IDC Guide

Adventures of a Dive Instructor – Part 8

The final part of my adventures in emails between myself and the Dive centre owner:

Cant remember if I told you but the German Course Director won’t be able to stay at the Kata Beach Resort as it is 100% full until April

Have got another extension agreed with my work in the UK and have moved my flights back again so my flights back to the UK is 22nd March. This allows us more time together, myself to do the IDCS with you and Thorsten and Simon and to get more work done.

We need Company insurance to get TAT licence I assume there is nothing in place and will need to get this for the TAT licence. Luckily you are sending me money and simon has paid some of his courses already so got some cash to do this

I have a meeting with AIG rep tomorrow at 1300 to get the business insurance sorted.

Please see previous email about work permits / tat licence – you have a pre-written letter and form to take to the police station when you get back (its in your bedroom) and must take your passport and will be fined max 2000 THB. You wont believe how much hassle / effort and money this has cost so far and was talking to another dive instructor tonight who told me he was lucky to renew his visa / work permit recently one week before the TAT licence requirement came in.

Thank you so much. As I told ou I will go to the embassy on Friday and try to find out if and what we can do. Anyway I am prepared to do a lot of admin stuff when I am back.

We need a room in the divecentre between 22nd Feb and 2nd March and will pay 10,000 THB ? Yes. Thorsten’s candidate will pay 10.000 for the room. I have another request for this PADI IDC. If the candidate decides to do it with us we can book them into Phuket interhouse as well (share one room). I hope I will know next week.

Thorsten wants to stay at the Kata beach resort between 22nd Feb and 2nd March ? Yes. If a room is available. We book it and we get the comission.

Will book 10th Feb South Siam 3 Depart 10th Feb Similan/Richelieu Rock Tour with (4 days/3nights), 22,900 THB but need diving details, last dive / no of dives / padi grade (obviously their pickup location is kata delight villas) Last dive will be one or two days before because the want to do daytrips and beachdives as well.

Both are Advanced Open Water Divers with about 70 – 80 dives. Pickup at Kata delight. Own equipment.

Will get the money to the dive community account once I see it, You do know that we get a reduced equivalent exchange rate when transferring money as it costs to withdraw money

German Couple arriving on the 13th Feb, I will hopefully be in the divecentre that day to expect them. I will be there as well I think.

Pick up couple on the 1st Feb? Karin & Andeas  I assume, I will pick them up but at the moment I dont even get 10 minutes to myself and think a 1 hour 50 minute round trip at possibly unsocial hours (and that is if there are no delays) for them to spent an uncomfortable trip in a dirty dive truck is not a good idea, a nice air-conditioned taxi costs only 600 baht to kata and even though I truely believe in the the idea of great customer service but I think my time and effort wasted here compared with a taxi ride. Please do not think I am not moaning but with the dive centre and diving / teaching / internet / marketing stuff / workpermits / tat licence etc I havent had a day or hour off in the last few months and think my time is too valueable to spend sitting around at the airport. If you disagree I will pick them up but maybe you can see my point. I would even spend 600 baht of my own money to pay for a taxi to avoid the hassle and wasted time of picking up divers /students. I had two lots of friends arrive from the UK recently and didnt pick them up!

I get your point. I will talk to them. Mabe you can welcome them at Kata Delight when they arrive?

Did you ever sell anyone a Dive Community Wetsuit as I saw one on the boat today doing a DSD for Warm Water Divers while wearing a Medium Dive Community Wetsuit, I am hoping she has bought it but I am sure its them that took the regulator from the dive centre and somehow swapped it for the Sea Bees one, result is we have one less regulator ! Probably told you I emailed them about the regulator but they say they havent got it, I first noticed it missing after they left !!

Agreed with Dive Community needing to move location but so wish the location would work out as Im getting to like it but not enough walk ins and lots of noise / high rent is not good / finding something better is going to be hard.

Your CDTC is in the bag relax , they want quality / professional people at the top and you fit the bill (although you did let a certain Russian Instructor through the IDC ! ) here is a snippet of a quick conversation from a certain Russian Instructor from the Similans yesterday:

‘james, my customers now on their second bottle of champagne, can dive ?’
another one
‘james my customer pregnant,is ok to dive ?’
what a great example of a padi professional (both ended up diving with her !)

