NSW Boat Licence
||No experience required. Minimum age 12 years.
|Duration:||5-6 hours. Finishing times may vary due to weather and other constraints which may arise on the day.
|Approvals:|| NSW RMS Approved Training Provider.
|Delivery:||Trainer-led theory and on water practical. Meets all the requirements of gaining the licence.
|Requirements:||Be able to read and understand English and advise of any health condition, eyesight, hearing, learning disability or other disability which may compromise training.|
||$265.00 Group booking discounts available.
This one day course delivers a great overall training experience and includes theory, knowledge test and on-water practical. It is ideal for anyone 12 years or older. On successful completion of the training with us, simply present the documentation we give you along with, your proof of identity at your nearest Roads and Maritime Service Centre, pay the licence fee and you will then be issued with the licence. You can also choose to combine the PWC Licence in the same day. Group booking discounts available. Call 1300 723 112 for more information or booking assistance.
Enrolment and Booking
To find a course location near you click on the select course locations and dates from the "yellow" drop down menu below. To start the booking process simply click on the "Enrol" button.
Click here to find course locations and dates in regional NSW areas.
- Review our general terms and conditions as well as the Roads and Maritime proof of identity requirements prior to attending one of our courses.
- Read the Boat Licence Training Privacy Statement
- To find a course location near you click on the select course locations and dates from the "yellow" drop down menu below. To start the booking process simply click on the "Enrol" button.
Everything you need to complete the course is supplied. Morning tea and generous lunches are available at all our venues for reasonable prices. It is also a good idea to bring a packed lunch. Break times are flexible, subject to student numbers on the day. Starting on the water or, at a shore-based venue our knowledgeable and qualified Skipper trainers will focus on teaching you practical, safe boating practices and skills - on the water, where it counts the most!
What you will learn
- Boating terms.
- State rules and regulations.
- Distances off, speed and wake restrictions.
- International Collision Regulations.
- Chartwork and buoyage system.
- Weather and tides.
- Marine radio, distress and rescue.
- Duty of care and boating risks.
- Emergency drills.
- Basic engine maintenance and boat handling.
- Waterskiing and towing rules.
- Docking,anchoring and ropework.
- Effects of wind and current.
Sydney boat licence course practical venues
Our practical training venues have been selected because they offer the best possible training experience, with plenty of action to put theory learning into practice on the water.
- NSW RMS boat licence multiple-choice knowledge test.
- Licence Application Form valid for 12 months from date of issue.
- Inflatable Lifejacket.Provided by the College to wear for the duration of the practical session.
Five - six hours. Finishing times may vary depending on weather conditions and other constraints which could arise on the day. Every attempt is made to keep to course timings.
PrerequisitesBe able to read and write English and advise of any health condition, eyesight, hearing, learning or any physical disability which may the compromise training or the RMS licence application.
Once you've completed the online enrolment/booking process you'll be provided with access to pre- course reading and practice quizzes. IMPORTANT: Don't be concerned if there are some questions or boating concepts you don't quite understand. On the day the Trainer will teach you everything you need to know. You'll also receive valuable information for keeping safe on the waterways.
Special needsApplicants who have difficulty reading or writing English, or who use AUSLAN (sign language) are advised to contact a local Maritime Service Centre, where interpretative services can be made available. Applicants who have difficulty in comprehending written questions can be given a verbal assessment by a College Trainer or by way of an appointment with NSW Roads and Maritime Services. Please call the College on 1300 723 112 to discuss your special needs with a suitable member of our crew.
What to bring
- 1 form of full proof of identity (POI) such as a current drivers licence. Or, one form of primary ID, such as a Passport or a Birth Certificate and one form of Secondary ID such as a Medicare Card, Pensioners Concession Card, current Student ID, or a current Credit Card. The required Proof of Identity information is available on the NSW Roads and Maritime website.
NOTE: Young adult licence applicants (persons between 12 years and under 16 years of age) are required to provide one form of primary ID and one form of secondary ID.
- Appropriate apparel for the practical boat session - Hat, water, sunscreen, runners, boat shoes, no thongs, jacket suitable for weather conditions of the day.
- Packed lunch/water.(optional)
You will be assessed in two (2) ways:
- Multiple-choice knowledge test.
- Practical skills demonstration and observation on the water.
Theory and practical assessments are completed face-to-face in the presence of an approved Roads and Maritime (NSW RMS) Services trainer and assessor.
