PADI® Women’s Dive Day 2018 Events to Remember

By Tara Bradley Connell

With PADI®Women’s Dive Day 2018 earning a media reach of over 236 million viewers worldwide, this is one event that not only increases awareness but also inspires more and more divers each year. From hosting an underwater treasure hunt to offering new diver specials for women, there are countless ways for dive operators and instructors to get in on the action – and gain new business along the way.

This year, the social media channels exploded with #padiwomensdiveday events from all over the world. For a look at this year’s activities, check out the PADI Women’s Dive Day 2018 Facebook photo album. Want more? Here are some locations that helped make this year even more special.

Here’s a look at some locations that helped make this year extra special.

  • Nassau, Bahamas

In the Bahamas, the Perry Institute for Marine Science collaborated with Stuart’s Cove to teach the PADI Reef Rescue Diver Specialty course. After a study on covered coral education, conservation, recovery processes and coral nurseries practices, the ladies enjoyed two dives where they learned how to maintain the nurseries. They also got to plant coral with personalized tags so they can monitor future growth.

  • Grand Cayman
  • Photo: Drew McArthur
    Photo: Drew McArthur

This year was all about breaking world records. To celebrate PADI Women’s Dive Day, a group at Dive Tech broke the world record for the longest underwater female human chain with 84 women in the water. The group also raised more than $3,000 US to support breast cancer research

  • Grenada

Sandals Grenada and Sandals Foundation celebrated Women’s Dive Day by focusing on controlling the lionfish population. The event kicked off at Sandals Grenada with a lionfish eradication dive to help protect the reef and threatened marine life. Post-dive, the group met at Grand Anse Beach with the Sandals Foundation, Grenada Fisheries Division of the Ministry of Environment, and the Grenada Chapter of the Caribbean Youth Environment Network  where they enjoyed a lionfish luncheon, lionfish cooking demonstrations, music, and exhibits – all set beachside.

Photo by Alicia Ward
Photo by Alicia Ward
  • Kauai, Hawaii, USA:

The calm, clear waters of Kauai made for the perfect spot for freedivers. As a way to build the female diving community on the island, the weekend included an all-girls freediving class. After their three-day course, some participants achieved more than two-minute static breath holds and depths of 21 metres/70 feet. Bonus: an impromptu visit from a pod of dolphins.

  • San Diego, California, USA:

The California coastline provided the backdrop for divers celebrating with Ocean Enterprises in La Jolla Shores, San Diego. The day’s itinerary was packed with diving, snorkeling, sand castle making, and an underwater photo booth with props to showcase all of the day’s events.

  • Quintana Roo, Mexico:

Finding some Zen mixed with diving was the ambiance found at Takata Experience in Majahual, Quintana Roo. With a focus on conservation, mindfulness and fun, the list of events included a relaxing yoga session, fresh ceviche, a coastal ecosystems talk, food, music and a beach cleanup.

Thank you to all who took part in this year’s celebration to inspire new divers and build a stronger, more active dive community.

Mark your calendars. Next year’s PADI Women’s Dive Day is scheduled for Saturday, 20 July 2019.

2018 PADI Women’s Dive Day Video Contest: Win a Free Membership Renewal

By Tara Bradley Connell

Share a video from your PADI Women’s Dive Day event this July 21, 2018, and you could win a free 2019 PADI Membership Renewal.

To help promote PADI’s Women’s Dive Day, the PADI marketing team is searching for videos that reflect what the day is all about – empowering women divers. Enter: the 2018 PADI Women’s Dive Day Global Video Contest.

The winning videos will be the featured in the 2019 event promotional video and the winning entrants will receive a free 2019 PADI Membership Renewal.

How it works:

  1. Register to host a PADI Women’s Dive Day event on July 21, 2018. Register here.
  2. Film your event, giving regards to PADI standards and safe marine life practices.
  3. Get signed releases from participants. Download a sample release here.
  4. Edit footage to no longer than two minutes in length/minimum 1080p.
  5. Submit entries to Be sure to include the entrant’s name, PADI Member/Store number, and contact information.
  6. Send video via file-sharing services such as WeTransfer or Dropbox.
  7. Six winners will be notified via email.

