To operate your own boat, you need to have a license issued by the United States Coast Guard.  To get this license, there is a course to take and a fee associated with the application. The course typically lasts ten days in total but can be spread out over several weeks.  The fee is approximately $800 but can vary, depending on where you are located.  You need to be at least eighteen years old and may be asked to provide documentation showing that you are in good health.  Once this information has been provided, you will have your Captain’s License and can now operate your own bareboat yacht charter.

Different Types of Captain’s Licenses

One of the most popular types of boat captain licenses is the Operator of Uninspected Passenger Vehicles License (OUPV).  Holders of this license can captain a boat that is less than 65 feet and carries a maximum of six passengers.  To hold this license, you need a minimum of 360 days of experience on waterways.  A Master License allows you to operate all vehicles up to 100 tons.  There are no restrictions on the number of passengers that can be onboard.  You must have a minimum of 360 days of service on any vessel to qualify for this license.  These licenses need to be renewed every five years, though there is no written exam for renewals.

Provide the Company with Additional Information When Booking a Bareboat Yacht Charter

Before ensuring their yachts into your hands as captain, most charter companies will want to learn a little more about your boating experience.  Beyond seeing your Captain’s License, you will often be asked about your experience captaining vessels.  This may include the number of days at sea that you have spent operating a boat on your own, the types, and sizes of these vessels.  This will give the charter company a good understanding of your boating experience and help to make sure the boat you choose for your trip is the right fit based on your experience. 

The experience of captaining your own bareboat luxury yacht charter is a truly unique experience, and one that few have the chance to enjoy.