The Buddy SYstem

Always dive with a buddy. The Buddy system is developed to improve diver survival across a range of situations.


Buddy Diving can save you during catastrophic gear failure, out-of-air emergencies, entanglement, disorientation including but not restricted to cave and wreck diving, and underwater medical emergencies.

As a rule, the buddy system applies to pairs of divers. Even when diving in groups, members of the group should always pair up.

  • Both divers should be fit to dive the conditions
  • A dive plan should be formulated and agreed on including provisions for separation
  • All gear and equipment should be checked before entering the water
  • Both divers should be familiar with the operation of each other equipment
  • Both divers should be aware of their responsibility to assist the other diver in an emergency
  • Divers need to maintain a degree of contact throughout the dive
  • Divers should ascend together whenever possible
  • Always tell a third party about your dive trip - preferably someone shore-based


New Zealand Underwater would be delighted to help you find a dive buddy. The best place to start would be to make contact with one of our member clubs.

Request a list of NZUA Member Clubs