If our courses are full you may still inquire about semi-private or private courses
Self Study, ECourse, Pool, Ocean
The Basic Open Water Course is the gateway to what is often a life changing experience. Explore more of the world by diving into the underwater realm for some adventure. Your adventure begins sooner than you think: register for a comprehensive, personal PADI Open Water course and be certified in two weekends.
That’s right two weekends is all it takes. You will receive a pass to the eLearning portion of your course to do some knowledge development at your pace with text, videos and graphics available to aid your learning online. After this you’ll join us for the first weekend for a little knowledge refinement before heading to the pool to learn the basic skills. On the second weekend you apply those skills in the real world. We head to the ocean and students show their ability to take the skills they learned in the pool and use them in the ocean with an instructor.
We are fortunate enough to have world-class scuba diving in Vancouver and are eager to introduce new divers to what’s available in our own backyard. We visit Whytecliff Park, a Marine Protected Area near Horseshoe Bay during the course. Alternatively, if you have a trip planned to warmer climates you can complete your training here so you don’t have to spend your vacation time studying. The PADI Open Water certification is recognized worldwide as a valid scuba diving license. This will permit you to rent dive gear and book dive trips almost anywhere on the planet.
Scuba diving is accessible to most people; a small amount of comfort in the water is a prerequisite. A basic swimming level is required you will have to demonstrate water-skill comfort by having to: swim 200 metres/yards and preform afloat or tread in water for 10 minutes, again using any methods that you want. We’ll teach you all the skills you’ll need for the underwater world. The course begins with academics and pool training for students to develop their knowledge and skills at a comfortable, progressive pace before some ocean dives.
At IDC we value safety above all else and are proud to keep our student to instructor ratios well below industry standards allowing for more personal attention and supervision. Along with the required course materials, which are quite comprehensive on their own, we provide some classroom sessions with an instructor before your pool dives. This develops a better understanding of our unique environment and some of the techniques and knowledge that applies best to BC diving.
Did you know that at IDC we do not charge extra for personal gear rentals? Our Open Water course includes rentals, eLearning, certification, etc. Everything you need to complete your course is included. We are the most affordable Open Water course in the lower mainland when all is said and done.
- All rental equipment, including wetsuit, mask, snorkel and fins
- Optional Dry Suit upgrade for only $99.95*
- Certification fees
- E-Learning Course Included ($199.00 Valve)
- Free Parking at the pool and locker service.
- Rental Fee for your Mask,Snorkel,Fins & Gloves. ($50.00 value you can get back ask staff for details)
- *50% off gear rental to be redeemed after certification
- Bathing suit, towel
- A completed PADI Medical form (and a physician’s clearance if you have any ‘YES’ answers)
- Be ready by completing your E Learning course work.
- Sense of adventure
- Once you have registered you will receive an email within 1 business day to start your eLearning portion of the course; you will need to complete this prior to the first day of the course.
- PADI eLearning is self-paced learning.
- Review knowledge development with a PADI instructor in the class prior to pool dives.
- Briefings and debriefings bring the classroom to the poolside and shore.
Thursday Night Orientation Session, students are expected to attend an orientation on the Thursday before the first course weekend from 6pm to 8pm. This will be a very important information session which will allow you to meet your fellow dive buddies, complete your paperwork, get sized up for your gear, ask questions, and get a detailed rundown of how the course will run. We will also discuss some basic diving concepts and introduce you to the equipment you’ll use.
- 10:00AM Saturday at International Diving Centre for orientation, paperwork and class. You will need to have completed ALL of your E-Learning course work prior to the course start date. You will also need to bring a swimsuit and towel.
- 10:00AM Sunday at International Diving Centre for Drysuit upgrade & class/final review.
Pool training follows classroom work on the first Saturday & Sunday of the Open Water & Open Water Referral Courses.
- 1pm – on deck for gear assembly, briefings. Please be changed and ready on the pool deck by 1pm.
- 2pm – in water for pool training.
- Pool sessions end at 4 or 5pm depending on course option selected. Please allow time to rinse and pack up gear and get changed.
Pool dives are for skill introduction and development and to gain familiarity and comfort with the equipment involved in scuba diving. We keep our student to instructor ratios low to ensure that all students are able to progress at a steady but comfortable rate with plenty of feedback.
The pool is a heated, indoor pool with changing facilities, parking and showers.
Ocean Dives at Whytecliff Park
- Friday 1pm-6pm – Prior to the second weekend of the course all students are responsible for checking over & picking up their rental gear (including tanks).