Why cant somebody send her back to Siberia? 🙂

A while ago I met an Instructor from the company that looks after freelance instructors and talked to him about the lack of business in our area (he has a office / house near us) he emailed and talked about sharing facilities and the other day he came to the shop the other day to talk about using our facilities when needed, I told him that he can use classroom / equipment for training for rental / hiring fees and we talked about them using the Dive Centre as their office / main training facility as well. Not ideal situation having 4 of us in the dive centre but would certainly help with the rent, what do you think ?

I think we should talk about that once I am back but in general it sounds like a good idea to me.

Have moved my flights and sabbatical back by one month but I will try to put it back again by one month which will allow me to do the IDC and see Simon thru to Instructor. Is Simon OK with the IDC dates together with Thorsten? That would be very good as we can keep the money (no matter which price ou made for Simon) and we would have an IDC with 2 or 3 candidates + 1 IDCS.

Email from Phuket Hotel:

I am glad to confirm the Deluxe Villa room for your client, Karin & Andeas Beermann from 1st Feb. to departure on 22nd Feb. It has a view to the beach, the bay and Phoo Island.

The rate of Bht. 4,300.- covers room rate only. Breakfast is served at Delight Restaurant, Bht. 150.-/persons for ABF and Bht.110.-/person for Continental

other stuff ………….

I am glad I am busy but still dont have enough customers to justify hiring anyone else which is what we really need, also I really do not like leaving the shop empty during 10-8 as there are people walking past and you only need one to come in per week for liveaboard or courses to give you a little bit more money. Luckily now have Simon here and he is proving a good DMT candidate as he is staying at the dive centre / gets on well with customers and is willing to sit in the shop and help if / when I cant be there. We both spent about 3 hours tonight cleaning and re-arranging the shop.

Have invested a bit of time and money in producing some Dive Community Packs to give to hotels / companies that maybe able to send us customers once in while (kata poolside hotel is my first priority now)

I am please to say that the house nextdoor is finished but…………… they are building a 3 storey building right next to it and as such right next to us, so the view of our dive centre from the road is now permanently blocked as well as having to put up with noise and disruption for another 6 months ?

Nitrox (the cat) returned for a few minutes (after a 3 week holiday !) hissed at the two new kittens I have there and left….. I saw him the other day just strolling around the place

I need another 12 month visa before 2nd Feb and if you have any ideas how to get one I would appreciate it. Think they can only be got from your home country

I got the final documents for the TAT licence today so fingers crossed we will get it then the work permits, Our Thai administration girl  has proved excellent and really hope she doesn’t ‘resign’ and continues to help me.

What shall I do about Simon’s IDC ? i suspect he will be doing it Feb 16th, obviously we want to pay the lowest possible price for it, will you be involved with the IDC and be able to get a lower price for his inclusion or shall I just ask him how much he wants

The final emails:
arrived back in the UK Friday 5am 24 March 2007

Whats happening with Simon, he has moved out now? was angry with Shoko for giving him her house and trying to get him to go there, while she was in the dive centre using the internet at our invitation , she has cost the company money and also didnt want to pay for her discovery scuba diving course as she understood it to be a try dive for free ( she asked me to do it so assumed she knew I would charge her)

Whats the 5000 Baht for ? seems expensive for food and tanks
Chris made me use our tanks for the Instructor Specialities and said he would sort it out with you. I didnt want to give Laura the money back for the manual but understand you agreed to it. There was a section missing in the one you brought us but I correct this and double checked it but still she wasnt happy

What bookings have you got ? and what perspectives ?  Assume you know there is about 41000 THB in the bank

Sorry to hear offspray lost the boat again – hope the customers were happy with an alternative.

cdtc is pretty cool – interesting people, easy assignments. I´ll keep you updated.