The boat licence course is derived from the following nationally recognised units of competency:
MEM50008 - Carry out trip preparation and planning.
MEM50009 - Safely operate a mechanically powered recreational boat.
MEM50010 - Respond to boating emergencies and incidents.
There are 50 multiple choice questions comprised of which 20 core safety issue questions must be answered correctly and 30 general safety questions of which 24 questions must be answered correctly. If you do not successfully pass the test you'll be given a second attempt on the day. Should the second attempt not be successful you will need to resit the multiple-choice test on another date. Re-testing fees apply. The boat multiple-choice test is based on a range of knowledge defined by NSW RMS for the issue of a NSW General Boat Licence.
If you fail the second attempt you will still be able to complete the practical session however, your documentation will be withheld until the reassessment fee has been paid and the knowledge test successfully completed.
Theory learning is put into action on the water and involves every participant getting behind wheel, learning engine controls, steering, docking, manoeuvring and anchoring. Students will also participate in an emergency drill, line handling, launch and retrieval activities. You will be assessed on your ability to steer the vessel safely and within the rules.
The National Maritime College is an Approved NSW RMS Training Provider.
What are the requirements for a NSW Boat Licence?+
Be 16 years or older. Complete an approved boat licence course, successfully complete the boat licence multiple-choice test and undertake a practical boating session. A General Licence can be obtained if the person is 12 -16 years old. The licence has restrictions applied.
Are young people catered for on the course?+
Young people between the ages of 12-15 years are. We have all the necessary safety systems and checks in place both on and off the water. Our trainers are first aid qualified and hold current working with children clearances.
When do you need to hold a boat driving licence?+
In NSW anyone who is the operator of a power-driven vessel operating recreationally on NSW waters, at a speed of 10 knots (approximately 18.5km/h) or more must have a general boat driving licence. The licence allows the holder to drive any sized recreational vessel.
Are group booking discounts available?+
Yes, they are. Our online enrolment system is configured to automatically deduct the discounted amount before sending an invoice depending on the number booking online at any one time. For two people, the discount is 5%. For three people the discount is 10%. For four or more people the discount is 15%. The discount is applied to each person on the booking.
What does the NSW RMS multiple-choice test assessment involve?+
There are 50 multiple choice questions of which 20 compulsory questions must be answered correctly and 30 general questions of which 24 questions (80%) must be answered correctly. Supervised by a College trainer the test takes 20-30 minutes to complete. If you do not successfully pass the test you'll be given a second attempt on the day. Should the second attempt not be successful you will need to resit the boat licence test on another date. You can resit the test with us or with NSW Roads and Maritime. Re-testing fees apply.
Is there any pre-course reading or exercises to complete prior to attending the course?+
Yes, we recommend all students complete some prior reading before attending the course. On completion of the enrolment process students are provided with links to a download area containing course pre-reading documentation and quizzes.The course is structured to provide students with all the learning required in order to pass the boat licence multiple-choice knowledge test.
What should I bring to the course?+
Bring proof of Identity (such as a Drivers Licence, a Passport or a Birth Certificate) For the practical training you should bring; drinking water, packed lunch, sunscreen , hat, sunglasses, sensible footwear (deck shoes, joggers, sand shoes - no thongs) and jacket, suitable for the conditions on the day of training.
Does the training meet NSW Roads and Maritime (RMS) requirements for gaining a boat licence?+
Yes it does. The National Maritime College is as an Approved Boat and PWC Licence Training Provider for NSW Roads and Maritime.
What does the practical session involve?+
Onboard a training vessel and guided by an experienced maritime trainer you will complete a variety of hands on tasks as part of your practical assessment. Each student will drive and dock the vessel, participate in a Person Overboard drill and will be encouraged to be active participants throughout the session.
Will the practical sessions run in adverse conditions?+
In most circumstances yes, subject to trainer discretion. The College training vessels are generally fitted with full biminy, storm covers, radio and safety equipment. It is rare for the practical course to be cancelled due to weather. Students are advised to dress and be prepared for conditions of the day.
Once I've completed the course how do I get my boat licence?+
That's the easy part, after completing the course with us you will have met all the requirements for obtaining the licence. Just, take the paperwork we give you to a Roads and Maritime Service Centre, pay the licence fee and be issued with a temporary paper licence over the counter. You can use the temporary licence until you receive your Boat Licence Card in the mail. Click on the " Licence Info" tab on this page to view the current RMS licence fees.
