Frequently Asked Questions

Have questions? Check out the sections below for our most common questions and if you still can’t find your answer, contact us!


What should I bring on the day of my dives?

Come ready to dive! Bring any personal dive gear you’d like to use, your dive logbook to register your dives, a towel, and dry clothes to change into afterwards.


For Panglao island dives, you’ll leave personal items in a locker and board the boat with your dive gear only. For Balicasag and Pamilacan dive and snorkel day trips you will leave your shoes on shore and be able to bring your personal items with you if you choose. 

How deep will my dives be?

Your certification level will determine the depth of your dives. Uncertified divers for Discover Scuba Diving and Scuba Diver certified divers can go to a maximum depth of 12 meters. Open Water divers max depth is 18 meters, and for Advanced Open Water divers, 30 meters.


All of the dive sites in our area are enjoyable from 12 or 18 meters, and only a few sites offer depths of 30 or more. 


Maximum depths for children are as follows:


  • Bubblemaker:  8-9 years old, maximum 4 meters
  • Junior Open Water (10-14 years old):
    • 10-11 years old: must dive with a certified parent/guardian or PADI Professional to 12 meters maximum
    • 12-14 years old: 18 meters maximum, with possibility for additional certification up to 21 meters
  • Junior certifications convert to regular certifications at age 15, with the same depth guidelines as adults
Is it recommended to use Nitrox?

If desired, Nitrox is available on request (please notify us at least 24 hours before your dives). It is not necessary for this environment however, and a large majority of divers dive here use non-enriched air.

How will we get to the dive sites/how much time will we spend on the boats?

Panglao island dive sites are all located within a 5-10 minute boat ride from our dive center on Alona beach. Pamilacan and Balicasag dive sites are located 30-40 minutes from the dive center by boat.

How long do I need to wait after diving before I take a flight?

For your safety, your last dive should end at least 18 hours  before you fly. If you have a flight the next day after you dive, please be sure to tell us your flight schedule so we can make sure to end your dives on time.

Can I dive with SSI, CMAS, NAUI, or other professional dive certifications?

Yes! While Bohol Divers Club is a PADI center, we do accept certifications from other organizations. We only offer PADI courses.

Do I need my PADI certification card?

We are able to verify certified divers within our system using your name and birth date. It is ok if you forget or choose not to bring your certification card. A photo of your card will also suffice.

How often do you run trips to Balicasag and Pamilacan?

Island day trips depart several times per week, sometimes daily according to diver demand. Use our booking form to request the dates you’d like to go!

What is the maximum dive time and pressure for dives you lead?

Island day trip dives will have a maximum dive time around 55 minutes, and begin an ascent to the safety stop when the first diver in your group reaches 70 bar of remaining pressure. Panglao island dives will have a maximum dive time of 60 minutes, or 70 bar.

How many divers per divemaster and students per instructor?

We always keep group sizes small, to ensure diver safety and a great diving experience for everyone. Courses are limited to 1-4 students per instructor, and on fun dives, we limit groups to 4 divers per divemaster. If a group of 5 would like to dive together, we can make an exception.

What kind of equipment is available for rent?

We have available for rent full length and shorty wetsuits, fins, mask, snorkel, booties, BCD, computer, compass, and torch. Scuba “full set” price does not include computer, torch or compass.


What is the best time of year to come for weather and visibility?

Panglao is beautiful year-round. If typhoons do come, they are likely to occur in July-September, although the weather is often also very pleasant during those months. See this website for average weather by month here in Panglao.


Diving visibility here is generally very good but can vary day to day based on current and wind conditions. It does not vary significantly based on season.

What is the water temperature?

The water temperature here is usually 27-31 degrees Celsius.


What should I bring on the day of my snorkeling trip?

All you need is yourself and a towel. Come ready to jump in the water! You’ll arrive at your first snorkeling site after a short boat ride. Apply reef safe sunblock* at least 30 minutes before you enter the water, as sunscreen chemicals are harmful to our coral reefs.


For Balicasag and Pamilacan dive and snorkel day trips you will leave your shoes/sandals at the dive shop and can bring a bag with your personal items if you choose. 


* Key ingredients to avoid are Oxybenzone and Octinoxate. Additionally, look out for Benzophenone-1, Benzophenone-8, OD-PABA, 4-Methylbenzylidene camphor, 3-Benzylidene camphor, and Octocrylene. These can affect corals’ reproductive cycle, damage DNA, and worsen the effects of coral bleaching.

What if I can’t swim?

You should be comfortable in the water. Snorkel floats and life jackets are available for your safety, as snorkeling conditions usually include current, and water in which it is too deep to stand.


If you are a nervous swimmer and would like a “skin diving” snorkeling lesson to help you prepare, please inquire in the dive center in advance of your trip. If you are completely unable to swim or float, snorkeling is likely not a safe choice of activity for you.


What should I bring on the day of my course?

Come on the day of your dive or course ready to dive! You will start water skills after your first land lesson, and dives will begin after a short boat ride. Apply reef safe sunblock at least 30 minutes before your dive. Bring any personal dive gear you’d like to use, your dive logbook, and dry clothes to change into afterwards.

What if I can’t swim?

Before beginning the course, all PADI Open Water students should be able to swim 300 meters with a mask, snorkel and fins and float or swim comfortably for 10 minutes with no swim aids. (In place of the 300m swim, you can choose to swim 200 meters without any swim aids.)


This is a PADI requirement. Being comfortable in the water is a must. If you are not a confident swimmer, we advise you try to gain some water experience before scuba diving.


Discover Scuba Diving does not require swimming skills, although it is still recommended you be comfortable in the water.

What will my certification cost if I started my PADI course at another dive center/location?

You can most likely finish your course with us for less than full price! You will need to send us your referral form, containing a record of all the skills and exams that you have already completed. Our instructors will check on how much course work remains for you and then we will let you know the final cost to finish your course.

Can I finish my Open Water course sooner if I have already completed a Discover Scuba Diving experience?

If you do a “try dive” / Discover Scuba Diving experience with us at Bohol Divers Club and then decide to get your Open Water certification, there will be no need to repeat theory or skills practice you have already done. You’ll already be well on your way! 


Because a discovery dive is not a certification, there will be no PADI record for us to pull from if you have completed a Discover/try dive experience somewhere else. In that case we will need to cover all Open Water material with you, for your safety and to ensure you get the most out of your course.

Can I skip some parts of my course, in order to get to diving faster?

In order to complete your certification, you must complete all skills and lessons included in the course. If you have already completed some portions of your course with another instructor, we will need a referral which confirms this. If you have the skills but not a referral, not to worry, when you demonstrate you are able to complete the skills we will be able to sign you off on them very quickly and move on! 

Can I complete my PADI course in my language?

BDC offers PADI instruction in English, Spanish, Chinese, French and German. For other languages, just submit a request in advance and we will do our best to find an instructor for your needs!

Can I complete some of my required course dives on an island day trip to Pamilacan or Balicasag?

Because Balicasag and Pamilacan marine protected areas do not permit any instructional dives in those areas, all of your course dives will take place at Panglao island, where our local reef offers many exciting things to see.


In any case, you will enjoy your Balicasag or Pamilacan dives that much more with your newfound skills (like better buoyancy and air consumption) and confidence after you complete your course. Many of our students choose to celebrate their new certifications with an island trip the day after they finish!