Need some inspiration? Check out last year’s PADI Women’s Dive Day video here:

Click here to see Official Rules

3 Reasons to Host a Conservation Event for Women’s Dive Day

Since its inception in 2015, PADI Women’s Dive Day has received worldwide media attention – including mentions from The New York Times, Huffington Post and The Boston Globe. In 2017, more than 884 events were held in 85 countries.

Hosting a PADI Women’s Dive Day event is a fun and fulfilling way to promote your business and build community.  If you’re looking for Women’s Dive Day event ideas, or just want to level-up your event from last year, consider hosting an event with a conservation component.

Any PADI Member can create an event and get listed on the official PADI Women’s Dive Day webpage, this includes dive centers, resorts and individual members. The benefits of including a conservation component to your Women’s Dive Day event are three-fold:

#1 Bring in new customers
A volunteer activity can help attract new customers who might not have scuba diving on their radar – especially those who are age 18-35 (millennials). According to the Washington Post, 70 percent of millennials like to volunteer and Forbes recently reported two-thirds of millennials are willing to spend more on a product from a company with eco-friendly practices.

– Connect with local volunteer groups, or use MeetUp to find people interested in community service projects.
– Use MeetUp to contact women’s hikinggroups, kayaking clubs, or even women’s fitness. As anyone who’s helped with a beach clean-up knows, cleaning up the environment can be a workout! 

#2 Environmental benefits with long-term lifestyle changes
A beach clean-up has both short and long-term benefits for your local ecosystem. Studies have shown, volunteers who collect trash not only improve the health of local waterways, they also adopt environmentally-friendly lifestyle changes. After collecting dozens of plastic straws on a beach, it only makes sense that someone would pledge to never use another plastic straw.

#3 Gain media coverage
A scuba diving event by itself might not be newsworthy, but Mamas for Mother Earth or Divas Diving Against Debris is another story. A group of women standing around a pile of trash looking victorious (wearing your dive shop t-shirt, of course) is an image worth sharing.

– Invite local news media or prominent bloggers to attend your event.
– Contact local news outlets after your event and send them your best pics and video.

Putting it All Together: Dive Against Debris + DSD
On women’s dive day, 21 July 2018, have your certified divers can collect and log marine debris  using the new Dive Against Debris app (available for Android and iOS) while topside volunteers collect rubbish on shore. 

– Take a group photo with the trash pile
–  Award prizes for the most trash collected or most unusual piece of trash collected.
– Offer a free Discover Scuba® Diving voucher to anyone who participates in the clean-up to encourage new people to try diving.
– Conclude the event with a picnic or other socialactivity so sand-side volunteers have the opportunity to mingle with divers.
– Post to social media using the hashtags #PADIWomen and #PADIWomensDiveDay – your image or video may be featured by PADI!

Additional resources to plan and promote your event are available on PADI’s website. Check out out How to Organize a Clean-up Event and Conducting an Underwater Clean-up Off a Boat or Pier, and don’t forget to register your 2018 Women’s Dive Day event.

Save the Date: 2017 PADI Women’s Dive Day


In 2016, men and women from Michigan to the Maldives, Thailand to Turkey and everywhere in-between took part in more than 700 PADI® Women’s Dive Day events in 77 countries across the globe. New and expert divers came together, gearing up for everything from high tea on the high seas to shark dives and underwater cleanups.

Be part of the third annual PADI Women’s Dive Day on 15 July 2017. Promote your business and strengthen both the local and global dive community by hosting an event.


Registration will open soon.

PADI Women’s Dive Day 2016 – A Huge Success

On 16 July 2016, more than 700 events in 77 countries took place to celebrate the second annual PADI Women’s Dive Day. Women, men, girls and boys from around the globe joined together on land and underwater to enjoy scuba diving as one community. Events ranged from PADI Discover Scuba® Diving experiences in the local pool, to adventurous shark dives, to environmental talks and underwater cleanups, to simple fun dives and beach barbeques.

Here are just some great Women’s Dive Day moments shared by PADI Dive Shops and Members:

  • Great Lakes, Michigan—Great Lakes Divers and Team Sedna embarked on record-setting journey where dubbed the #BigFiveDive on which they dived all five of the Great Lakes in just 24 hours.


  • Cayman Islands—Divetech joined forces with the Cayman Islands Crisis Centre to raise funds to aid women and children seeking shelter from domestic abuse.


  • Dutch Springs, Pennsylvania—Divers with Underwater Adventures Dive Center explored a sunken plane, fine-tuned their scuba skills, shared stories and heard from experts in the industry.


