Diver?

In simple terms, a Specialty Diver is someone with enhanced scuba diving abilities beyond entry level certifications (e.g. Discover Programs, Scuba Diver, Open Water Diver).

Signing up for specialist scuba courses is the ideal path to take if you want to learn new techniques and experience different kinds of underwater exploration.

Furthermore, you will get the best opportunity to acquire superior knowledge and skills in the diving activities that interest you most because a 'Specialty Instructor' will be supervising the training.

Scuba Diving from Boats

Age, Depth, and Prerequisite Certification

There are minimum age requirements and maximum depth limits for all the specialties that require scuba training dives in open water.

As a result, before you can enrol in the PADI Boat Diver Specialty course you will need to be (all):

Number of Days: One (1) Day (minimum)

Open Water Training Dives: Two (2)

Maximum Depth: Depends on age and certification level

Important: Even though scuba certifications do not expire, we recommend taking the PADI ReActivate® refresher course if you have been inactive from diving for a while (e.g. longer than six months).

Motivation for Becoming a Boat Diver Specialist

Some divers never make boating dives. Whereas others have countless submersions entered in their diving log book without ever making a scuba entrance from a beach or shoreline.

So, what are some of the common reasons for taking the PADI Boat Diver Course? Well, most scuba divers enjoy traveling, especially to exotic, tropical destinations.

Reaching some of the best scuba diving and snorkeling sites means you will need to travel. Often, the only way of getting there will be a journey made by boat.

How to Get the PADI Boat Diver Specialty Certification in Thailand.This course prepares you for going scuba diving from different watercraft and motor vessels, including:

  • A purpose-built dive boat
  • Catamarans
  • Engine-powered motorboats
  • Liveaboards
  • Rigid-hulled inflatable boats (RHIB)
  • Sailboats and yachts

It's important to understand that the techniques and procedures used when entering and exiting the water from boats will vary.

Exploring Offshore Dive Sites

Having the knowledge and unique skills to explore distant locations away from the shore is another reason for taking the course.

Do you like swimming with big fish?

If so, you need to go diving in deeper water that attracts schooling vertebrates and pelagics, such as large sharks, groupers, and sea turtles.

Digital Learning Programs for Self-Study

In general, it is much easier for divers with a busy schedule to choose the online learning option to start scuba lessons.

Being able to complete the independent study portion of a multiple day course offers you some flexibility and convenience.

As long as you have a computer or a mobile device, you will be able to study the knowledge development portion at your own pace (online or offline).

Boat Diver eLearning: Up to Four (4) Hours

If you sign up for PADI eLearning® you can complete the Boat Diver self-study assignments online (around 4,500 THB).

Following that, you would need to contact the dive shop to perform the required scuba training dives with a PADI Instructor to finish the course.

PADI Boat Diver: What Skills Will You Learn?

You need to participate in the instructor-led knowledge development sessions by completing all knowledge reviews from the Boat Diver student manual.

Here's why...

Of course, you will learn how to enter and exit the water in a safe and effective manner from a boat while wearing scuba gear.

Besides that, you will also learn about:

Note: Did you successfully complete the elective Boat Dive from the Adventures in Diving Program? If so, an instructor may count it as being the first training dive of the certification requirements in this particular specialty course.

Dive Gear and Specialist Equipment

You will need to be wearing standardised scuba gear for the two open water training dives. Other specialist boating diving equipment that you'll use, may also include:

FAQ Section and Medical Questionnaire Form

Can a Certified Boat Diver Dive Alone?

The scuba diving buddy system is a safety rule that pairs two or more divers together. Moreover, the group should also perform the standardised pre-dive safety checks (BWRAF) before entering the water.

Nonetheless, PADI does consent to a kind of 'solo diving' through the Self-Reliant Diver certification course, which is available in Pattaya, Thailand.

Can I Touch the Underwater Organisms?

Divers share a common responsibility to protect and conserve nature. As a result, interacting passively with aquatic animals helps to safeguard the habitats of delicate and sensitive sea life.

What Should I Not Do after Diving from a Boat?

After cleaning the gear, there are several kinds of activities that divers should avoid doing after using scuba equipment, including:

  • Exercising
  • Flying in a plane or traveling to altitude (e.g. mountain hiking)
  • Having a deep tissue massage, hot bath, or hot shower
  • Drinking alcohol
  • Forgetting to log the dives

When Should You Do a Scuba Refresher?

Suppose you don't go diving for more than six months. There is a simple way to refresh the knowledge and skills that you already learned.

After a long period of inactivity, taking the PADI ReActivate® program will help you brush up on the safety procedures and scuba diving fundamentals.

Medical Requirements: Free Download

You must be in good physical and mental health and be medically fit for recreational scuba diving. You can review the Diver Medical Participant Questionnaire Online to check whether you need to be evaluated by a physician.

It is not appropriate to ask dive staff (e.g. divemasters, instructors) for medical advice or clearance to go diving. Instead, you can contact the Divers Alert Network (DAN) if you have questions about your medical fitness to dive.

Price for PADI Boat Diver Specialty Course in Thailand 8,500 THB*

We have qualified instructors and expert dive guides who can teach in several languages, including English, Thai, and Chinese.

The price includes (all):

Blue Check MarkBoat trips (with free soft drinks served on board)

Blue Check MarkProfessional tuition from a "Private Scuba" Instructor

Blue Check MarkFree rental of required diving equipment (including a dive computer)

Blue Check MarkPADI Boat Diving Specialty Manual and Certification Card

Blue Check MarkHotel transfers within Pattaya City limits

Important: You will usually be making two (2) scuba training dives in the same day. The PADI flying after diving guidelines say you need to wait a minimum of eighteen (18) hours after the second dive before you go to altitude. Please send us an email if you need further information.

YouTube Video and Knowledge Base for Boat Divers

Most of the information and advice in this page focuses on scuba diving activities conducted from different types of watercraft.

We also have a list of blog articles about snorkeling which relate to popular boating adventures - especially in Thailand.

Scuba Diving Help Guides

Note: The short video presented by PADI highlights what to expect when taking the Boat Diver Specialty course and how boating protocols and procedures vary in different parts of the world.

What Comes after the Boat Diver Specialty?

Boat diving is very popular with almost all divers because of the convenience, flexibility, and extra fun that it offers.

Now you're an expert at scuba diving from boats. So what comes next? Your certification links to almost all other scuba certifications, including the popular Specialty Courses offered by the Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI).

Even so, the PADI® Boat Diver course combines well with several other specialty courses such as, AWARE Shark Conservation, Deep Diver, Delayed Surface Marker Buoy (DSMB) Diver, Multilevel Diver, and Wreck Diver.

Note: All course prices for diving are subject to change and assume that all prerequisites have been met to start the training. Click here to contact the team at Private Scuba in Thailand to make a booking or send an enquiry.

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