PADI Rescue Diver Course


Add to your dive qualifications with a PADI Rescue Diver certification through our five-star PADI Dive Centre in Cairns, gateway to the world famous Great Barrier Reef.

As a PADI Rescue Diver you’ll learn to prevent and manage incidents, sharpen your observation skills and help others avoid problems, becoming a safer, more confident diver.

The PADI Rescue Diver course is divided into three sections: Knowledge development, Skill development and Practical application. All three sections will be completed under the professional supervision and guidance of your Divers Den PADI Instructor.

Once you’ve developed your Rescue Diver knowledge at our training centre, it’s time to set off on a two-day one-night experience on our liveaboard vessel OceanQuest. Here you’ll be expertly guided through the practical scenarios out in the open water of the Great Barrier Reef.

The exact dive schedule during your experience will vary depending on instructor availability. All rescue skills are taught to a COVID safe standard in accordance with PADI guidelines.

If you don’t have a valid First Aid/CPR certificate, you can begin the PADI-endorsed Emergency First Response (EFR) course on your first day with us. Please contact us for details.


Upcoming courses: 8 August, 8 September, 8 October, 21 November and beyond


4 days

Course Outline:

2 days pool & theory, then a 2 day/1 night liveaboard


  • All required PADI materials
  • All dive and snorkel equipment, including air fills
  • Course tuition
  • Two sessions in our heated pool
  • Fresh chilled water, tea and coffee
  • Chef-prepared meals on board OceanQuest
  • Twin shared cabins with en suite bathroom
  • Two outer reef locations per day
  • Meals while at sea
  • Sharks in the Dark snorkel experience

Book now

4 Day Rescue Diver Course (Incl. 2 Day/1 Night Liveaboard)

Twin Cabin per person
Double Cabin per person

​Includes all equipment and tuition. Prices valid to 31 March 2023. Price is per person and includes all applicable fees, taxes and levies. Locals discount not valid for optional extras.


Rescue Diver Course: 2 Day/1 Night Liveaboard

Day 1 (Monday)

9am: Complete paperwork and familiarisation at our Dive Training Centre. You’ll spend your first day on classroom learning, with theory sessions in the morning.

Lunch is not included, but you can bring a packed lunch, or there are plenty of places to eat near by.

End the day with pool sessions covering skills like self-rescue reviews, tired and panicked divers, and divers in trouble underwater.

4.30pm: Course finishes for the day

Day 2 (Tuesday)

9am: Finish your theory in the morning and sit your final exam. After lunch we will continue with more pool training, covering unconscious divers on the surface, exits, first aid and oxygen use.

In the afternoon, fine-tune your rescue skills in the pool.

Day 3 (Wednesday)

Remember to bring your overnight bag today, because you’re off to the Great Barrier Reef!

7.30-8am: Pick up from your central city accommodation or our dive centre, before transferring to the marina

8.30am: Set off from Cairns Marina on board OceanQuest, our liveaboard vessel. After boarding you will be allocated your cabin. As we cruise to the outer reef you’ll receive dive briefings and complete assignment work with your instructor.

10am: Arrive at the reef for your first dive session

12pm: Enjoy lunch and a rest to log your dives and catch up with your fellow student divers while we move to our second dive site

3pm: Afternoon dive session

6pm: Dinner is served

6.30pm: Enjoy our exclusive Sharks in the Dark experience!

8pm: Dessert

10pm: Bar closes

Day 4 (Thursday)

7.30am: Prepare for the day with a full cooked breakfast.

8.30am: Dive session

10.30am: Last dive session, with final rescue scenarios

12pm: Check out of your cabin

12.30pm: Time for lunch! After lunch, you’ll have rest time to work on your dive logs, finalise your paperwork and emergency assistance plans – congratulations, you’re now a certified Rescue Diver!

2.30pm: Our transfer vessel arrives to return you to Cairns

3pm: Depart outer reef

5pm (approx): Return to Cairns. On arrival we’ll offer a complimentary luggage and dive gear drop off to your hotel and dive centre.

Additional info

Prerequisites and forms

  • Minimum age 12 (12-14 year olds receive Junior PADI Rescue Diver certification, 15 and above receive adult Rescue Diver certification)
  • PADI Advanced Open Water Diver or equivalent certification – if certified by any other agency, you need 20 logged dives to start this course
  • First Aid certificate valid within 24 months
  • Completed Self Assessed Medical Declaration



  • First aid / EFR certificate (HLT Workplace First Aid recommended, or EFR course can be inducted at additional cost)
  • Personal CPR pocket mask – available at our shop
  • Snacks and beverages
  • Photo purchases
  • Digital camera hire
  • Quality souvenirs

What to bring

  • Hat, sunglasses and sunscreen
  • Swimsuit and towel
  • Cert card and logbook
  • Please supply your own personal CPR pocket mask for COVID safety


Medical and altitude information

All scuba participants must meet medical questionnaire requirements. Some conditions or medications may prevent you from diving.

Currently the rules state that for a single no decompression dive, you should not fly/go to altitude for at least 12 hours, or 18 hours after multiple dives. Divers Den recommends waiting a minimum 24 hours whenever possible. These are guidelines only, there is no guarantee that these recommendations will prevent decompression sickness. There are no current guidelines regarding diving after flying.

Altitude is defined as 300m/1000ft above sea level. Certain other tourist attractions around Cairns and Tropical North Queensland involve travelling to altitude. These include the Atherton Tablelands and the Skyrail Rainforest Cableway, so we recommend a gap between booking these experiences and any dive course or trip. Under normal circumstances, you should be out of the water on your last dive by 12.30pm on our overnight trips, and 2pm on our day trips.