Consumer Protection Statement
It is the intention of ACUC to offer the best possible consumer protection for individuals who decide to enrol in an ACUC diving course.
Although it is impossible for ACUC, or any other Dive Training Organization, to individually “police” every associated Instructor, Dive Centre (club, store or school), we at ACUC have implemented consumer protection policies we believe will ensure that our clients obtain all they should when contracting a diving course.
Dive Course Standards
It is very important for consumers to know the standards of the diving course they are contracting. Course standards provide valuable information to the consumer as they outline what the consumer can expect to learn and achieve and what certification they will receive at the successful completion of their course.
To the best of our knowledge, ACUC is the first Dive Training Agency to post Course Standards and Curriculum on the web for all consumers to see. We do this in order for our customers to be easily and better informed when deciding to contract a diving course. ACUC course standards are available to anyone by either contacting ACUC directly, any ACUC Dive Centre or qualified Instructor, or on our web site
Course Content and Associated Costs
When an individual contracts a diving course with any Instructor or Dive Centre, from any Dive Training Organization, they have the right to be informed of the approximate hours duration they are to commit; the entire cost they are expected to pay and exactly what they are paying for. It is important to ask, when quoted a price for a diving course, if the costs also include:
- Educational material (course manual, dive log book, decompression tables, etc.)
- Membership fees or “user fees” for pool accessibility during training
- Use or rent of diving equipment required for the course
- Any examination or evaluation fees
- Cost and number of open water checkout dives required for certification.
- Cost, type and duration of diving insurance.
- Cost of registration with a Dive Training Agency to obtain a certification card.
Unfortunately some dive centres may use extremely aggressive sales techniques that advertise very cheap courses to attract customers and will not voluntarily disclose up front what the low price includes. An inexperienced, uninformed consumer may assume this low price is all they are required to pay, only to find there are additional costs involved as the course progresses.
It has been found in many instances the final total cost of the advertised “cheap” course is actually more expensive than the competitor’s seemingly higher priced course.
ACUC does not condone this type of hard sell advertising and we expect our associated Instructors and Dive Centres to provide full disclosure of course content and associated costs before a client contracts a diving course.
A scuba Instructor conducting any diving course for any Dive Training Agency is required to be in “Active” teaching status with their associated Dive Training Agency. If the Instructor is not in “Active” teaching status with the associated organization, s/he will not be able register the client’s certification and the client will find they have paid for a diving course that is of no use to them.
In order for ACUC Instructors to retain their Active Teaching Status they must renew their certification annually. All ACUC Instructors with Active teaching status will be pleased to show consumers their certification card. To provide consumers with assurance that an ACUC Instructor is in Active teaching status ACUC issues Instructor certification cards with an expiry date clearly indicated (see sample). ACUC also issue “Active (year)” stickers for Instructors whose plastic certification card shows a past due date in the “Exp:” field but the ACUC Instructor is still considered by ACUC to be in Active teaching status. The ACUC Instructor places this sticker in the upper right corner of their current certification card ( see sample).
However, in some cases ACUC may place an individual Instructor on suspension for whatever cause, and although the Instructor is no longer considered in Active teaching status, they may carry a certification card that apparently shows otherwise. Because it is very difficult for ACUC to recall the certification card from the suspended Instructor, ACUC freely discloses and posts on our web site the names of all ACUC Instructors who are currently under suspension.
Finally, consumers at any time may contact ACUC directly to verify the qualification and status of any ACUC Instructor.
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