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svgaby
07-18-2014, 15:21
Hi all,

I have done some diving in the past but I wasn't certified so I've done it with an instructor. I just thought it was time to get certified.
I have contacted a scuba school (which had PADI/NASE/NAUI logo on their webpage) I payed and I am supposed to start on Monday. This weekend though I'm supposed to do the self-studying. They sent me a link but that redirects me to a NASE site. I called them and they said it is fine, it is the same as PADI, etc...
Could you please tell me if there is an advantage of one over the other? I know everybody knows about PADI everywhere I've been in the world! But I have never heard of NASE until now. I am going to Brazil in a month, is it possible they will not accept/recognize my card? And, moreover, for the future, will I have any problems having a NASE cert and not a PADI?
I hope it's not a stupid question (sorry if it is)! In case you think PADI is better (more widely accepted) I can still cancel, get my money back and go to a PADI school.

Thanks and regards,
Gabriel

scubadiver888
07-18-2014, 16:34
There is always a chance that someone will not recognize a NASE certification. Anyone who is a real dive instructor should know who NASE is or be able to quickly evaluate that a NASE trained diver is just as good, if not better, than a PADI trained diver.

The only time I have seen a dive operation question someone who didn't have a PADI card, it was the guy who checked c-cards and drove the bus. He wasn't a diver. He worked for a large shop which paid this guy to fill out paperwork and drive the bus. When the divers insisted their card was just as good as a PADI card he thought about it for a second then the divers said, "Fine, you can give us our money back." He let them go diving.

Is there a possibility someone will refuse you? Sure. The less known the agency the bigger the chance someone will deny you. However, if I ran a shop I'd only turn away customers if I felt I could be held accountable for a bad thing happening. It is highly unlikely someone is going to say, "No, I don't want your money because there is an incredibly small chance you will harm yourself and I'll be held accountable."

Bottom line, everyone who works in the dive industry will tell you it isn't about the agency; it is all about the instructor. If the NASE instructor is a good instructor then you should be fine.

navyhmc
07-18-2014, 16:37
I've heard of NASE, but haven't seen a lot of divers with it for cert. At the diver level, there's not a lot of difference between the 3, other than recognition. I personally would go for PADI or NAUI due to worldwide recognition, and my low knowledge of NASE, but then again, it may be readily accepted Brazil.

Zeagle Eagle
07-19-2014, 12:37
I have not heard of NASE until now. 'course I have only been diving about 40 years and I think split fins are awesome.:smilie40:

Zeagle Eagle
07-19-2014, 12:39
I just googled it. It's the national association for the self employed. 12356

Zeagle Eagle
07-19-2014, 12:41
It's possible it could be this outfit too. 12357

Largo
07-19-2014, 13:01
Gabriel,

Please let us know how the trip to Brazil goes. Do you know where you'll be diving?

navyhmc
07-19-2014, 17:05
I've been diving for 39 years, what are these split fins you mention? When my fins split, I toss 'em

scubadiver888
07-19-2014, 17:21
I've been diving for 39 years, what are these split fins you mention? When my fins split, I toss 'em

Maybe next time you can sell your split fins to Zeagle Eagle. :)

navyhmc
07-19-2014, 19:36
Maybe next time you can sell your split fins to Zeagle Eagle. :)

True...

And back to
svgaby's question. Personally, I'm a little wary of some of the odd ma out agencies, mostly due to possible recognition issues. It appears to be a good agency, but there may be reputation and recognition problems out of country. An older than me dive buddy had problems with his LA County Cert in Thailand years ago.

scubadiver888
07-19-2014, 20:56
I guess if the shop is NASE/PADI then hopefully the instructors are NASE/PADI instructors. Have them do the PADI paperwork but get the benefit of a good trainer. If you can swing this, svgaby, then you'll have the best of both worlds. A good instructor who'll train you to NASE standards but a PADI c-card so you'll be recognized anywhere in the world.