  • Bahamas—Stuart Cove’s hosted a Sea Turtle & Shark Conservation Educational Experience. “All our female PADI Instructors get just as excited about this event as our women divers who join us! The day is about getting together to learn and share our passion for exploration, education and conservation,” said Hayley-Jo Carr.

Stuart Cove's PADI Womens Dive Day 2016

  • St. Louis, Missouri— The Great American Diving Company challenged divers to an underwater Poker Run and honored newly certified divers at a special ceremony.


  • Eugene, Oregon—Eugene Skin Divers Supply invited non-divers for a free DSD® and tea social to introduce them to scuba diving.

Eugene Skin Divers

  • Coronado Island, Mexico—PADI AmbassaDiversTM Emily Callahan and Amber Jackson led a dive adventure with sea lions and sharks. Watch their video here.

Check out additional event photos in the PADI Women’s Dive Day photo album on Facebook. You can continue the global conversation by using #PADIWomen on your social networks. Be part of the movement! Next year’s PADI Women’s Dive Day is 15 July 2017.

PADI AmbassaDiver Susan R. Eaton: Explorer, Geologist, Extreme Snorkeler

In the lead-up to PADI Women’s Dive Day, coming up on 16 July, 2016, we’re featuring the world’s most interesting and accomplished women in our “Women in Diving” blog series. This time, we caught up with Susan R. Eaton, scientist, explorer, journalist, conservationist and ‘extreme’ snorkeler.

Ten years ago, after a 32-year career in diving, Susan suffered a scuba diving trauma that landed her in a hyperbaric chamber for three days, ending her scuba diving career. Today, Susan explores the ocean in the snorkel zone, the land-sea-ice-air interface where snorkelers interact with large marine mammals. Susan is also the founder and leader of the Sedna Epic Expedition, a team of women divers, scientists, explorers, movie-makers, photographers, artists and educators recently announced as PADI AmbassaDiversTM. Team Sedna is currently preparing for an epic 3,000-kilometer snorkel relay across Canada’s Northwest Passage in the summers of 2017 and 2018 to bring global attention to the disappearing sea ice in the Arctic.

Read on to find out more about Susan, Team Sedna and how they plan to dive the five Great Lakes in 24 hours (a world’s first) for PADI Women’s Dive Day 2016!Sedna-team-e1461868193662

You were an early achiever of the PADI Open Water Diver certification at a time when there were few women divers. How did that come about? What inspired you?
I obtained my PADI Open Water Diver certification in 1975 when I was 16. I was one of two women in my class. Completing that certification took a great deal of dedication on everybody’s part because our checkout dive took place over two days in Halifax Harbor… in Nova Scotia, Canada… in February…during a two-day blizzard!

As for inspiration, my dad was a recreational diver in the 1950s and 1960s, and my mom was a marine biologist – who could barely snorkel! She was a marine mammal expert, specializing in whales and seals.

I was also inspired by other female ocean scientists of the day, including deep ocean explorer Dr. Sylvia Earle and ichthyologist / shark behaviorist Dr. Eugenia Clark, who took up scuba diving in pursuit of her research. I thought, “If Jacques Cousteau is going to hire me, I need to be a diver!” I wanted to be ready!

Did you have a favorite type of diving? Such as ice diving, cave diving, etc.?
I really enjoyed all types of diving and leading dive expeditions. In fact, I co-led a dive expedition to Cocos Island back in the mid-1980s, before anyone ever heard of it! I was never a cave diver; I like looking up and seeing the water’s surface. I like deep diving too – I don’t need to see the bottom! Wreck diving was an early favorite since I grew up in Nova Scotia, one of Canada’s Maritime Provinces. Its rocky coastline is littered with shipwrecks, and diving there involves dangerous currents and cold water. Nova Scotia is also home to sunken ships dating from the 1600s all the way up through World War II. My favorite wrecks were the wooden ships from the 1800s to 1900s, although there isn’t much left of them. I would love to dive a German U-boat but I’ve never done it!

My hands-down favorite ocean activity has always been interacting with big animals. However, in most jurisdictions, it’s illegal to dive with marine mammals; instead, you snorkel with them in the snorkel zone. For me, the snorkel zone because is the most dynamic part of the ocean because it’s the place where all the air-breathing animals come to the surface.

