Dive Charters Calling Off a Dive

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friscuba

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Thanks for the feedback all, Yea I would've canceled the dive if I could but I would have not been refunded.
Thankfully everything was ok on our second dive with the exception of a few divers inflating a sausage and waiting for the boat to come to them because of the current being way way too strong.

I assumed they would cancel because the conditions were not as bad (still pretty bad tho) on this charter I was going out on the day before and they canceled the trip for our safety according to the DM and Captain.

Sounds as though they try to be reasonable on cancelling, probably made a poor choice of locations for their first dive. Sometimes you get yourself in a spot and the conditions turn out a bit worse than expected... happens sometime.
 

Zaixon

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I meant this was a different charter than I had attempted to go out with the previous day. If I was going out with the charter I had been on the day before they would have never left the dock.

This charter would not refund my money if i wanted to cancel because they said the boat was going out either way, i guess thats just somethin that's gotta be dealt with sometimes
 

flw

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Depemds very much on what the local conditions are, and what type of boat it is. In the UK, it's unlikely a charter will cancel due to 4-5ft waves or some surface current. Most ladders/lifts are easily negotiated in those conditions, but it does vary a bit. We had significantly bigger seas ( and heavy rain) on Sunday diving off big RIB, and it was fine - though we did duck into an inlet to kit up - on a steeper sea you might well call off earlier though
With any type of current/tide, I wouldn't even attempt to make it back to an anchored boat - boats have engines and it takes the pressure off if they come and get you rather than the other way round - but again, we almost never anchor boats in locally
 

k11dorf

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We had great dives Saturday morning and afternoon and again on Sunday morning, although the torrential downpour that caught us just as we were entering the Intracoastal on the way back forced us to cancel the afternoon shallow snorkel/dive trip. We still managed to have a great BBQ, followed up by a beautiful one tank night dive, and then watched the fireworks from the water...

As for our cancellation policy -- we will cancel the dive if there is any question of safety (we WILL run a trip for career students if conditions are just on the border of comfort; that's good training for them). We have to reserve the right to charge for a cancellation without 24 hours notice -- when we could have sold the seat -- but we invariably (if only unofficially) honor a cancellation without penalty whenever a diver is legitimately concerned about safety....
 

Zaixon

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The dive evening sounds really nice! and fireworks from water would've been an awesome experience! Sunday had gotten completely messed up for us cause we had planned to do a wreck for a while but conditions were extremely bad
 

k11dorf

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Well, that little thunderstorm/downpour caught everyone by surprise. We offloaded the boat in almost knee-deep water in the parking lot between the dock and the gear room! You should definitely come out next Fourth of July...in the interim, hope to see you on the boat anytime...
 

yarik83

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I have been on dive boats that hold 6 people and 4 foot waves seemed like the end of the world because boat was loaded and crest of waves was higher than side of the boat. I was also on boats that were meant for 30 people and 4 foot waves seemed like a walk in the park.

Weather is one thing but there is one thing that can royally screw your vacation plans.

2008 christmas season I was on a cruise ship traveling around carribbean. Dove in cozumel.. perfect.. dove in mahahual... perfect.. dove in turneffe atol in belize and it was nothing but sand desert... still paid the full fare.. ship got to nassau in bahamas and as we were de-boarding we were told that dive charter cancelled because of weather. All other things were booked so I grabbed my gear and started running around the docks trying to get myself a boat. Weather was perfect.. boats were leaving for dive sites and our boat that was reserved for us.. was loaded up with people from a different carnival cruise ship and off they went. Of course I could not dive because every local charter promised to get me back 1 hour after ship departure time.

Now i was refunded my money.. but err... what if I specifically went on that trip to dive in bahamas?

Going back to the weather situation.. it is nasty... my dive charter was sunk returning from a dive trip because a 6 ft wave broke on the back of the boat as it was entering the sound. Now they have a bigger boat but that experience taught them to respect weather a little more.
 

Van Isle

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What TSandM said. You have to consider the profit motive, and realize that as long as it's safe for THEM to go out the onus is on you to call the dive. And of course (usually) lose your money. That's part of the challenge and adventure of boat diving. I've had boat dives that ended up costing me $10 per minute: $20 to descend, $30 to assess the undiveable conditions on the wreck while "flagging" on the line, and $60 to ascend and safety stop.

Cheap lesson, really, about learning to be responsible for your own dive planning, even on charter boats. You can check the charts, tide tables, current tables, weather reports, but in the end it's still a roll of the dice. AND you get to pay the charter company for the privilege of the boat ride to and from an undiveable site. On the dive mentioned above, some folks had a great wreck dive, but they got in about 45 mins before me and didn't suffer the same conditions at all. And THAT'S why the charter op won't cancel unless it's patently unsafe for all divers.

In short, there are no constants about what constitutes a "condition" where the dive op will cancel the charter.

VI
 

netmage

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I fall into the 'old salt' category... Unless I get a whiff of diesel or breakfast isn't agreeing with me - I won't puke or get seasick.... I dove all three days this weekend in the mornings...

Saturday was up in Boynton with a stiff current but otherwise perfect, Sunday and Monday were in Pompano, where we had torrential downpours in the afternoon and currents were mild on Sunday relaxing to nothing during the dive to very strong and ripping on Monday... Sea-state all mornings was in the 0-2' range - nothing notable.

The rule of thumb I like to go by is 0-2' seas everyone dives. 3-4's are sporty but certainly do-able - some of my friends are prone to cancel... 5-6's are the edge of comfort where the "professional's" will cancel, and the bare bones ops will continue to run because they never cancel - hence they never refund... Often turning back between the dives leaving you a little sour...

Your a local - so - the wrecks will be here for you every weekend... Head to Flanagan's or Bru's and have a beer and some wings... And never permanently 'bag' an op for showing caution... they have far more experience dealing w/ mother ocean than you...

PM me for some op recommendations in the area...

-Tim
 
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