Archive | March, 2014

ScubaEarth Featured Destination: Cambodia

29 Mar

cambodia

PADI Asia Pacific is delighted to advise that the weekly diving destination featured on ScubaEarth™ is currently showcasing Cambodia.

ScubaEarth™ is an online scuba resource and social community for divers and other water lovers. It’s a robust, one-stop site to research, plan and share dive experiences providing a host of information.

ScubaEarth is already a high traffic website for the scuba diving industry as it’s powered by PADI and PADI Members and with an average of 50,000+ unique visitors each month – it presents 70,000+ consumers (divers or potential divers) to reach, engage and convert.

ScubaEarth has recently launched a new feature, the Critter Finder, allowing users to explore by clicking on the Critter tab and typing favourite critters into the search box. The Critter Finder will display interesting facts such as ‘how Cuttlefish communicate’, or ‘what on earth is a false killer whale?’, providing users with greater information about marine life in your area.

Have you considered participating in a Dive Expo?

26 Mar

Dive Expos are a great way to start new partnerships and find out about new trends in the dive industry.  They also give you the chance to meet with international and local dive clubs, other divers, travel agencies and equipment suppliers, not to mention providing the opportunity to attend seminars and training programs, start new partnerships and to meet the PADI team.

Normally, your Regional Manager will attend the show with members of the PADI Head Office who you might not usually get the chance to meet.  This enables you to speak with the team face to face and build key relationships.

Dive Expo Tips for Success

  • Try and include activities at your booth – prizes, games, unusual equipment or videos or maybe bust out your own Flash Mob!  Sitting down on a chair looking at your phone will not bring people to your booth. For a living, we entertain people every day, why should a show be any different? Also, you might find that your best work is done outside the show when you’re attending training, an event, seminar, or maybe even at the socialising part of the day!
  • Having a special deal for on the day bookings and a regular special for anyone who contacts you with a promo code from the show will help you increase course enquiries and bookings.
  • Make sure you build a database of contact information of the people that visit your booth. This is important to ensure you can keep track of who you’ve spoken to throughout the day, what they are interested in and to follow up on any enquiries.
  • Participating at Dive Expos also provides intangible benefits, such as increased brand awareness. Just by being present and showcasing your business to consumers and others in the industry, the next time they see your logo, business name or consider diving in your area, the likelihood of them contacting you for information, a fun dive or a course increases. Even now, lots of PADI staff recognise dive shop names they saw at DEMA over 10 years ago!
  • Share your booth to cut costs. Instead of two small booths, rent a large booth and share it with a centre you work closely with. I.e. one you send customers to when you can’t fulfil the customers’ needs yourself.
  • Check out the specials equipment suppliers are offering to take advantage of savings.

What show should you attend?

First of all, think about whether a particular show is right for you. We all know the Chinese market is growing, but is it the right show for you if you don’t have any Chinese speaking staff?  If you are an internationally run dive centre or you have international managers, maybe their annual vacation back to their country can be timed with that dive show? You might even consider sponsoring a travel agent you use in a particular country to put a show on for you.

Assistance from PADI

Anyone who visits the PADI booth with be directed to PADI Members booths. We will come and visit you to have a face-to-face chat about your business goals and whether there is anything we can do to assist in achieving them.

If you’re a PADI Five Star Member, you may also be eligible for an Expo Scheme, which includes promotional materials and a monetary credit. You must apply for this at least six weeks prior to the Dive Expo you want to be a part of.

This year at the Deep Expo, Paul “Tosh” Tanner will be hosting a Members’ Forum covering the new revised Open Water Course, the new DSD booklet, PADI’s recent marketing efforts and how PADI Members are doing in our AP region.

For information on attending a Dive Expo, contact your PADI Regional Manager.

We hope to see you at the Expos around Asia Pacific and beyond!

A Day in the Life of a PADI Divemaster

25 Mar

An interview with Leyshack Sánchez Fernández
PADI Divemaster
Scuba Junkie
PADI 5 Star Instructor Development Resort – 100% AWARE Partner
Sabah, Malaysia

Leyshack-FernandezDescribe a typical day in your working life
as a PADI Divemaster.

