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Docking alongside the fuel berth with a qualified trainer standing by

Skipper Training

Before obtaining your car licence you had to learn practical skills. You should do the same before taking the helm. With knowledge and experience comes increased safety and enjoyment. Let us help you achieve your learning goals, understand the Skipper's role and make every experience on the water an enjoyable one.

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It's important partners know how to drive the boat too!


You maybe a brand new Skipper and want a little help with your new boat, boating rules, the international buoyage marker system or a Skipper who wants some additional training, we can help. A College commercially qualified skipper offers training to ensure you are confident with handling a big or small vessel, sail or power. With training you'll avoid damaging your boat but more importantly, your family and friends remain safe.

Here's some of the ways we can help you:

  • Boat and PWC licence training
  • Launching and retrieving
  • Marina berthing and close quarter handling
  • Night navigation
  • Setting up your boat for a floating pontoon
  • Marine radio training
  • Anchoring and mooring
  • Rope splicing/prep fenders & lines
  • Sail training
  • Chart reading, navigating by chart and finding your position using 'Lats & Longs'
  • Using electronic navigation aids
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Heading out on a family training session.

Training can be conducted on board your yacht or cruiser with training tailored to suit to suit your needs and to help a non-boating or sailing partner gain confidence so that you can work together in handling the vessel.

We find that most people new to boating need to spend a minimum of one day a week over a three month period to gain the skills required to become a safe Competent Skipper. Remember, boating skills and seamanship cannot be taught in a day. Like learning to drive a car, these skills are learned over time, with practice and in varying conditions. Whether you're new to boating or already have some experience, no matter what size your vessel is, undertaking boating education and practical training will extend your horizons and expand your knowledge and confidence.

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The Skipper's Duty of Care is a fundamental principal of maritime law and seamanship, which is legislated within State Maritime Acts, National and International Regulations. Regardless of whether you are Master of a big ship or Skipper of a small " tinnie", the vessel owner and Skipper are deemed responsible for every person onboard the vessel, must not endanger other vessels and must be prepared to render assistance to anyone in need of help.


The Skipper's duty of care includes:

  • Monitoring the safety and integrity of your vessel and to ensure the vessel is suitable for making the planned trip.
  • Maintaining a regular maintenance schedule for engines and electrics.
  • Monitoring weather, tides and local conditions. If in doubt about the conditions delay trip.
  • Leaving a voyage plan with the local Marine Rescue Unit or a responsible person. Inform them of your voyage plan to and the estimated time of return.
  • Maintaining and carrying the correct safety equipment for the vessel as well as all the necessary supplies - fuel, food, clothing and water.
  • Obtaining current charts for your voyage. Identify navigation hazards such as rock shoals, wrecks, reefs and shallows.
  • Briefing crew and passengers on the location of all the safety equipment, especially the location of life jackets and how to don them.
  • Outlining any associated risks which may arise including what is expected of them in the event of an emergency.
  • Monitoring the vessels stability and to not exceed the passenger carrying limits of the vessel.
  • Maintaining a state of personal fitness and ability to safely Skipper the vessel in all conditions.
  • Considering the needs of passengers and crew regarding food allergies, medical conditions or if anyone is prone to sea sickness?
  • Whilst underway maintaining a proper lookout at all times and to take action to avoid a collision if it is necessary.
  • Skipper's must be aware of what is happening around them at all times on the water, even when at anchor.
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Training gives people the skills and information they would not be able to acquire from hands-on experience alone. People with formal training have a deeper depth of knowledge and confidence to make better informed decisions for keeping their crew, passengers and vessel safe.

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