Frequently Asked Questions – FAQ

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Frequently Asked Questions

There are three factors that affect this

1-If you have a current (less than 24 months old) Emergency First Response (EFR) or other CPR and First Aid certification

2-which learning option (materials) you choose

3-how long it takes you to master the skills during the training

1- EFR/CPR & First Aid if you do not have one of these, or it is more than 24 months old at the start date of your rescue course, we can provide the training here. This will take one full day for the complete course, or half a day to one full day for the refresher.

2- Materials we can offer a paperback manual and DVD combination, this is most time consuming when in Moalboal as you will need to read the manual here, and watch a DVD, these courses typically take 3 days. We can provide an e-book in advance, allowing you to read it before your arrival here, this leaves only the DVDs and training, this might bring your time with us down to 2.5 days. Better still we provide you online materials such as e-learning (suitable for laptop or desktop computers) or Touch (suitable for tab or smartphones), this has all of the content of the books and DVDs in an engaging format, leaving a quick review and the dives for your time with us, these courses typically last 2 days.

3-Mastering skills once the academics are complete we have the fun stuff to do, diving! However it is important to understand these courses are objective, not time, based. You must show mastery of a set of dive skills before certification. Many get them on the first attempt, some require repetition. Repetition equates to more time, your course might take a little longer, and it is best to plan for that. Our objective is to help you become a safe and happy diver, we won’t rush, and we won’t let you walk away with an incomplete set of knowledge or skills.

There are two factors that affect this

1-which learning option (materials) you choose

2-how long it takes you to master the skills during the training

1-Materials we can offer a paperback manual, this is most time consuming when in Moalboal as you will need to read the manual here. These courses typically take 2 days. We can provide an e-book in advance, allowing you to read it before your arrival here, or provide e-learning (online, suitable for use with laptop or desktop computers) or Touch (downloadable and then offline, suitable for use with smartphones and tabs), using these options we can get the course time down to 1.5 days.

2-Mastering skills once the academics are complete we have the fun stuff to do, diving! However it is important to understand these courses are objective, not time, based. You must show mastery of a set of dive skills before certification. Many get them on the first attempt, some require repetition. Repetition equates to more time, your course might take a little longer, and it is best to plan for that. Our objective is to help you become a safe and happy diver, we won’t rush, and we won’t let you walk away with an incomplete set of knowledge or skills.

At least one day, as a minimum we need to conduct a check dive (see are check dives and refreshers required) and a safari briefing. Diving in the point of embarkation and disembarkation is not included in the safari, we recommend at least a few days at either end of the trip to enjoy these locations.

Currently this service is not available on Dive Safaris, however we can provide a full service to Technical Divers in Moalboal or Sipalay.

Under certain conditions we may be able to accommodate CCR divers, please contact us for more information.

What are the minimum number of divers needed for a safari to go ahead?

A trip needs a minimum of four divers to go ahead, trips not meeting this number may be subject to cancellation, in this instance we can either refund your payment or offer viable alternatives (see cancellation policy).

What are the maximum number of divers on a trip?

We limit the number of divers to 14, however this number onboard is not common, typically a trip will have around 8-10 divers onboard. Our first consideration is guest safety, followed by comfort. Larger group sizes are suitable when groups of friends or family travel together.

If the trip is cancelled by a guest, the following terms apply

Up to 60 days before departure: full refund (excluding bank charges)
Up to 59-31 days prior to departure, 20% is forfeited
Up to 30-14 days, 50% is forfeited.
Up to 14 days before departure, no refund is available
Cancellations must be in writing

If the trip is cancelled by the organisers, the following terms apply

Seldomly dive safaris might be cancelled in advance, e.g. for not reaching the required minimum amount of passengers (we need a minimum of 4 guests for a trip to go ahead). In this case you will get a full refund of your payment, or we will offer viable alternatives for the time of your trip. The refund shall be limited to payments made for the safari, airport transfers and accommodation booked by us before and after the safari, we are not liable for flights or other costs incurred, for this reason we strongly recommend travel insurance. We shall not be held liable for failure to carry out any contracted arrangements which are caused by acts of God, labor disputes or conditions, weather or otherwise, beyond our control (Force Majeure).

 

A 20% deposit is required within 10 days of making your booking, the remaining balance must be received no later than 30 days prior to departure.

If it helps keep your costs down you are welcome to send the full payment, only 20% of that would be treated as a deposit, see cancellation policy for more information.

Payment is accepted strictly by bank transfer, we can accept payment in EURO, PHP or USD, please ask us for a currency conversion. Please not your bank or ours may levy a small fee for currency exchange or processing, these fees are to be shouldered by you and the full amount quoted for your trip is payable. Small differences can be paid on arrival if necessary.

