Preparing for the holiday season can be like pre-dive stress: making a mental list of the pending tasks and how to get them all done, keeping track of where you’re going and when, and worrying about unwanted encounters, whether jellyfish or in-laws. Fortunately though, holiday shopping for the scuba divers in your life is nothing to panic over. With so many fun gadgets to choose from, it’s practically impossible to go wrong. Because scuba diving is an equipment-intensive sport, gift options run the full gamut, from stocking stuffers to dive computers, and even swimming with groupers.
Gearing Up for the Holidays With so many bells, whistles and lights clipped to their BCD, divers often look like some sort of aquatic Christmas tree. But when it comes to gear, the more is always the merrier, especially at this time year. Plus diving equipment can always be upgraded to the latest model, so springing for a new dry or wetsuit, regulator, or mask is always a welcome gift. Underwater camera equipment is another great investment, and it doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Presenting a housing for the digital your loved one already has, a filter and mount for the GoPro, or Vivid-pix underwater photography correction software, encourage turning sport into art that can be shared with the whole family.
Dreaming of a Blue Christmas
If you’re looking for a gift that is less material and more memorable, consider booking a dive holiday – after all, they call them “vacation packages” for a reason. Liveaboard cruises and seaside dive resorts are popular all over the world, from the Caribbean to the Solomon Islands, so spin the globe and pick out a nice warm place where the holiday season is blue and sunny. Or think locally and opt instead for a long weekend at a dive resort closer to home. Either way, a blue getaway will surely bring out the holiday cheer.
Stockings and Dive Boots
For those looking for gifts that don’t involve diving quite so deep into the proverbial pockets, there is an infinite array of smaller items that make ideal stocking stuffers or Secret Santa presents. Pocket torches are a great way to light up a dive – and a diver – during the holidays, and they come in all kinds, sizes and colors. A save-a-dive kit is small enough to hang over the fireplace but big enough to recoup a dive about to be lost to minor equipment damage. For a more personal touch, you could pick out a fine piece of scuba- or marine-themed jewelry. From silver earrings to gold key chains, it’s not only trees that like to be draped in tinsel on Christmas.
A Gift that Keeps on Diving
Another great gift idea for the underwater enthusiast is a scuba specialty course through the local dive club. Help foster sharp diving skills and continued education by selecting a course in underwater videography, marine life or wreck diving. A holiday ski trip could be coupled with training for a certificate in altitude diving. Or for those adventurous and full of seasonal spirit, an ice diving course might be the best way to break into the New Year. While skills can always be honed, the wonderful thing about recreational certifications is that they last a lifetime.