How does Freedive Fiji impact the environment?
Fiji is one of the world's top vacation and dive destinations and we understand that not only does the country's economy rely on tourism, but so does our success. Home to some of the most stunning beaches on the planet, Fiji is known for its crystal clear waters, incredible marine life, and spectacular reefs. Freedive Fiji is committed to use conservative fishing methods to make sure reefs are minimally impacted. We believe that the sport of spearfishing is the most sustainable and selective form of fishing in the world today. Spearfishing holds an advantage over most traditional forms of fishing because the spearfishermen can see their prey and “hand pick” their desired catch. This selective process helps limit unnecessary depletion of certain ocean populations, in contrast to fishing "blindly" above water. It is important to note that even though there are still countries in the world that allow spearing while using oxygen tanks, our company does not condone these methods and will only allow spearing while freediving.
The emphasis on our charters is to target open water pelagic fish species and make sure to minimize the amount of reef species caught. We believe you “eat what you shoot,” and as long as this practice is carried out there is minimal negative impact to the environment. Unlike fishing boats catching up our fish stocks in large nets, with a large by-catch, spearfishing has no by-catch and so there is no waste. We maintain a philosophy of “fishing for the future” so the sport of blue water spearfishing can be enjoyed by future generations of “hunters” for years to come.
In addition to being selective in species targeted, our company has created fishing guidelines that will be reviewed before every charter during the pre-dive safety instructions and training session. These company-established guidelines are much more conservative than the local and governmental fishing regulations. We will have divers sign an "Environmental Sustainability Statement"
insuring that everyone is not only aware of our guidelines but also agrees to follow them for each dive. We will ensure all fishing laws and regulations are followed and will work with the local Fijian villages to exercise extreme sensitivity to their beliefs by avoiding all fish species considered sacred to the Fijians.
How does Freedive Fiji give back to the community?
Fiji is home to people who have been called the friendliest on earth. It is made up of over 300 islands and is a cosmopolitan cocktail of culture, race and religion. In line with Freedive Fiji’s mission statement, we are committed to giving back to our community. Customary rights to Fiji’s reefs are owned by village clans; therefore, Freedive Fiji will collect a diver levy separate from the dive cost that is fully paid to the village. This income is essential for village education programs and necessary community improvements. We will also donate resources by sharing a percentage of the catch from each charter with the local Fijian villages whose land and reefs we are diving.
Every quarter, Freedive Fiji organizes a community “Clean up Fiji” day, in which we will have all Freedive Fiji employees and family and friends donate a day of their time to cleaning up the trash that washes up and damages beaches and oceans. We believe giving back promotes inspiration in life and building solid community relationships is essential to maintaining a positive and rewarding company culture.
What is Freedive Fiji's policy for the fish caught on charter?
On shared charters, guests are welcome to take back what they
themselves can eat for dinner. Our crew will be available after charter
to fillet the catch for each guest. On private charter, it is up to
the crew to determine what amount of fish will be given to the guests,
unless already agreed prior to charter. All fish will be property of the boat once caught.
What are the Terms & Conditions for bookings?
Since Freedive Fiji charters will operate daily, bookings are essential. Separate charges will be applied for village levies on spearfishing and snorkeling charters and will be paid directly to the village fund. Freedive Fiji reserves the right to alter prices, apply additional fuel surcharges, cancel departures, arrange alternative charter vessels, and vary itineraries and services if necessary.
The safety and health of each guest is top priority; therefore charters may be rescheduled if conditions are not suitable. Freedive Fiji reserves the right to cancel or amend any charter due to weather or ocean conditions. If the conditions cause a booking to be cancelled, the trip will be rescheduled for another day. Bookings will only be altered within 24 hours at the sole discretion of Freedive Fiji’s directors.
Diving and spearfishing can be strenuous under certain conditions and sometimes medical fitness needs to be confirmed. It is at Freedive Fiji’s sole discretion to determine if a customer meets the mental and physical requirements to participate in the dives and spearfishing on each charter.
What is Freedive Fiji's Cancellation Policy?
Daily Charters: Due to extensive trip preparation and demand for each charter, cancelations must be made more than 24 hours prior to the charter’s departure. Cancelations made more than 24 hours before departure will be refunded, however a cancelation fee of 20% will be charged. Cancellations within 24 hrs of charter OR no shows on the day of charter will be charged 100% cancelation fee and will not be refunded or re-booked. In some situations, we will attempt to accommodate by transferring to another charter date.
Overnight Charters: Due to extensive trip
preparation, hotel requirements, and demand for each overnight charter, cancellations must be made more than 30 days prior to the charter’s departure.
Cancellations made more than 30 days before departure will be refunded, however
a cancellation fee of 20% will be charged. Cancellations within 30 days
will not be refunded or re-booked. We recommend each diver
obtaining travel insurance should any unforeseen circumstances happen within
the 30 days and cancellation is required.