Will my boat licence be recognised in other states?+
Yes, in Queensland, Western Australia, Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania. Currently in Northern Territory there is currently no licence requirement
Can I include the PWC licence on the same day?+
Yes, you can. Just book on the one day boat and PWC combined course option. On successful completion of the boat licence test you will then be given the PWC Licence test to complete. This consists of 15 multiple-choice questions. There is currently no practical requirement for obtaining a NSW PWC Licence.
The College is required to comply with Roads and Maritime (RMS) directives in relation to acceptable acceptable proof of identity (POI) documents to be produced by boat and PWC licence applicants.
Roads and Maritime Boat and PWC licence fees
Similar to a driver's licence you will also have to pay a state government fee to Roads and Maritime. The fees are subject to annual review.
One year licence
$62.00 $190.00 One year concession or for persons aged under 16 years old
$31.00 $95.00 Three year licence
$167.00 $415.00 Three year concession licence or for persons aged under 16 years old
$84.00 $208.00 Five year licence
$263.00 $649.00 Five year concession licence or for persons aged under 16 years old
$132.00 $325.00 Ten year licence
Ten year concession licence or for persons aged under 16 years old
A NSW General Licence or PWC / Jet Ski licence is available for either a 1, 3, 5 or 10 year period. Issued as a paper licence followed by a plastic card.">
There are two classes of boat licences:
- General boat driving licence (GBL)
- Personal Watercraft driving licence (PWC)
The general boat driving licence permits people aged 12 years and over to drive any vessel (except a PWC) at 10 knots or more WITH RESTRICTIONS APPLIED.
Combined driver and boat licence
Eligible Roads and Maritime customers can combine their unrestricted vehicle driver's licence (all classes) and the boat licence onto one card. A combined licence will constitute a NSW driver licence which includes an indicator on the reverse side of the card that the licence holder also holds a NSW boat licence.
Eligibility and non eligibility requirements for the combined licence are detailed on the Roads and Maritime website.
Digital boat licence and vessel registration
In NSW boat licence and vessel registration is now available in digital form on an updated version of the Service NSW app. To access digital licences and vessel registration, boaters need to download the Service NSW app and link Maritime Services to their MyService NSW account.
NOTE: The digital licence for the PWC class licence doesa not have a photo included for this release and therefore will not be valid when operating a PWC at any speed. So when driving a PWC the operator must carry their physical PWC licence at all times. When operating a powered vessel above 10 knots however, a PWC class digital boat driving licence will be accepted as a valid form of licence.
A boat driving licence-class PWC cannot be renewed online or via the app. A licence holder with a combined licence (boat and a driver licence) can view their Boat Driving Licence as a digital licence. Until the driver licence is available digitally (planned for release in 2019), these users will not be able to renew their Boat Driving Licence online. While users who choose to carry only a digital licence must ensure their device remains charged and accessible, digital licences can be accessed on another smartphone or tablet by securely signing into the Service NSW app when in mobile reception.
Licence holders 12-16 years old
The holder of a general boat driving licence or PWC driving licence who is aged from 12 to under 16 years of age must not do any of the following:
- Drive at a speed greater than 20 knots.
- Drive in any race, display, regatta, exhibition or similar operation.
- Drive any vessel, other than a PWC, at a speed of 10 knots or more, without the holder of a general boat driving licence who is 16 years of age or older being present on the vessel, between sunset and sunrise, or while the vessel is towing anyone.
- Drive a PWC between sunset and sunrise (this rule applies to all PWC driving licence holders)
- Drive a PWC at a speed of 10 knots or more, without the holder of a PWC driving licence who is 16 years of age or older being present on the PWC, or while the PWC is towing anyone.
Holders of valid AMSA Certificates of Competency as master, mate or coxswain are currently exempt from the requirement to hold a PWC or General Boat Licence when boating for recreational purposes.
Where the applicant has a known eyesight condition or is unable to provide a current Drivers Licence, or eyesight report to confirm eyesight standards, an eyesight test may be required. This can be completed at a Roads and Maritime Service Centre or you can provide an eyesight report issued by a General Practitioner or Optometrist.
Applying for the licence
You can apply for your licence by attending a Roads and Maritime Service Centre in person or by mailing your licence will be issued. NOTE: Young adult applicants must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian who must provide acceptable proof of identity.
- General boat driving licence (GBL)