Originally Posted by RickD
That is, is it like a "drivers license" or something or just just your paperwork to prove you can handle a boat?
Vasco has it right. In the US they are interested if you can pay the deductible. They don't want the boat wrecked but for a day sail there really isn't a ton that can go wrong in protected waters.
really are useful to improve your sailing. Sailing is easy, sailing fast is hard, sailing fast where you want to go is very hard.
I have never been asked for a cert but when I was a young guy I went with my sister's bf to try and rent a boat.
Desk Manager "Do you know how to sail."
BF "Sure. No Problem."
DM (pointing) "What tack is that boat on?"
DM "The power boat
rental place is next door."
But like Vasco says - Before they give you a 42 foot cat they'll sus you out. If you appear to need help they will "suggest" a couple of days to check out.
Here you are required to have a boating license
for any craft that has an engine
. I have attempted to proudly show my license
in the US and no one cares...
I am a strong advocate of taking some basic lessons, especially if you have never sailed keelboats before.