Surface marker buoys (SMBs) allow scuba divers to mark boundaries for mapping or search and recovery, alert boat traffic, or provide a line as a visual reference for ascending divers. During two dives, learn the proper techniques and protocols for using surface marker buoys and delayed surface marker buoys (DSMBs) in the local area..

The Training

The PADI Surface Marker Buoy course includes two parts: 

  • Knowledge Development – Starting off with a classroom session, an instructor will take you through the different types of SMBs and reels available and the purpose and safety considerations key to correctly deploying an SMB from depth.
  • Open Water Dives – Over the course of a day you will conduct 2 open water dives with an instructor practising the following and more whilst you discover a whole new diving experience:
    • SMB and reel setup 
    • Use of an SMB for mapping and marking
    • 4 different techniques for SMB deployment
    • Emergency drills for runaway SMBs and reels


    • Age: 12 years old and above
    • PADI Open Water Diver and above, or equivalent, from an alternative agency
    • Good physical health – You will need to fill out a self certification medical statement. If you have any medical conditions you think may prevent you from scuba diving please feel free to contact us




  • 2 open water dives
  • Certification
  • Transport to and from dive sites
  • 10% off Aqua Lung and APEKS dive accessories
  • Lifetime membership of the Wreckheads Club

Time commitment

1 day