ALERT- WHY OWNING YOUR OWN DIVE GEAR IS CRITICAL - RENT VS. OWN 2021
"I rent gear, so I don't have to pay the bag fees." You've heard it, I've heard it, and it is an argument with a little truth. Airlines are getting tighter and tighter. Some airlines don't even give you a free drink, and… good thing, the tray table isn't big enough to hold 4 oz of liquid. But, pardon the pun, does the argument hold water? In this day and age, there are a lot of considerations that go way beyond luggage. Look you've already spent a lot of time on this diving thing… let's take a moment more and talk rent vs. buy.
Cleanliness and maintenance are the two most important reasons to own your own scuba diving gear.
Buying scuba gear is expensive but not as expensive as a trip to the hospital, decompression chamber or worse. Face it, diving is an extreme sports, we know it and we love it! The following are some points that you should consider when considering to rent or buy gear.
If you are getting certified for the first time most shop recommends that you buy fins, mask and a snorkel. “Ok, well that isn’t too expensive, but when you add on the certification cost it takes it up a notch. When you add on the big ticket items like a regulator, BCD and computer… well things are getting serious.
I was just like you, a diver for 18 years and I did not own a BCD, computer or regulator. I had all the same considerations, how many times do I dive in a year, rental is cheap, they sterilize it, I don’t want to pay for another bag.
It’s nice to think that everything is perfect and sterile when you rent. In most cases it is. But if you consider the places you diving, or have dove, things can get a little sketchy. Many of the best dive destinations are in foreign countries. Some places do not have the finances, resources or even the knowledge of how to properly clean regulators and other gear to kill all of the germs. Many of these operations are small and keeping a continuous flow of customers is to the top priority instead of making sure all rental gear is properly cleaned. Don’t get me wrong; many gear rentals abroad are perfectly safe. However, there are horror stories. https://www.scubadiving.com/when-renting-scuba-gear-goes-wrong
It is poignant today that health risks can be real. When you dive with your own regulator you don't have to look at the mouth piece and fight off thought of where it's been. You don't have to think of snotty noses in the mask. You throw the mask on knowing it seals, and knowing the only nasty stuff that's been there is your nasty stuff.
What about maintenance. Rental gear is not always tagged and marked properly. It is also very possible that the person prior to you may have not reported an issue.
Both maintenance and cleanliness, not to mention age of equipment can be lumped into safety. When you learn to dive it takes a while and you are required to know many things. Why? For your safety. Your safety is the number one reason to own your own gear. The peace of mind means a lot. After all you’re there to enjoy yourself. Your safety is worth every penny if it were ten times the cost.
If you have never dived save for your certification, then you may find that the first plunge isn’t as smooth as you envisioned. Anxiety is high, strangers are watching and despite the fact that this doesn't matter, we are human, and it affects us. When you dive with your gear you have time to get used to it. This way the first “real” dive gives you a familiar friend by your side aside from your dive buddy. That is your recognizable and calming dive gear. Bad dives can be a stike system. New activity (stike one), Pressure to perform (strike two), unfamiliar dive gear (strike three). Give yourself a chance for the perfect dive at the perfect destination.
Sure dive gear costs. You may want to buy products that are subjective items first. That is things that fit your taste and fit. These include a dive mask, BCD, and fins. If you have to rent, rent objective products that you don't have to worry about sterility. These include go/no go products like dive computers. They work or they don't. Check it before you dive.
At Indigo, we believe that owning your own equipment is the best choice. Sure we sell gear, but we also acknowledge safety, logic and reason. We also know that great gear doesn't have to cost a fortune and we have options that are rock solid product for a reasonable price. For 2020 we set a goal to tackle the issue of dive gear travel. We launched a couple of travel BCD’s, BZ- Traveler and Paul de Gelder Bionic AF Travel BCD. These are outstanding products at a reasonable price… but we want to do more.
We want to tackle the issue of people leaving their dive gear at home because of luggage cost. We are pleased to say we have found the solution. Indigo Industries Fleek Pac. The Fleek Pac converts your BCD (yes, other BCD’s not only Indigos) into a backpack that is airline compliant for carry-on. The Fleek Pac fits BCD, regulator, fins, boots, mask and snorkel. The comfortable and styling backpack design is durable and even allows you to carry a second backpack on both shoulders.
Indigo’s masks, from a quality, design, fit, and clarity perspective compete with any brand on the market… at any price. We set a reasonable price for the mask, at under $70.00 the ProVantage and ProVision masks are the best value out there. Plus those with glasses can purchase clip on readers for under 30 smackers.
Buying your gear is safer. You don't need to look into a mask and wonder about viruses, and nobody likes the thought of who’s nose was runny on the last dive. It means less time tinkering with gear and more time enjoying the dive and the bottom line is that is why you got into diving in the first place. You didn't spend this much time and money learning to dive to go out and fight worn out dive gear and battle illness. We would love to talk to you about reliable and cost effective options for outstanding dive gear. Give us ring at Indigo or drop us an email or message. We have solutions for almost any dive gear need.