Written on: 16/03/2010 by METHUSALA (16 reviews written)
BCDs - some are good (if basic models), most are falling apart and dirty. Mine leaked badly so was exchanged for the spare carried on the dive boat, but that also leaked - less so, but I still ran out of air after only 245 minutes and the dive was cut short.
Fins - Fins are an adjustable type that are designed for snorkelling rather than diving - they are too flexible, and when swimming against a current they simply bend in half with a kick and give no real push through the water.
Masks and Snorkels - Filthy, covered in black mould in the edges of the mask and inside the mouthpiece of the snorkel - disgusting.
Regulators - Mine was OK, as were the others used by divers with my DM (he confessed he gets in early to get the best of them, as there are only four decent ones that are available), but there were over twenty divers on the boat, and aside from looking old and dirty, some people complained of them being hard to breathe through or being leaky.
It broke down during the dive and we were stuck out at sea for over two and a half hours after the diving was complete. The longtail that they normally use just to ferry you to and from the longboat had to come out and get us eventually - it was a poor trip back which took another hour and a half with no protection from the sun, it was crowded and the boat is badly worn - several complaints of splinters from the wooden bench seats, everyone was badly sunburned in the 45 celsius heat, and we only had whatever water we had brought with us.
The front entrance looks good, but out back a decked area where we meet to go out and get changed we we get back is falling apart - the boards are worn and slimy (slippery), rusty nail heads stick out through the boards, and areas are so rotten they bow alarmingly when you find yourself standing on them.
My DM and a couple of the instructors I spoke to seemed like nice guys, but they had no defence for the dive centre - they looked very much like they'd heard it all before and didn't really know what to say because they agreed but couldn't say so. I was invited out in the evening and I went along with staff and students, but I left early.
I didn't dive with them again, but my friend said he'd give them another go as he liked the DM and had less trouble with kit than me, but he joined me at another dive school the following day. Most of the staff were obviously hung over and in no shape to dive, and after he saw one of the instructors vomiting through her regulators due to her condition, he ended his dive.
We both went to Crystal Divers just a few minutes walk away from Master Divers - they were brilliant - excellent equipment and boats, excellent multi-lingual staff, and a very professional outfit. Anecdotal evidence from my DM here, from divers all across the island (and it's pretty much all that goes on here with about fifty dive centres on a small island) that Master Divers had been good in the past, but had gone down hill and now deservedly had a very poor reputation, and general concern that it was bad for the island as a whole. My experience of the rest of the island was fantastic - good times, good people, good diving - just avoid Master Divers if you want to have a good, safe dive trip.
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