7:00am at Mabul Island. My dive computer’s alarm beeps and I jump out of my bed in the Scuba Junkie Mabul Beach Resort. Time to get ready, have some breakfast, go to the jetty and help organise dive gear, tanks and other equipment ready for another day of my internship. While I wait for the boats coming from Semporna, I talk to my colleagues. We all share the same world, we make common jokes and enjoy the sunny weather together. No stress, no cars, no shopping malls. Just us and the sea. Some days I am with certified divers, others I am assisting PADI Instructors to prepare for the PADI Instructor Development Course with Scuba Junkie later this month. Every day there is something fascinating going on. The dive boats arrive and it’s time for diving! The day passes by so fast that we cannot believe it. At 3:30pm our 3 dives are finished and after cleaning the equipment, it’s time to help our divers fill in their log books before heading back to the resort for a nice relaxing shower!

When and where did you start diving?
A friend and I decided to go to Semporna in September 2011 to try diving with Scuba Junkie. We arrived one sunny morning at magnificent Mabul Island and we could not believe the beauty around us: the transparent waters full of colorful fish and stunning corals. Jason, our PADI Instructor made it an incredible Discover Scuba Diving experience. We both fell in love with the sea instantly!

When and where did you become a PADI Divemaster?
My contract was coming to an end at the National University of Malaysia, I wanted to change my life and do something that made me completely happy. The sea was the only place I wanted to be, so I decided to start a PADI Divemaster course on the 1st December 2013. Of course it had to be at Mabul, after all I had already completed all my other courses from PADI Open Water Diver to PADI Rescue Diver with Scuba Junkie: there is no better place for me in Malaysia! This little island -and its people- keep on dragging me back. There is something magic here…

What made you choose to become a PADI Professional?
I am a teacher, a professor, a lecturer… I have been teaching all my life many different things: languages, literature, martial arts… Teaching has always been a rewarding experience for me as well as learning new things, traveling and diving. But diving has something magical, something unique that always makes me feel happy, whole, part of Nature. Being a PADI Professional was just the natural step to take. And I have no regrets at all! Being able to show and witness the wonders of the underwater world is the best experience I ever had.

What highlights do you recall from your PADI Divemaster course?
I can say that the PADI Divemaster course has been fascinating from day one.  I consider the PADI Instructors at Scuba Junkie to be some of the best trained people, the most thorough teachers, and the most encouraging mentors. It is difficult for me to choose just one moment but I can say that doing the distinctive Reef Check Specialty as part of my Eco-DMT course was very rewarding and it was great to be part of the environmental projects of Scuba Junkie.

What dive locations are on your bucket list and why?
I want to dive all over the world, I cannot help myself! But Philippines is coming soon as well as Mexico, the Red Sea and Galapagos… I have seen videos and photographs of these dive sites from other divers and instructors, from the Internet and some documentaries. I want to see those places with my own eyes, feel the sea on those latitudes. I am sure the list will keep on growing in time.

What has been the most memorable dive of your life?
All dives have something special but some are outstanding. The night dive at the Liberty Wreck in Tulamben, Bali is still one my favorites as well as some muck dives at Secret Bay (also in Bali). Raja Ampat, West Papua has the best night dives in coral reefs I have ever done. Richelieu Rock in Thailand is the most lively dive site as the pinnacles are full of fish, corals and invertebrates. Incredible macro life in Awas (Mabul) and schooling devil rays at Siamil Island on the Sipadan Barrier Reef – The most memorable dive? I cannot make up my mind!

What words of advice and encouragement would you give to divers thinking of becoming a PADI Divemaster?
Becoming a PADI Divemaster is an experience that you will never forget: it is full of fun, adventure and knowledge. That alone should make you go for it! You will improve your diving skills and you will gain in depth knowledge of the sea. Becoming a PADI Divemaster will make you part of a great community of professional divers who care about the environment and help to protect it. Just imagine yourself waking up every morning on a beautiful island to unravel the secrets of the sea… What’s next for me? My PADI Instructor course, naturally. And guess where? At Scuba Junkie!

