Deciding on which boat to travel on is like choosing your hotel, restaurant, and dive shop all in one.
So reads an extract from Astrid Witte and Captain Casey Mahaneys Live-Aboard Dive Travel: The Essential Guide. Stan Watermans introduction led me to believe that this would be a volume aimed exclusively at those with budgets sufficient to use the likes of the Aggressor fleet. In fact I found it relevant to liveaboard diving almost anywhere in the world. With more than 20 years of professional on-board experience, the authors are well-placed to advise on all aspects of the subject. A diver/passenger properly prepared will always have a better time than one who is not.
The books detailed guide to liveaboard diving locations worldwide is itself extremely useful. It gives a clue for whom this book was originally intended. The Bahamas, Bay Islands, Belize, Cayman, Turks & Caicos, Cocos, Galapagos, Hawaii, Fiji, Indonesia, PNG, Coral Sea, Solomons, Palau and Truk are all expensive to get to, and the sort of liveaboard vessels operating in these areas are inevitably from the premier division.
Bear in mind that some of the liveaboards used by we Europeans may reflect a lower-priced holiday with sometimes poorer on-board facilities, and you can still use this book to help you choose the right destination and vessel and get the most out of the experience. John Bantin

Live-Aboard Dive Travel: The Essential Guide, AquaPress (01702 335929). Softback £12.99 (£2 p&p).

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