SSI or Padi
“I want to do my Padi” we hear that a lot. What they mean is “I want to get my diving license”. Padi is certifying agency just like SSI or CMAS or BSAC, there are many different agencies that can get you a diving license. What’s the difference? Does it make a difference after when I go diving if I choose SSI or Padi?”. No, any dive shop will accept a certification from an accredited agency. If you want to do the next level course that can be either SSI or Padi or any other accredited agency and the same with the next course. The most common diving course is the open water which allows you to dive to 18m, the next course is advanced which allows you to go to 30m.
What are the main differences?
Padi courses are instructor lead and can be taught just by themselves with Padi having a central survey-based Q&A system to ensure quality. SSI courses are dive shop lead and instructors can only teach through a dive shop that ensure the quality through a monitor and surveys. Both ways of teaching are very similar to theory, skills and diving are all taught to the same standards worldwide governed by the WRSTC (World Recreational Scuba Training Council).
The equipment and sea are the same whether its Padi or SSI right? With Padi you have to buy the student manual. SSI lets you rent for free for a few weeks as part of the course. Or you can also choose to buy them if you want at an additional cost. With SSI you can start to read the manual before the course during this free period. The SSI certification is digital and is completed after the course by your instructor and sent via email. You can choose to have a plastic card at extra cost printed locally. But we are reducing our environmental footprint and doing as much as practical digitally. From the manuals to the certification so we ask customers if they really need a plastic card.
SSI or Padi? The quality of the instructor and dive school does matter
What matters is the quality of the instructor and dive school not which certifying agency you do the course with. And of course how much fun you will have; the same worldwide standards are used to teach all courses. Check out our reviews on Trip Advisor, Facebook or Google and you can see what our customers think of us.
Questions about the difference between SSI or Padi course?
Don’t hesitate and contact us. We are happy to help you with any questions about scuba diving on Koh Tao.