- 8am – Saturday & Sunday – The second weekend of the course features 4 ocean dives: 2 Saturday & 2 Sunday. Students must arrive on time at Whytecliff Park with all gear and complete all dives in sequential order to progress through the course & gain certification.
- 2pm – Courses are usually returning to IDC around 2pm each day of ocean dives. Students must return Saturday to get tanks filled. Debriefings may be conducted at the store or at the dive site. Sunday Students must return to IDC to return gear and complete certification process.
The ocean dives are where rubber meets road. These dives are to get acquainted with the ocean environment, to put the skills you learned in the pool to the test in the ocean and to discover what diving really is. But be warned, once you try diving in the ocean, you may be hooked!
The PADI Open Water course includes 4 instructional training dives in the ocean. These dives are meant to acquaint divers with the marine environment here in Vancouver and its unique challenges. These dives are a lot more dynamic of a learning experience than the pool. If we are fortunate classes may encounter some of the diversity of wildlife that inhabit our waters as they finish their course. Seastars, sole, various crabs, tubeworms, anemones, tunicates, sea cucumbers and a variety of other fish and invertebrates make regular appearances on Open Water courses. If we are very lucky we may even find a curious seal or octopus.
The dives themselves are approximately 30 minutes long and do not exceed 60 feet/18 metres (or 40 feet/12 metres for the Junior Open Water). The days begin early so we can be assured parking at the popular marine protected areas. A site orientation is provided to familiarize divers with the facilities, points of interest and potential hazards of the dive site. Each dive is briefed and debriefed and logged. Students will be assembling and disassembling their own equipment before, after and between dives. The day is usually wrapping up by mid afternoon.
* You will need to provide a deposit for equipment you will be taking to the ocean. A credit card number is more than sufficient. This is a deposit only and will only be applied to broken or missing equipment. If a credit card number is not an option, a cash deposit may be substituted in special circumstances. Students are responsible for the equipment they use – any loss or damage will be assessed and charged.
Students are responsible for picking up and transporting their rental equipment for the ocean dives on the Friday before their ocean weekend. We will pack it for you and show you how to check over rental equipment to ensure it is complete and in working order. This is good practice whenever renting gear.
Also note that transportation is not included in the course. Students are responsible for their own transportation to and from the dive site. If you require carpooling or transportation please check with your classmates.
IDC’s 5th Dive
In addition to the course training IDC’s Open Water course includes a “5th Dive” which is a 50% rental of equipment for a 24 hour period, including one tank, to use once within 3 months of your Open Water course. If you opt for the drysuit upgrade in your Open Water course your 50% equipment rental will include a drysuit upgrade with the package. Any additions, like a second tank, may also be added for a fee. We encourage you to get out and keep your skills fresh. You are welcome to join us on one of our organized fun dives. Please note: fun dive or boat dive fees are not covered by this, only the equipment rental itself is.
*Drysuit Upgrade and Advanced Open Water
It is highly recommended to upgrade to the drysuit upgrade for students that get cold easily or diving in January to March and October to December. When you opt to do the Open Water course in a drysuit you get a confined pool session and ocean training in a drysuit. To honour this additional training and the $99.95 upgrade fee (this is an entirely optional, but highly recommended upgrade) we offer Open Water students a discount on the Advanced Open Water course in a drysuit: If taken within 3 months of an Open Water course, students receive a $70 credit towards the Advanced Open Water course.
1 50% off 24-hour Equipment Rental: to be used within 3 months of course completion date. Students are encouraged to get out diving once they’re certified. This rental includes all essential gear, including 1 tank. If students opt for drysuit upgrade during the Open Water course, a drysuit is included in this rental. The value of this rental is over $100.
Student Discount: 10-15% off regular priced, in-stock merchandise. Discounted or sale items, fair market price items (prices set by manufacturers), books, camera equipment and services (rentals, equipment service, courses, trips, etc) are excluded. Your student discount on dive gear is honoured for life.
PADI Advanced Open Water Discount: Students whom opt to do the optional drysuit upgrade as part of their Open Water course will receive a credit toward their Advanced Open Water course in a drysuit if enrolled within 3 months of completing their Open Water certification. This is a $70 value, which reduces the course price from $419.95+tax to $349.95+tax.
Once certified refer a friend for $25 gift certificate to IDC. After you’ve completed your course, refer a friend to us to do theirs and you receive a $25 gift certificate to IDC as a thank you from us.