Photo by Jill Heinerth –

And now, the snorkel zone is your home. Will you please tell us how that came to pass?
Ten years ago, I experienced a diving trauma in Belize, and I spent the better part of three days in a hyperbaric chamber… I emerged from the chamber as a non-diver.

So, after 32 years of diving, I assumed that my up-close-and-personal relationship with the ocean was over. Initially, I was quite depressed. Then, I discovered that people were snorkeling with belugas in Churchill, Manitoba. Intrigued, I traveled to Hudson Bay, to report on snorkeling with belugas for the Calgary Herald. Then, I heard about people snorkeling the rivers of Vancouver Island with hundreds of thousands of migrating salmon. I visited Campbell River, the “salmon capital of the world,” and ran the river with up to a half a million salmon. The salmon are fighting their way upstream as I was gliding downstream. When the salmon see your black wetsuit (which looks a lot like a seal), they just part around you. Next, I volunteered with the Haida Nation Fisheries program, counting and netting salmon, and snorkeling the rivers of Haida Gwaii which lies off the northern coast of British Columbia. Then, I set off to snorkel with narwhals off the northern tip of Baffin Island. Unfortunately, my fellow explorers and I became stranded when the ice we were camped on broke away from the island. After traveling 19 kilometers on an ice island, we were some 36 hours later rescued by the Canadian military!

In short, I’m happy exploring my new home in the snorkel zone, the dynamic land-sea-ice-air interface where the exhalations of snorkelers co-mingle with those of narwhals, belugas, leopard seals and humpbacks.

In 2015, you were named one of Canada’s top 100 modern-day explorers by the Royal Canadian Geographical Society. How did you become an “explorer”?
When I first got involved in ‘extreme’ snorkeling, I googled ‘Antarctica and snorkeling’ and discovered the Ocean Geographic Society’s Elysium Epic Expedition comprised of scientists, movie makers and photographers were going to the Bottom of the World to study ocean change. I joined the science team as the ship’s geophysicist – which was not as easy as it sounds. When I discovered the expedition, the vessel was departing in just three short months. I got in touch with the contact person in Amsterdam and told her, “I need to be on this trip.” She said it was by invitation only, and who are you, anyway? I told her, “I’m an ‘extreme’ snorkeler.” I also told her that 100 years ago, Ernest Shackleton’s scientific team had been led by a geologist and that there had also been a geophysicist in the team – wouldn’t it be great if, 100 years later, the geoscientist was a woman? Well, I made it onto the Elysium Epic team. Since 2010, I’ve participated in three Antarctic expeditions and three expeditions to the Arctic.


Now, you are devoting a great deal of time to your homegrown project, the Sedna Epic Expedition? What was the inspiration for Sedna?
In 2010, I heard a news report about a sailboat had traversed the Northwest Passage, which was only possible because it hadn’t been a heavy ice year. While this crossing was impressive, I knew that quite a few ships had traversed the Northwest Passage before. I had a Eureka moment, “What if you could swim the Northwest Passage? Snorkeling this waterway would be a very elegant metaphor for disappearing sea ice. And, you’d be able to study the Northwest Passage like no one had before if you were immersed in the water.”

For three years, I researched and planned how a team of divers and snorkelers would go about snorkeling the Northwest Passage. In September 2013, I launched the all-female Sedna Epic Expedition at the Canadian Chapter of the Explorers Club. I named the expedition after Sedna, the Inuit goddess of the ocean and the mother of all marine mammals. The Sedna Epic Expedition’s goal is to bring attention to disappearing sea ice and to deliver ocean educational outreach to Inuit and Inuvialuit communities situated along the Northwest Passage. Team Sedna’s sea women will serve as role models for indigenous girls and young women in the Arctic, inspiring them to think big, and to follow their dreams.

During the summers of 2017 and 2018, Team Sedna will launch a 3,000-kilometer snorkel relay across the Northwest Passage. Team Sedna is comprised of women from around the world – including indigenous women – and includes snorkelers, divers, scientists, moviemakers, photographers, educators, and artists. The mother ship will become Team Sedna’s TV station /floating classroom. Team Sedna’s ocean education outreach program also includes underwater robots equipped with cameras that kids can fly from the piers. During the summer of 2016, Team Sedna will travel to Iqaluit, Nunavut, a small Inuit community situated on Baffin Island. The sea women will run their innovative ocean outreach program, using aquariums and robots. And, assisted by two PADI Divemasters, we’ll mentor 12 indigenous girls, leading them on snorkel safaris and teaching them about the oceans around them. We call the program “bringing the ocean to sea level”.

