PADI Dive Instructor Course in Thailand

Learn to become a PADI Diving Instructor on Koh Tao

IDC Koh Tao is a part of the Black Turtle Dive pro level training team with three PADI Course Directors being led by Award Winning PADI Course Director Matt Bolton.

Our full range of pro and recreational PADI Diving Courses provides aspiring scuba divers with education, fun, excitement, adventure, and a change of lifestyle or an opportunity to pursue a new career.

Koh Tao’s most experienced PADI Course Director Matt Bolton welcomes you to the beautiful island of Koh Tao, the center of Thailand’s scuba diving industry and the world’s premier diver training location.

Choosing a Scuba Diving course on Koh Tao with our highly professional and experienced team, allows you to explore and discover the diverse and amazing marine environment surrounding our tropical island.

Marine conservation is at the heart of our diver training philosophy, and we partner with Black Turtle Conservation and Eco Koh Tao, as we believe in educating our divers to protect and preserve our ocean ecosystems.

As an aspiring scuba instructor, after completing your PADI Dive Instructor Course with us, you have a license to work anywhere in the world. IDC Koh Tao offers you the opportunity for a complete change of career along with the lifestyle you have dreamed of.

For over 20 years, Matt has been teaching and diving on Koh Tao and is one of the world’s most experienced PADI Course Directors. Matt has trained thousands of PADI Instructors & PADI Divemasters and over 20 PADI Course Directors and PADI staff.

Matt’s achievements have been recognised by PADI on many occasions. He has been awarded the ‘Platinum’ Course Director rating every year since PADI introduced the program. This award recognises a Course Directors teaching experience during the previous year.

Matt is the only Koh Tao based Course Director to have been recognised by PADI for “Outstanding Achievement & Commitment to Instructor Development”.

This is an award he has won 3 times for his cutting edge diving instructor courses and it is the only PADI IDC that is conducted Neutrally buoyant with a program that is full of additional workshops and training sessions.

His unique full Divemaster Internship and Instructor Internship programs have also been awarded the “Diver Trainer” award for “Outstanding achievements in relation to raising the standards in the field of Diver Training’. They are packed full of extra’s including a marine conservation module and a real life working internship.

Get off to the best possible start in your diving career by joining Matt and his award winning team of highly experienced Course Directors and Master Instructors, and book your PADI Divemaster Course, PADI IDC or an extended and flexible Scuba Diving Internship.

Our 5 Star Award Winning PADI Career Development Center (CDC) provides you with the highest standards in diver training whilst preparing you for prospective real world employment.

Read More


Featured Content

Diving Instructor Specialty Courses


Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best Dive Instructor course in Thailand?

IDC Koh Tao is led by Matt Bolton and offers candidates the most innovative and complete Instructor Development course, ensuring you get a perfect start to your dive career.

Teaching above and beyond the PADI standards, all skill circuits are taught neutrally buoyant.

There are additional classroom workshops including social media, online marketing for dive professionals and how to prepare a dive resume to help you stand out to customers and prospective employers.

Additionally, there are extra in-water workshops. In Confined Water there is a Rescue Diver course skills circuit and in Open Water there are descent, ascent & CESA workshops.

Matt offers a pass guarantee such is his confidence in the program based on teaching dive professionals for 20 years.

Where is the best Dive Instructor course in Thailand?

The best place to complete your PADI Instructor Development Course is Koh Tao.

A remote tropical island that is easily accessible, enjoys all year diving, great facilities, world class dive centres and the most experienced PADI Course Directors in the world.

The island has an abundance of marine life and over 25 really good dive sites for all levels of diver training.

There are currently industry leading dive professionals including PADI staff located all around the world, who completed their initial diver training in Koh Tao.

Are Diving Instructor courses cheaper in Thailand?

The Diving Instructor course in Thailand is extremely competitively priced and excellent value for money.

The Instructor Development Course is 41,900baht with the IDC Koh Tao team. This is a 14-day program including IDC Prep course, the EFR instructor course and the full Instructor course conducted on beautiful Koh Tao.

You will also need to invest in the PADI IDC crew pack which is 25,000baht including the EFR Instructor manual sold separately at 4,000baht.

There are also PADI fees that you pay directly. For 2024 they are:

  • PADI Instructor Exam – $AUS 1,120
  • PADI Instructor Application – $AUS 331
  • EFR Instructor Application – $AUS 228

Total: AUD$ 1,679

Prospective candidates may want to consider our all inclusive Diving Instructor Internships.

Living costs are cheap. On Koh Tao you can secure a 1-month accommodation deal for as little as 7,000baht (200 Euros). Food is also great value and very tasty, especially the Thai food.

Expect to spend 350baht (10 Euro) a day on food.

How can I find work as a Diving Instructor in Thailand?

The Thailand Diving Industry is well developed and services large numbers of scuba divers every year requiring a significant number of well-trained Dive Instructors and Divemasters.

This provides fantastic employment opportunities for enthusiastic dive professionals with the right attitude and skill set to succeed.

Choosing the right PADI Course Director and facility to complete your professional level training is very important.

IDC Koh Tao is the preeminent Professional level scuba diving training team in Thailand.

With over 20 years at the forefront of the industry their program is of the highest quality and is excellent preparation for a career in the diving industry.

The standard of Divemaster and IDC training in Thailand varies greatly.

Look for Pro level training that offers experience, innovation with additional presentations and workshops focused on developing your abilities as a dive professional, educator and marketer.

Thailand is one of the most popular countries in the world for people to learn to scuba dive with a huge variety of dive sites in the Indian ocean on the west coast and the Gulf of Thailand on the east coast.

