How to Prepare for aLiveaboard Trip
First thing first, prior to any preparation, thoroughly research the liveaboard of your choice. Most listings will include what facilities and accommodations are available on board. Thus, you will understand the situation onboard and what you will need to prepare. No need to overpack, right?
There are a few things you can do ahead of time that will drastically improve your liveaboard experience. We prepared a non-exhaustive list below:
1. Organize Your Communications
Divers choose a liveaboard experience to go for an adventure in remote areas. The obvious consequence of being remote is that cellular networks are often non-existant and wi-fi isn’t likely to be available either. Let’s be honest, why go to the middle of nowhere only to be tethered to the Internet all day?
Because emergencies can happen, make sure your loved ones have the contact info of your tour operator/agent. In case of emergency, they will be able to contact the boat.
2. Know Your Dive Sites
Most of the locations the boat will visit have more amazing sites than you will have time to enjoy. Of course, the crew will know the best spots but their considerations may not be the same as yours. Therefore, it’s better to research the sites prior to traveling so you will have an idea of which sites suit your interests best. Don’t forget to check the reviews on www.DiveTravelReview.com!
3. Chef, What’s on the Menu Today?
Don’t forget that Uber Eats isn’t available on the boat. Habits are more in our mind than we think they are, and being cut-off from convenience can be disturbing.
That’s why it’s necessary to make sure that the reference meal menu fits your dietary requirements. If you have any food requests, please inform the booking company ahead of your trip. This will allow them to properly prepare ahead of time. The chef can’t shop during the middle of the trip so please communicate your requests in advance.
4. Book the Best Cabins
Sleep comes fast after a long day of diving but having a quiet cabin also helps! Generally, these cabins are furthest from engine room but also from the stairs and public areas. Ask the boat or booking agent which cabins are ideally located before booking your space.
Don’t forget to pack a few ear plugs and a sleeping mask to make sure that you are well equipped to get the rest you need.
5. Consider a Private Dive Guide
If you are a keen photographer or videographer, or maybe a beginner on your first liveaboard, why not inquire about a private dive guide? It might not be that expensive and it’s a great value. Having one guide who you dive with throughout the trip will enhance the quality of your dives.
6. Insurance for You….and Your Gear
Diving, like most adventure sports, has its own set of risks. While not overly common, accidents can occur. Therefore, it’s irresponsible to travel without proper health and diving insurance. There are many companies that offer travel insurance as well as companies that offer diving specific insurance. The key is to make sure yours covers things like recompression chamber treatments. That being said, your credit card insurance may cover travel and diving insurance so check with them first.
Remember that expensive camera that found a new home at the bottom of the sea? It would have been great if it was insured right? Have a look at insurance plans that cover your valuable gear as well.
Are your vaccinations up to date? We can’t prevent every risk but many can be avoided thanks to proper planning. Many people are afraid of needles but is it worth spending all your time in your cabin ill? Not to mention, it may impact your dive buddies experience too. Your local health official will be able to inform you what vaccines may be needed in the area you plan to visit.
8. Arrive a Day Early
We suggest arriving a day before your planned boarding time. Traveling to exotic locations often involves flight delays or cancellations. An extra day might also help in recovering from potential jet lag or late luggage arrival.
Moreover, it gives a great opportunity to enjoy local sightseeing, last minute shopping, and experiencing a new, exotic location.
10. Dive Ahead of Time
Why not enjoy a couple of dives from the mainland prior to boarding the boat? For instance, prior to a trip to Raja Ampat, spend a couple of days diving in Bali. This allows you to get comfortable in the water if you haven’t been diving in a while.
It also allows you the chance to see if your equipment is working properly before boarding the boat. It’s also a great way to relax and get used to the time change without the added pressure of 4-5 dives a day on the boat!
We guarantee you will enjoy your liveaboard dives more with a few days of diving ahead of time.
10. Brand Yourself as a “Sustainable Traveler”
Before leaving home be sure to pack your reusable bottle and reef-safe sunscreen and toiletries.
From our carbon footprint to ocean pollution, we all have a responsibility to care for the environment. To help you plan in advance, we have compiled a list of things to prepare for sustainable travel. ===> https://divetravelreview.com/7-environmental-tips-for-travel/
Did we miss something? Please leave a comment below to share your best tips on how you prepare yourself before a diving trip.