A Second Look at our Dive Club
Over the last 2-3 years the number of certificated divers that Aquatechnique has trained has increased each year by a massive 45% year on year (PADI statistics). Accordingly we wish to thank our customers for choosing us as their trainer, and in their support of our shop and dive trips.
According to PADIs national statistics, many of the UKs divers are failing to take advantage of UK diving opportunities, and tending to dive abroad only. There is currently an industry drive underway by PADI and other agencies, together with a well known manufacturer, to promoting UK diving. Indeed recently the BBC screened “Britains Secret Seas”, again emphasising the opportunities to dive and explore our UK shores..
I am often asked by students, where’s my favourite dive destination? Out of all the places I have dived in the last 35 years, the answer is always the same, here in the UK. On our doorstep we have a fantastic array of topography, flora and fauna, and the best wreck diving in the world. The UKs diving facilities have improved exponentially over the years, decent dive boats, increased number of dive centres, and a more customer service orientated industry.
The statistics also reveal that many divers qualify with PADI, but their experience in the sport is often transitory, often because of the lack of opportunity to dive with other likeminded dive buddies. At Aquatechnique, we have tried on our part to promote UK diving, through trips arranged here in the UK and abroad, and also tried to keep people diving. This year we are going to try even harder by establishing a more formalised dive club.
Following a visit to PADI HQ recently, I met and spoke with 2 other successful Dive Schools in the UK, both run diving clubs as part of their commitment to UK diving and keeping people active in the sport. Many ideas flowed in both directions, it seems that their experience and initiative does stimulate further dive experience, both in the UK and to some super dive destinations around the world. Keeping divers within the “family” does enhance learning, experience and undoubtedly provide accessible fun and adventure for both divers and their partners and families.
I was persuaded, and enthused by the experiences of these 2 centres, and so have decided to spend a little more time and effort in promoting our own club, perhaps on a more formalised model than that of the past. Many efforts to arrange trips are thwarted sometimes by a lack of commitment on your part, or perhaps lack of a more long term scheduling on our part (and of course UK weather). Either way, dates are going to be calendarised well in advance, dates are going set for deposits to be paid, and a firm commitment should ensue from all sides.
More effort is going to be invested in the administration of the Club, it does take a considerable amount of time and input to obtain and secure suitable dive destinations/facilities, liaise with dive operators and tour providers, and to harmonise travel and transport arrangements. In addition we have to secure monies payable on time, in order to secure a commitment from these other providers.
We have now secured an arrangement with 2 major holiday tour operators to provide 3 dive package holidays to Cyprus, the Red Sea and Tenerife over the next 9 months. These trips are not limited to divers only, and we hope will attract both you and your partners/ families.
We have now installed a new “Dive Centre Management System” called EVE, which will benefit all aspects of our operation, not only in our dive school training, but also on the retail side with bar code readers and better stock and order control. EVE will also allow us to run a more effective system in communicating with all our dive contacts, customers and friends. EVE will therefore complement, administer and manage the Dive Club for us too!
In the next few days a whole host of diving trips, holiday destinations, adventure experiences and other activities will appear. EVE will send you out details automatically, if we have your email address. We will promulgate the Dive Events Calendar on our WEBSITE and also promote it through TWITTER and FACEBOOK (remember if you have entered Aquatechniques twitter/facebook already, either as followers or liking us, then this may ping you with an update automatically).
We would like to hear your suggestions to add to this list, we want to hear what you would like from your Dive Club, if its possible to accommodate it, then we will facilitate it !
As they say…….Watch this space !