PADI Open Water Scuba Certification

If you're interested in scuba diving lessons in the Sacramento area, you found the right place! We are Sacramento's only PADI Dive Center and California's only scuba training center with 100% 5-star Yelp ratings.  As an authorized PADI Dive Center, this certification means we stand out for training divers from beginners to the professional level.  Wouldn't you want to learn to dive from seasoned professionals?  At Sac City Scuba, our expert instructional staff has been training divers for decades!

Steps to Scuba Certification

1. Academics

First you will complete your academics via either a take home workbook and video or PADI's online training program (PADI eLearning*).  Either way,  you can complete the academics in a self-study format at your own pace when it is convenient for you.  Workbook/video learners will attend an academic classroom session with one of our instructors to have thier homework checked and quizzes administered. ELearners do not need to attend the academic session prior to the pool training as thier quizzes and exams are administered online. ELearners only need to email or printout and bring to class their eLearning results. Most students report the academics/eLearning to take between 6 and 10 hours to complete. Some students may take longer. Minimum age: 10.

*Additional Fee

2. Pool Training (Confined Water Dives)

Once you complete your academics you can begin your pool training in a heated pool. Your instructor will put into practice the techniques you learned in the academics program. Your two pool training sessions will be  logged and approved by your instructor before you move on to the open water "check out" dives.  You can either do the dives with us in Monterey, Lakes Folsom or Tahoe, or arrange to complete the dives at a tropical destination of your choosing.  The latter is called an "open water referral" and since we are PADI, every dive shop in the world will accept our referral paperwork without question or confusion. This is not true for any of the other certification agencies. Minimum age: 10.*

All students must complete an un-timed 200m swim, any style, unaided (goggles ok, no scuba mask) and a 10 minute tread water/float. You do not have to be a strong swimmer to scuba dive, but the sport takes place in and around water therefore you must show competency in swimming so that in case, for example, you were to fall off the boat.


3. Open Water Dives

Get ready to experience everything you've learned with the freedom of open water!  Once you complete you two pool training sessions, you have the option to do the "check out" open water dives with us or in a tropical destination of your choice.As soon as your open water training dives are approved by your instructor you will be a certified PADI Open Water Diver! The four "checkout dives" are typically conducted over two weekend days in Monterey, Folsom Lake, or Lake Tahoe, though many students prefer to do them in tropical waters in which case we issue a "referral form" documenting the academics and pool are completed. Divers then take this to any instructor or dive shop in the world to complete their open water dives. A referral form is valid for one year. Recommended ages for California open water dives: 13 and up. *  Referrals to warm water: 10 and up.

The average student can complete the pool training in the two sessions. Additional sessions may be added at a discounted fee of $50/session.

*Students ages 10-14 will receive a PADI Junior Open Water certification. Certified divers aged 10 and 11 are restricted to a depth no greater than 40ft regardless of experience and must buddy with an active, in teaching status instructor, divemaster or certified parent/legal guardian. Those 12-14 may eventually with proper training and experience dive to a maximum depth of 70ft and must buddy with a certified adult 18 or over. A diver the age of 15 or older is considered an "adult" certification, however 15 and 16 year old's can not buddy with someone under 15 without a certified adult buddy present. 


An important note on gear:  The major pieces of scuba gear can be rented but it is imperative each student have their own personal gear; mask, snorkel, fins, booties, and (if you do your checkout dives in temperate water) gloves. We offer these items for sale discounted for students with packages starting at around $170. This is not something you want to buy cheap, borrow or buy sight-unseen off the internet. It is not just "snorkeling gear", it is part of your life support system. Not to put too fine a point on it , but losing your vision or propulsion while on scuba due to faulty or ill fitting gear can be life threatening. Make sure you are fitted by one of our dive professionals to give you the best possible chance for success. We price match any authorized online retailers and have a fit guarantee. If your mask doesn't fit, we will keep trying different ones until we find one that does! Safety is our #1 priority.

