Scumbag SCAM organisation... Lost 300+ euro on a phony ride with them...
Diving is all about trust. And... boy, PADI failed big-time for me - being active part of a SCAM which costed me 360 hard-earned euro without delivering anything except a standard manual worth just 30 euro.
But it was not just the money... Basicly PADI does not set out or require real tangible standards during their certifications. Fx. being certified as 'Open Water Certified Diver' can partly be done in a hotel swimmingpool for that matter - where temperature, visibility and boyance are completely different from confined sea water. Need I say more. PADI doesn't even require an instructor to have a 'plan' for the process (timeplan - committed learning precondition checklist before dive). PADI certainly never looked for a commited plan from the 'scammer' we met, when we discussed personal events occurring.
Reconsider before involving yourself with PADI. They are undisciplined and offer a total lack of real commitment to actually give you anything tabgible. PADI certificate will not prepare you for real diving. Go with another certification.
Fx. PADI exercise no commitment to exercise discipline among the large number of offices, which do certifications. On Malta a _lot_ of PADI offices has opened in recent years. Some honest - others dishonest. My underage son (11 years) experienced a typical tourist scam at one of the PADI certification offices ('look at the birdy.. oops your money is ours now'). Thinking the registered trademark mattered, we tried to contact PADI QA. They ducked behind the legal view, insisting on 'legally independant' office and basicly denying the fact that they in fact are business partners with dealership bindings.
My experience in short... On Malta... 21th July 2012... after payment (360 euro) for OWDC... no certified instructor.. unassisted viewing of all video in one continous marathon session... no check of questions in dive manual.. no dives in water (hotel swimming pool or other..). And PADI's response was.. 'No indication that the business partner has broken PADI standards.'. PADI claimed it wasn't even necessary for a kid to read the manual before being strapped with lead and put in water... as long as he had signed the juridical disclaimer, of cause.
I accept the possibility for a cultural misunderstanding somewhere. Coming from Denmark in Northern Europe, I would expect some rules applied for a safe PADI certifiation. Qualified people... Extra alertness for children.. The need to be familiar with equipment before going into water... But PADI doesn't acknowledge such needs. So I'm forced to conclude that PADI simply shouldn't be allowed to include underage persons in their certification. It's only just barely safe for adults, who know their personal limits.
At the end of the day, my 11 year old son :
* had to read the diving manual as unassisted self-study
* for 5 days, my son never saw a certified instructor doing actual instructing
* never saw water
* had certification cancelled by the SCAM office after only having effective 48 hours with the book to do the self-study.
Oh yes.. my son subsequently went to another (older, established) dive office - paid again - and took the PADI certication without problems.
The PADI organisation is utter trash and waste of time with repetition of the same legal phrases and no commitment to deliver actual value and perhaps exercise some discipline among the large numbers of offices recently opened at popular resort sites. For PADI money is the primary concern... For us not... we decided to pay twice for that matter. But what I care about is reckless people not taking a serious approach to the responsability invested in them - and trademark owners only interested in legal rules and shareholder value.
I look forward to no-good-for-nothing 'Richard' from PADI QA maybe attaching a comment with denial-of-non-denial about their responses in matters discussed. Utter rubbish and nonsense not worth wasting time on.
PADI... Pay A Dollar and Into the bathtub.. to do your 'open water' certification! No standards required.
I wanted to learn scuba diving to get Open Water certification for my holiday, so I chose PADI eLearning to study the theory on my PC before the actual diving in the swimming pool and open water at diving centre, in order to save time and money. So I paid $120.00......
To tell the conclusion first, DO NOT APPLY FOR ELEARNING if you want to save money & time, or don't want to get ripped off by PADI.
I believed myself if I took eLearning, I would get some sort of discount from the total course fee after the completion (Mind you, I'd already paid 120.00 beforehand - who wouldn't expect deduction?), but in fact THERE IS NO DISCOUNT AT ALL. It doesn't really matter if you take eLearning or studying in the classroom with other learners; you'll have to pay the full price one way or the other.
I was gobsmacked so I wrote an email to PADI, and here's the reply.
Thank you for your email, and we are sorry to hear of your dissatisfaction with the PADI eLearning process. The instructors and dive centres that offer PADI courses are not agents of PADI, nor are they employed by PADI and as such PADI receives no monetary benefit from the courses run through these instructors or dive centres. PADI is therefore not a party to the pricing policy of dive centres, and we are unable to intervene in financial disputes. PADI cannot control our member's financial agreements with their customers.
Further to this, as you have stated in your email, the PADI eLearning programme is designed soley to assist you in gaining the knowledge required to continue with your diving education in a timely manner and one which is convenient to yourself. Many students prefer to study at home, or during work breaks, or even whilst commuting by train, and the PADI eLearning programme provides for this method of leanring.
Upon initial registration for the course the terms and conditions clearly state that an additional fee may be payable for the remainder section of the course:
“In addition to the online knowledge development portion of the PADI Open Water Diver course, you'll need to complete inwater training. You can visit your chosen PADI Dive Center or Resort to begin your dives at any point after you complete the first section. When you visit the facility, be sure to bring your eLearning Record with you and remember, the $120 US nonrefundable fee is for the online portion of the course only. You will be required to pay an additional fee to your chosen facility for the inwater portion of your certification. You are also responsible for purchasing or renting any required equipment such as a mask, snorkel and pair of fins, as well as the scuba system. Your PADI Dive Center or Resort may suggest additional equipment along with the required purchase of a Recreational Dive Planner (Table or eRDP version) and a log book.”
We are sorry to hear of your disappointment regarding the pricing structure at the dive centre you have chosen, however as previously stated, the PADI eLearning course is intended to provide convenience to yourself as a consumer, and may not be a suitably priced option for all consumers.
Training and Quality Management Consultant
PADI International Ltd
The Way the World Learns to Dive®"
Obviously he meant "we don't care and thanks for the cash!", didn't he?
I understand many people choose PADI becasue it is one of the largest organisation worldwide, but I really don't like their business style and attitude towards learners. If you want to learn scuba diving, go for BSAC or CMAS.
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