If they aren't willing to go for that (they want to promote NASE). See if you can get NASE certified but for a little extra money get a PADI certification as well. Essentially, they make their money certifying you as NASE then you pay the cost of filing the paperwork with PADI to get a PADI c-card as well. You could suggest they do this for all the NASE students. Then you show your NASE card whenever you go diving but if they refuse it, you pull out the PADI card and explain the NASE card is better. :)

Zeagle Eagle
07-19-2014, 22:32
Good advice from both Navy and SD888

snagel
07-20-2014, 09:00
My Open Water Certification is through IANTD and is for Open Water and not Tech Diving. This is a little more recognizable than NASE. In the states, when I show this card people think I'm a Tech Diver. Outside the States, I have had a few look at the card, but nobody has every denied it. Some have asked questions. Again, if they are a dive instructor they ask me about Tech Diving.

I got my Advanced Open Water through PADI. Why? It is more recognizable and I don't have to go through the Tech Question thing and more importantly, if by chance I'm on some island somewhere and forget my c-card or lose my c-card most dive operations can look my AOW card up through PADI. We actually had to do this once in Curacao when my wife misplaced her c-card, but it was quick and easy (for the dive op) to get on the PADI website and find it. (And, they didn't even charge us for this)

Snagel

scubadiver888
07-20-2014, 10:02
If you go to http://www.wrstc.com/main.php this is the site for the World Recreational Scuba Training Council. They have four regions. If you check you will find that agencies like SSI and SDI are in three of the four. PADI is in four of four. There are other agencies like IDEA, PDIC and NSDAS which are lesser known. Then you get agencies like CMAS, NAUI and NASE. The WRSTC sets minimum requirements and organizations like PADI, SSI and SDI are active within them to ensure everyone has similar training. Organizations like CMAS, NAUI and NASE feel the minimum requirements of WRSTC just aren't cutting it. By joining the WRSTC they are paying into a minimum requirement they don't believe in.

Ten or more years ago the idea of recreational divers using BP/W and diving somewhat technical configurations was not the norm. Today we see PADI shops teaching BP/W for OW plus PADI has its DSAT TecRec certifications. So technical agencies are teaching recreational certifications (GUE has fundamentals, IANTD has OW, AOW, EANx, Rescue, etc.) and recreational agencies are teaching technical certifications (PADI has TecRec, SSI has extended range and technical extended range certifications). The lines between the two (recreational and technical) are getting blurred.

But when it comes to recreational diving, PADI is the most widely known agency. They have the quantity. There is an argument that PADI is quantity and agencies like NASE, NAUI and SSI appear because they feel the quality of PADI is getting diluted. They created these organizations to set a higher standard. I do have to admit the first shop I worked for was a SSI/PADI shop. If you wanted to get AOW certified it cost more for SSI but you got much more extensive training. If you look at the cost for a PADI course you can often find OW for $199. For other agencies they don't talk about the price because it is often $1000+. But with PADI you might spend three days on class and pool then two days open water. With other agencies you might spend up to two weeks. My original PADI training was 7 solid days, all day. I had two private instructors and it was an awesome experience.

Bottom line is that people looking to make money can open a PADI shop and give you the minimum training. People who love to dive and want to share that with others can also open a PADI shop and give you exceptional training.

Also, ten years ago forgetting your c-card and being PADI was a huge advantage. Any PADI shop could look up your certification history. This was a selling point for PADI shops. Now a days a lot of the recreational shops can look up your certification history. So being NAUI, SSI or SDI isn't as limiting but if the shop is a PADI shop they might not be able to look up a certification from a different agency. Also, if you email PADI they can often send you a certified PDF of your certification history. You can then print that out and use it at non-PADI shops, should you forget your PADI card.

So, if you aren't confident an able to convince someone your NASE certification is just as good (if not better) than a PADI c-card, you might want to just get a PADI c-card.

