PADI 2013 Elite Instructor Awards Issued

PADI Elite Instructor 2013

Were you an Elite Instructor in 2013? Check the My Account section of the PADI Pros Site or your mail box to find out.

The PADI Elite Instructor Award celebrates the achievements of PADI Instructors who issued 50, 100, 150, 200 or 300+ certifications in 2013. Elite-status PADI Instructors receive:

  • An acknowledgement letter and recognition certificate
  • A decal for their PADI Instructor card
  • An e-badge (see details below)

The Elite Instructor e-badge can be downloaded from the My Account section of the PADI Pro’s Site and may use on emails, websites, blogs and social media pages. The e-badge also displays on PADI Pro Chek™ .  Additionally, Elite award instructors may authorize PADI Dive Centers or Resorts to display their Elite Instructor e-badge on the dive shop’s website.

If you have achieved Elite Instructor status and wish to download your e-badge, here’s how:

1. Log on to the PADI Pro’s Site

2. Choose My Account from the main menu bar

3. Click on the Awards tab.

4. Elite Instructors will see a link to download their badge, whereas non-Elite instructors will not (see screengrabs below).


(email subscribers may need to click through to the PADI Pro blog to view the images below)

Verify PADI Elite Instructor Status
Elite status – with download link

Non-Elite status, no download link

Are You on the List?
For more information and restrictions, visit the Elite Instructor information page on the Pros’ Site of to read about the 2014 program.

If you believe you were mistakenly omitted from the Elite Instructor list, please check your cert counts from last year (click on My Student Counts at the bottom of the My Account page on the PADI Pros Site) and contact PADI’s membership department at: 800 729 7234 ext. 2495 or +1 949 858 7234 ext. 2495.


PADI Open Water Touch for iPad is Now Available

PADI Touch access registration code banner
Can’t see the image above? View this post in your web browser.

If you pre-ordered a PADI Open Water Touch – and are an iPad user – the product is now available. Check your email for a message from PADI, or go directly to the PADI Pros Site and follow the instructions below.

  • Android users: sit tight, the Android version will be available later this year.
  • If you did not receive the email, but have purchased an Open Water Touch, simply go directly to the PADI Pro’s Site – where your redemption code resides.

How to Access Your PADI Open Water Touch

First, download the PADI Digital Library app from the iTunes store. While the app is downloading, login to the PADI Pro’s Site from a desktop or laptop device.

After logging in to the PADI Pro’s Site:

  • Click on Online Services from the main menu bar
  • Choose Online Processing Center from the dropdown menu
  • Choose Process Using New PIC Online
  • Accept the Terms and Conditions

From the Online Processing Center

  • Locate the Touch Registrations row (pictured below)
  • Click on the green Available Codes button


Next you’ll be presented with a “Touch Registration Queue.” If you don’t see any codes, utilize the Filter by Purchase Date drop down. Choose 6 months and your pre-order code will appear (see example below). PADI-Touch-Code-Pros-Site

Click Select and you’ll be presented with the student info form below. If you were giving this to a diver, this is where you’d enter their information. Since this is a demo for you as an instructor, please enter your personal information below.

IMPORTANT: for the email field, use your PADI Pro email address.
Your Pro email = the one PADI uses to contact you. It can be found in the My Account section of the PADI Pro’s Site.

PADI Touch registration form

After completing this form, click Confirm. That’s all there is to do on the Pro’s Site. Now it’s time to download the Touch to your iPad.

The next step is to check your email using your iPad. Look for the email from PADI and choose Redeem your registration code here. You’ll then be prompted for verification.

IMPORTANT: when prompted for a Touch login (see example below), first try your Pro’s Site User Name. If this does not work, try the email associated with your PADI Pro account. The password is the same as your Pro’s Site login. If you’re not sure which email to use, go into the My Account section of the Pro’s Site (main menu bar).


The final step is to access your Touch from the PADI Digital Library app.

  • Open the PADI Digital Library app you’ve downloaded from the iTunes store.
  • Login using your Pro’s Site email and Pro’s site password.
  • Click on the Open Water Diver icon to download.

