Business Overview

Scuba diving affords an unparalleled experience with the underwater world. However, safe diving requires training, equipment, and often a guide. Scuba diving businesses provide divers with the training, equipment, and local knowledge they need to have a fun and safe time under water.

With between 2.7 and 3.5 million active scuba divers in the United States and 6 million worldwide, there is significant demand for scuba lessons and guided dives.

Who is this business right for?

While scuba diving businesses can generate sizable profits, most business owners don’t get into this type of work solely for the financial return on investment. Instead, they’re passionate scuba divers themselves and are drawn to the scuba lifestyle. They like the idea of making money doing a sport they love.

What happens during a typical day at a scuba diving business?

A typical day at a scuba diving business is full of activity. Business owners and employees spend time:

  • Servicing equipment (e.g. refilling air tanks, checking masks, etc.)
  • Maintaining the business’ building and boat (if they’re owned)
  • Teaching in classroom settings
  • Going on guided dives
  • Ordering more supplies and equipment
  • Filing paperwork for students (see Skills & Experiences)

What is the target market?

Most open water divers are affluent, typically owning their home and having an annual household income between $100,000 and $150,000. They have enough discretionary income to spend on vacations and pricey recreational sports, such as scuba diving.

How does a scuba diving business make money?

A scuba diving business primarily makes money by charging customers for classes or guided dives. Many businesses also rent equipment, including necessary essentials, optional dive computers and underwater cameras to generate additional revenue.

What is the growth potential for a scuba diving business?

Because diving requires an intimate knowledge of the local underwater features, most scuba diving businesses have just one location. If well chosen, this location can provide access to multiple dive sites.