Everything you wanted to know about PADI Certification

Have you been thinking about becoming a certified diver? If you’ve always wanted to take scuba diving lessons, you should consider obtaining a certification that is recognized around the world.
At Aquaworld, you will find several options to get a dive cert, all with worldwide recognition, but here you can find everything you wanted to know about the PADI Certification.
No matter where you decide to go to dive, your PADI certification card will be recognized and accepted.

What is PADI Certification?

PADI is one of the most prestigious scuba diver training organizations in the world. The organisation was founded in 1966. Two buddies got together and decided that the dive agencies that existed at that time, were outdated and just too complicated. How were they going to spread the love of diving if it was too hard to get certified in the first place?

Once you are Open Water PADI certified you are legible to dive up to 18 meters (60 feet). This means that you can participate in most local dives, in any dive destination around the world. Some dives may require an advanced certification or some kind of specialty which we’ll talk about that later.

PADI certification card

When you have completed your certification, PADI will send your dive card to your home address. This is a credencial that you must show at any dive center prior to your dive. There are actually different types of certification cards depending on your age and what level of cert you have completed.

The mínimum age to scuba dive is 10 years old so the first level is a junior cert. The content of the course is exactly the same as the adult cert but at the end, a junior may only dive up to 12 meters (40 feet). However, on their 15 birthday, they may apply for the adult card, this is done directly with PADI and a new card will be issued.
The doors are now open to some more exciting dives!

PADI certification renewal

The good thing about the PADI certification is that it’s life-long, that means it doesn’t expire. But, if you haven’t dove in a while, it’s always a good idea to take a refresher before you dive again, or you could start off with a shallow dive just to get back into the swing of things.
If you lose your dive card, not to worry, your information is always available in the PADI system and you can apply for a new one here.

What does PADI stand for?

So what does PADI mean? When our previously mentioned buddies created the company, John Cronin insisted the word ‘profesional’ be included in the title. Ralph Erickson added the ‘association of diving instructors’. And so the name was created; PADI –  Professional Association of Diving Instructors.


 More than 60 percent of the divers certified in the world are certified by PADI, and more than 70 percent of the scuba instructors in the world are PADI instructors.


PADI’s strict adherence to training standards and its international presence means you will receive the best scuba training available and that your PADI certification will be recognized throughout the world.

PADI Certifications

It’s pretty straightforward to begin your certification, however there is a small check list to pay attention to first. You don’t need to splash out on fancy gear in the beginning, this will come later as it’s really a comfort factor. You should only consider the following when starting out on your path to obtaining a PADI Certification

Health Questionnaire

You’ll need to be in good physical health with no major issues or restrictions. Completing a health questionnaire is essential and if you answer ‘yes’ to any of the issues mentioned on the form, you will need the ok from your doctor. These issues include asthma, recent surgeries, blood pressure issues and back problems.

Adequate swimming skills

Before you begin the training, you will take a basic swimming evaluation. You will be required to swim 100 meters without a swim aid or 200 meters with a swim aid (such as fins, a mask and a snorkel). You will also be required to float unassisted for 10 minutes.

How to get PADI Certified


Diver training consists of three components: 1. Academic or classroom study, 2. Confined Water or pool training and 3. Open Water training.
Nowadays, the popular method of completing the initial theory training is via the PADI E-learning training or you can download their pdf workbook and learn the necessary modules in your own time. This is a great option if you want to get certified whilst on vacation, you save a lot of time, who wants to spend their holiday in a classroom? (link to product).

Your confined water training can then be organized through your local dive center or if you’re planning a vacation where there is some fab diving to be had, why not make the most of diving amongst some awesome coral reef and tropical fish?
With Aquaworld, you can take the pool training in a specially designed dive pool and then the open water dives take place at Manchones Reef and also the Underwater Museum. Awesome!

Typically the course takes three half days to complete, well worth the time to become certified for life in three days.

It’s worth mentioning that you don’t need to take the whole course all in one go. PADI offer some great options so you can organize your time and split the course up if you like.

Scuba Diver Course

If you are short on time whilst on vacation, you can complete a ‘half cert’. This credential carries the title ‘scuba diver’ and basically covers first three modules of the open water certification. The course takes only two days to complete and inlcudes one 2 tank dive. With this certification you can dive to 12 meters (40 feet), just like a junior. Again, this is a life-long cert and you can complete the rest of the course whenever you wish.

Referral Certification

With a referral cert you would complete the theory work first, followed by the confined training and then when you’re ready, you can take the referral at any other dive center.
This means, if you live in a freezing cold country and don’t fancy diving in your local lake, you can book an amazing vacation to a hot destination like Cancun, and dive in the warm, blue, crystal clear ocean! Make sure your paperwork is signed by your instructor upon completion of the previous modules, it’s important to provide all the necessary documents.

Open Water Certification

This is the full diver certification which includes the knowledge development, basic skills, and full practice. Check out these options to decide which one is best for you.

Once you’re Open Water certified, you could then go on to think about further courses. You might want to consider a career in diving, you could work your way up to Instructor level.
PADI also offer some great specialties where you can learn about different types of diving and improve your techniques along the way.
For example, the night dive specialty covers the equipment needed to dive at night, techniques, precautions and risks involved. Most specialties include a dive as well so you can put your new found skills to the test.

PADI worldwide

PADI dive centers can be found all over the World. Check out the options here



But of course the best one is Aquaworld in Cancun. Aquaworld has been certifying divers for over 30 years. Our online team are here to answer all your questions prior to booking your course, so contact us here