Tank Diving

How long does it take to become a certified scuba diving instructor?

Under the PADI system, you must be a certified scuba diver (i.e. Open Water Diver or equivalent) for at least 6 months before you are allowed to start the Instructor Development Course (IDC). So technically, the minimum time to go from non-diver to PADI instructor is 6 months.

However, it's not simply a question of getting your basic OWD, waiting 6 months, and then joining an IDC. During that 6 months, you would have to get certified at every intervening level between OWD and Open Water Scuba Instructor (see http://www.padi.com for the training progression), which means paying for all those courses and their certification fees.

You would also need to rack up your logged dives, since you need at least 60 dives to be certified as a Divemaster, and at least 100 logged dives to be certified as OWSI. That means you'd need to log about 16-17 dives per month (including course training dives). Two-tank dive day trips typically cost 50-100 USD per day (depending on how much equipment needs to be rented, in addition to the tanks and weights).

Ideally for the Divemaster course, and certainly for the IDC, you would be expected to own a full set of scuba gear suitable for guiding/ assisting/ teaching. This gear should be well-fitting and familiar, since you will be expected to perform teaching-quality diveskill demonstrations during both the DM course and IDC. A full set of new scuba gear, including all gauges and signalling devices (but excluding tank and weights) will cost about 1000-2000 USD.

Finally, you would also need to pay all necessary medical/ PADI registration/ PADI examination fees, plus personal liability insurance if you wanted to work as an instructor after qualifying.

And I should also emphasise that the above are the absolute minimum requirements for PADI instructor candidates. Unless you spent those 6 months doing literally nothing except diving, and reading about diving, such a progression would not actually make you a particularly experienced or well-rounded (diver and) instructor.

So the pertinent question -- i.e. the limiting factor for most people -- is really not so much how long it would take, but how much it would cost. I don't think it's unrealistic to suggest that you'd probably be looking at somewhere between 5000 and 10000 USD for the above courses/ dives/ gear/ fees, NOT including living expenses. If you wanted to gain experience of diving in multiple environments (rather than just your local dive spots), you would probably also have to add significant travel expenses to the above.

