Full Cave Diver Course

full cave diver course e-learning code

In the TDI Full Cave Diver course, you learn how to dive into more navigationally challenging cave systems safely.

During this portion of the course, you will learn advanced dive planning and gas management and navigate complex caves. Also, at this level, you begin to encounter restricted cave passageways.

The Full Cave Diver course expands your skills and knowledge from the TDI Intro to Cave diver level to prepare you for more complicated dives, including penetrating extensive distances in the cave with tricky navigation and negotiating restricted passages.

Here is where you learn how to plan more complex dives and enhance previously known skills to match new and more challenging situations. Greater distances require greater awareness as the physical and psychological challenges increase.

Cave divers can encounter intersections, jumps, gaps, circuits, and traverses. Complex navigation requires clean diving techniques and advanced referencing methods to avoid disorientation.

TDI Full Cave Diver Course

The Technical Diving International (TDI) Full Cave Diver program consists of three sections:

1. Cavern Diver:

TDI Cavern Diver Course in Mexico

TDI designed this course to develop the minimum skills and knowledge for cavern and overhead environment diving within the limits of light penetration; it also outlines specific hazards associated with cave diving. The intention of the cavern diver course is NOT to provide instruction for cave diving environments. This course aims to train divers in the proper planning, procedures, techniques, and cavern diving hazards.

Qualifications limits of Graduates:

1. Cavern diving within the natural light zone of the cavern entrance.

2. Maximum penetration is limited to 1/3 of a single diving cylinder or 1/6th if using double cylinders.

3. 61 linear meters / 200 linear feet from the surface.

4. 40 meters / 130 feet maximum depth.

5. No decompression diving.

6. No restrictions; no areas too small for two divers to pass side-by-side

7. Safety stops as appropriate or necessary.

8. Maintain a continuous guide-line.

9. Use proper cavern diving equipment.

10. Removal of dive gear within the overhead environment is not allowed at this level of training.

Upon completing this program, graduates are qualified to enroll in the TDI Introductory Cave Diver course.

Student Prerequisites:

1. Minimum age 18 (15 with parental consent).

2. Provide proof of an Open Water Scuba Diver certification.

3. Minimum of 25 logged dives.

Course Structure and Duration:

Water Execution:

At least four cavern dives at two different sites.


The TDI Cavern Diver course takes at least three days to complete.

2. Intro to Cave:

Intro to Cave Diving Course

This course is the introduction to the basic principles of cave diving utilizing a single primary guide-line. The TDI Introductory cave diving is the second level in developing safe cave diving techniques, directly building upon the cavern diver course. The intention of this Introduction is NOT to train divers for all facets of cave diving. The Intro to Cave course aims to perfect the Cavern Diving Program’s skills and learn additional techniques and procedures required for elementary cave dives.

Qualification limits of Graduates:

1. Single guide-line cave diving.

2. Maximum penetration is limited to1/3 of a single diving cylinder or 1/6th if using double cylinders.

3. 40 meters / 130 feet maximum depth.

4. No decompression diving.

5. Maintain a continuous guide-line.

6. Student divers must use proper cave diving equipment.

Upon completing this course, graduates are qualified to enroll in the TDI Full Cave Diver course.

Student Prerequisites:

1. Minimum age is 18 years old, or 15 with parental consent.

2. Provide proof of certification as a TDI Cavern Diver or equivalent.

Course Structure and Duration:

Water Execution:

1. At least six single guide-line cave dives in two different sites.


1. The TDI Introductory Cave Diver course takes a minimum of 4 days. (Cavern + Intro combined = 5 Days and 8 dives).

3. Full Cave Diver Course:

full cave diver course in mexican caves

This course is the third step of training in the series of the TDI’s Cave Diver development program. During this part, you learn Advanced cave dive planning, the practical execution of different types of cave systems, and possible scenarios cave divers can encounter. This course aims to practice and expand previous skills achieved in the TDI Cavern and Introductory Cave Diving programs. We emphasize dive planning and skill perfection through actual complex navigation cave dives and cave


Qualifications of Graduates:

1. Maximum penetration is limited to the 1/3 air rule.

2. 40 meters / 130 feet maximum depth.

3. No equipment removal in the cave.

4. Maintain a continuous guide-line.

5. Student divers must use proper cave diving gear.

6. No decompression diving.

7. Complex navigation cave dives planning and execution.

Student Prerequisites:

1. Minimum age 18

2. Minimum certification as a TDI Introductory Cave Diver or equivalent.

Course Structure and Duration:

Water execution:

1. At least eight cave dives at three different sites.

2. For divers entering the cave program without the TDI cavern diver or Intro to Cave Diving certification, 16 cave dives are required.


1. The TDI Full Cave Diver portion of the course takes a minimum of 5 days. (TDI Cavern + Intro to Cave + Full Cave Diver = 8 Days).

Each student must have the following equipment:

1. Two single cylinders for Sidemount Diving limited to the 1/6 air rule.

2. Two regulators with pressure gauge and alternate air source on a 2 meters / 7 feet hose.

3. Buoyancy compensator device (BCD) with a power inflator.

4. Exposure suit adequate for cavern environment (minimum 5mm with hood).

5. Mask and fins, NO snorkel.

6. Two line cutting devices.

7. Safety reel with a minimum of 37 meters / 125 feet of guide-line.

8. One primary reel.

9. One primary/main light and two backups.

10. Two dive computers or one computer and a bottom timer and depth gauge.

11. Wrist slate and pencil.

13. Three directional line arrows and three non-directional line markers.

Required Skill Performance and Graduation Requirements:

  • Adequate pre-dive planning.
  • Perform equipment checks and gear matching.
  • Bubble checks.
  • Use specialized propulsion techniques.
  • Proper buoyancy control.
  • Exhibit proper body posture (Trim).
  • Demonstrate accurate stress analysis (detection and management).
  • Properly deploy and follow a guide-line with eyes open and closed, simulating a visibility loss.
  • Share air with a buddy with eyes open, following the guide-line.
  • Share air with a buddy with eyes closed using touch contact communication while following the guide-line.
  • Remove and replace the dive mask while keeping contact with the guide-line.
  • Demonstrate light/hand -signals and touch contact.
  • Show proper use of directional and non-directional markers.
  • Use of safety reel in lost diver procedures.
  • Use of safety reel in a lost line drill.

Before enrolling in a TDI Full Cave Diver course, we recommended taking a Sidemount Diver Course and be proficient using this configuration or take the Sidemount Diver course in conjunction with the Overhead Environments Training. 

You can combine this course with other TDI courses such as Advanced Nitrox and Decompression Procedures.

Full Cave Diver

TDI Full Cave Diver Course


USD 250 a day

The TDI Full Cave Diver course takes a minimum of four days


Cavern + Intro to Cave + Full Cave Diver = 8 Days

Sidemount Diver + Cavern + Intro to Cave + Full Cave Diver = 9 Days


Transportation from the Center of Playa del Carmen.

The training program includes academic presentations, land-drills, confined water sessions, and a minimum of 6 Cave Dives.

Student e-learning code. (We will send you the code as soon as we receive the reservation deposit).

NOT Included

Cenote entrance fees (Avg. 300 Mexican Pesos). These fees must be paid in Mexican cash at the entrance of the Cenote. 

Certification fees USD 35

All technical diving courses start in a shallow open water Cenote!
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