Ages and stages
Start with snorkelling
Snorkelling is a good place to start. Kids usually start to show an interest in snorkelling somewhere between five and eight years old.
Kids as young as eight can try scuba diving with a Bubblemaker experience. Basic theory and safety are taught in a fun environment, followed by a pool session to learn how to use scuba equipment. Once they are comfortable they can enjoy an ocean dive to a depth of two metres.
Junior Open Water Certification
This certification level is designed for 10 to 14 years. Again, there is a theory component and practice in the pool before venturing out to open water. Maximum depth is 12 metres up to 11 years of age and 18 metres for 12–14-year-olds.
Discover Scuba Diving
Another option for those not ready to commit to a full-blown scuba diving course is a Discover Scuba Diving option, for ages 10 and up. This is often the trigger for kids to go for their first real certification.
Open Water Diver
This course is for those aged 15 and over who want to feel confident and self-reliant in open-water environments. The course includes lessons on the physiology of diving, the equipment and techniques for safe diving, online, in the classroom, in the pool and the ocean.
Before travelling, check your travel insurance covers dive-related incidents. Consider dive specialist insurance from the Divers Alert Network (DAN), one of the only policies covering the costs of evacuation to the nearest decompression chamber in an emergecy; Fiji currently does not have an operational hyperbaric chamber. When researching resorts, ask if they have oxygen (O2) available on their dive boats, and if the staff are trained in O2 first aid.