For additional information on managing your Touch codes and certifying your divers, review this help document (PDF)

For questions regarding your Touch code, to order PADI Open Water Touch code(s) or supplemental materials, contact your PADI Sales Consultant at 800 729 7234 (US and Canada), +1 949 858 7234.

PADI divePAL Computer Simulator Intro and Setup

PADI  divePAL Dive Simulator Access Card
product 70275

With an increasing number of PADI Instructors teaching the dive computer option in Open Water, we now have an improved dive computer simulator. Students can choose from a wide variety of different computers and practice plotting and analyzing their dives.

The simulator is included with the Open Water crewpak 60335 and eLearning crewpak 70821 and also available ala carte (product no. 70275). To see the divePAL computer simulator in action, or preview the set-up process without having to use up an access code, please view the videos below:

Students have the option to download divePAL onto their Windows desktop or laptop, or onto an Apple iPad. Additional divePAL overview videos and tutorials are available on YouTube. Simply search for divePAL.

PADI  divePAL Dive Simulator Access Card (back)

Getting Started with Online Advertising

In a survey conducted in December 2013, we asked PADI Members: What had the greatest positive impact on your certification numbers this year? The number one answer:  online marketing.

If your advertising portfolio doesn’t include online ads, it’s time to diversify! PADI RRA Members can take advantage of co-op funds ($500 – $750) to make your initial investment. For details, contact your Sales Consultant or Regional Manager.

Online Advertising Overview

Below is a quick guide to getting started with online ads and some advantages / disadvantages of each platform. For a more detailed overview, including our secret sauce for great online ads, attend PADI Business Academy.

AdWords Express
If you’re short on time or tentative about dipping a toe into the online ad waters, AdWords Express is an excellent choice. The video below does a nice job of illustrating the process – in a charming, claymation sort of way.

Creating an ad is an easy, three step process:
– Input your contact information
– Choose a category (Scuba Diving Certification, for example)
– Set a monthly budget and you’re done.

Google will make a budget recommendation, but you choose the final amount. You only pay for clicks and the ads are automatically shown on both desktop and mobile devices. There are no keywords to choose, and no ads to manage.

Some disadvantages: AdWords Express ads can be expensive in a competitive marketplace. Also, if you are the only dive center in the area, organic search should put you at the top of Google’s page results for free.

Google Display Network

Google AdWords
A  more dynamic, sophisticated way to advertise online, Google AdWords includes both ads in Google search results, plus ads across Google’s massive display network. The video below gives a quick overview.

Your display network ad could appear on sites such as Gmail, ScubaBoard, USA Today or other popular sites. In addition to text, your ad can include a photo or video.

Target users based on:
Search term
Geographic location
Device (ex. only iPads)
Time of day
Specific website / interest

The main disadvantage of Google Ads (versus AdWords Express) is that they need to be monitored. While Google will automatically show your best-performing ads more often, very few will show if the keyword targeting / quality score isn’t good, or if the bid price isn’t high enough. Google will make keyword and bid recommendations to ensure your ads are as successful as possible, but you need to login regularly to see these suggestions.

Look for a promo code!
Before we move on, it’s important to note that Google regularly offers promo codes of $50 – $75US in “free ads” to new accounts. Before initiating a new campaign, Google AdWords promo code.

Facebook ads

Facebook Ads
A popular alternative to Google Ads, Facebook ads leverage the power of personal recommendation. Watch an overview video.

Popular targeting options include:
Connections (friends of people who already like your page)

Facebook ads can point to your website or your Facebook page. If the ads point to your page, you’ll also see a boost in exposure for your status updates during the same period you’re running ads. This is especially good if you’re running ads in conjunction with a sale or special event.

Disadvantages – as with Google Ads, Facebook ads need to be monitored regularly.

YouTube Ads
You can’t ignore these stats:
84.9% of online Americans watched online video in December 2013, down slightly from 85.5% in November,  and  online video ads reached 53% of the online population During December. Ads accounted for 4 in every 10 videos viewed Americans (stats via ComScore).

