# Diver Survey 2011… preliminary results

Every year we survey our associate members (divers who have earned certification through SDI or TDI) to ask them general questions about their diving habits and goals.

This year an invitation to complete the 2011 Diver Survey was distributed to more than 20,000 associate members in their copy of the January eNewsletter. Here are the preliminary results with commentary.

How many dives do you plan to log this year?
fewer than 10 = 9.09%
between 10 and 20 = 14.31%
between 20 and 30 = 14.12%
between 30and 50 = 17.21%
between 50 and 100 = 25.15%
more than 100 = 18.57%

We were mildly surprised at the percentage of SDI, TDI divers who plan to take more than 50 dives this year (almost 44%); and believe this indicates a continued healthy interest in diving.

Do you expect to log more dives this year than last year?
Yes = 64.60%
No = 31.33%

Again, we believe this is an interesting and positive statistic with more than twice as the number of respondents planning to dive more in 2011 than plan to dive less than last year.

Based on last year’s totals, what percentage of your dives do you plan to do locally?
approximately 25 percent  = 16.05%
approximately 50 percent  = 14.70%
approximately 75 percent  = 18.96%
more than 75 percent  = 23.60%
none of my dives will be local = 11.99%
all my dives will be local  = 7.16%
other = 4.84% with the majority choosing 10% local diving

How many dive trips are you planning to take in 2011 that will require a flight either domestic or international?
Average number of trips = 6.37
First Quartile = 3 trips
Second = 3.5 trips
Third = 5 trips

Once again a surprising stat. The average number of trips for all respondents was weighted by several unrealistic responses, but we believe the figure of between three and five planned trips is a supportable one.

Within the limits of your experience and training (tech or sport) what kind of diver do you consider yourself to be?

very conservative (well within limits) = 7.35%
conservative (stay within limits of training and experience) = 44.29%
moderate (mostly dive within limits) = 23.40%
mildly aggressive (push the limits on occasion) = 15.67%
aggressive (limits are for the other guys) = 0.77%

Do you currently or are you planning to dive a rebreather (semi-closed or full closed-circuit) in 2011?

Yes (Y) = 14.31%
No (N) = 72.73%

The percentage of divers who currently dive or who plan to dive a rebreather is up by more than half on figures from two years ago.

If you had to describe to a non-diving friend what it is that appeals to you most about diving, which of the following words or phrases would you be likely to use do you think?

Exciting = 35.78%
Challenge = 26.11%
History = 13.54%
Fulfilling, Satisfying = 22.82%
Community and Friendship = 16.83%
Appreciation = 9.67%
Natural Beauty = 29.98%
Awareness = 11.61%
Thrilling = 12.38%

Which value-words do YOU use in your facility’s marketing and promotions?

If time and money were not factors, describe where you would go to dive next.

Interesting answers from 77.56% respondents. Executive summary is that PacRim destinations top the list… Chuuk, Palau et al. The question you may want to ask yourself is which PacRim dive trips from Scuba Travel International are you offering your customers?

Read the following to get an idea of the more detailed submissions:

My favorite dive experiences have been not so much from place but from moments – achieving moments of bliss or accomplishment where you’ve done a dive and had a zen like experience. Having a dive where everything was just right and I was fully engaged in the site (be it a reef, wreck, exploring a lake, whatever). I have great memories of 30-50′ drift dives across beautiful reefs abundant with fish, wall & crevice dives full of wonderment and wreck dives of all types (penetration and not) where the joy came in the doing with ease, grace and expertise (flawless execution) and full engagement in the moment. Reflecting on great dives – they tend to be trips of several days so you get over the acclimation, gear, and skills issues and can focus on the dive and site. So my next dream dive would be to go to a beautiful, diverse area where I can dive frequently, with a variety of dives (night/day, shallow/deep, wall/reef/wreck/interesting environment, variety of macro/micro life) and great surface activities as well. Variety is also stimulating, so something different than the last few trips… moving from a liveaboard to a shore resort to mixed activity trip (e.g. Seattle/Puget Sound). Its all good! So for my next great dive, probably a live aboard doing lots of wrecks in Truk or something like that.

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We will be conducting follow-up surveys to our Associate Membership through the rest of 2011.

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