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House of Scuba Scuba Diving Tank Valve Cap with Hammerhead Logo Black
House of Scuba Scuba Diving Tank Valve Cap with Hammerhead Logo Black
$1.95
House of Scuba Scuba Diving Tank Valve Cap with Hammerhead Logo BLUE
House of Scuba Scuba Diving Tank Valve Cap with Hammerhead Logo BLUE
$1.95
House of Scuba Scuba Diving Tank Valve Cap with Hammerhead Logo GREEN
House of Scuba Scuba Diving Tank Valve Cap with Hammerhead Logo GREEN
$1.95
House of Scuba Scuba Diving Tank Valve Cap with Hammerhead Logo RED
House of Scuba Scuba Diving Tank Valve Cap with Hammerhead Logo RED
$1.95
House of Scuba Scuba Diving Tank Valve Cap with Hammerhead Logo YELLOW
House of Scuba Scuba Diving Tank Valve Cap with Hammerhead Logo YELLOW
$1.95
Dive Rite Stage Bottle Rigging
Dive Rite Stage Bottle Rigging
$55.00
Dive Rite 200 Bar Dual Manifold
Dive Rite 200 Bar Dual Manifold
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Manifold for Scuba Diving Tanks
Manifold for Scuba Diving Tanks
$159.99
Perfeclan Aqualung Scuba Diving Single Tank Back Pack Gas Cylinder Bracket
Perfeclan Aqualung Scuba Diving Single Tank Back Pack Gas Cylinder Bracket
$41.24
Scuba Diving Dive Tank Cylinder Valve Knob Oval Design Better Grip Green
Scuba Diving Dive Tank Cylinder Valve Knob Oval Design Better Grip Green
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Scuba Diving Cylinder Tank Cam Band Strap BCD DIY
Scuba Diving Cylinder Tank Cam Band Strap BCD DIY
$35.00
Scuba Diving Dive Silicone Tank Band AL 40 AL 80 Black Yellow
Scuba Diving Dive Silicone Tank Band AL 40 AL 80 Black Yellow
$15.00
Scuba Diving Tank Valve Cylinder Cap Protector Blue Green Yellow Black
Scuba Diving Tank Valve Cylinder Cap Protector Blue Green Yellow Black
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Scuba Diving Snorkeling Tank Cylinder Bracket Backboard Oxygen Bottle Holder
Scuba Diving Snorkeling Tank Cylinder Bracket Backboard Oxygen Bottle Holder
$26.05
Aquatec Scuba Diving Single Tank Back Pack Assembly
Aquatec Scuba Diving Single Tank Back Pack Assembly
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Apollo Bio Tank Lock SCUBA BC Tanks Locking System NEW Diving Dive Strap Band
Apollo Bio Tank Lock SCUBA BC Tanks Locking System NEW Diving Dive Strap Band
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Vintage ScubaPro Scuba Diving Tank Needs Hydro
Vintage ScubaPro Scuba Diving Tank Needs Hydro
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Mini Aluminum Scuba Diving Tank with 12 O Rings AND Brass Pick Dive Key Chain
Mini Aluminum Scuba Diving Tank with 12 O Rings AND Brass Pick Dive Key Chain
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Oceanic Flex 2 Scuba Diving BC Size M
Oceanic Flex 2 Scuba Diving BC Size M
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Heavy Duty Dive Cylinder Carry Strap Handle Side Mount For Scuba Diving Tank
Heavy Duty Dive Cylinder Carry Strap Handle Side Mount For Scuba Diving Tank
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Submersible Systems Spare Air Tank Scuba Gear SSI Scuba Dive
Submersible Systems Spare Air Tank Scuba Gear SSI Scuba Dive
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Scuba Diving Mask Underwater Anti Fog Swimming Full Face Snorkeling Equipment
Scuba Diving Mask Underwater Anti Fog Swimming Full Face Snorkeling Equipment
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Soft Band BCD Tank Strap with Buckle Scuba Dive Diving Black TA06
Soft Band BCD Tank Strap with Buckle Scuba Dive Diving Black TA06
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SeaSucker 2 TANK RACK Vertical Mount Secure dive tanks without drilling holes
SeaSucker 2 TANK RACK Vertical Mount Secure dive tanks without drilling holes
$218.83
O Rings Scuba Diving Pressure Valve Water High Pressure Reducing Valve
O Rings Scuba Diving Pressure Valve Water High Pressure Reducing Valve
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Scuba Diving Dive Tank Carrier Handle Shoulder Sling Cylinder Carrying Strap
Scuba Diving Dive Tank Carrier Handle Shoulder Sling Cylinder Carrying Strap
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Scuba Diving Dive Tank Carrier Handle Holder Sling Cylinder Carrying Strap
Scuba Diving Dive Tank Carrier Handle Holder Sling Cylinder Carrying Strap
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Scuba Diving Tank Cylinder Valve Cap Protector
Scuba Diving Tank Cylinder Valve Cap Protector
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Scuba Diving Dive Tank Cylinder Valve Cap Protector Cover Green
Scuba Diving Dive Tank Cylinder Valve Cap Protector Cover Green
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Durable Scuba Diving Pressure Valve Expansion Pressure Relief Valve
Durable Scuba Diving Pressure Valve Expansion Pressure Relief Valve
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Heavy Duty Scuba Diving Dive Tank Bracket Cylinder Carrier Holder Backboard
Heavy Duty Scuba Diving Dive Tank Bracket Cylinder Carrier Holder Backboard
$28.35
Protable Air Nozzle Scuba Diving Gear Tool Quick Connection to Inflator Hose
Protable Air Nozzle Scuba Diving Gear Tool Quick Connection to Inflator Hose
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