Though diving solo isn't for everyone, diving alone can be done safely by well-trained, experienced and responsible divers. Scuba Diving International (SDI) recently has formulated standards by which qualified dive instructors can offer solo diving courses, and as of March 2004, some of the vessels in the Explorer fleet, will offer SDI solo diving courses on board.
Any solo divers diving off of our vessels - including staff - must be both properly trained and equipped. The equipment, training and administrative requirements are extensive. If you would like to do a solo diving course during your time with us, or to dive solo, you will need to be aware prior to your arrival of the SDI requirements which we follow.
Please also recognize that not all dive sites which we will visit may be conducive to solo diving, due to weather, current, entry method, Marine Park regulation or otherwise. There may be occasions where solo diving is not allowed by the dive staff, based on their local knowledge of conditions or dive logistics.
Solo diving is not available in the Maldives & Galapagos.
Solo Diver Course Requirements
Those wishing to take the SDI solo diving course on board must meet the following prerequisites:
- Completion of standard liability release, as well as medical history form
- Minimum Advanced Diver rating
- Minimum 21 years of age
- Minimum 100 logged dives (proof must be presented to the instructor).
- Ability to complete a 200-meter surface swim in full scuba gear, without stopping.
- In addition, the diver must be mentally and physically fit to complete the course. Instructors have discretion in determining whether a candidate qualifies on these points.
The solo diving course consists of a class session emphasizing equipment and planning, as well as two dives. Each dive must follow the dive plan discussed before the dive or the student must do an additional certification dive. During each solo dive, the equipment requires specified below must be met.
Requirements - Certified Solo Divers
Divers wishing to dive solo, who have previously been certified to do so, are welcome to dive solo off of an Explorer vessel, with the except of the Maldives and Galapagos. The follow requirements must be met:
- Solo divers must present proof of their certification.
- Solo divers must carry a pony bottle (not a Spare Air or similar device) or independent or isolated-manifold twin tanks, whistle, knife, compass, and signaling device deployable from safety stop depth (safety sausage or dive flag on a reel, for example).
- All solo divers must file a dive plan for each solo dive with the dive staff on board, and adhere strictly to that dive plan.
Costs - Caribbean vessels
Solo Diver Course - US$135, includes: 3 dives with solo gear & TDI/SDI Registration. Book is $40 - payable on board.
Equipment Rentals - US$20/day or US$50/week (includes all additional required equipment) - payable on board
If you might be interested in the solo diving course, please make note of it on your application form so that we can confirm whether or not an instructor and rental equipment will be available.