Diving with… Will Stratford – Survival Dive Stop, Pernera, Cyprus

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In this ongoing series, we speak to the people who run dive centres, resorts and liveaboards from around the world about their businesses and the diving they have to offer…


What is your name?

Will Stratford

What is the name of your business?

Survival Dive Stop

What is your role within the business?

I’m the diving operations manager and the main instructor at Survival Dive Stop. I’m responsible for organising all dive activities at the centre and ensuring that all of our customers have an exceptional time.

How long has the business operated for?

Survival Sports have been operating for nearly 30 years. The diving part of the operation was fully established in 2011.

How long have you dived for, and what qualification are you?

I have been diving since I was 11 and have now been diving for 25 years. I became a professional diver in 2000. Since then I have travelled to various parts of the world before owning an inland dive centre in the UK. I moved back to Cyprus in 2017. I mainly teach PADI courses and have been a PADI IDC staff instructor since 2008. I also teach BSAC, and PSAI for Technical diving.

What is your favourite type of diving?

I love all types of diving whether I’m guiding, instructing or just pleasure diving. Every dive with Survival Dive Stop is an adventure.

If you could tell people one thing about your business (or maybe more!) to make them want to visit you what would it be?

Survival Dive Stop aren’t just a business. We are friends to all our customers. Our friendly, relaxed, chilled dive centre keeps people coming back to us time after time. We are one of the only centres with our own on-site pool – great for confined water training. Divers aren’t just a number to us, they are a personal friend.

What is your favourite dive in your location and why?

Simple, it has to be the Zenobia. Why? The Zenobia is rated as one of the top five wrecks in the world and we are fortunate enough to be only 45 minutes away. The wreck offers something for every level of diver, from people doing their first wreck dive to the most experienced Technical wreck divers. Diving on the Zenobia is guaranteed to make every diver smile.

What types of diving are available in your location?

Whatever your request! The dive team at Survival Dive Stop will do their upmost to accommodate your requirements. We offer highly competitive guided diving, PADI & NAUI courses from complete beginner to Instructor in-house, also Technical training and diving. We are also one of the only companies in Cyprus offering inclusive dive & stay packages at exceptional prices.

What do you find most rewarding about your current role?

I love every aspect of being a Scuba instructor – it is definitely a cool job to have. I get to do something I love and earn a living from it. What’s not to love! I have to say, though, even after all these years, seeing the smiles on divers’ faces or getting a diver over a problem on a course still gives me a great feeling.

What is your favourite underwater creature?

It has to be either the Loggerhead or Green turtles. Both of which are commonly spotted on our local dive sites. Just sitting watching them is an amazing experience. At one of our dive sites the turtles are super tame and you can interact with them in their natural habitat for a truly unique experience.

Are there any exciting changes / developments coming up in the near future?

At the moment there are no big developments at Survival Dive Stop; although we are always striving to better ourselves and work hard to ensure we exceed customers expectations, time after time.

As a center what is the biggest problem you face at the moment?

Thankfully unlike other popular dive destinations, Cyprus doesn’t have any issues or travel restrictions. This makes Cyprus an attractive alternative to any off-limits destination.

Is your center involved in any environmental work?

Yes, Survival Dive Stop regularly participates in beach clean-ups, and actively promotes PADI Project AWARE. We also try to educate tourists and party boat operators the damage that they can cause when discarding unwanted rubbish into the sea.

How do you see the SCUBA / Free diving / snorkelling industry overall? What changes would you make?

Overall, the Scuba and various parts of the dive industry are in a good state. Training organisations are generally moving with the times and are introducing new programs and revamping existing ones. I’m not going to get into the politics of diving as Scuba diving is meant to be fun and enjoyable.

What would you say to our visitors to promote the diving you have to offer?

As a diver do you want to dive in a relaxed friendly environment? If so, then Survival Dive Stop can guarantee you an exceptional diving holiday. With our superb value dive and stay packages starting from just €395 including 6 local shore dives and 7 nights self catering accommodation, it’s excellent value as well. Our team will tailor make a dive package to accommodate your needs and requirements.

Where can our visitors find out more about your business?

www.survivalbuddies.com

Email: divestop@survivalbuddies.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/survival.protaras

Team Scubaverse

Team Scubaverse

Team Scubaverse manages the Scubaverse website

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