In this series we will be helping you get to know our valued team and understanding who is best placed to help you identify your perfect holiday.
Meet Dave Simkiss. Trained Dive Guide and world traveller, Dave has been part of the Blue Bay family for 8 years. Having always been drawn to the water, a keen interest in aquatic life led him to try snorkeling in Israel and a lifelong love was born.
Gaining qualification in the form of his PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors) Open Water Entry-Level Course whilst on holiday in Kenya in 1992, opened a world of opportunity. “Whilst on holiday in the Maldives a dive guide fell ill, and I stepped in and helped for the remainder of the trip. I was then invited back on various occasions over the next 2 years to work and live on the dive safari boats,” said Dave.
We asked Dave - how has this experience benefited you in your job as a travel agent?
Living in the Maldives for lengthy periods of time means I know the climate and people very well. It has given me a unique view of the Maldivian atolls and islands and I know which are best suited to diving and which ones are better suited to holidaymakers.
What do you like about working for Blue Bay Travel?
I love nothing more than using my expert knowledge to understand my clients' needs and expectations and providing them with exceptional customer service with a personal touch. Back in 2005 I spent 16 months travelling around the world visiting Thailand, Bali, Australia, Indonesia, Fiji, LA, San Francisco and Boston - it’s great to be able to share my experience.
What have been the highlights of your diving experience?
I saw a 4.5 meter tiger shark whilst diving in the Sudan - that was frightening and exhilarating at the same time. Diving off the Great Barrier Reef in Australia is definitely a once in a lifetime experience and I wholeheartedly recommend adding this to any divers bucket list. Oh and a shark once nibbled the end of my flipper off – but that’s a whole other story…
Which Maldivian islands would you recommend and why?
It really depends on what you are looking for from your visit. My top 3 islands would be:
Kuramathi: Stunning location, large Island with huge range of accommodation and a superb choice of restaurants. Great for families with plenty to see and do.
Biyadhoo: One of the more affordable islands and just 45 minutes transfer (by speedboat!) Perfect for snorkeling, with the best house reef. Great for learners on taster dives or more experienced divers looking for the most challenging sites.
Diamonds Athuruga or Diamonds Thudufushi: Very small boutique island - perfect for people wanting a more exclusive holiday with a definite luxury vibe.
To speak to Dave or any of our fabulous advisers simply visit our website and click ‘call me back’! We specialise in tailored getaways, designed to bring your dreams to life.
"I love nothing more than using my expert knowledge to understand my clients' needs and expectations and providing them with exceptional customer service"
Dave Simkiss, Blue Bay Travel
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