Armed Forces Resettlement & ELCAS Diving Course Provider Sabah, Malaysia, Borneo

What is ELCAS

Enchanced Learning Credits Administration Service (ELCAS)

Our PADI 5 Star IDC Dive Centre is a recognized ELC education provider.

Promoting lifelong learning amongst personnel of the British Armed Forces, ELCAS is the British Ministry of Defense’s (MOD) Enhanced Learning Credits (ELC) scheme._DSC5754

Once per year for 3 years, the ELC scheme grants financial support in the form of single, up-front payments to HM forces personnel wanting to pursue higher-level education.

Only available to Armed Forces personnel and only for higher-level learning, the fund for overseas pursuits must be for an internationally recognized qualification.  Courses equivalent to NVQ Level 3 or above qualifications on the NQF in England & Wales, or Level 6 and above qualifications on the SCQF in Scotland qualify.

* SCQF – Scottish Credit & Qualifications Framework / * NQF – National Qualifications Framework 

Enhanced Learning Credits for HM Armed Forces

ELCAS-approved courses qualifying for the ELC scheme funding at Downbelow, includes our various PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor courses.

Based on strict entry criteria, the ELC scheme is a reward system for British Military personnel, which is available in 2 tiers:

  • Lower Tier, for 4 years or more of eligible service and claims up to £ 1,000,
  • Upper Tier for 8 years or more of eligible service and claims up to £ 2,000;

British Armed Forces personnel can claim ELC funds in 3 separate financial years, which could be consecutive or not, but is subject to meeting all the criteria. Claims can be made either whilst in service, or for up to 10 years after.

A Career in Diving

If you love scuba diving, becoming a professional scuba diver is a logical consideration.

The leap from recreational diving to professional diving is not easy, but promises a rewarding career for Armed Forces personnel.

With millions of active divers being trained through thousands of training facilities world wide and thousands more qualifying every year, a future in the dive industry is bright.

Scuba Instructors can work anywhere in the world, in locations as exotic as you fancy, from tropical dive centres, to yachts, or anywhere there is good diving to be had.

As a Scuba Instructor you will plan and lead dives for groups and individuals, as well as be an underwater guide. Most importantly you will train others to become scuba divers, right up to the level of Divemaster.



Why choose Downbelow?

Unbeatable Location & World Class Facilities

When training for your future, you want the highest quality training in the best possible location. Tropical Sabah, Borneo with lots of sun, sea and vibrant life – above and below the water, is where Downbelow’s PADI 5 Star IDC Dive Centre is located.

The beach house dive centre, where you will spend most of your training time, is on Gaya Island in a marine park, which is just 10 minutes from Kota Kinabalu, home to our Head Office and classrooms and the vibrant capital city of Sabah.

At the dive centre we offer shore and jetty dives, with 49 other dive sites just minutes away by boat. No wonder our centre is so popular with British Military groups and the Armed Forces whom we regularly host.

Kota Kinabalu is just a 2-hour flight from many of South East Asia’s biggest cities, which give you ample opportunity to work with a diverse client base from all over Asia and Europe.




At our dive centre in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, we dive every day!

It’s always hot and the water temperature is a constant 30°C, with just a couple of degrees dip when it gets “cold”.

We are also blessed by being below the monsoon belt. Not called The Land Below The Wind for nothing, we are rarely troubled by adverse rainy conditions. When it does pour, it usually lasts for only a couple of hours per day.

The weather almost never stops us diving.

Value For Money

Kota Kinabalu and Sabah is a very affordable place to live. Because of this we can offer value for money courses without compromising on the highest standards of quality and safety._DSC1768

International Staff Team

Downbelow’s owners are Richard (or resident Platinum PADI Course Director) and Joanne (PADI Master Instructor) who are British expats who have lived in Sabah for many years.

With a wealth of instructor, diving and team building experience between them, they lead a team of highly trained diving professionals renowned for their professionalism and quality training courses.

They regularly host training camps for British Military and Armed Forces from the UK and stationed in the region.

Having conducted LC Adventure Training for HM Forces since 2004, Downbelow knows what is expected from them and they have the capability to deliver.



Approved Courses

Downbelow’s ELCAS Provider ID is 3745 and the following approved courses are offered through the scheme:

  • PADI Advanced to Open Water Scuba Instructor (Code: AOWIDC02)
  • PADI Divemaster to Open Water Scuba Instructor (Code: DMIDCIE01)
  • PADI Divemaster to PADI Instructor with EFR Instructor & Instructor Speciality (Code: DMIDCIESPE)
  • PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor Course (Code: IDCIE01)

Email us now or contact us

to start your future career


Contact us now for a customised Instructor Development Course Package or Internship.

Tel: +60 12 866 1935