Frequently Asked Questions
What is the minimum age I can attend a Powerboat Course?
It is surprising how early children can start to drive a powerboat safely - the minimum age for the RYA Powerboat Level 1 course at our centre is 11 years old, and for RYA Powerboat Level 2 it is 13 - However we recommend that under 16's hold the level 1 prior to attending level 2).
Can I take the course on my own boat?
Do I really need a radio licence as I never really use it?
Absolutely! There are two issues here. The first is licences for the equipment on your boat, including any hand-held radios - if you own any type of marine VHF (& some other types of marine transmitting equipment) it must all be licensed. It is free, & licences are obtained online from the OFCOM website Secondly, any user must either hold something called the Short Range Certificate (a marine radio qualification), or must be supervised at all times by someone on board who holds the certificate. To get the certificate you will need to do a one day course - we run them very regularly - have a look at the courses section for more info or call or email us. Both the Short Range Certificate and the Ships Radio Licence are legal requirements, so don't get caught out!
I don't want to do a course, but would like some advice on a particular boat handling issue...
No problem - give us a call to discuss your particular requirements. If it a question we can answer over the phone we will be delighted to help. If you just need a couple of hours on a boat to help with a particular issue we can easily organise a training session for you, or if you want an instructor for a few days or even weeks we can organise this too. Even if you have a really exotic boating question, we have a range of very experienced skippers and instructors who have been to most places from the Equator to the Polar Regions, so even if we can't answer your question straight off, we should know who to speak to or who to put you in touch with.
What time do I need to arrive?
Powerboat Courses start at 0915 and finish at approximately 1645
VHF Radio Courses start at 0900 and finish at 1800.
Online courses can be taken at your leisure from the comfort of your own home.
What do I need to bring with me?
Have a look at joining instructions for the specific course you are coming on. For powerboat courses you are in an open boat and the temperature on the water is always a layer of clothing colder than on land. We provide Henri Lloyd Coastal Waterproofs and a lifejacket, but don't provide waterproof footwear so it is probably a good idea to bring boots or a change of shoes if it looks wet or windy, although we don't plan to get you that wet, accidents can happen... please bring a change of clothes just in case!
Why do I need a passport photograph?
For certain courses such as the Short Range Certificate (VHF) course, and the Powerboat Level 2 course, the certificate that is issued is a photo certificate, and therefore we can't process them without your photo.`
Can I wear my own waterproofs and lifejacket?
We actively encourage students to bring their own Waterproofs with them, although we do have a selection available to borrow if you need them.
Students should wear a Chas Newens Marine Lifejacket as they are serviced regularly to ensure that they remain fully functional. It is at the instructors and companies sole discretion that students may wear their own.
How do I get an ICC?
The International Certificate of Competence is documentary assurance from one government to another that the holder meets the levels of competence laid down in something called Resolution 40 (a UN resolution affecting some European waters). It is not a qualification, but is accepted in lieu of a qualification in some countries which require boat users to be qualified. The type of ICC needed depends on the type of boat you plan to use abroad. To use a power driven vessel up to 10 metres you can use a powerboat Level 2 certificate to apply to the RYA for an ICC. For larger motor boats the minimum is a Day Skipper power certificate. Alternatively you can take an ICC test for either discipline - call or email us for more details.
Do I need an ICC for UK waters?
What is CEVNI?
The Certificate Europeen de Voies de Navigation Interieures is an additional endorsement to the ICC to allow holders to navigate on mainland Europe's inland waterways - to obtain the CEVNI endorsement you must first hold the ICC (or qualified ready for the ICC), then take a short test. The inland waterways have what may seem at first like a bewildering range of different regulations, and it is knowledge and understanding of these rules that the test examines you on. The best way to learn the rules is to get a copy of the RYA's CEVNI book which we hold stock of.
I've lost my Powerboat Certificate, how can I get a replacement?
Lost certificates are now managed centrally by the Royal Yachting Association, You need to complete the declaration of loss form and return it to the Training Department with the appropriate fee to arrange replacement.
After My Course
How do I gain more experiance after my course?
There are a few options available here. How about a day on a rib with one of our instructors? Use the time to practice mooring and boat handling, or combine it with a run along the Thames - you can even bring friends or family and let them get some hands on experience driving the boat under the watchful eye of one of our instructors. These bespoke days have inevitably proved very popular and very useful, and are a very good bridge between a course and the first bareboat charter.
If you have your own boat then we can supply one of our own instructors for own boat training!