Darrell

P.S. Until snagel pointed it out I didn't know IANTD did OW. Most the guys around here start off as PADI then find they want to get into wreck diving. So they switch to IANTD in order to become technical or advanced divers. Mind you, if snagel presented me with a IANTD OW card I'd have more faith in him then most PADI OW divers. :)

svgaby
07-21-2014, 13:58
Thank you all for your replies. It was a shady business: they had both logos on their webpage but when I insisted I wanted PADI cert they started bashing PADI by telling me how they stopped working with them a few years ago (??) because a lot of PADI certified kids died in the world etc. What??? Not to mention they charged my credit card more than we initially agreed. Anyways, I hope I'll get my money back! I will start the classes on Saturday with another PADI shop - I talked to the owner and they are extremely nice and professional.
To reply to user Largo: I'm going to Fernando de Noronha. Should be amazing.

scubadiver888
07-21-2014, 15:47
I've seen good people and shady people doing the PADI/SSI or PADI/SDI or PADI/something else thing. Some were a PADI shop and just felt the cost, paperwork and quality of PADI wasn't as good as some other agency. The idea of paying for marketing material and other costs PADI does to promote themselves and diving just didn't sit well with them. So they became a dual shop and pressed people to try the other agency. However, they made it clear why they felt the other agency should be selected. If the student still wanted to be PADI they would make them PADI. None of this saying it was PADI but charging them for the other agency.

Other shops did what you are describing. I suspect they wanted you to do the other agency because they made more money. If they certified you PADI it would dig into their profits. One shop I'm thinking about would also do things like be a registered dealer for say Poseidon, Mares, ScubaPro, etc. but when you got to the shop they would try selling you a lesser known regulator for the same price. When you asked to see the say ScubaPro equipment they would tell you they have none in stock and if you wanted them to order it they would need full payment up front, no refund. When I became a dive professional I found out from others I didn't want to work for that shop because they ripped off the staff as well as the clients.

If they give you a hard time about getting your money back, let them know you are going to report them to qm@padi.com. This is PADI's Quality Management team (http://www.padi.com/scuba-diving/about-padi/consumer-protection/). Most the time if you have a problem with a shop but they have been good to PADI, PADI will defend them; i.e. PADI will give the shop the benefit of the doubt. If however the shop is opening stealing PADI students and certifying them as NASE students, I am sure PADI would have a serious problem with that. If you threaten to report them unless you get your money back, hopefully the shop will give you your money back.

snagel
07-21-2014, 17:48
Svgaby,

Looks like you are getting squared away with the class. Regardless of agency, what makes the class good or bad is dependent on the instructor.

If I can, let me jump up on my soap box a little (since it's been awhile). Every weekend people are getting their Open Water Scuba Certification. That is only the beginning and simply means you can now move on with your training. Once you get your OW Cert does not mean you know what you are doing. There is a huge learning curve and for most until they get out and do it on their own they don't know what they don't know. I highly suggest you find a mentor. Find somebody who has dove awhile and dive with them. This is where you will really learn the art. You don't need an instructor, you just need somebody you trust and is willing to mentor you. This was/is the most valuable learning tool I've used. I have some great dive buddies now that in the beginning really taught me the ins and outs. Okay, off the soap box.

Have fun in class and remember, there is no dumb question and you get out of it what you put in it.

Snagel

svgaby
07-21-2014, 21:52
Totally agree with you, Snagel! Thanks for your nice words!



Svgaby,

Looks like you are getting squared away with the class. Regardless of agency, what makes the class good or bad is dependent on the instructor.

If I can, let me jump up on my soap box a little (since it's been awhile). Every weekend people are getting their Open Water Scuba Certification. That is only the beginning and simply means you can now move on with your training. Once you get your OW Cert does not mean you know what you are doing. There is a huge learning curve and for most until they get out and do it on their own they don't know what they don't know. I highly suggest you find a mentor. Find somebody who has dove awhile and dive with them. This is where you will really learn the art. You don't need an instructor, you just need somebody you trust and is willing to mentor you. This was/is the most valuable learning tool I've used. I have some great dive buddies now that in the beginning really taught me the ins and outs. Okay, off the soap box.

Have fun in class and remember, there is no dumb question and you get out of it what you put in it.

Snagel

Largo
07-23-2014, 11:04
To reply to user Largo: I'm going to Fernando de Noronha. Should be amazing.

That's awesome. Please post a trip report when you get back.