A scuba-diving license is for life. In fact, it will last longer than you given that it’s coated in non-biodegradable plastic. Scuba certification never expires; no diving police will suspend it, cancel it, or penalize you for disuse.

Your training agency issued your C-card after several days of close supervision, skill development and the familiarity that goes with continuous, daily diving. You lose that connection after many months of aquatic absence, and the place to be reunited with it is not in deep water, fast currents or out in the blue on a drift dive.

Many people forget little snippets of information from their initial training — the handy hints, the bits you didn’t listen to while rubbing sunscreen across your salty skin. This was the moment your instructor reminded you to sign up for a scuba review or check dive if you had a lengthy gap between dives. If you’ve only got a day or two for diving, it’s natural that you don’t want to spend time in a pool or swimming around a sandy bay. But check dives or skill reviews are essential. They’re not penalties or community-service sentences. Neither are they just safety measures that you should interpret as overbearing regulations, obstructing your path to enjoyment. When an inexperienced diver or out-of-practice diver enters challenging environments, everybody is at risk.