I dont know why Simon says everybody is talking about my plans to sell the dive centre. A lot of people saw the strange thing on PADI pro and some asked about that. But the fact is (as I told you) I want to run IDCs with Dive Community and I am planning to travel to Thailand a few times a year. But I dont want to be around all year or for month in a row. And I dont want my life to be ruled anymore by the fact that I own Dive Community. After our last conversation about the option that you become a business partner with Dive Community I had the impression that you are not really interested in taking over shares.

Something I can understand as for you there are too many open questions (Hotels, cooperations etc.) So – as you told me to do – I am considering options. But: You did a very good job for the dive centre and you still do. For many people you are “Mr Dive Community”. I am wondering if you might be more interested in working on for Dive Community (English market, Staff Instructor, English web site etc.) with work permit on a employment basis – this is something I would appriciate very very much. And This is something I will try to work out if somebody else is interested in buying. Please share your thoughts with me.

Seem to be spending all my time and effort with the TAT / Work Permit / Visa issues that are here and coming up, along with everything else, Somjet and his idiots started to do our Balance Sheet (year end results) two months ago, I have been told by our Thai administration girl  that they wont be able to finish them for 3-4 weeks, she rightly states that that will cause me serious issues (my Visa expires 2nd Feb) and need new one which she can organise in Phuket town but need TAT licence / Work permits and to do this by 31st January Latest, therefore I am going to Somjet tomorrow hopefully for the last time to close our account with him, it is long overdue and Im not sure he will let me do it without you but I will try obviously

Really cant believe the wasted time and effort and money that this idiot has caused us.

Phuket Interhouse have been sent an email, I assume Jaime already has accomodation, I have an account with Shanti Lodge also so will try them also
Very sorry to hear all this. I can imagine this was not a good week for you. It´s a shame to come back after such a long time and being overloaded with bad news…

I made a final decision about the dive centre: I sold it 100 %. I will be affilated with it as the Course Director and for European Marketing activities. After you left and made clear to me that you dont want to become my partner (I assume you will stay in the UK now for a while?) I wanted a clear cut and clear perspectives for me and my future before I go back to Europe. I am happy that I found a real good sollution now. The new owner and his connection into new markets will mean a complete restart for Dive Community and I hope the best for its future. I will tell you more details within the next two weeks.
Now I am busy with sorting things out (Nart, rentals, accountant, open bills etc) and will leave to go back to Germany next Wednesday. So the dive centre will be closed for the next month – which is no problem now. But no worries about Harley – Simon and/or Thomas will take care about that.

The cat is in very good hands – Thomas took it. He loves cats and the cat loved him. Simon moved out last Wednesday – I was a bit angry about that as well but I understand Simon. For him it is the much better option. Only Shoko needs to find another cheap internet place.

I made some notes to remind me of how I ended up running a dive centre in Phuket, for information here they are:

