Learn to Scuba Dive in the Crystal Clear waters of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef

Take the plunge and let’s go Scuba diving!

Reef Encounter learn to dive personalised open water dive course Great Barrier Reef AustraliaWe believe there is no better place in the world to learn scuba diving than the Great Barrier Reef. All locations that Reef Encounter visits have clear, confined, calm and shallow lagoon areas that are perfect for scuba dive training. We believe that completing your entire scuba diving course in the ocean – as opposed to the first half in a swimming pool – produces more confident and experienced divers by the end of our training program.

What is an Open Water Course?

An Open Water Course is the first official step in scuba diving training, where you will learn all the fundamentals to help you become a confident scuba diver. No prior scuba experience is necessary and upon successful completion of the course you will receive an Open Water Diver license; which is a lifelong, internationally recognised scuba diving rating and can be used anywhere around the globe.

Why should I choose Reef Encounter to Learn Scuba Diving

Reef Encounter is a leading SSI Training Vessel. Our experienced Instructors guarantee you receive the very best dive education. Reef Encounter prides itself on it’s high training and safety standards.

Group numbers are kept small to ensure quality control with a maximum of 4 students to 1 Instructor at all times – we strongly recommend always considering class size when enrolling on any scuba diving course. All training is done from Reef Encounter, cutting out the need to travel to classroom and pool facilities.

Food, accommodation, scuba equipment hire and tuition are all provided onboard M.V. Reef Encounter – Our premier choice dive boat! Optional extras are wetsuits and dive torches if you require them, which are available for hire onboard. Prescription lens masks are also available for hire.

Can you imagine being along on your first scuba class and seeing a turtle lazily swim alongside? It could happen!


How long does it take?

You can choose to complete your Reef Encounter learn to scuba dive Open Water Course in either three days (two nights) or four days (three nights) depending on how much time you wish to spend. A Top Deck Club Private Open Water Course takes four days (three nights) to complete.

How many students are in each class?

The Reef Encounter learn to scuba dive Open Water Course is designed as a ‘Personalised’ scuba course with a maximum of four (4) students to one Instructor, guaranteeing the very best scuba training for everyone. If you wish to enrol upon a private scuba course, consider becoming a Top Deck Club guest.

How many scuba dives are included?

In order to complete the Open Water Course with Reef Encounter you must complete a minimum of eight (8) training divesIncluded in the 3 day open water course is 8 daytime fun and training dives. Night dives are an optional extra at an additional cost, and are not part of your open water course training. Included in the 4 day open water course is 8 daytime fun and training dives. Any dives that you choose to do once you have completed your 8 training dives will be fun dives as a Certified Diver. Depending on how you progress with your training, this may leave you as many as 3 certified scuba dives once you have qualified.

All scuba dives are included in the trip cost, with the exception of any night dives you participate in prior to certification, which will be extra. If you have completed all course requirements by the last night of your stay, the night dive as a Certified Diver is included in the trip cost.

We look forward to greeting you onboard Reef Encounter for the start of your scuba diving adventure!

Reef Encounter, Great Barrier Reef, Liveaboard


What is the difference between the 3 Day and the 4 Day Open Water Courses?

On a 4 day (3 night) Open Water Course you have more time to relax and just enjoy being at the Great Barrier Reef! You can learn at your own pace and have the extra time to spend with your Scuba Instructor to practice if you wish to, or to enjoy the many other activities onboard Reef Encounter. There is more flexibility with when each training class is scheduled too, so no problem if you fancy a sleep in one day!

Instead of being onboard solely to concentrate on getting your scuba diving license, the 4 day course enables you to enjoy every aspect of being on the Great Barrier Reef. Additional Certified Dives On a 4 day course after you have completed the 8 training dives for certification, any additional dives that you do will be fun dives as a Certified Diver.

This is sure to be the highlight of your trip and is a great opportunity to practice your new skills, gain experience and just have some great fun! Depending on when you choose to complete your training dives, this may leave you as many as 4 Certified Dives at the end of your trip (3 day scuba dives, 1 night scuba dive). Any night dives prior to qualifying from the course are an optional extra at an additional cost.

We are passionate about scuba diving and we guarantee that upon completion of your course, you will be too!


Do I need to do anything prior to starting the course?

Yes. Before your open water course you must attain a diving medical certificate and we recommend that you complete a free online training class. Read on for details on each…


Online Training

If you wish to do your Open Water Course onboard Reef Encounter then we ask that you complete the free online training class before your trip. On average it takes around two hours to complete, but you can do it in parts so you do not need to do it all in one sitting. Online training is extremely beneficial as it enhances learning, gives you a good understanding of what you would like to practice more with your Scuba Instructor and cuts down the time you are required to spend in theory classes.

To register for the free SSI online training class, follow the link www.divessi.com/online_training. For additional information on how to complete the training online, please email us at info@reefencounter.com.au or call us on +61 7 4051 5777 and we will be happy to send you an attachment with some helpful advice.


Compulsory Dive Medical

Before beginning any Open Water Course in Australia you are required by law to get a medical certificate that states you are fit to scuba dive. Your dive medical can be attained from any registered physician either within or outside of Australia, but must be conducted in accordance with Australian Medical Standard AS4005-1 and state this clearly on the certificate. For a copy of the Australian Medical Standard AS4005-1 that you can take to your doctor, click here Australian Medical Standard AS4005-1 or for any assistance in acquiring your dive medical, please email us at info@reefencounter.com.au or call the friendly Reef Encounter office on +61 7 4051 5777. If your medical certificate does not state that it conforms to AS4005-1, it is likely that you will have to acquire another medical certification in Australia that is compliant.

Book your Reef Encounter dive course today an SSI dive qualification is internationally recognised and can be used anywhere around the world.

For more information about SSI dive courses and about the difference between SSI and PADI, Please see the Frequently Asked Questions section.