Posted by kelphead on November 21, 2000 at 15:41:04:
In Reply to: What's wrong with dive industry economics? posted by Kendall Raine on November 21, 2000 at 10:24:02:
"By contrast, an hour of ski class time costs $40-$80."
yeah, but isn't an hour all that is needed to learn
to ski? i remember taking a skiing class at mammoth,
but it didn't take long and i wasn't training to
be in the 'olympics'. so, if it only takes an
hour to learn the basics, then that ski instructor
only sees that 40$-80$ once per student. a class
of ten students, say, and he's made 400$-800$.
"An entry level sky diving cert. costs upwards of $1500."
i'm not a skydiver, but i would take a wild guess
(please correct me if i'm wrong) that a good portion
of that $$ might go to insurance, since sky diving
is considered so dangerous (even more dangerous
than scuba diving?) and to plane fuel--how many
times does a student have to take a plane ride
during the certification course? and plane fuel
is not cheap, is it?
now, if we compare the scuba diving course cost
to a ski course, say 200$ per student for scuba
diving and a class of ten people, the scuba
course will net 2000$ while the cost for
ski instruction at 80$ per student will net
800$. so, the scuba course will net more
than the ski course you quoted, but i admit
that i don't know how much of the total amount
gained is profit and how much is overhead cost.
re:'padi' having a chokehold on the industry,
well, how did it basically monopolize the
industry? was it just better at its 'job'
than the other agencies? (bill gates comes
to mind as well.) isn't profitability
always the name of the game here in the u.s.,
quality be damned? if so, then there's nothing
new in this story, just the same consistency as
in other industries. why should anyone be surprised...?...
last but not least, could the fact that the diving
industry is so small have anything to do
w/the dollar game? scuba diving is not mainstream--
heck, you may even have more SKY divers and bungee
jumpers than scuba divers, and if so, what are
the players involved to do in order to try to
enlarge their customer base? reducing instruction
cost is probably the way to go in order to attract
more people to a small industry. if dive gear
mfg's aren't going to reduce their cost, perhaps
certifying agencies are taking it upon themselves
to try to increase the customer base by lowering
their own costs as well as by certifying individuals
at younger ages.
again, i'm no expert in this field, but i thought
i would throw out what i, as a consumer, am thinking.
it really is no surprise to me that a bunch of
people put quantity before quality (what's new
about that?), but i think that b/c of the complexity
of the sport many divers are disgusted by the
'cheap' tactics, and rightly so; however, diving is,
after all is said and done, a business--like any
other business. no one who is on the other side
of the counter is doing this solely for altruistic
reasons or to spread joy to the world.
it always comes back down to 'consumer beware'.
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