Isn’t it great that our sport lends itself so well to video? You can try this at home: have someone describe a whale shark in 10 seconds. Then watch the first ten seconds of this video:

As with all the other online ads, you only pay when someone clicks through to your website. If the viewer clicks the “skip ad” button, you don’t pay. Ads can be targeted based on location, device, search term, and other factors.

PADI has several promotional videos available. Check out the marketing toolbox of the Pro’s Site, or the PADI Producer YouTube channel. Videos are available in English, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian and we even have one that’s language-neutral.

Co-op funds are limited, so if you’re an RRA Member don’t delay! If you’re interested in a detailed presentation (including hands-on workshop) attend one of our upcoming PADI Business Academy presentations.

PADI Business Cards

As a PADI Pro, you’re eligible to order PADI-branded business cards. On the front, list your name and contact details. On the back, choose a Project AWARE message or an offer to redeem the card for a Discover Scuba experience.

For more information, or to order, visit the PADI Pro’s Site. Our 2016 pricing is the same as previous years: $40 – $50 per 1000 cards. The price depends on if the card is one or two sided. Shipping is an additional $11 (shipping to continental US).

Links not working? You must be logged in to the PADI Pros Site to view the order form. Please log in and try clicking the links again. If you are on a mobile device, please choose to view the desktop version of the site.

order PADI business cards

ScubaEarth How to Videos

Several tutorials are now available to help you establish your presence on ScubaEarth (30,000+ divers and counting). Each video is two minutes or less, and there are six videos currently available with more to come:

  • Setting Up Your Profile Via the PADI Pros’ Site
  • Profile Overview
  • Measurement and Privacy Settings, Reporting Errors
  • Dive Crew Overview/Dive Shop Search
  • Adding Staff
  • Managing Your Gear Locker

You can view the complete sequence of videos below, or view them one at a time. If you are viewing this post in an email, please click through to our ScubaEarth How To Playlist to view it online.

More videos are coming soon. Bookmark the ScubaEarth How To Playlist on YouTube for updates.

Download the 2013 PADI Instructor Manual

Download 2013 PADI Instructor manual
2013 PADI Instructor manual download

The 2013 PADI Instructor manual is now available as a free download for renewed PADI Pros.

After logging in to the PADI Pro’s Site, click on Training Essentials from the main menu, then choose Digital Instructor Manual.

On the next screen you’ll see several language options, including English, French and Español. Click the language you wish to download and save the PDF to your computer or other device. Below the language list is an (English only) option to download a summary of the changes from the 2012 to 2013 PADI Instructor Manual. Please see screengrab below…

Teaching an IDC ? Be sure candidates download a copy of the new manual and continue to update it with subsequent training bulletins. The Systems, Standards and Procedures Exam at the IE is updated regularly to reflect the most current standards. This is also an excellent way of instilling the good habit of referencing the latest materials before teaching any PADI programs.

PADI Instructor Manual Download Options

PADI Pros Site Tips: eLearning Student Report

PADI Retail and Resort Members can now view their eLearning students from the My Account section of the PADI Pro’s Site. The new report will show you:

  • Student name
  • Sign-up date*
  • eLearning course chosen
  • eMail address
  • Course completion date (if applicable)
  • Certification date (if applicable)

* New students may take 12-24 hours to appear in this report

With this information, you can contact students who have started, but not finished their course to see if they need assistance with the course, gear purchase, etc. You can also discover students who affiliated with you for eLearning but may have been certified elsewhere.

PADI Pros website link to download list of PADI eLearning students

Here’s how to access your eLearning student report:

  • From the PADI Pro’s Homepage: click on My Account on the far left side of the menu bar.
  • On the My Account page, scroll to the very bottom and click eLearning payment report.
  • From here you can view Sign Up Date, Course Completion Date, Student eMail address and certification date.
  • The report can be refined by date and downloaded as a Excel file.

Here is an example of what the report looks like. For privacy reasons, the student names have been blocked.

where to find list of PADI eLearning students
student names deleted for privacy reasons, your report will include their names

ScubaEarth Profile Troubleshooting

PADI ScubaEarth Logo

ScubaEarth™ launches next week to the general public.

If you haven’t set up your store profile, it only takes a few minutes.  Add your logo, links and About Us info via the PADI Pro’s Site, then click through to ScubaEarth to see it in action. For complete instructions, see our previous post Link Your Facebook Page, Blog to PADI .

