Learning to dive with The Great American Diving Company is a unique and exciting experience.

Through our professional staff and a combination of knowledge development (in class or online), skill development in our custom built pool (the only one like it in St. Louis) and open water dives (with us or on your vacation) you will become a safe diver.

Why choose to learn to dive with us?

As the St. Louis area’s oldest PADI 5 Star Instructor Development Center, we are able to offer you a unique and exceptional experience.

We have trained over 17,900 divers and our experience shows.

We are the ONLY dive shop in the area with our own pool and training center. Because of that, your class is easy and convenient. All class and pool sessions are held at our AquaCenter, eliminating the hassle of traveling between locations and transporting gear. Everything is in one convenient location – classrooms, pool and gear. The AquaCenter provides a distraction free, family friendly environment unlike other pools with noisy and disruptive aquatic activities and residents.

Pre Requisites

10 years old
Comfortable swim ability


$199 / person includes all class & pool instruction, use of scuba rental equipment in the pool (not including personal scuba quality equipment – mask, snorkel, fins, boots or wetsuit) and all completion paperwork.

See our special on Groupon

Each student is required to have a personal set of materials ($150* / set for traditional classroom students which includes student textbook, logbook, 2 disc DVD, dive computer access card, SMB) OR eLearning materials ($278* / set for eLearning access code, logbook, SMB, dive computer simulator access card, Online PIC certification card). Materials must be purchased from our retail store.

Students doing the eLearning option have some additional scheduling options. If you are doing weeknight classes you only have to attend the last two evenings. If you are doing weekend classes you can attend just the afternoon sessions of the regular courses or you can attend our special eLearning weekends with just two morning sessions. All scheduling options are listed below.

Each student is required to have their own personal scuba quality equipment including mask, snorkel, fins and boots. Personal wetsuits and/or rash guards for pool use are highly recommended. If you purchase your equipment elsewhere please bring it into our retail store when you enroll to ensure that it fits properly and is scuba quality. Personal equipment that is not scuba quality or does not fit properly will not be permitted in class for safety reasons.

To finish your certification, you must complete 4 open water training dives with an instructor. We offer these dives from April through early November for $125. This includes all 4 dives, scuba equipment rental for the weekend (excluding your personal equipment), admission to the dive site, air fills for the certification dives and certification fees. Travel and overnight accommodations are not included. You can also complete these dives on your vacation. This option is called a “Referral” and we are happy to provide our students with their necessary paperwork at no charge.

Time is a precious thing these days and we never have enough. Rest assured that we DO NOT cancel classes. If you sign up for one of our courses it will happen – no need to worry about it being canceled. In return we ask that you confirm that your class dates work for you before you sign up. Cancellations on your part are honored only in the case of documented medical emergencies.

*plus applicable sales tax. Additional family members in the same household can save $20 / person on the traditional materials by sharing the DVD.

Links To Other Programs

We offer two very popular upgrades to this course. The first option is the PADI Peak Performance Buoyancy Course. This class is conducted on Sunday afternoons after your complete your certification dives with us. Your instructor will spend extra time with you discussing buoyancy, weighting and trim. Then you will do two additional dives with the instructor for a total of 6 dives that weekend. Students typically find the additional hands-on time helpful and complete the weekend as a more comfortable diver. The cost for this option is $95 / diver and includes student materials, all instruction and certification card.

Our other option is the popular PADI Drysuit Diver course. Drysuits keep you warm and toasty when the water is chilly. There is no reason not to enjoy your open water dives as much as possible. Drysuit divers dive more, enjoy their dives more and are warmer after the dive. This option is $185 / diver and includes additional time in the pool practicing buoyancy control with the drysuit, one additional dive during your open water certification weekend, use of the drysuit system, on all of your open water certification dives, your own personal set of seals to use later when you purchase or rent a drysuit from us, student manual and certification fees.

These upgrades can be credited to the dives required for your PADI Advanced Open Water Diver certification and earning your PADI Master Scuba Diver!

One weekend each October you can also add on your PADI Underwater Pumpkin Carver class to your weekend of open water certification dives. You will do two additional dives over the course of the weekend and gain additional practice working with your buddy underwater and controlling your buoyancy. Check with our store for more information.

2019 Schedule

Book & DVD - Weeknight Classes
TGADC AquaCenter
6:30pm - 11:00pm
September 16, 18, 23 & 25Mon / Wed Evening
1 Space Available
October 8, 10, 15 & 17Tue / Thu Evening
October 28, 30, November 4 & 6Mon / Wed Evening
November 12, 14, 19 & 21Tue / Thu Evening
December 9, 11, 16 & 18Mon / Wed Evening

eLearning - Weeknight Classes
TGADC AquaCenter
6:30pm - 11:00pm
September 23 & 25Mon / Wed Evening
1 Spot Available
October 15 & 17Tue / Thu Evening
November 4 & 6Mon / Wed Evening
November 19 & 21Tue / Thu Evening
December 16 & 18Mon / Wed Evening

Book & DVD - Weekend Classes
TGADC AquaCenter
9:00am - 6:00pm
September 7 & 81 Spot Available
September 14 & 15Full
September 21 & 22Full
September 28 & 29
October 12 & 13
October 19 & 20
October 26 & 27
November 2 & 3
November 16 & 17
November 23 & 24
November 30 & December 1
December 14 & 15
December 28 & 29

eLearning - Weekend Classes
TGADC AquaCenter
September 7 & 812:30pm - 6:00pm
1 Spot Available
September 14 & 1512:30pm - 6:00pm
September 21 & 2212:30pm - 6:00pm
September 28 & 2912:30pm - 6:00pm
October 5 & 69:00am - 2:00pm
October 12 & 1312:30pm - 6:00pm
October 19 & 2012:30pm - 6:00pm
October 26 & 2712:30pm - 6:00pm
November 2 & 312:30pm - 6:00pm
November 9 & 109:00am - 2:00pm
November 16 & 1712:30pm - 6:00pm
November 23 & 2412:30pm - 6:00pm
November 30 & December 112:30pm - 6:00pm
December 14 & 1512:30pm - 6:00pm
December 21 & 229:00am - 2:00pm
December 28 & 2912:30pm - 6:00pm

Certification Dives
Mermet Springs, IL
8:30am - 5:00pm
September 28 & 29FULL
October 5 & 61 Space Available
October 12 & 13
October 19 & 20
October 26 & 27
Underwater Pumpkin Carving 10/26
November 2 & 3
November 9 & 10