Our diving guests come from countries all around the world. We get a few from Africa & South America, but the majority are from Asia, Europe, Australia & North America. Because almost all of our liveaboard diving trips are in Asia, it’s usually quite easy and not too expensive for our Asian divers to travel to our diving destinations, particularly at the Similan Islands in Thailand. Recently, we have noticed an increasing number of Korean scuba divers at Similan Islands & Richelieu Rock, including many who book their trips through our websites. All nationalities of scuba diver are welcome on our boats, but the Koreans appear stand out more… and for good reasons.
What is the typical Korean scuba diver like?
In our opinion, Koreans are very good divers. They don’t use much air, their buoyancy skills are good and they enjoy gaining more certifications, such as AOW, Nitrox and specialities. In addition, they’re aware of other divers and the environment around them, and from our experience they are sociable but polite on board. Even those who smoke or make extra meals make sure that it doesn’t disturb other guests. They often offer to share whatever they are eating or drinking with other guests and staff.
Is it true about ‘All the gear, no idea’ with Koreans?
No. This term is often used in the scuba diving industry to describe people who buy lots of equipment but are not very good divers. In fact, we feel that some middle-aged European men are more likely to fit this category. Korean scuba divers appear to like to use their own diving equipment, and some wear headscarves, gloves, sidemounts and lots enjoy underwater photography. However, from our experience they just get very involved in their hobby of diving and they know what they are doing. Often, when Koreans they go on a diving holiday they tend to focus the whole holiday on diving, meaning that their luggage doesn’t need to include much else.
Why do they travel & dive in gangs?
Korean people are very sociable and they appear to like to travel, spend time and dive with their compatriots. We have noticed that sometimes Korean scuba divers will sign up for a liveaboard diving trip when they know that other Korean divers are on it. They even do this when they have never personally met some of the other Koreans who they want to join the trip with. From what we understand, Korean people are very active on social networks, and they easily join together online before agreeing to travel for diving together. Also, there are lots of Korean scuba diving clubs. From our point of view, it’s only a good thing. We are able to make a group booking and the divers tend to have a leader who organises them for pick up at the start of the trip and ensures that they all understand the rules, regulations and what is expected of them.
Why do we love our Korean scuba diving guests?
Quite simply, the three paragraphs above explain why they are so popular with us. They’re good divers who are also culturally sensitive, sociable and polite. They are enthusiastic divers and many bring their own diving equipment. Finally, they nearly always book in groups, which makes everything easier for us. Anyway we love all our guests, wherever they come from!