Freelance Dive Jobs
Working as a freelance Dive Instructor at least gets your fins wet!
Where ever there are a number of dive schools concentrated in an area, lets say along a beach in Thailand or in a very popular diving region- Freelancing is a very viable option to get diving work.
During my years as a dive instructor, I very often picked a place I would like to work and just go. Obviously, I did some research before getting there and I tried to make contact with as many dive schools as I could.
Once I arrived, I would go into all the dive schools armed with my diving CV and let them know that I am available for work. Most of the time there were not any positions available instantaneously, so I would offer my services on a freelance basis.
Dive centers like to have freelancers they can rely on in times of need and there is less of a commitment on their part -so it is a good way to get your foot in the door. Sometimes instructors were sick or needed a break and so I stepped in.
Once the dive centers get to know you and are happy with your work, there is a higher chance of one of them offering you a more permanent position.
Reputation and Rapport!
It is important to do a good job and build a good rapport with the staff regardless of the dive school you work for. You may prefer one dive center over another but your reputation as a dive professional is vital and dive schools talk to each other.
Dive centers in general have a high turnover of staff due to there being so many beautiful places to dive in the world and instructors moving on to fulfill their diving dreams. Being a freelance dive instructor gives you a chance to build relationships and keep your ear on the ground for when a position is available. If you have a reliable reputation and a good rapport with the staff and customers- you have a high chance of landing the job.
A word of caution!
One word of caution would be to be prepared to wait a little. You might not get anything for some days or even weeks. Make sure you have enough money to stick around and keep an eye on the visa and work permit conditions for the country you are in. For instance, I had to leave Zanzibar every 3 months to renew my holiday visa until I got an official job at a dive center. You can and will get the jobs to keep you going which a lot of the time are under the table-but be careful- Emigration officials can be very nasty!