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Old 03-05-2019, 11:09   #31
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Posts: 448
Re: Do I need certification to sail?

To give you an honest answer: No.

As a US Sailing instructor that has trained hundreds of sailor, (a number of which I have crossed paths with later in foreign ports). I can give you a practical answer too. There are two schools to go to: the one I went to as it was the only one, the School of Hard Knocks. It works but it’s slow and more hazardous. And you will probably miss some good stuff. Or, the route of formal certification. More thorough and much faster and safer. However, that being said, there is no instant solution to learning cruising on a sailboat. Courses that advertise that they will take you from zero through Bare Boat or Costal Cruising an just a few day of “live aboard training” are very miss-leading. I also teach Scuba and the same thing goes. “Learn SCUBA in a weekend” .........uhhhh barely and good luck! It takes time and experience. At the school that I taught with in San Francisco, after Basic Keelboat and then Basic Cruising, we require you to have at least 10 trips out with you in charge ( on any cruising boat) before you could take the Bare Boat Cruising course. That’s because nothing replaces experience, where you make the decisions, the mistakes and figure out how to solve them.

So, no, there is no Certification required and actually, I agree with that. The water is one of the last places that we can go and not have government grinding us with license requirements. That being said, professional sail training properly done, will GREATLY enhance the speed and safety of learning.
merrydolphin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2019, 11:44   #32

Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 5,998
Re: Do I need certification to sail?

Quote: "Surely, the thing that matters is that you know the rules of the road?

Competence and possession of a certificate are NOT the same thing. That goes for every profession as well as for seamanship. As a sailor you need competence to keep yer bum out of Neptune's sling, certification to keep it out of bureaucrats' slings!

I've just finished telling MyBeloved that I want her to learn the stuff in the Power Squadrons' course on operating the VHF so she can actually use it if I should depart over the transom. Whether she is in actual possession of the Operator's Card would surely get lost in the resulting kafuffle if that should happen!

Don't incur fines needlessly, but, on the other hand, never let the bureaucracy get in your way of applying common sense :-)

TrentePieds is offline   Reply With Quote

certification, sail

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