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“Exceptional instructors. Safety conscious. Great for kids”

Scuba School And Family Dive Center
Ranked #2 of 77 Tours in San Pedro
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Scuba School And Family Dive Center Belize is a premier dive center in Belize, offering scuba lessons, local dives, Blue Hole, private charters, Blue Hole Overnight, mainland tours and much. We are a full license tour operator company that provides services throughout the country of Belize.
Reviewed 23 April 2014

We signed up with Scuba School Belize to get our kids (aged 11 and 14) certified as divers. My wife and I are keen divers and we were excited to have our kids join us in the sport. Our great experience with the school started in email where they patiently answered my various questions, and walked us through various options. We decided to do the PADI e-learning online. While more expensive, I highly recommend this route. It allowed the kids to spend as much time as needed to master the complex information at their own speed. The quizzes & tests ensure that the material is actually mastered. Once we reached Belize they were able to go right into the pool sessions. The instructor Junior was amazing. He was calm and patient while working with them, while also making it fun for the kids. He also really focused on the safety aspects and why each skill was important and when it might come into play on a real dive. The school is small, so we got really friendly personal treatment from all the staff. The pool session was just our 2 kids with Junior. Their open water dives had only 4 students with 2 instructors. When my daughter had trouble equalizing Junior worked patiently with her to help her overcome this at her own pace. At the end of the course it was amazing to see how comfortable our kids were with all of the gear, with being underwater, controlling their buoyancy etc. In just a few days they were diving with pros. A lot of people (e.g. my daughter), approach diving with a certain amount of fear of the unknown, and their first experience can be critical to dispelling or reinforcing this fear. We are incredibly grateful that by having Junior as their instructor, they got such a great start in the sport. Thanks everyone -- Junior, Yemen, Clive, Ashley & Ana!!

Thank lksamm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Venancio T, Manager at Scuba School And Family Dive Center, responded to this reviewResponded 6 May 2014

Hi There, I'm happy to hear that you had a good time and that your kids had a great time.We sure do hope that we meet your expectations. It was fun to have you guys diving with us. Once again I want to thank you for a great review. Hope to see you soon!

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408 - 412 of 545 reviews

Reviewed 23 April 2014

I am a Padi AI and have been diving with Venancio (Junior) Tillet for years. I got my OW dive certification in San Pedro about 20 years ago with Bottom Time Dive shop. A lot has changed on the island over the years but when I met Junior about 10 years ago I knew I had a top notch instructor that I would stay with as my family started to dive. Junior got my husband certified next followed by my son at 10 years old. He actually had my son in the water doing bubble makers before that. My daughter did bubble makers at Eco Divers with a different instructor and had a less than stellar experience. I didn't think we would get her in the water again but Junior was patient and just perfect with her and subsequently got her Jr. Open Water certification.

My son is now 16 and just finished doing his Rescue Cert with Junior and started his divemaster cert with him. He plans to finish that next year. PLEASE check out the videos that Junior and my son took a few weeks ago on the Scuba School Belize website of them diving with dolphins! Probably the single coolest experience he will ever have diving! (I missed it sadly...). During our trip a few weeks ago I traveled with 2 friends who had their 18 year old daughters with them on spring break. The girls both got certified as well but one of the girls started with a different instructor in the pool and had some trouble. I didn't think she would get certified - she just wasn't comfortable. I told her to give it one more try with Junior and if she still didn't feel comfortable then diving wasn't for her. Not only did she feel so much more comfortable with Junior she did indeed finish her certification and loved it! He took his time with her and went at a pace that she was comfortable with.

Finally, do book SSB for recreational diving as well! It is FAR and away better than the big boat shops jam packed with divers! Nice, professional boats, dive masters and shop with small numbers of divers. And the dolphin dive was just icing on the cake!

Top notch 5 star dive operation in Belize! Highly recommend!

3  Thank RP8133
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Venancio T, Manager at Scuba School And Family Dive Center, responded to this reviewResponded 6 May 2014

Rachel,

Thank you so much for your review! It was a pleasure having you dive with us again. We are very grateful that you've not only shared your passion for diving with your children, but also for introducing others to the world of diving. We sure hope to see you soon. Take care!

