PLANNING A DIVE VACATION and all the associated details can be a frustrating endeavor. The logistics of obtaining gear, arranging transportation to and from dive sites, and booking a place to stay that can accommodate your needs requires patience and attention to detail. All-inclusive dive resorts offer relief from much of this vacation orchestration, providing concierge services and prearrangements for every conceivable facet of your stay.
Staying at a dive resort can help you avoid some of the stress of trip planning and allow you to simply relax and enjoy your vacation, but you should still take precautions and not fully offload your sense of personal responsibility to the resort. Being mindful of the fundamentals of safe travel and safe diving will allow you to make the most of your all-inclusive dive resort stay.
When selecting a dive resort, be sure to read the fine print on what the resort offers. More specifically, look for what the resort does not include so you won’t encounter any surprises upon arrival. Read reviews of the resort on travel websites or scuba diving message boards, but remember that negative feedback is much more common than positive comments and is sometimes questionably credible. Perform due diligence, and reach out to the resort’s customer service team with any questions you may have; they should be forthcoming with information and happy to assist you.
The dive opportunities at resorts vary by geographical location and season. Consider projected visibility, water temperature, and other general dive conditions when selecting your resort. Some resorts feature house reefs, which are dive locations in the immediate vicinity to the resort. While the close proximity is enticing and will allow you to dive more frequently, you may find the sites crowded or lacking in variety.
Many dive resorts provide transportation to offshore locations, which can give you the experiences you desire but alternatively take up more of your time. Some offshore locations have dive restrictions, such as paid entry permits with a set number of visitors allowed per day.
Regardless of the resort you select, practicing the fundamentals of safe diving while on location is essential. Have an emergency action plan in place, and recognize any limitations of the resort with regard to medical care and recompression chamber access in the event of a dive emergency. Remember to perform predive function checks on your gear, and know how much breathing gas you have and its exact composition before you start each dive.
Retain your situational awareness when diving with strangers. While the dive resort’s local guides are experienced and know the area, other visiting divers may become caught up in the excitement of their trip and exhibit negligence or disregard for safe diving practices.
All-inclusive dive resorts offer an amazing experience with the goal of leaving nothing to chance. Retaining your personal responsibility in emergency planning and diving safely will improve your ability to relax and enhance your overall peace of mind.
© Alert Diver — Q4 2022