If it helps keep your costs down you are welcome to send the full payment, only 20% of that would be treated as a deposit, see cancellation policy for more information.

A full set is 750 Pesos per day. Our divers more often than not have their own dive computer, so we rent them separately for 500 Pesos per day. For simplicity of dive planning, and your safety, dive computer use on safari is mandatory.

We highly recommend both travel and dive (health) insurance. Some things to consider, there is no free health care treatment in the Philippines, secondly delays and cancellations with airlines and ferries are common. Protect your investment. We use and recommend DiveAssure. You can get a policy here https://www.diveassure.com/en-intl/home/?pid=4809, or we can help you with that.

You have the choice of two options when you book the dive safari

1- Sleep on board

or

2- Stay in a room at a beach resort nearby the dive spot.

Overnight option 1 – stay on board: Think of camping on an outrigger dive boat in the tropics. There are 4 bunks on board below the main deck. Each bunk is good for 2 divers, so a maximum of 8 divers can sleep on board. The whole bottom of the bunk is covered by one big mattress. There are some small shelves and nets for personal belongings. There are some small windows for fresh air. Another option is to take a mattress out on the webbing between the outriggers. You can sleep under the sparkling stars, if weather permits. There is only one bathroom on board the ship.

Overnight option 2 – Stay in a room at a beach resort nearby the dive spot: We book a room in a resort near the anchor point of the safari ship. Accommodation is simple, with at private bath room and air-conditioning, when available. A small Zodiac rubber boat will bring you to the beach and pick you up in the morning if you stay in beach resort, your feet will be greeted by the warm tropical water, and you may get a little spray as the boat moves, so wear appropriate footwear and clothing.

Please note resort accommodation is booked months in advance, if you opt to stay onboard, and later change your mind, we will do our very best to accommodate you, but we may not always be successful finding last minute accommodation.

On waking, coffee, tea, cookies and biscuits are served before the early morning dive. After the early morning dive, a simple breakfast (like bacon and eggs, pan cakes or muesli) is served. After the morning dive, lunch in form of a plated dish is served (Western or Filipino dishes). After the afternoon dive, snacks like sandwiches, or a fruit platter is available. After night dive, a plated dinner is ready for your consumption. There are no buffets, meals are served on individual plates.

We can do our best to accommodate special dietary needs, but we will need advance notice. Please be as specific as possible, if we are unable to meet any requests we prefer to tell you before you book. Also keep in mind the food is prepared in a marine galley on board by our cook, food is simple, but tasty.

We provide water and soft drinks, alcohol is available (after your dives have ended for the day), for a small additional charge. You are welcome to bring your own drinks with you.

 

Here is an overview about the weather in our region: In summer time (dry season: January – May), the sea is usually calm with very good visibility. Rainy Season starts in June and is actually very nice, too. Bright sunshine in the morning and a short but strong and refreshing downpour in the afternoon or night. Usually good visibility. September till December is Typhoon Season, where we have sometimes overclouded and rain for a couple of days in a row. We are not much affected by typhoons passing through the Philippines. These typhoons follow a regular path, which leads over the islands of Samar to Luzon (Manila) further on to China, Hong Kong or Japan. Cebu is outside this typhoon belt but sometimes affected by overcast and some rain. Visibility varies from 10-30 meters, water temperature is 27-29C.

These dive safaris are a joint venture of Easy Diving and Savedra Dive Center, managed by Easy Diving. On every dive safari the ship passes by Oslob since it is on the way. Savedra’s policy is to discourage every diver from diving with the whale sharks. However, Easy Diving allows every diver to make his own informed decision, after a thorough briefing, if he or she likes to dive with the whale sharks or not. The local fee to dive with whale sharks, 1,500 Pesos per dive at this point in time (Oct 2013), is not included in the price.

We provide standard 11.3 Liter (80CFT) aluminum tanks on dive safaris, unfortunately logistics make it impossible to reliably offer special requests for different tank volumes.

Unfortunately logistics make it impossible for us to offer nitrox onboard at this time, all dives are done on air. However the dive sites visited, and the profiles we use mean nitrox would offer little benefit anyway.

You can do usually 3-4 dives in a day, including night dives. However, some dive spots don’t allow night dives and sometimes weather conditions and travel distance limit the maximum number of dives.

Weather permiting night diving is offered at most of the dive spots.

Sanctuary fees vary from sanctuary to sanctuary and are often changed. Also, some sanctuaries charge more for divers with photo or video cameras. For the total safari, estimate about 3.000 Pesos for sanctuary fees. We collect these from each diver at the end of the Dive Safari.

