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Old 08-06-2024, 14:06   #1
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Sailing course - Chesapeake Bay 2024 / foreign skipper license on the US waters

Hi everyone, I am looking for a weekend sailing school in the Chesapeake Bay area (Annapolis preferably). Currently I have a Polish offshore skipper license (all seas, boats up to 18m/59feet length), but I am not sure whether it is recognized in the USA/Maryland and by US insurance companies. Moreover I need to practice as I haven't sailed the last couple of years. Can you give me any advice/recommendations to sailing schools and recognition of foreign sailing licenses by the US gov.agencies/insurance companies, please?


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Trancos is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-06-2024, 13:26   #2
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Re: Sailing course - Chesapeake Bay 2024 / foreign skipper license on the US waters

Boating Safety Education Requirement
Powerboat on the water.In Maryland, the law states that anyone born on or after July 1, 1972, must possess a certificate of boating safety education in order to operate any motorized vessel. This certificate is non-renewable and must be carried by the student at all times while operating a vessel. Officers may or may not ask to see the certificate during a vessel check and, if not provided, you can be charged with a minimum of $25 for the first offense and up to $500 for each offense thereafter.

Boating safety courses are offered all across the State. Prices, times and locations may vary. Please contact the provider by calling the number provided. Any further questions can be answered by contacting the Natural Resources Police Safety Education Section at (410) 643-8502.

There you go.

It varies Some States require something similar some don't.

My advice take a basic sailing co in Maryland it will probably be a relatively inexpensive way to have fun on the water and get some local knowledge.

Or just do the online test.
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Old 26-06-2024, 10:50   #3
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Re: Sailing course - Chesapeake Bay 2024 / foreign skipper license on the US waters

Sounds like you might be able to save money on the Boating Safety course by pointing to your Polish Offshore skipper's license (though it would be smart to have a translated copy, no?) and paying the $25 if you get stopped and they ask for the document and you don't have it. A Boating Safety course is not likely to teach you anything you don't already know from your Polish license. As UnicaneJack says, some states have requirements and others don't. AFAIK there is no Federal license required to operate a sailboat in the U.S., and most states only require a certificate when the boat has a motor.
As an example, I have a Safe Boating Certificate from Connecticut. Is it valid in Maryland? Georgia? Florida? Who knows? Since I had a boat with a motor before the Connecticut Safe Boating Certificate program was started, they simply issued me a certificate without me having to take any course or pass any test. That should give you an idea of the value of these state certificates.
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Old 26-06-2024, 11:36   #4
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Re: Sailing course - Chesapeake Bay 2024 / foreign skipper license on the US waters

We took boating safety online in our state (PA) and, IIRC, it's basic rules of the road and some buoys (US may reverse red and green on entering a channel - not sure which way Poland does it). Then a lot of powerboat and jetski stuff. It's not hard and doesn't cost much.

There is no requirement to have a sailing license unless you are taking paid passengers. Insurance companies seem more interested in sailing experience on boats similar to whatever you are insuring. Not sure how they'd respond if you are new to the US and not a resident/citizen.
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