Question: How long to complete scuba diving open water certification after I finish my book work through an elearning course?
My name is Erika and I am from Colorado. I am 18 years old and very interested in learning how to scuba dive.
My goal is to eventually get to cave diving but I know I need to start slow.
Since I obviously live no where near an ocean or sea, I was thinking of taking the book work to get my c-card online. However I have a question I hope someone can answer. Is there a time frame where I need to complete my open water dives after I complete my book work?
For example lets say I do my online courses now, can I do my open water dives in like 6 months to complete the entire certification? It's hard to describe through email but I hope someone understands. Please let me know soon. Thank you!
Erika from Colorado
I understand your question and I had a hard time finding a definitive answer. I have put questions into a couple of training agencies and I will let you know when they get back to me.
That being said, there is a maximum amount of time within which you have to complete your open water dives after completing the book and confined water portions of your course.
The best I could find online was 6 months to a year, depending on the agency. I took my training with NAUI (ending up getting certified by PADI but that is another story) and I believe we had 6 months to complete the 4 open water training dives.
Just to remind you, after you do your book work (whether through elearning or a local dive shop) you still have to complete confined open water dives. These are done in a pool or a pool-like environment.
After you complete these 2 segments (book work and pool dives), you will receive a referral that you can take to other dive shops to complete your open water dives and get that dive certification.
However, I would encourage you to complete the book and pool dives as close to taking your open water dives as possible. Six months (much less a year) is a long time to wait. You want things to be as fresh in your mind as possible since it is all new to you. That will make your open water certification dives easier and less stressful.
I will let you know if I hear back from the certification agencies.
Good luck with your diving and let us know how it goes.
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