If you’ve set up your account and something isn’t working right, please read on for some hints, tips and suggestions. We’ll cover:

  • Facebook link is not working
  • Blog link is not working
  • The About Us section gets cut off or has strange characters
  • How to contact us for additional questions

ScubaEarth Facebook link isn’t working

It’ s possible you’ve put in too much information into the online form. Our website will automatically populate  (see screengrab below). You only need to enter the information following

Add Social Media Links to your ScubaEarth Profile

For example: if we were to paste in the entire web address below – the link won’t work. Only the part highlighted in yellow should be input to the PADI Pro’s Site.

Some businesses may have a “vanity” Facebook link (see example below).

In this example, only the text jacksdivinglocker should be input to the PADI Pro’s Site. The site will automatically add in

ScubaEarth Blog link isn’t working

Here are correctly-formatted examples for a ScubaEarth blog feed using Blogger and WordPress (the two most popular platforms). Copy and paste the appropriate link into the Pro’s Site – substituting your blog’s name for blogname.



The About Us section

Here’s an article about how to write a great about us paragraph. Before saving your final copy, look for special characters such as an ampersand (&) quotation marks or apostrophe’s. These characters may not display correctly – the ampersand cannot be used at all.

Problem: black diamonds with question marks

ScubaEarth Troubleshooting

Solution: an apostrophe or quotation mark is causing the problem. For apostrophes – put a space before the apostrophe.

OKAY: Joe ‘s Diving Locker
NOT OKAY: Joe’s Diving Locker

For quotation marks, put a space to the right of the quotation mark.

OKAY: ” free”
NOT OKAY: “free”

Problem: About Us paragraph gets cut off

For example:
Joe ‘s Diving Locker offers scuba & snorkel tours year-round. Visit our website, or call us to book your adventure today.

Displays on ScubaEarth like this:
Joe ‘s Diving Locker offers scuba

Solution: remove any “and” signs (aka ampersands) from your text. Anything following that special character won’t show up. For example:

Advanced ScubaEarth Troubleshooting

ScubaEarth is in Beta –  help us improve the site by reporting any problems you may be experiencing not addressed in the article above.

Click the Bug Reporting link on the left side of the screen when logged into ScubaEarth (see screengrab below).

You will be asked for your browser and operating system. To obtain this information, visit this helpful website:

Report problems with PADI ScubaEarth

Link Your Facebook Page, Blog to PADI

Attention PADI Stores:  ScubaEarth™ is launching soon and you’ll want to complete your business  profile before the site goes live to consumers. Your ScubaEarth profile – at minimum – should include:

  • Links to your social media pages (Facebook, Twitter, Google+).
  • A profile image (such as your logo).
  • A short About Us paragraph

PADI Instructors: the wait is almost over for you as well. We’re capturing store information first and will then open the site to independent members.

For PADI Stores  – here is how to input your ScubaEarth profile info. It only takes a few minutes.

1. Login to the PADI Pros Site
2. Click on My Account from the main menu
3. Click on Social Media Settings tab
4. Fill in your information and upload a store logo (140 x 140 pixels)
Consider using your Facebook profile image.

You can add links to some or all of the websites below. If you don’t have a Twitter page, for example, you can leave that spot blank.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Google+
  • Blog RSS Feed*
In addition to the links above, you’ll add a short About Us paragraph (750 characters or less).

About Us
Why is your dive business is better than the rest? Brag a little…

If your business is 100% AWARE – this distinguishes your business from “the other guys” who don’t donate a portion of every cert to protect the underwater world.

Do you have  noteworthy customers (such as a local fire department)? Are you one of the top-ranked on Yelp or TripAdvisor? Details like this make a difference!

Check out our tips for creating a great About Us blurb. It was originally written as a guide for a webpage’s about us page, but the ideas are just as relevant for a short-form About Us.

* How to find your blog’s RSS Feed
(what the heck is RSS? – video)

Visit your blog and look for an orange RSS symbol. Click on it to display the feed URL. Copy and paste this URL, it will look something like this: