Choosing snorkel gear

Can ya stand another equipment question?

I have a dive mask but no snorkel or fins. Before I go to FL, I would like to buy these items.

Any advice other than make sure they fit well?

Wait until you get to Fl…
There are dive shops and diving super stores all over the place that will guide you well…

Agreed plus those things are bulky

– Last Updated: Dec-23-09 5:53 PM EST –

to fly with..just something else for the airlines to lose.

I did buy snorkelling gear..what a hoot Maine int the middle of a snowstorm but we are going to Belize with no shopping time.

Don’t put it in checked luggage
I have often traveled with snorkeling gear for both snorkeling and diving. I have had a mask broken and a snorkel cracked just from being in a bag and tossed around.

I recommend that you buy locally if there is a good shop where you live. Snorkeling equipment actually does require maintenance occasionally and if you buy decent stuff it is good to have someone locally that can help you.

You have a choice between snorkel fins and dive fins. Even though they cost more I recommend dive fins. They are more efficient and make it easier to move through the water without using your arms and easier to swim against current. I have classic black Scuba Pro dive fins and they are great. You would, however, have to buy booties to use them. There are lots of good masks and snorkels. My snorkel has a ball at the top to keep water out if the snorkel is completely submerged. Very nice and keeps you from accidentally inhaling water. If you wear glasses, get lenses in your mask to match your prescription. You will see much more. Have fun.

Skip the snorkles…
with moving parts, balls, floats, clearance valves in the mouth piece. No moving parts means no malfunctions and will last longer. Learn to lift your tongue to keep from swallowing water. Make sure mouth piece fits comfortably and won’t slide off shaft. Don’t buy the cheap stuff at big box stores. Full foot light weight dive fins will work well.


From my diving days I learned to look for two main things. First get the largest diameter you can find and second get one with a purge valve near the mouth piece. Lacking these means it’s hard to get clear all your exhale before inhaling. I’ve had minor panic feelings occur from accumulated carbon dioxide. Also the purge valve helps a lot if you like diving deep then blowing hard to clear water when you hit the surface. Of course the mouth piece should be comfy in your mouth.

If you don’t swim much and don’t dive down then you can get by with a cheaper one.

I carry my snorkel gear with me on the plane. I’m happy with the Mako Open Heel fins. They work well for me and these fins along with my Deep See mask and snorkel fit nicely in a bag the size of my laptop computer bag.!AERIS

equiptment choiced on fins are extensive…fins are usually purchased with the intended water temp in mind.

plastic vs rubber and what stiffness for the type of diving you plan on doing.

this would be a reason to buy them where you plan on diving/snorkeling…the shops local will carry the proper stiffness for the waters they have locally.

to ice dive takes a differant fin than to warm water dive.

The snorkels with the purge valve near the mouth piece are very user friendly…I own one and like it very much. (that could be purchased either in your home town or where you plan on diving.

Best wishes


Diver’s Direct
This place has four shops throughout southern Florida, and should have some good deals this time of year:

Good Luck!


A lot said about the equipment, so
I won’t go into that, but a couple of things to keep in mind if you are heading out to a reef on a dive boat.

  1. Pick a day when the wind is light and variable. (Best viewing for snorklers)
  2. don’t take the “cattle car” out of Pennekamp - they go to a couple of spots and if you don’t like it, they don’t much care
  3. Pick a private place like “Quiescence” dive shop in Key largo. They only take 6 people per boat. You will get personal attention, plus they will move to another spot if where you are is not productive.

    They also have the snorkling gear on the boat if you don’t have your own.



My .02 on the fins …
Others opinions might vary.

I would suggest getting surf fins over dive fins …

These work just fine for snorkleing and do double duty for body surfing or any sponging you might end up doing.

For sure wait 'till Fl.

More to it than I thought

– Last Updated: Dec-24-09 11:38 PM EST –

I'll check out the recommended websites but probably wait to buy till I get to FL.

Checking/flying issues don't matter; I am driving there, which is nice also in that I can bring fuel, more than 3 oz. of shampoo etc., a knife, and all the other stuff you're not allowed to fly with. Not to mention the freedom to see other places on the way to/from.

Ooops, where are my manners! Thank you all for your input, and have a good Christmas.

here’s a good instructional video