Royal Caribbean is introducing another “industry firsts”, by becoming the only cruise line in the world where guests can become certified scuba divers as part of their vacation. Adventure seekers can dive in and explore hundreds of shipwrecks in destinations like St. Thomas and the British Virgin Islands, and discover some of the most vibrant and renowned coral reefs across the Caribbean.
Royal Caribbean International is the only cruise line in the world with onboard PADI diving instructors allowing guests, looking to immerse themselves in the beauty of the ocean and wonders of marine life, to become certified scuba divers as part of their vacation with Royal Caribbean.
“For the past 16 years Royal Caribbean has worked closely with PADI to develop our onboard dive program,” said Roberta Jacoby, managing director, Global Tour Operations at Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd. “No other cruise line offers the opportunity for guests to become PADI certified scuba divers as part of the cruise, making it an ultimate dive trip as well. When guests sign up for the PADI Open Water Diver Course, they receive first-rate training and diver certification, performing their own scuba dives amidst the beautiful and serene waters of multiple Caribbean destinations and the South Pacific.”
Royal Caribbean’s partnership with PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors) opens up a vast underwater world for guests. Whether a newbie or experienced diver, Royal Caribbean offers a range of programs from a 30-minute Try Dive program, for those just wanting to get their feet wet, to PADI’s Reactivate Program for certified divers wanting a refresher, with prices starting at $29 and $59 per person, respectively. Those seeking the ultimate scuba dive vacation can enroll in PADI’s Open Water Diver course to earn their complete scuba diving certification, starting at $599 per person.The premiere scuba course begins at home with the online course using either the PADI Touch app for mobile devices or PADI eLearning online for desktop and laptop computers, leaving more time for the fun of scuba diving while on vacation. Once on the high seas, divers will test the waters in the ship’s pool before heading out to complete the four mandatory, open-water training dives in some of the world’s most spectacular underwater surroundings. The training dives will be split among two different ports of call, allowing for maximum sightseeing in the crystal blue waters of the Caribbean or South Pacific. Upon returning home, guests will be certified scuba divers able to plan and execute dives on their own and have the stories to share about the aquatic world they’ve recently discovered.
Guests looking to immerse themselves in the beauty of the ocean and wonder of marine life can book their PADI course before boarding through the Cruise Planner, or while on board at one of the Royal Caribbean-exclusive PADI Five Star Dive Centers found on 10 ships across the fleet, including Oasis-, Freedom- and Voyager-class ships, as well as Quantum-class’ Anthem of the Seas.