Frequently asked questions

Q. What do I get with BSAC membership?

A. 12 months membership to the BSAC, which gives you, access to our international diver and instructor training scheme.

  • 3rd Party Limited Public Liability Insurance up to £5 million.
  • Monthly issue of 'Dive' magazine.

Q. What Insurance do I get with my membership?

Type: Third Party Public Liability Insurance
Insured: Any member for the time being of any branch of The British Sub Aqua Club to which the Policy applies.
Cover: Legal Liability arising from or in connection with the sport diving activities, including social events, of any branch of The British Sub Aqua Club.

Q. Why is it that a child of 12 can complete an Ocean Diver course with a BSAC school but would have to wait a further 2 years before he/she can dive with their parents as a BSAC member through a branch?

A. They are able to do the Ocean Diver course through a BSAC school at this age, as Ocean Divers do not need to be members of the BSAC. The requirement to reduce the age to 12 years for members through BSAC branches has previously been put to a vote at the Annual General Meeting of the BSAC on two occasions but unfortunately a majority of votes required has not been achieved on either of these occasions.

Q. Do I require a Diving medical and how long does it last?

A. All Members are required to complete a self-declaration form, which asks various questions about your state of health. If you can answer 'No' to all questions then you simply sign the form. If you would answer 'Yes' then you need to consult with a specialist Diving doctor who may, following consultation, declare you fit but possibly for a restricted period of time.

Q. Although I’m a qualified BSAC Diver I haven’t dived in a number of years and may be a bit rusty, is this going to be a problem?

A. Far from it, you will join with your existing qualification and will be offered a refresher course in the pool before venturing out into open water.

Q. What is the difference between BSAC & PADI?

A. The BSAC is the Governing Body for the sport of scuba diving in the UK and is a club-based organisation that offers training for members through a branch or intensive courses through a BSAC school.
PADI is a commercial business that will only offer diving courses.

Q. Can I be a member of more than one branch?

A. Yes. You will have to elect which of the two branches is to be the main branch (this will be the branch you pay your BSAC subscription to and will also be the branch whose Diving Officer will sign your qualifications). As a dual member, your dual branch will be required to let HQ know that you are a dual member with them.

Q. What is the minimum age that I can learn to dive?

A. Bristol No3 has adopted the minimum age of 14 to be able to undertake scuba training, although you can join as a snorkelling member as young as 12.

Q. How long does it take to learn to dive?

A. This depends on how quickly the individual trainee picks up the skills. We would normally say that to get to open water level would take about 3 months. Our instructors are not bound by any commercial pressures. This means they can spend as much time as needed to ensure that you receive the best standard of training.

Q. I did a PADI open water course a couple of years ago, does this count when I join the Club?

A. Yes, when you join the club your current grade is crossed over to the equivalent BSAC grade. From there you can continue training towards Sports Diver or beyond.

Q Where do you do your pool training?

A. We train at Bristol South Swimming Pool on a Monday night between 8pm and 9pm.

Q Do you teach PADI courses?

A. Unfortunately not, all our training is within the BSAC syllabus, so we can only offer the equivalent BSAC course.

Q I haven’t dived in years, I’m going on holiday later in the year and want to dive. Do you do refresher courses?

A. Because we’re not a commercial organisation we can’t offer one off training courses. If you became a member of the club our instructors would tailor a training package to suit your individual needs.

Q I’m not a very strong swimmer, How fit do I need to be to start diving?

A. All that we ask is that a perspective member can swim two lengths of the pool (freestyle) and be able to complete a self-certification medical declaration.

Q What sort of diving do you do?

A. This tends to be standard club diving, a mixture of Reef/Wreck to a maximum of 50m. All diving grades are catered for in the club and dives are arranged with this in mind.We don’t currently support re-breather, mixed gas or deep air diving. Some members are qualified to Advanced Nitrox, and do dive on Nitrox but at the moment that’s as “Technical” as it gets.

Q. Where do you dive?

A. For day trips we tend to frequent the South Devon and Dorset coastline. Longer weekend trips tend to venture further a field to Cornwall and South/South West Wales. This will depend on where members want to dive because we have our own boat we’re not bound by any one area.

Q When are you running your next course?

A. We have an ongoing training program throughout the year. We don’t run a ridged training schedule, instead we tailor the training courses that are run to the current requirements of the membership. Please get in touch with us so we can discuss your individual requirements.