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Reviewed 20 April 2014

I absolutely loved getting scuba certified with scuba school Belize. They made every moment so fun and enjoyable. Being underwater can be scary, but the instructors gained my full trust and did an excellent job helping me get my certification. I would recommend them to anyone and everyone. Again, I'm so grateful I got the opportunity to work with them while getting my scuba certification.

1  Thank JennyJohnstone
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Venancio T, Manager at Scuba School And Family Dive Center, responded to this reviewResponded 6 May 2014

Jenny,

We're so happy you finally got down here to Belize and that you were able to get your Open Water certification while here. We greatly appreciate the time you took to review us and I'm glad to hear you had such a wonderful experience during your stay. Let us know when you and everyone else plan on coming back. We hope to see you again soon!

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Reviewed 20 April 2014

This is the best place to go in Belize for your diving experience! Junior is one of the best instructors I've ever had the pleasure to meet. His experience and emphasis on safety is paramount to an unforgetable experience you will have. His knowledge of the ocean and what lives and goes on is amazing!

Thank AJs_New_Mike
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Venancio T, Manager at Scuba School And Family Dive Center, responded to this reviewResponded 6 May 2014

Mike,

Thank you so much for the wonderful review. Junior, as is the rest of the staff, is very knowledgeable of diving and the marine life in the Caribbean waters. We are awaiting your return to Belize so we certainly hope to see you again soon.

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Reviewed 18 April 2014

I dove 19 times and did a Peak Performance Buoyancy certification with them in March/ April 2014.

I cannot recommend them enough. They go above and beyond to tailor your rental gear and dives to you which makes your experience underwater and above a great one. Some specific examples follow-

SAFETY-

- Unlike other dive shops, they encourage you to set up and safety check your gear for at least your first dive back. If you don't want to set it up, they do all this for you eagerly and walk you through the safety check.

- Pre-dive briefing is thorough and constant communication before and during diving insures that you are safe and comfortable.

- They are conscience of reef safety and treating the fish with respect.

- I saw how they work with beginners on the dock and I also took an advanced class with the instructor. I would recommend getting certified here as he is very clear communicator and directs all his attention to you. I heard others talk about how he helped them overcome fears and continue to dive and saw how he mentored a young rescue diver in training.

SERVICE-

- Pre-trip communication was excellent and VERY helpful. They responded quickly and kindly to all sorts of questions.

- The office staff (Anna) called my condo multiple times to relay messages and to make sure I was happy with my dive schedule.

- I have a sore jaw and they helped me change the mouthpiece three times until I found the perfect fit. They were happy and helpful when I asked to try diving with different exposure suit combinations and weights until I found the best fit for me (which entailed extra work for them).

- They have smaller group sizes than most shops on the island and a pool for beginners.

- They make efforts to make everything nice, from assistance with putting on the BCD so you can sit and not have to walk (AT ALL) with a tank on your back, to taking up your fins and BCD after the dive and then offering a hand to walk up the ladder each dive. Then you have a warmed scented towel to wipe your face with and a very short boat ride to the dock.

- They provide transportation at the end of your dock.

KINDNESS-

- Surface intervals are friendly and informative.
(one dive master Yemin took hours of his time to help me learn to identify dozens of fish, while the boat captain and I shared music and snacks)

- They take diving safety serious but like to joke around and have a good time.

- You can tell they love to dive and share your enthusiasm (especially when circled by dolphins!)

- I dove with my husband and then for a week on my own. I felt safe and welcomed like a friend.

EQUIPTMENT-

- They had everything I needed in my size and many others. They made sure I dove with the same stuff each time so I was comfortable with it. They carried it all and set it up and rinsed it out before the next day.


Location TIP- Coral Bay Villas is an Excellent choice if you wish to do multiple dive days as it is a 2 minute walk around the corner to the shop and I loved it there.

Thank Kumi77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Venancio T, Manager at Scuba School And Family Dive Center, responded to this reviewResponded 6 May 2014

Kristen,

Thank you for the excellent (and extensive) review! All of the details really help us to understand what makes our guests happy. It was truly a pleasure having you and your husband dive here with us, especially since you may have been a good luck charm bringing the dolphins around. We sincerely hope that if you ever return to Belize, you keep us in mind so we can finally get you to Turneffe Atoll.

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