What is the best IDC to do in Thailand?

IDC Koh Tao led by successful PADI Course Director Matt Bolton is the most extensive and progressive IDC on Koh Tao.

This award winning program includes lots of additional training sessions, workshops and seminars for aspiring dive professionals.

Extra’s include water skill development, online marketing, sales techniques, customer service skills and much more to help make successful candidates more employable.

Koh Tao offers the best IDC for many reasons.

The small tropical island offers a year round diving season, easy access to lots of dive sites, world famous dive centres and some of the most experienced Diving Instructors in the world.

Is it easy to become a Diving Instructor in Thailand?

Becoming a PADI Diving Instructor in Thailand will take a minimum of 6 months from the day you become an Open Water diver.

Koh Tao offers a 12 month diving season with the chance to dive 5 times a day, so the experience you gain is extensive during the 6 months from non-diver to PADI Instructor on this beautiful island.

You will need to complete the following courses:

  • Open Water course
  • Advanced Open Water course
  • Rescue Diver course
  • EFR course
  • Divemaster course

This takes on average 6-10 weeks and is dependent on how intensive you want the course to be.

There are lots of employment opportunities for a Divemaster on Koh Tao whilst you are waiting to become eligible to enrol on the IDC and with the right attitude you can easily find work as a PADI Divemaster.

To enrol on the Diving Instructor course you need to have been an Open Water diver for 6 months and have a minimum of 100 logged dives.

What is the PADI Dive Instructor course in Thailand?

The PADI Dive Instructor course in Thailand is designed to teach a Divemaster how to safely teach scuba divers using the PADI system of education.

The course introduces training standards, theory and practical teaching techniques for use in the Classroom, Confined Water and Open Water.

There are also presentations for candidates on each specific PADI course you will be certified to teach.

Some of the subjects covered are Dive Theory for Dive Leaders, Risk Management and Legal Considerations, Quality Management and The Business of Diving.

The PADI Instructor Development Course (IDC) is scheduled over 14 days on Koh Tao.

The Instructor Examination (PADI IE) is conducted by PADI staff and is taken over 2 days and follows on immediately from the 14-day Dive Instructor course (IDC).

Upon successful completion of the PADI IE, successful candidates are certified as PADI Open Water Scuba Instructors (OWSI).

An OWSI rated Dive Instructor is qualified to teach all levels of PADI divers from Discover Scuba Diving through to teaching the Divemaster course.

The PADI Dive Instructor course is the most recognized scuba diving instructor course in the world. PADI Instructors are the most sought after and employable in the diving industry.

Koh Tao is at the heart of the world’s scuba diving industry and certifies more divers and dive professionals than any other single location in the world.

Therefore, competition is strong and the quality and standards of the dive courses on Koh Tao are extremely high.

Can I teach as soon as I pass my Dive Instructor course in Thailand?

Once you have successfully completed the PADI Instructor Development Course you are eligible to enrol on an Instructor Examination (PADI IE).

PADI Instructor Examinations are conducted independently by PADI staff and schedules vary around the world.

On Koh Tao there is a PADI Instructor Examination every month with dates fixed at the beginning of the year.

IDC Koh Tao offers a 14-day Instructor Development Course every month scheduled to lead straight into the Instructor Examination.

Once you have successfully completed the Instructor Examination the PADI examiner will send the paperwork to PADI HQ and your teaching status will be processed.

PADI will email you to congratulate you on becoming an Open Water Scuba Instructor (OWSI). You can then start to teach immediately.

Many new OWSI rated Dive Instructors will then enrol on an MSDT program that includes a team teaching module.

MSDT allows you to gain valuable experience teaching alongside more experienced Instructors, applying the teaching techniques you learned on your IDC as you build your confidence and competence teaching real students.

Why you should do your Dive Instructor course on Koh Tao?

Koh Tao is the best place in the world for you to complete your Dive Instructor training and Instructor Development course.

Instructor courses are scheduled every month on Koh Tao and taught by some of the most experienced Course Directors in the world.

The training standards and quality of professional level training you can expect on Koh Tao is of the highest calibre.

The facilities on Koh Tao are excellent, with some of the most reputable and established PADI 5 Star Instructor Development Centres in the world.

The island offers scuba diving all year with perfect environmental conditions for most of the time and very easy access to almost 30 dive sites.

Koh Tao is an ideal location if you want to learn, train and gain employment after becoming a Dive Instructor with a plethora of career opportunities.

As a PADI Diving Instructor, Koh Tao offers continued training courses in addition to teaching and you can achieve your most ambitious career aspirations and goals.

Aside from the diver training, Koh Tao provides you with a simplistic yet rewarding lifestyle, within an amazingly picturesque tropical island location.

Do I need to prepare for my IDC in Thailand?

The new and revised IDC program includes an entire e-learning section that can be completed prior to day 1 of the IDC.

During the IDC your PADI Course Director will be presenting a variety of curriculum modules during classroom sessions.

As a candidate you must complete the corresponding IDC e-learning portion before attending the classroom presentation.

Independent study is a fantastic tool that we use throughout the PADI system.

Other tips to prepare for your IDC include reading the Instructor level dive theory in the Encyclopedia of recreational diving manual you received during the Divemaster course.

Another great way to prepare for an IDC is to get in the water and dive, specifically work on your demonstration skills.

IDC Koh Tao offers a 2 day IDC Prep course.

The course focuses on each theory subject that you will be evaluated on during your Instructor examinations; Physics, Physiology, Equipment, decompression theory and skills and the environment.

The Prep course also includes 2 skill circuits consisting of the 24 basic Open Water skills and skills from the Rescue Diver course.