PADI Diving Society’s Ocean Safari: Dumaguete, Philippines

21 Mar

PADI Diving Society Members picked up their passports in February and headed to the Philippines for a week of diving adventures. Dauin, Dumaguete with its warm water, white sandy beaches as well as diverse culture and history, was the backdrop for this year’s first Ocean Safari. PADI 5 Star Dive Resort, Atlantis Dive Resort hosted of the event held from the 15th until the 22nd of last month, which boasted fantastic attendance from Society Members as well as staff from PADI America’s.

Staff from PADI America's Diving Society  From left to right: Budd Riker, Niccole Sherman, Adrianne Miller, Theresa Kaplan.

Staff from PADI America’s Diving Society. From left to right:
Budd Riker, Niccole Sherman, Adrianne Miller, Theresa Kaplan.

 

A cocktail party kicked off the society event, which was followed by seven days of diving. Society Members were treated with 5 dives a day, including night dives, in order to take full advantage of the fantastic diving on offer in the Philippines. Negros Island proved a highlight where more than 400 species of coral are found. Atlantis took members to the many dive sites around Apo Island, Dauin Marine Sanctuary and Siquijor. The archipelago is renowned for its active fish life, more than 3000 species can be found here, providing society members with ample to see and discover. Surface intervals were spent exploring the coastline by Kayak, taking a dip in the Casaroro waterfalls and enjoying great food at Atlantis’ world renowned restaurant, Toko’s.

Atlantis’s dive team were a great support throughout the event, helping make every Society Members diving experience unforgettable. The beach BBQ and farewell reception let divers unwind from the week’s events and provided an opportunity for Society Members to mingle and reminisce with their new found dive buddies.

With more than 7000 islands, the Philippines offers up a lot in great diving. More information about diving in Dumaguete as well as the other countless diving hubs in the Philippines, Cebu, Palawan, Bohol and Subic Bay, can be found on the Vacation Spotlight feature on padi.com.

PADI Diving Society events are a great way to showcase the diving on offer in your region and promote your dive shop to a global audience. The diving society keeps divers diving actively, frequently and all over the world. It encourages divers to purchase equipment, continue their dive education and live the scuba diver lifestyle with their PADI Diver Center or Resort. Visit the PADI Diving Society Online Member Benefits portal on sportdiver.com to add your latest Diving Society incentive today.

New Bahasa Indonesian Translation Announcement

21 Mar

PADI Asia Pacific is very pleased to announce the release of the Bahasa Indonesian Rescue Diver Manual on the 100% Digital Manual site.  This new translation is now live and for any Students or Stores who already own the Rescue Digital Manuals, they will automatically be updated with this new language added.

The Bahasa Rescue Digital Manual is now located in exactly the same place as all other languages of the Rescue Digital Manuals.

The PADI 100% Digital Manuals are completely online, so there are no extra charges for freight or duties and taxes as nothing is physically sent; you will receive access to the Manual electronically.  The RDPs and other related slates are within the product in a digital format, therefore covering the required standards.

There is no delay in receiving your materials, as you will receive access to them as soon as the order is processed.  Each 100% Digital Manual comes together with an Online PIC which will be credited to your account at the same time as the Manual.

The 100% Digital Products are available for purchase for Members in Indonesia, East Timor, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam directly from the PADI Asia Pacific Head Office where our Sales Representatives are waiting to assist you.

We look forward to hearing your stories of the new Indonesian PADI Rescue Courses!

New Bahasa Indonesian Translation Announcement

Target your Customers with the EVE Agent

19 Mar

EveLogoWhen customers sign up for your PADI Open Water Diver programs, what happens next? That might seem a silly question but take a moment to think about it. Ask yourself, what would an ideal scenario look like from your perspective for a diver going through their Open Water class with you? Would those customers:

  • Know all the dates, times and locations of their training
  • Know what to read and watch and when to do it
  • Buy, at the minimum, the personal items of dive equipment such as mask, fins, snorkel and boots
  • Become members of your dive club or the PADI Diving Society
  • Be booked on to your next dive trip the weekend after certification
  • Be signing up for the next PADI Advanced Open Water class you’re running

In short, would you like to see these customers welcomed fully into the world of diving, invited to become a real part of your store and encouraged to see diving as a genuine new lifestyle choice?

