Just to respond to CruisingKittys Comments
The RYA is not a commercial
body. Its primary aim is to represent leisure boat users.Is does recoup the cost of training materials ( books
, exam materials etc). The schools charge to teach it, but you can of course become an instructor and do it for free if you wish.!! The RYA does not charge for its courses , the schools do.
As part of that the RYA has an extensive training operation, which is global in reach , currently being official used in Australia
, NZ, SA and Belgium and Ireland
Is has a very simple structure for keel
boat sailors, DaySkipper, Yachtmaster Coastal(formerly Coastal Skipper
) and Yachtmaster OffShore
. There is a further Celestial ticket Yachtmaster Ocean.
These courses have been around for years , so to suggest the RYA is "making up new requirements for certification
" is quite simply ridiculous
The RYA has similar graduated courses for Dinghy
Sailors, Powerboat ( RIB) and motor
All these courses involve practical examinations on the water
. The YM is a very extensive exam and easily the most rigorous test world-wide for leisure sailors. Its also one if not "the" one with the greatest reputation for that class of sailor.
Its so good, that on top of it , both Ireland
and teh UK , allow a commercial
endorsement to be sought , so that the holder can technically command vessels upto 200 tons, but not vessels that are commercial ships ( ie have mandatory manning requirements and fall under STC95 , so you can use it to pilot a superyacht but not a small freighter.
Note These RYA Certificates have no "official" status for a leisure sailor. They do not convey any particular status . They is no way compare with Master Mariners tickets etc.
A master mariner is very different from a yachtmaster. I do not believe a yachtmaster is STCW certified. Please correct me if I am wrong.
They are not STCW95 certified nor are they intended to be. And yes the YM is designed primarily for non commercial sailors in non mandatory licensing situations.
For leisure sailors the knowledge that is required to be demonstrated in practical and extensive, involving navigation
, night sailing, passage
planning etc. In that regards they are different then commercial mariner tickets which are exam based but backed by a record
The YM ticket does require a prerequisite of 3000 miles at sea primarily acting as skipper
. you must also have a sea survival cert, and a first Aid cert.
RYA YM is often used as the gold standard for such leisure tickets and as far as I,m concerned it is justified. No other leisure ticket comes close.
For small yacht work, including commercial work in vessels under 200 tons and under 24m, the YM is used in the UK and Ireland as a substitue for small commercial tickets. SO delivery
skippers etc are generally Commercial YM. ( and act as trans-Atlantic skippers etc)
In summary, if you want a gold standard practical certification
for leisure yachts that is well above "basic" level, then the YM is the thing. Its more directly practical , and is a hell of a lot cheaper then Master Mariner and STC95 courses. Of Course if you wish to work in the merchant marine
, then a YM is not the way to go.
SO , as to certification required in Europe
The answer is very very simple.
NO, repeat No country , OTHER then Croatia
has a requirement that you must have mandatory certification for sail boats, ( Note : your Boat not charter) THE ONLY requirement most have is that if your own country requires certification then you must have it. Croatia
requires that even if your own country does not require certification , you still must have a certificate and it has a long list of acceptable ones including US . canadian etc.
Several European countries like Greece
have port officials that believe that all nations have mandatory certs like their nationals have and take a dim view of someone with no cert at all. However the position is still as I have set out ( if you want to argue)
CruisingKitty seems to comment on France
is one of the countries least likely to check or care ( unless your Brits!). It have no requirement for certs unless you are using a French registered vessel and then only when the power of the engine
is above a certain limit. They do have safety regulations
that apply to all boats in their waters, as does Ireland ( lifejackets) , Several other countries have such legislation, but its rarely enforced.
Note if you are a national of a country or in a vessel registered under that countries flag then of course their own national certifications apply and many European countries require their own nationals to have specific certificates ( portugal
carries this to ridiculous extremes).
The situation is different for European Inland Waterways, for non nationals of the countries where the canals do through , then an ICC
with CEVNI extensions IS required. CEVNI is an add-on theory exam to the standard ICC
, ( the ICC is a one/two day on water
assessment). You also need an ATIS compatible radio
and a copy of the CEVNI rule
HAM licenses can be got throughout Europe
easily now that the code requirement is gone, I wouldn't say the US version is easier just a bit different.
licenses are easy to get in the US, If you do find yourself in Ireland or the UK Id suggest you do the VHF
certificate, the instruction is good and you learn about GMDSS, DSC
situations etc. I find very few US sailors understand GMDSS etc. Certs arent always about pieces of paper, you do learn things as well.