There are many reasons why PADI AWARE Foundation® certification cards are popular and the most sustainable PADI card you can order.

This article is dedicated to answering all your questions and showing how important PADI AWARE® certification cards are.

Let’s go!

What Is the Difference Between PADI AWARE Cards and Other PADI Certification Cards?

All types of certification cards serve the same purpose: to show that you’re officially a PADI diver and that you are qualified to explore the underwater world.

But, when you buy a PADI AWARE Certification Card, you’re supporting ocean conservation. Each PADI AWARE certification card includes a direct donation to the PADI AWARE Foundation (more on that below).

Who Can Get the PADI AWARE Cards?

All PADI students can buy a PADI AWARE certification card upon completion of any PADI course. Just tell your PADI Instructor that you’d like to upgrade your standard certification card to an AWARE card. (You may automatically be issued a PADI AWARE certification card if the dive center or resort you’re certified at is 100% AWARE.)

If anything, it’s become customary among divers of all branches and levels — from scuba divers to freedivers and mermaids — to get PADI AWARE cards.

Already certified? If you’d like to replace your existing card or have lost your physical card, you can easily order a PADI AWARE replacement card.

PADI Aware turtle certificaiton card

Is the PADI AWARE Certification Card a Physical Card?

If you are receiving a PADI AWARE certification card at the completion of a course, you will automatically be issued the card as an eCard, in line with our approach to making the dive industry more sustainable. You can always choose to order a physical card (made from recycled materials) separately. However, if you are ordering a replacement card, you can choose to have an eCard, physical card, or both.

What Designs Are Available?

Designed to be eye-catching and memorable, the PADI AWARE cards are instantly recognizable thanks to the included PADI AWARE logo.

There are currently three designs available:

  1. The PADI AWARE Sea Turtle Legend by Stan Moniz card portrays a gorgeous sea turtle, showing the special connection divers have with marine species and the privileged position they’re in to help protect them.
  2. The PADI AWARE Great Hammerhead Shark by Jay Clue card is enigmatic and captivating. This card is for divers who feel strongly about shark conservation.
  3. The PADI AWARE Flight of the Whales by Shawn Heinrichs card is a powerful image of humpback whales.

How Do PADI AWARE Cards Help Save the Ocean?

The selection of PADI AWARE Foundation Cards are not just pretty photos taken by popular underwater photographers. They also help protect our oceans in the most practical way possible: through monetary donations.

For every certification card bought, USD $10 is donated towards funding the PADI AWARE Foundation’s mission to protect our oceans through local projects for a global impact. In tangible terms, this means PADI AWARE Mission Hubs are able to:

  • Collect marine debris
  • Monitor coral reefs
  • Protect endangered species
  • Increase the number of marine protected areas
  • And reduce the carbon footprint of diving activities

Our collective efforts peaked in 2024 when PADI made it onto the list of Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies for its conservation efforts. This official recognition is a clear sign that what we’re doing is working and having a positive effect on our planet. Without your support, this wouldn’t have been possible.

A mom and calf humpback whale are in the foreground, and a male is in the background. The water is dark and clear.

Limited Editions Cards

All PADI AWARE Cards are sold as limited edition, so when they’re gone, they’re gone. Luckily, we release new designs regularly.

But why limited editions? Because we want to honor the originality of photographers who capture the ocean and its marine life in a beautiful light. Plus, they’re a collector’s item and a cherished memento from your diving course.

But, to be honest, limited editions are more than a testament to creativity. By limiting the production of cards, we can trigger more donations. After all, every card purchased equals a donation that supports ocean conservation initiatives.

Order Your PADI AWARE Card

You can’t be a diver and not see how the ocean is under threat.

Whether you’re in the middle of a dive course or would like to replace your existing card, order a PADI AWARE certification card to be part of a bigger plan to protect our beloved oceans.

It’s easy, it’s straightforward, and for every diver, it’s a no-brainer.

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