If so, then EVE can make that happen for you. Think of your natural points of contact with a customer for a moment and you’ll soon see the opportunities you have to make the right contact in the right way at the right time.

  • Thanks for booking
  • Your course starts next week
  • You should be watching this, reading that
  • Come in and get sized up for equipment
  • You’ve learned about the importance of having your own gear, so here’s the info on selecting it
  • Congratulations on completing the academics… we’re off to the pool
  • Pool dives completed… skills mastered…now for open water
  • Want to use your own computer on your open water dives next week? Here’s how…
  • Congratulations on becoming a PADI Open Water diver
  • Come to the next dive club meeting
  • Our next boat or local dive is coming up
  • Take your diving further on the next course
  • Your PADI certification card is here for you

Your 24-7 employee, the EVE Agent can do the leg work for you.

You can set the EVE Agent to send out emails or SMS text messages at every one of the action points above. The communication sent out should be a mix of logistics, information and marketing – “where you’re going to be, what you’re going to do, what equipment you’ll need to do it with and how this leads on to the next step.”

The EVE Agent finds those customers, at every step of their journey through their course with you – from booking, prior to the course, during the course and after the course – and can use your customised PADI email templates to deliver the appropriate scheduling, informational and promotional message.

Targeted, relevant messages to your divers… the right message at the right time to the right customers… let EVE work for you.

Start today and use EVE to help promote your services to your customers as they take their PADI Open Water course with you.

You can even try EVE out for 60 days because we’re confident that once you do, you’ll never want to let EVE go. Follow the link to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W4ZkT30AiV0 (or enter “Introduction to EVE” in YouTube) and email info@issys.co.uk to get started today.

Scuba Junkies’ Shark Week in Malaysia a success

14 Mar

Scuba Junkies’ Shark Week, Pulau Mabul, Sabah, Malaysia kicked off spectacularly with the tagline – ‘400 million years to perfect – 30 years to almost destroy’ to inspire support for their shark conservation efforts.

Here in Mabul, shark week participants were buzzing from seeing 147 sharks and rays in ONE day! On the first day of Shark Week, which ran from 1-7th March, a lucky group of divers saw a whale shark and a breaching thresher shark at Sipadan, and at Si Amil all divers saw a school of over 50 devil rays!

But despite this great experience, Scuba Junkie Shark week aimed to raise awareness about the threats to sharks and rays.

“Sharks are under dire threat worldwide, with many species facing extinction. In addition, many people hold negative perceptions of sharks, which is a hindrance to conservation efforts. Our shark week will focus on amazing, yet responsible information about sharks – which are incredible creatures, their lives needing no negative embellishments. We also wanted to show our support for Project AWARE – so today, as part of our Shark Week, we’re holding a sponsored 8km relay snorkel around Mabul to raise funds for Project AWARE. You can help us play a critical role in saving sharks by sponsoring us – thank you” said organiser Cat Cassidy.

Shark

Photo Credit Duncan Oliver – Finathon swimmer and Scuba Junkie diver

“A healthy and abundant ocean depends on predators such as sharks keeping ecosystems balanced. As PADI divers, we want to protect our oceans, we have a responsibility for the marine environment we love. Sharks may be the apex predators in the oceans, but they are still vunerable to human overexploitation – they grow slowly and produce few young, and current fishing and finning activites are having devastating effects on population numbers, which will take generations to recover from, if they manage to do so at all. “ added Cat.

Environmental Projects Manager for Scuba Junkie, Rohan Perkins, said “I am very proud of the support that the Shark Week has received from our guests, staff and local residents. It is support such as this that has enabled Scuba Junkies’ Shark Education Awareness Survival (SEAS) project to grow over the years, leading to us, in conjunction with other concerned organisations, to form the Sabah Shark Alliance, which is dedicated to pushing shark conservation efforts in Sabah to the fore.”

Scuba Junkie also organised two Dive Against Debris events including reef and beach cleans around Mabul. Their network of friends created shark sandcastles on beaches around the world and shared their photos on the Scuba Junkie Facebook profile to show their support.

International donations keep rolling in for the Finathon and you can still support by donating online: www.justgiving.com/Scuba-Junkie