Which Advanced Open Water program?

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TMHeimer

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Quite a few PADI specialties are 2 dives, many are 3, and some are 4.
2-dive specialties are: Altitude, Aware - Shark. Boat, DSMB, DUP, DPV, Drift, Fish ID, PPB, Naturalist, and U/W Photographer.
3-dive specialties are: Dry (1 is CW), FFM (1 is CW), Ice, Night, Self-Reliant, SCR, SM, Nav, and Videographer.
4-dive specialties are: Cavern, Deep, PSD, S&R, and Wreck.
Distinctive specialties are a separate issue.
Thanks. I haven't taken any of those that are just 2 dives. I took Deep & Wreck as part of AOW so I forgot that I already did dive 1 of 4.
 

FloridaMan

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Lets say I wanted go with PADI specialties. To do Nitrox, Deep Diver, Navigation, and Night Diver, that is $185, $125, $125, and $125 for the online eLearning. Then there is the cost of the dives themselves. However there is an SSI school in West Palm Beach that I could do my SSI Advanced open water with. The cost of that is $185 for the eLearning and $600 for all of the dives. That is the same cost as the PADI AOW, but you don't get any certs (for what they are worth...) I am just trying to think if there is anything detrimental about going with SSI...
 

Bob DBF

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This maybe opening a can of worms, but I am curious on everyone's view of PADI's Advanced Open Water and SSI's Advanced Open Water?

Apples and oranges. It's the same name for two completely different programs. However, it is great marketing.

The SSI's equivalent to PADI AOW, is Advanced Adventurer. One can take SSI AOW and not take Nav or Deep, which are assumed to be required dives of AOW.

My advice, for what it's worth, take SSI advanced adventurer or PADI AOW and you can decide which specialties would enjoy taking next, with those or any other agency. An added plus, if you want to take a dive trip that requires an AOW card, you will have one after two days of dives.
 

Esprise Me

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Lets say I wanted go with PADI specialties. To do Nitrox, Deep Diver, Navigation, and Night Diver, that is $185, $125, $125, and $125 for the online eLearning. Then there is the cost of the dives themselves.
PADI AOW requires you to choose 5 specialties including deep and navigation, and I don't think Nitrox can be one of them. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong. So you still need to pick two more if you want the AOW card, which can come in handy with certain boats going to deeper sites.

However there is an SSI school in West Palm Beach that I could do my SSI Advanced open water with. The cost of that is $185 for the eLearning and $600 for all of the dives. That is the same cost as the PADI AOW, but you don't get any certs (for what they are worth...) I am just trying to think if there is anything detrimental about going with SSI...
I'm a little skeptical that the SSI course would really be the same price if it involves more dives, so you might want to double-check with the shop. But if it's really the case, I see no downside.
 

Bob DBF

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PADI AOW requires you to choose 5 specialties including deep and navigation, and I don't think Nitrox can be one of them.

You only do the first dive if those 5 specialties.

I'm a little skeptical that the SSI course would really be the same price if it involves more dives, so you might want to double-check with the shop. But if it's really the case, I see no downside.

See my post above.

SSI is the full specialty, but is not an equilivent to what people think of as AOW.
 

Esprise Me

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You only do the first dive if those 5 specialties.
Right, but you do 5. OP only listed 4 in the post I quoted. I'm not sure if he meant that he was thinking of doing those 4 specialties instead of AOW, because he wouldn't get an AOW card from doing just those. Also, I'm not sure you can do the full deep specialty course without some other prerequisite--advanced adventurer, I think?
 

BLACKCRUSADER

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I do not see the need to pay for doing night diver or photographer or many of the specialty courses. I do think the OP should do the AOW then later on the Rescue and that should be enough. Doing video and photography you will learn a lot from doing that with other divers. A lot of dive centers have books so you can ID the marine life.

Just go out a dive more. In my mere mortal opinion.
 

Bob DBF

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Right, but you do 5. OP only listed 4 in the post I quoted. I'm not sure if he meant that he was thinking of doing those 4 specialties instead of AOW, because he wouldn't get an AOW card from doing just those. Also, I'm not sure you can do the full deep specialty course without some other prerequisite--advanced adventurer, I think?

In SSI that is an AOW card.

From what I have read, you can take any specialty at any time, I saw no prerequisite necessary for deep. Rescue is also a specialty, so one could take that after OW, not a bad idea actually.
 

TMHeimer

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PADI AOW requires you to choose 5 specialties including deep and navigation, and I don't think Nitrox can be one of them. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong. So you still need to pick two more if you want the AOW card, which can come in handy with certain boats going to deeper sites.

I'm a little skeptical that the SSI course would really be the same price if it involves more dives, so you might want to double-check with the shop. But if it's really the case, I see no downside.
Nitrox Adventure dive was one of my 5 to get PADI AOW. I did 2 dives from a boat. One was the Deep (to 63'), the other was to about the same depth but I used Nitrox.
Of course back then (2006) the Nitrox Specialty itself required two dives and hasn't for many years.
 

Marie13

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I did the SDI Advanced (package deal), which is very similar to SSI Advanced rather than the PADI “sampler platter” AOW. Wreck (limited penetration in light zone, 3 dives), then Night, Deep, Nav (2 dives each).

Most PADI divers I know don’t do any specialities aside from Nitrox and maybe drysuit if they’re local divers here in the Midwest.
 
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