Work Rumours about a takeover
Had to have an Interview for own job
Company issues Redundancy Notices (I was ok)
Handbook given and read information about Sabbatical
Robbo – ‘well do something about it’
Sabattical Email / Acceptance
Visa Thai Embassy (Phone Thailand for Company papers)
Office Move
Last Lunchtime with Robbo (my mate)
Last Payslip (ever ?)
Last Day at IT company Tuesday 31st January 2006
Meal with Family and Iwona
Rented my House
Clear out house – Sell furniture / electricals / car (ebay)
My world in 3 bags
LHR > BKK > PKT 13th February 2006
Phuket 14th Feb
Sea Bees – PADI IDC
Pre-IDC 17th Feb – Dominic
Buying First Aid / EFR Instructor manuals
Palm Garden – Neil / Arno
IDC Course 20th Feb 2006
Zebra bar Neil and Ju
Ulf + German (Was ist das ?)
Songkran ! Water Festival
The bar girl and the chicken leg incident
IDC Exams 3rd March 2006
IDC Party Ulf / Bar Girl
Night out (with Neil and Ju !)
First Day as an Instructor
Move to new room
Neil has no money so has to spend the night in my Bed !
MSDT Prep – Dominic
Arno gets bent – then flys home / needs chamber visits
Career Package (go and give your CV out)
Business Cards / CV / Emails
My first Student – He goes backwards !
Crash (New Top)
Petrol! looks like wine and bought in bottles by side of road
Work Permit ?
Ulf – Dive Community
Learning the ropes
Ulf Leaves ! All alone
No Customers / Vistors / Students !
Happy Days !
Poo, Nick, Aaron, Jeff, Lauren, Oi, A, J, Rob, Austin,
Drunken Fun
The Pervy German looking for Bar Girls
Pervy German Removed to the road
Pervy German bent Jo’s Bike
Finding Bike Shop !
Dive Community
Hotel Meetings
No customers at dive centre for 12 weeks ! (Ulf ‘really bad low season’)
Work Visa
With Neighbour Luisa on Kata Beach (while holding BCD and fins !)
Luisa at dive centre
Police – Pool / Police Station / Coffee Shop
Fish and Chip shop – Drunk Uncle asleep in front of Fridge (waiting for him to die !)
The Fish Shop
Sweet (Aunt Porn ! and Uncle Dick!)
Brain Damaged Instructor – Blood bank request
Steve Cook and mates in Phuket
Swiss Instructor couple
Puppy at DC
Motorbike plus Sidecar
Snake in DC
Po’s Sister Husband – His neck just break
Connor and Mum come visit me
Elephant riding
Connor Diving
Zoo – Falang Pricing – Crocodile / Orangutang
Sweet’s Uncle Drunk idiot
Steve Flowers visits
Steve, Nart, Me plus Narts mate Phuket town
Open water
AOW – Wrestle a shark (frightened of an eel !)
Truck problems – Porn wants the paperwork sorted
DC Stats – James Certs (Ulf’s free DSDs)
Monks – Cats and Dogs (upselling dogs as he has many)
Cats – Hot Dog and Budda (aka bud)
Cat Rescue / Cats dont bounce 🙁
Catie Smith – Diving fun!
Dive Community / The missing shoes !
Instructors quit! shocker
Simon and Nart’s friend
Simon on beach with Nart’s friend’s gay mate 🙂
DM Vicky Haining / Simon
Steve Flowers 2
Steve / Jif / Sea Bees Girl
Simon – Thai Gay approach at Dive Community
Steve and Ulf at Luisa’s
Steve / Simon / Myself Patong Ladyboys !
Diving with Luisa and Steve Perfect
Instructors wanting work
Beach Clean up!
IDC Students – Equipment sales
Massages after lunch
Egyptian IDC Student Couple Phuket Visa
Corrupt Thai people
Disillusioned Instructors
Swedish Couple – Work Permit
Freelance Instructor – Sea Bees
Swedish James busts the Village Idiots Teeth in Crash shocker !
Luisa Scarpa
Jamie Lee / Shower / Sweet
Friend beaten and left for dead in drainage ditch
Beach assault
Corrupt Accountant Headlines
Assistant Director of Film Diving
Swedish Dive Master
Tsunami the Aftermath Filming (Hospital, Airport, Hotel – Tim Roth)
Police Video on beach – Move site
Speedboat Instructor in Phi Phi (with Nick)
Anglerfish ! (Free diver – Hotel move)
Free diver above!
Move Accountant
Nart – Company Papers TDA / TAT
Gulya – Russian / Shower / Sweet p
Laguna bar
IDC Staff instructor course / IDC Candidates
Speedboat stolen and stripped part 1
Gulya – Crazy as a Crazy thing – Walks to Chalong
Joanne secret rendezvous
Jif – Mad, Faints, Fork Stab to Nose
Ulf Busted for WP
Speedboat stolen and stripped part 2
View Point – with po and friend
Austin Run over and Robbed in broad daylight (watch from wrist)
Aarons watch (Nicked by Village Idiot)
Dive Community Police for TAT licence 25,000 THB
Sweet Returns Aarons watch from Village Idiot while Police at DC
Dive Community for sale on ? Ulf has no idea why
Visa Run Burma
Dive Communty Accounts 125 THB
Dive Community sale Decision  €70k
Last Night
Morning Perfect
Last Day 20 April 2007
Keys in Car
UK Freezing
Dive Community Sold
Facing Redundancy
Happy Days / Aarons Drugs Bust – Corrupt Police 400k THB


Scroll to Top