10 tips to help in the search for a scuba dive job.
Updated: Aug 11
As a mentor for profesional divers in their career development, this is one of the many questions I got ask daily:
How to get a scuba diving job?
So when you reach this point you must likely did your homework and decided that a scuba dive instructor is a job for you. Now you are wondering how to get in and start working as a fresh qualified instructor.
By my experience, I line up some easy tips, that you should take in consideration even before start your professional career patch.
- 10 points to consider when looking for a dive instructor job:
- Train your profesional diving courses where you want to start your career. - Remember, scuba dive is a really serious JOB. - Your past matters for your diving career. - Stand out from the competition. Be a better diver. - Languages, Languages, Languages... - Plan your strategies and understand the dive location. - Research scuba diving positions worldwide and write for positions that you fit. - Sometimes, being freshly graduated dive instructor is a bless. - Work in your people skills and be a safer diver. - Work in your image/ dive brand.
#1 - Train your profesional diving courses where you want to start your career.
I know this is one sound complicated. Since the travel bug is normally in the DNA of dive instructors and you were wondering on keeping travelling while working, but take some time and picture yourself where you wish to be at least in the close future so you can take an assertive decision.
Dive Centers normally keep the loop and give chances from people from"the house", it's just simple to introduce a staff member that already know how the daily routine works, so training as a divemaster in the place you want to take your ITC/ IDC and maybe wish to start your career will definitely increase your chances.
For the job hunting the first certifications under your belt are gold and also the most difficult to get, so take a serious thought and talk with the dive center and analyze the chance that you have to certified some divers.
Even if you are thinking in being there for a short term you must know the next steps after the final exam. For this matter every DC are different but here are some working lines that you can find:
Payed Internship: As you still being treated as a student, this is a good way to shape your teaching style and get tips with experience instructors. Normally the fresh instructor pay a fee for the DC to be in some real courses and get the certification under their name.
Free Assistance: For this matter you don't pay but you are a mercy from the DC/ Instructor demand, so you will assist courses with experience instructors so you can pick some tricks and certified.
Koh Tao is a amazing spot to train and start your diving career with more than 70 dive centers and great mentors based in the island and almost 1 million tourist passing by every year, there is plenty of opportunities and possibilities all year round.
#2 - Remember, scuba dive is a really serious JOB.
Some candidates just dive too deep in the lifestyle, that they get stuck in the flip-flop environment and hang loose way.
So if you are trying get a job don't forget to build up a formal CV with references and contact details and pick up your phone afterwards (sounds stupid but really happens).
#3 - Your past matters for your diving career.
Your previous skills are also important. It can help your future employer make a picture of you and will be really useful for the DC operation:
Backgrounds with: sales, communication, computer skills, education, marine conservation, costumers service, health/ emergency service, mechanics and etc are always welcome in any DC.
#4- Stand out from the competition. Be a better diver.
Even as the tip #3 will help you to stand out from the competition, your future matters most for getting a job so keep learning and taking courses.
Show that you want to be a valuable asset for the company, become a specialities instructors, and go on.
More you can teach higher are your chances.
#5- Languages, Languages, Languages...
Diving still a risk activities and the ocean impose respect so students tend to take class in their own language, to avoid lack of miss-understand and eliminate an extra barrier from the task.
English is a must and every language are welcome. The most popular from job descriptions are Chinese, Spanish, French German Russian, etc...
#6- Plan your strategies and understand the dive location.
Diving is a dynamic activities and a lot of position are fulled from candidates from the so rounding area, so research the diving season, avoid arrive just before it, try to take time and be there 3 to 4 months from the pick.
It will give you time to adapt and be known between the dive centers.
Sometimes I even find useful to arrive just in the end of high season, some instructors are leaving and you can pick up from there and create your space for the next season, so if you have some savings and a long term plan, this is a good solution.
#7-Research scuba diving positions worldwide and write for positions that you fit.
One of the most annoying things for managers is to get a totally generic e-mail sometimes even the name of the dive shop is wrong, so avoid the copy and paste.
Be honest only apply for positions that you are fit. Research the dive shop that you are writing, visit their website, take their vision in consideration and edit your curriculum for the position and workplace.
Visit the job board from your dive association and look for opportunities: https://www.divessi.com/en-IC/alt_pros/
#8- Sometimes, being freshly graduated dive instructor is a bless.
Start looking for a job or let people know that you will attend for instructor exam even before you start the preparation. Some Dive shops love to pick nearly qualified instructors, so they can build up their staff in the exactly manner they wish.
#9- Work in your people skills and be a safer diver.
Diving is social activities, sometimes the best divers are not the best instructors, it's really important in the beginning to build this vibe around you and make people feel comfortable and wishing to dive/ getting courses with you.
Never forget, we deliver a service that is meant to be about SAFETY but also fun. So be safe and enjoy your dives and your guests will do the same.
#10- Work in your image/ dive brand.
Enjoy and share it, use social media as self-advertising, don't wait that the marketing of the dive shop be enough.
Bringing guests to the DC is one of the hardest tasks in the industry, so if you are able to bring your own divers, keeps then learning and buying, you will bring a big value along with your diving skills.
The ITC/ IDC are just the start of your life long adventure as a scuba dive instructor, the first steps can look a bit scare but keep up and never forget to have fun during the process.
If you find any extra tip let me know, I hope all the best luck in the search.