This is a Life&Dive ProDiver interview. These interviews are given to dive instructors from all around the world to provide you with an idea of their lives, job situations and opinions about the diving industry.
The interviews do not intend to insult employers or damage the reputation of their dive centres. They merely try to provide an honest picture about the working conditions in diving destinations all around the world in order to provide young and aspiring professionals with a helpful overview.
If you like to contribute an interview yourself, please contact us under mail(at)lifendive.com
Serbian, English, Russian
Number of Dives:
Sharm el Sheikh, Egypt
Salary Range / US $:
740 – 1850 $
Board / Accommodation?:
Duty and free time?:
every day, 7-17…or longer if there’s night dive, or early morning starts (4-5 AM)
Medical care situation :
fairly god but expensive
work permit mandatory, not available for DM. Just in few DC employer is paying for that or at least a half. In majority applicant have to pay costs (aprox 1000$ US per year)
Government administrative duties:
local diving association permit is mandatory and it’s connected to the work permit. Usually DC administration is taking care of that but employee has to pay the fees.
vast majority is renting private apartments. Some diving operations are offering staff houses but it would be better to live in the rat hole than in them.
Type of operation :
mostly DC, sometimes liveaboards
Size of operation:
large (one of three biggest in Egypt)
Location of operation :
Separate building with all facilities. Couple of franchises in Hotels and other cities
Job characteristics and/ or special duties :
all diving related: from the morning: guest pick ups, bringing them to DC, “delivering” them to respective instructors or boat leaders, organizing there boxes, check in and check out procedures, all corresponding paper work (crew lists, tank orders, food orders…etc), loading the boats (boxes, tanks etc), providing permitions from marine police, organizing dive sites, mooring the boats (we are blessed if we have all drift dives), preparing and communicating with office about situation for next day , collecting lunch money, unloading boats at the end of the day and partially reloading them for the next day, organizing transfers back for guests…..just briefly. And all of this while you are teaching or guiding.
Mode of Operation :
all possible modes that you can think of: shore, boats, RIB-s, busses….
Average # dives per day:
Diving industry in Egypt is highly developed in all forms of diving. Competition is ruthless and there’s no room for mistake if you are foreigner. Before you know some half qualified Egyptian will jump into your shoes. Anybody is easily replaceable for somebody who is always ready to work for less money and longer hours and employers will try to use every bit of your energy if you allow them . Beginner in this part of the world has to speak at least 3-4 foreign languages to get any decent position…I have been working here for almost 11 years now and changed few employers for different reasons. I have been working for small operations, posh operations, liveaboard companies and now for really huge diving system. I have seen ups and downs of the industry on this territories. Basic life expenses are almost dabbled over the years but salaries are remained the same.
Bottom line: if anybody wont to work here, they have to pay for everything on they own: accommodation, food, travel expenses, work permit, annual renewals of everything which is required to be renewed, equipment….and all of that for aprox 30 euros per day plus some commitions which are different on different places…but rarely one will go over 1000 euros per month and only if he works he ass off.
Social life can be as rich or as poor as one prefer. There are different sorts of activities one can do (golf, horseback riding, desert exploring….etc.) but it’s quite expensive. Usually one nationality is sticking to there own so everything is divided in four main categories: Egyptians, british, Russians and Italians. The rest of the world is mingling in between.
Now, why I’m still here: (1) diving is THE best in the world; (2) I have developed base of private guests (couple hundred of them) who keep on coming back here just to dive with me; (2) I have build up some important connections and reputation here which are working to my benefit workvise; (3) Have my family here; (4) close to Europe; (5) season all year round….