Q: I love to dive and want to take my kids along for a dive vacation. Are there programs for families, and how old do kids have to be to learn to dive?
A: Diving is a great family activity and really bonds kids with parents because of the buddy system.
Kids as young as 10 can become certified divers, although there are programs for kids ages 5 through 7, which teaches them to snorkeling and about the ocean. Kids age 8 and 9 can learn to dive in a confined water setting. However, for open-water dives, ages 10 and up can get Junior Open Water certifications at maximum depths of 40 feet.
Questions that need to be asked when booking a dive vacation: Does the dive resort have small youth size dive gear? Does the resort cater to kids diving? Are they PADI certified? Do they have experienced instructors for your kids? What is the ratio of students to instructors and when diving with an operator as a certified diver?
At Kids Sea Camp, we have certified more than 7,000 kids. Kids Sea Camp does not just sell dive trips, we provide them, run them and train the dive resorts and dive professionals we work with how to create safer diving for new divers and, most importantly, for families. Each child learns to dive in their own perfect fit ScubaPro dive gear and we use one instructor for every two kids in the water.
As a parent myself, I understand how a child’s attention span can wane, so our programs are meant to get the kids certified by having fun and booking them on individual family vacations with the same instructor that certified them. This gives them the comfort of the instructor to reinforce and review daily what they have learned while they are still enjoying time with mom and dad.
Margo Peyton, co-founder Kids Sea Camp. Learn more about Kids Sea Camp in New Itineraries Give Kids 5 to 17 Diving Experience.