Will Team Sedna participate in Women’s Dive Day this year?
Yes! We’re planning to dive all five Great Lakes in 24 hours, which is a world’s first! We’re partnering with PADI Dive Center Great Lakes Divers in Alpena, Michigan, and dive shop owner Stephanie Gandulla, who is also a Maritime Archeologist and Media and Outreach Coordinator at Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary for NOAA. Stephanie is also a member of Team Sedna. According to Stephanie, “In addition to Team Sedna’s sea women, I’m sure there’ll be plenty of space for PADI divers to participate. In fact, we already have four signed up – and they run the gamut of dive experience from newly-minted PADI Open Water Divers through experts.”

To participate in PADI Women’s Dive Day, register your own event on the PADI Pros’ Site.

Register Your Event for PADI Women’s Dive Day – 16 July 2016


The inaugural 2015 PADI Women’s Dive Day was a historic day for diving. In its first year, PADI Dive Centers and Resorts hosted more than 335 events in 65 countries on all seven continents. This was possible thanks to the enthusiasm and participation from PADI Members around the world who got behind this new initiative. Let’s do it again, only bigger. More new divers. More ambassadors for the underwater world.

The New York Times highlighted PADI Women’s Dive Day as an event “where sport fans should go in 2016,” keeping good company with Super Bowl 50, the Ryder Cup, and the 2016 Summer Olympics. By coming together to celebrate women in diving, we will strengthen and grow the female diver community, attract new women to the sports of scuba and free diving, and motivate existing female divers to get back in the water and continue their dive training.

Start planning your 2016 PADI Women’s Dive Day event on 16 July 2016 using these simple steps.

  1. Decide what type of event to host.

The type of event you decide to host is completely up to you! Whether you conduct PADI Women’s Dive Day themed courses, have a family-oriented open day, host fun dives or even a girls’ night out with your divers, only your imagination limits your event.

  1. Register your PADI Dive Center and Resort event.

Visit the PADI Pros’ Site to enter your event into the PADI Women’s Dive Day Event Locator. When PADI Women’s Dive Day is formally announced to the public on 8 March 2016, your dive center/resort will be included on the Event Locator at  To register your event, log in to the PADI Pros’ Site with your PADI Dive Center or Resort account (not an Individual Member account), go to ‘My Account’ page, and click on ‘Register your Women’s Dive Day event(s)’. Follow the on-screen instructions to quickly and easily add your event.


  1. Promote your event.

Use different platforms to help get the word out about your event – email, social media, advertisements (print, online and in-store), and event calendars. Visit the PADI Pros’ Site to download customizable PADI Women’s Dive Day marketing materials.

  1. Post Event Follow-Up

Follow up with all your PADI Women’s Dive Day event participants afterwards. A simple “thanks for diving with us” keeps divers engaged and encourages them to continue diving with you. Don’t forget to include links, telephone and a call to action. And be sure to share your success stories and photos with the marketing team at your PADI Regional Headquarters.

Register your 2016 PADI Women’s Dive Day event now!


PADI Women’s Dive Day – 18 July 2015

Women's Dive Day
Where are you diving on 18 July 2015? You can show your support of the female dive market by organizing a local dive or event for PADI Women’s Dive Day. It’s a genuine way to get more women together, in the water and involved in diving. PADI Members from around the world are hosting events to celebrate women’s contributions to recreational diving and to attract the next generation of female divers, explorers, and underwater photographers.

Why should you get involved in this initiative?
The PADI organization has witnessed a gradual increase in the proportion of female divers in recent years:

Women Certification Stats
Also, many brands have been shifting focus to female consumers over the last decade, adjusting product offerings, marketing messages and business models accordingly. Even historically male-focused industries have realized the business potential females wield as the primary decision makers in many households.
Are your marketing efforts targeting women specifically? If not, now’s the time to start.

If you’re interested in organizing a Women’s Dive Day event on 18 July in your area and get listed on the PADI Women’s Dive Day webpage, please send an email to

Get featured! The top five PADI Women’s Dive Day events will be featured in an upcoming issue of Sport Diver magazine!