In addition to standard dive equipment, every diver must have in his possession his personal dive computer and surface marker buoy. If you don’t have a computer you might rent or purchase one at our dive center, we provide you with a surface marker buoy.

Included

Group Divemaster service (personal DM on arrangement)
Tank, weights and weight belt
Accommodation on board or in a beach resort
Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
Refreshments such as snacks and fruits
Drinks,  mineral water and soft drinks

Excluded

Alcoholic beverages
Additional food and drinks in restaurants, bars & resorts
Marine sanctuary fees
Rental dive equipment
Rental snorkel equipment
Rental Dive computers

Yes, our in-house travel desk can arrange all domestic flights, transfers (sea or land) and/or accommodation before and after safari using our network of dive, resort and travel partners all over the Philippines. We recommend you use this service, not only do you have the convenience of a single point of payment, but we are aware of all connection and transit points.

The most convenient way to get to Moalboal is to let us arrange your transfers; we provide reliable aircon car services from aiport to hotel/dive center. For the adventurous types on a tighter budget you can take a bus from Cebu South Bus terminal (about 20 minutes by taxi from the airport), the AC bus (worth the wait) is currently 110 PHP and will take you 3-4 hours. On arrival in Moalboal catch a tricycle to Savedra Dive Center (NOT Saavedra baranguy), this is a 4 kilometer journey and will cost in the region of 150 PHP. If you wish to arrange a taxi from Cebu to Moalboal look for the white cars outside the airport, or consider using an app such as grab or uber. Be sure to check the condition of the car and driver.

To get to Sipalay from Bacolod or Dumaguete the most convenient way is to let us arrange your transfers; we provide reliable aircon car services from airport to hotel/dive center. If you are feeling adventurous take the bus, your journey will be around 5-6 hours. On arrival in Sipalay take a tricycle from the town to Easy Diving.

Typically the trips are run by an European Dive Instructor, who work closely with one or more Filipino Divemasters. We find this provides the ideal amount of expertise above and below the water. If you feel that you need closer supervision you may request an additional divemaster to look after you. These requests must be made in good time, there are a limited number of guides who know all of our dive sites.

An Advanced Open Water or higher Certification is highly recommended. However, experienced Open Water divers can join, too. Inexperienced divers may be excluded from some of the more demanding dive spots (e.g. Coconut Point). Advanced Dive Courses can be conducted prior to the dive safari at our dive centers. You need a minimum of 2 days to get Advanced Open Water certified. If you have concerns about your experience level please let us know in advance your training level, and dive experience.

For your safety, and our risk assessment, a check up dive before the safari is required and it is provided free of charge. If all goes as planned this will allow us to determine which guide and group to place you with. If the check up dives reveals the need for a refresher we can provide these for a small additional cost.

Our goal is to make sure you get as much enjoyment as possible from the trip, and have a safe dive safari. Rusty or missing dive skills can adversely affect your enjoyment.

You must arrive at your point of embarkation with sufficient time for a check dive, and leave some spare just in case a refresher is needed. A check dive typically lasts an hour, if a refresher is needed it will normally run for 2-3 hours.

Dive Safaris actually begin the day prior to departure with the check dive (see are check dives and refreshers required), on the day of departure you meet at the beach at 6AM, and typically pull up anchor at 7AM.

At the end of Safari you will normally arrive between 6 and 7PM, this can be earlier or later depending on the weather conditions, wind and waves can speed up, or slow the boat.

There are two factors that affect this

1-which learning option (materials) you choose

2-how long it takes you to master the skills during the training

1-Materials we can offer a paperback manual and DVD combination, this is most time consuming when in Moalboal as you will need to read the manual here, and watch 5 hours of DVDs, these courses typically take 4 days. We can provide an e-book in advance, allowing you to read it before your arrival here, this leaves only the DVDs and training, this might bring your time with us down to 3.5 days. Better still we provide you online materials such as e-learning (suitable for laptop or desktop computers) or Touch (suitable for tab or smartphones), this has all of the content of the books and DVDs in an engaging format, leaving a quick review and the dives for your time with us, these courses typically last 3 days.

2-Mastering skills once the academics are complete we have the fun stuff to do, diving! However it is important to understand these courses are objective, not time, based. You must show mastery of a set of dive skills before certification. Many get them on the first attempt, some require repetition. Repetition equates to more time, your course might take a little longer, and it is best to plan for that. Our objective is to help you become a safe and happy diver, we won’t rush, and we won’t let you walk away with an incomplete set of knowledge or skills.

Visayan Dive Safaris begin and end alternately between Savedra Dive Center in Moalboal, and Easy Diving Resort in Sipalay. The boats travel the route between the two spots from October to May, with 2 to 3 days between each trip.