Thursday, March 18, 2010
Learning to dive in Kho Tao, Thailand
I chose the Sairee Cottage because they have a Thai teacher who I could understand well. However, she spoke English the whole time. Normally, a course takes three and a half day, and includes three nights accommodation in one of Sairee Cottages' bungalows. I had to stay longer because the day I registered there no one else joined the class yet. So They asked me to wait one more day and I already started moved into the room. Because of that, the last day I had to pay for the room that I stayed over free there to finish the course.
One course includes five dives. There are two big dive associations; Padi and SSI. The Padi price is 9800 Baht and SSI is 9000baht. The teacher told me that Padi dive association is importing the material from Australia that's why it is more expensive than SSI. If I had taken SSI, I would have gotten the certificate card after finishing learning to dive, but with Padi, which I chose, I got it around 2 or 3 month after the course. The card was sent to my home.
They also said the standard group is 4 people per course but, my group was 5 people. Everyone took SSI dive association, except me chose Padi.
The first half day was orientation as how to use the dive plan, how to use a regulator. Further, we had to watch a training video for two hours and had to do home work for three lessons.
The second day that we use 1 dive to learn how to breath underwater with regulator and use the hand sign. I was very enjoyed learning to dive except a lot of homework that I had to do after learn diving so I got a little depressed on that day.
I had to got up really early in the next day. We had to take the boat go to deeper water. So that day we did two dives and went up to 12 meters deep. Underwater we had to learn how to recover our regulator when it's lost, how to clean the mask and how to go up to surface. The last day was very enjoyable, we dived to 18 meters deep. We could see a lot of fishes and coral. There they are really beautiful, I felt like we visited a different world.
The last day, everyone in the class except me got their diving card because they took SSI but I, having PADI, only got a form which I had to send by my self to PADI in Australia.
After I sent my application form I got my certificate card from PADI around 2 or 3 month later. Sairee Cottage didn't even want to spend 85 Baht for the postage - very disappointing.
Anyway, the diving was good fun and I will return to Koh Tao for the advanced course in my next holiday.