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Frequently Asked Questions

Booking a surfing course, lesson or holiday for the first time can be a daunting experience. To help you out we've put together some useful information which includes answers to some of the most commonly asked questions.

If there's anything you can't find the answer to please don't hesitate to CONTACT US and we'll be happy to help and advise.

Surf Courses, Lessons and Holidays

Where will we be surfing? The vast majority of our surfing lessons are held at Watergate Bay. We also have a mobile set-up which allows us to travel to other beaches locally if conditions are more suitable elsewhere.

How much does a surf course cost? The cost of our courses varys depending on the options you choose. Please see our Price Guide for details of the cost of all our courses. If you can't find what you're looking for or would like a bespoke quote please Contact Us.

How big are the groups? Group sizes vary depending on the level of ability and booking on that day. Typically, tuition is provided along the industry guideline of a maximum ratio of 1:10. Typically, here at the O'Neill Surf Academy you'll find our group sizes much smaller than the industry standard at 1:6 ratio. For 1-1 and Private Small Group Lessons it will just be you and your instructor.

What's included in my surf lesson? All courses include use of all equipment and all tuition throughout the duration of your course.

Do I need to hire equipment? All equipment hire is provided free of charge during your surfing lessons with us. Additional hire is available if you require

Can I bring my own surfing equipment?  If you have your own surfboard or wetsuit that you'd like to bring along with you please feel free to do so! 

Can I keep hold of my equipment after my lesson to practice?  We also have a great hire facility where after your lesson your instructor can find you the right equipment you need to head out and prictice and make some progression. Hire is available for a few hours, or even a few days.

What if it rains? We're going to be getting wet anyway....tjere's no better activity on a rainy day. Lucily for surfers wet weather, as with most other weather conditions is not a problem.

Are there any age limits? The minimum age we accept for children learning to surf is 6 years. We cannot accept children younger than this. There is no upper age limit.

Do I need to be able to swim? It's ideal if you can swim 50 metres. If you are a non-swimmer or have limited swimming ability then please inform us upon booking so we can make additional arrangements to ensure you are looked after and we have sufficient coaching cover. Lessons are typically held in waist deep water, which make the activity safe and fun regardless of your swimming ability.


How To Book, Booking Information and Payments

When is The O'Neill Surf Academy open? We're open all year round.  We run all our surfing courses between March - December and offer Half Day Group and Private Lessons only from December - March.  We're open seven days a week, including weekends.

How can I book? You can book a surf course or lesson by giving us a call on 01841 520052, by sending us an email using the contact form or You can also check availability and book your course ONLINE.

How do I  book a Surf 'N' Stay course? To book a Surf 'n' Stay course you'll need to call or email. Due to the complexities of these bookings and availability we don't currently have this course available for you to book online. 

How do I pay for my Surf Lesson? We accept all major credit and debit cards (except for american express) All online bookings are completed through our secure portal. You can also pay by card over the phone, we can issue e-payment form or by bank transfer. We can accept cash and card at the beach for all balance payments.


Travel and Getting Around

What are my travel options to get to Watergate Bay? We're located just 2 miles from Newquay airport. Their are regular flights to Newquay from most major uk airports.  There is also a train station in Newquay town centre (approx 5 miles from the beach) and the National Express Bus Service stops at Newquay Bus Station daily. See our Travel Guide for more info

How do I get from my accommodation to the beach? If you're not staying at Watergate Bay, then you'll need to make your way to the beach for your lessons each day. We're a short drive from Newquay and Padstow by car. There's plenty of parking available at Watergate. The Public bus service between Newquay and Padstow also stops at Watergate Bay arriving at perfect times for arriving at your lessons. There are also plenty of taxi firms locally. If you would like us to arrange transport for you on your behalf please contact us.

Where is Watergate Bay? You can use this Google Map to find Watergate Bay.


Small Print

What if I miss my lesson?  If you miss one of your surf lessons due to personal reasons (social engagements, illness, fatigue, hangover or similar) We're not obliged to reschedule or refund your lesson.

What happens if we can't go surfing? In the unlikely event we're not able to surf because of dangerous surf or weather conditions, O'Neil Surf Academy / West Coast Surfari will not be held financially responsible. We ensure that you're lesson is either rescheduled for a more appropriate date/time, another activity is offered or the time is used constructively to learn about other aspects of the sport.