Is the Diploma qualification internationally recognized?

The Diploma in Commercial Skydiving is known all over the world and we have more requests for students than we are able to supply.  

Here at the New Zealand Skydiving School we are affiliated with the NZPIA (New Zealand Parachute Industry Association), and the NZPIA certificates we issue are aligned with the international sport licencing body, the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (FAI).  The aim of the course is to prepare students for employment in the specialist field of skydiving and much of the course content has been developed in direct response to industry operators all over the world making our graduates highly employable in all countries across the world.

What are the benefits of doing the diploma in commercial skydiving instead of learning at my local dropzone?

If you are serious about working in the skydiving industry, there is no better platform to achieving your goal than the Diploma in Commercial Skydiving.

  • You will receive world-class, consistent and intensive training and high levels of supervision from our Course Director Paul Jeune and his team.
  • You will achieve 200 skydives in only 32 weeks, this is a very consolidated time period which could otherwise take a couple of years to achieve if you were seeking independent training.
  • You will gain experience in all areas of dropzone operations, which would be unavailable to you in a typical dropzone environment.   You will learn manifesting, ground crew, video editing, parachute packing (tandem and sport) and be trained in camera flying for filming tandems. 
  • The learning facilities and equipment at the school are conducive to learning.  The school boasts a large packing building, fully equipped classroom with lecture facilities, computers, internet access and video editing facilities along with multiple debriefing stations.  In addition to these, there is also an on-site kitchen, toilet and shower facilities for student use.

You would not receive this in depth level of training and access to this learning environment at your local dropzone.  The content of the course, timeframe in which it is delivered and consistent coaching and training makes you highly employable to drop zones at the end of the course, hence our 95% employment rate.

What is the earning capacity of the industry?

This is a difficult question to answer, due to the nature of the industry and the variables involved including the location of your dropzone, how busy it is, seasonality, the equipment you have and your personal drive.

On average, graduates who are currently employed as freefall camera flyers earn anything between $25,000 - $55,000 per year here in New Zealand.  As a tandem master you could earn anything from $35,000 - $90,00 per year.  Other roles within the industry such as manifest, video editor and parachute packers can earn in advance of $35,000 - $45,000 per year, depending on their location.

You may begin your career in the industry working as a parachute packer, progressing to freefall camera flyer and then tandem master once you gain the required number of jumps.  Others, if they prove themselves, have been known to enter the industry as a freefall camera flyer at the end of their work placement.

Do I get paid whilst on my work placement?

Your work placement is a 12-week unpaid internship, provided to allow you to consolidate your learning and apply the knowledge you have gained on the course.

Students who qualify for a Study Link student allowance will have their work placement covered, however international students will need to make sure that they have enough money set aside to see them through their 12-week internship, as this is considered part of your course.

Do the course fees include accommodation?

No, accommodation is at your own expense. Most students choose to stay in the student house next to the airfield for the entirety of their time at the school. We will provide you with accommodation options once you have secured a place on the course. International students - assistance is available to make accommodation bookings at your request. Please note that we do not arrange or inspect accommodation or in any way guarantee the quality or availability of private accommodation.

How long should I apply in advance to secure a spot in advance?

Spaces on the Diploma in Commercial Skydiving are limited, the earlier you apply the more chance you will have of being accepted.

Domestic students are required to pay a deposit of $500 and ensure they have enough time to get through the Study Link application process.  International students need to apply and pay full course fees into a Government guaranteed trust account, in order to meet the study visa requirements.  The time it takes to get your student visa varies depending on the country where you are applying.  We suggest you allow 3 months overall, however it is worth contacting us should your timeframe be shorter.