Open Water Diver

The PADI Open Water Diver course with WEST SHORE SCUBA

If you've always wanted to learn how to scuba dive, discover new adventures or simply see the wondrous world beneath the waves, this is where it starts. The PADI Open Water Diver course is the world's most popular scuba course and has introduced millions of people to the adventurous diving lifestyle.  See more information about the PADI Open Water Diver certification process below!


STEP 1: eLearning ($195 paid directly to PADI)

You will want to start your certification journey by purchasing the Open Water Diver eLearning from PADI.  Once you purchase the eLearning, you will want to get started on completing the eLearning modules.  Click here to purchase your eLearning.

STEP 2: Contact Us To Schedule An Orientation & Purchase Gear

Prior to completing your confined water dives in the pool, you will want to contact West Shore Scuba to schedule an orientation to complete your paperwork which includes a required diver medical form.  (If any response on the diver medical form is a "yes," it may require your doctor's signature, so, getting this done sooner than later is your best bet.)  While you're at the shop, you also want to purchase your personal scuba equipment - mask, booties, fines, snorkel and logbook - to be prepared to begin your underwater adventure.

STEP 3: Confined Water Dives ($200 paid to West Shore Scuba)

The next step toward becoming a certified Open Water Diver is to complete your confined water dives.  (You can join us to complete your confined water dives before your eLearning is entirely finished.)  Our current class schedule can be found here.

STEP 4: Open Water Check Out Dives ($375 paid to West Shore Scuba)

After completing your eLearning and confined water dives, the next and final step of earning your Open Water Diver certification is to complete 4 open water check out dives.  When the weather is favorable, we typically use Dutch Springs in Bethlehem, PA to complete the open water check out dives.  You can also opt to take advantage of opportunities to complete your open water check out dives during one of our upcoming trips.  The cost for completing the open water check out dives during one of our trips is $175 + the cost of the trip.  If you decide to finish your open water check out dives with another dive operator, a referral fee of $35 will apply.

Starting from

Availability: Contact us for booking information

What You Learn

During the PADI Open Water Diver course, you'll learn what you need to know to explore the underwater world using scuba. Most people find it a rewarding challenge.

Earning a PADI Open Water Diver certification shows that you met the course requirements. Dive centers and resorts require proof of certification before they will rent scuba equipment, fill scuba cylinders or book dive excursions. As a PADI Open Water Diver, you'll be trained to a maximum depth of 18 metres/60 feet, and are qualified to dive in conditions as good as, or better than, those in which you trained. It's just the beginning of a lifetime filled with dive adventures.


Earning Your PADI Open Water Diver Certification

The PADI Open Water Diver course includes three parts:

(1) Knowledge Development - The knowledge development portion of the Open Water Diver certification covers the principles, concepts and terms you need to know for dive safety and enjoyment.  Typically, the knowledge development portion of your certification can be completed via eLearning.  (Click here to get started on your eLearning)

(2) Confined Water Dives - During the Confined Water Dives, you learn and practice scuba skills in a pool or water with pool-like conditions.  You'll enjoy making one or more minidives, which take you through the same steps you follow when you make open water dives.

(3) Open Water Dives - To complete training you practice, apply and demonstrate what you learn during four Open Water Dives at a local dive site.

If you've participated in a Discover Scuba Diving experience or resort course, the skills you learned may be credited towards a portion of the full PADI Open Water Diver course certification.  Please ask West Shore Scuba how this may benefit you, if applicable.


Prerequisites & Requirements

Age Requirement: 10 years or older

Course Prerequisites: Able to swim; medically fit for diving

Time Commitment: Approximately 8-15 hours


The Fun Part

The fun part about this course is...well, just about all of it because learning to dive is incredible. You breathe underwater for the first time (something you'll never forget) and learn what you need to know to become a certified diver. During the course, you'll make at least five pool dives and four dives at local dive sites under the supervision of your PADI Instructor.


The Scuba Gear You Use

In the PADI Open Water Diver course, you learn to use basic scuba gear including a mask, snorkel, fins, regulator, buoyancy control device (BCD), dive computer and a tank.

Prior to your confined water dives, you will want to stop by West Shore Scuba to purchase your personal scuba equipment - mask, booties, fins, snorkel and log book - to be prepared to begin your underwater adventure.  While you're at the shop, you will also want to complete your required paperwork.

During your Open Water Diver certification, West Shore Scuba will provide you with a BCD, regulator, dive computer, tanks, weights and wetsuit. The equipment you wear will be chosen by a West Shore Scuba staff member in order to ensure your comfort throughout the course.


Getting Started

You can start your learning now with PADI's home-study materials - Open Water Diver eLearning. You should also stop by your local PADI dive shop to enroll in the course and speak to a PADI Instructor about scheduling time for inwater training. Your instructor will also answer any questions you have along the way and check your progress to make sure you understand important scuba diving information.

Go to our FAQ page to see associated costs and other info pertaining to the options below.

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