Shopping small can make a big difference, here’s why….
Small, local businesses are an important part of our economy and community. The U.S. alone has more than 28 million small business and since 1995 they have generated more than 60% of all new jobs in the U.S. Small business are a big deal and should be appreciated! We know you have many options when it comes to purchasing your dive gear, and now more than ever, buying online is easy, accessible, and affordable, but there is something special about shopping small.
You get great service and personalized advice. Small business owners and staff strive to provide more personable and memorable service. When you step into your local shop you will get one on one service and attention. The dive staff will spend time going over what options are suitable for your needs or future dive plans and will ensure they fit you in the most appropriate gear to meet those needs. Maybe you are just beginning your dive journey and don’t know what items will be good for you. The staff has tried and tested the gear in the shop, so they can give valuable insight and advice on the items that will be suitable for your needs or future dive goals!
You support your local economy. When you support your small, local dive shops you are supporting your own town, city, and community. The bulk of your money stays local, in turn helping other local businesses, schools, police, and fire departments.
You will get great deals and diverse products. All dive manufacturers have a suggested retail price, whether you purchase online or in person. There is a common misconception that buying online is cheaper, local shops will often match online prices or in many cases will actually give you a better deal! If the local shop doesn’t have an item or sizing you want in stock, owners will be more than willing to order it specifically for you with turn-around delivery times often faster than buying online.
A common surprise for consumers after purchasing gear that has been heavily discounted (below MAP) from an online vendor is that the warranty is then voided. Buying at a authorized local dealer ensures your warranty on your purchase is valid and they will also support you in the long term by servicing the gear you rely on to dive safely and confidently. Another amazing perk of buying from a local shop is that you will get to try on your item before you buy, and have the flexibility to exchange it if you are not 100% pleased. We’ve all been there where we purchase something online and once we get it or try it in the water, it’s just not what we expected. Many shops will allow you to try gear in pools or freshwater to make sure you love your item.
You make connections. For many of us our local dive shop is our second home and the people become our scuba family. Stopping in to spend time shopping around or even just to chat about your dive plans can create lasting friendships and relationships. Finding your local dive shop can mean finding your community. By supporting local dive shops, you can empower the dive industry.