Open Water Course Dates 2019

(Academic sessions optional for eLearners)

OWC #2019-003:
Academics Session: Wednesday Nov 27th 6:30pm to 9:30pm
Pool Session : (One day Course) Saturday Nov 30th ~11 am to 5pm

OWC #2019-004:
Academics Session: Thursday Dec 5th 6:30pm to 9:30pm
Pool Session 1: Saturday Dec 7th ~8am to 1pm
Pool Session 2: Sunday Dec 8th ~8am to 1pm

OWC #2019-005:
(weekday evening class)
Academic Session Tuesday Dec 10th 6:30pm to 9:30pm
Pool Session 1: Thursday Dec 12th 7pm to 10pm
Pool Session 2: Tuesday Dec 17th 730pm to 10pm
Pool Session 3 (if needed) Tuesday: Dec 19th 7:30pm to 10pm

OWC 2019-006:
Academic Session: Friday Dec 20th 6:30pm to 9:30pm
Pool Session 1: Saturday Dec 21st ~8am to 1pm
Pool Session 2: Sunday Dec 22nd ~8am to 1pm

Open Water Course Dates 2020

OWC 2020-001:
Academic Session: Thursday Jan 2nd 6:30pm to 9:30pm
Pool Session 1: Saturday Jan  4th ~8am to 1pm
Pool Session 2: Sunday Jan 5th ~8am to 1pm

OWC 2020-002:
Academic Session: Thursday Jan 16th 6:30pm to 9:30pm
Pool Session 1: Saturday Jan 18th ~8am to 1pm
Pool Session 2: Sunday Jan 19th ~8am to 1pm

OWC 2020-003:
Academic Session: Thursday Jan 30th 6:30pm to 9:30pm
Pool Session 1: Saturday Feb 1st ~8am to 1pm
Pool Session 2: Sunday Feb 2nd ~8am to 1pm

More to come

*Exact times may vary   


 You have two academic options:

Academic Option A:

Required: PADI Open Water Crew-Pak. Each student needs their own. Includes a workbook and dive log. May also be purchased in-store. Workbook to be completed before pool session.  $89.

To purchase your PADI Open Water Course Crewpack:

Click Here

Required: PADI Open Water DVD. Each student must view. One per family. Returnable after class for full refund. $49

To purchase your returnable PADI Open Water Course DVD:

Click Here



Academic Option B:

eLearning (online course) All academic, videos, quizzes and the final exam will be completed online. Continuous internet connection needed; $179

To purchase PADI Open Water Course eLearning:

Click Here



Course Tuition: $99

No matter which session you use, to pick your dates and pay the course tuition:

Click Here




Special All-In-One Discount:

Academics, Pool, Open Water Dives, Gear rental, and Certification Fee. Save money and buy all at once: Normally $475 Discounted to $429.

Click Here

to purchase the all-in-one discounted PADI Open Water Course*


*Does not include personal gear: Mask, snorkel, fins and booties. Visit our training center to be professional fitted. We have a fit and price guarantee. Please do not buy these sight-unseen off the internet. This is not just "snorkeling gear", it's part of your life support equipment. Most students end up buying a second set when they realize that the fit is not right or the quality sub standard.  You do not want to have issues with your sight or propulsion during a dive.

Open Water Course Open Water Dive Dates

Ocean “check out" dives.

4 dives over 2 days.


Sat & Sun Dec 14th & 15th
Sat & Sun Jan 11th & 12th


Purchase the PADI Open Water Course Ocean Dives here:

Click Here for to reserve your ocean dates: $99

Please download and read the PADI Medical Waiver to determine if you need to have a doctor sign you off prior to participating in SCUBA activities.

Click Here

Refer to our FAQ for our cancellation policy.

Considering the internet for your personal gear?
Support a local business
Before you consider any internet purchase of dive equipment, please check with us first.  We compare very favorably with any internet site, and feature the added benefits of the same or better pricing, hands-on evaluation and product comparisons, expert advice, assembly & inspection, fitting, warranty activation, parts-for-life programs where applicable, test diving the equipment in our pool, and future repair. We offer a fit guarantee. If you are not happy with your gear during the pool session, you can exchange it for full value. 

What's next?

Once you've become a PADI Open Water Diver, your education is just beginning.  Why not take on a new challenge with PADI Advanced Open Water Diver? If you did a warm water referral and would like to be able to dive in the temperate waters of California, the Advanced Open Water Course is one way to convert your warm water certification to a temperate water certification! And don't forget, the PADI Advanced Open Water Course counts towards your specialty and PADI Master Scuba Diver rating!

PADI Advanced Open Water