coastal skipper

The coastal skipper is an advanced course on the skills and techniques, navigation and meteorology required to cruise safely by day or night.

The coastal skipper needs to have the knowledge needed to skipper a yacht on coastal cruises entering unknown ports by day or night.

The coastal skipper is also the first start on the professional path as it can be commercially endorsed by the RYA / MCA


 

Advanced skippering techniques for yachtsmen and women with considerable knowledge of sailing and navigation, wanting to undertake coastal passages by day and night.

Like the Day Skipper course, this course consists of skippered passages in a variety of situations. Each trainee will skipper more challenging passages and learn more about passage planning, pilotage by day and night, boat handling, safety and emergency situations.

It is a satisfying but intensive week, with candidates often working towards a Certificate of Competence.

Most centres will expect you to complete the Coastal Skipper/Yachtmaster™ Offshore shorebased course beforehand as there is insufficient time to teach you theory during the week.

Coastal Skippers should be able to undertake more difficult passages by day and night and handle the yacht in more demanding conditions. By the end of the course you should have the knowledge, if not the experience, to become a Yachtmaster™.  

Requirements & Outcomes

Pre-course experience15 days, 2 days as skipper, 300 miles, 8 night hours
Assumed knowledgeBoat handling to the standard of Day Skipper and navigation to shorebased Coastal Skipper/Yachtmaster™ Offshore
Minimum duration5 days
Minimum age17
Course contentPassage planning, Preparation for sea, Pilotage, Passage making and ability as skipper, Yacht handling under power, Yacht handling under sail, Adverse weather conditions, Emergency situations
Ability after the courseAble to skipper a yacht on coastal passages by day and night

RYA Coastal Skipper courses can be taken in either sail or motor yachts, and in tidal or non-tidal waters. Your certificate will be endorsed accordingly.

There are two types of coastal certificate:

a) The Coastal Skipper course completion certificate, that is awarded by a training centre on successful completion of a five-day training course. This is very much hands-on with little time to teach navigation or other theoretical subjects. It is therefore recommended that you take the RYA Coastal Skipper shorebased course prior to your practical course so you can put those skills into practice on the water.

b) The Yachtmaster Coastal Certificate of Competence, that is awarded by the RYA/MCA on successful completion of an exam. 
You are not required to take the five-day Coastal Skipper course above prior to your exam. However, if you have not previously taken RYA training you may find it useful to complete the course or organise some informal tailor-made tuition.

If you need a certificate in order to work on board a commercial craft subject the MCA’s codes of practice, it is the Certificate of Competence that you will need (option b above). You will also require a commercial endorsement (see left). You can then work on commercial vessels up to 24m in length, operating in category 3, 4, 5 and 6 waters – that is up to 20 miles from a safe haven.

Coastal Skipper course summary (sail)

Pre-course experience15 days, 2 days as skipper, 300 miles, 8 night hours
Assumed KnowledgeBoat handling to the standard of the Day Skipper practical sail cruising course and navigation to the standard of the Coastal Skipper/Yachtmaster shorebased course
Course contentPassage planning, pilotage by day and night, boat handling, safety and emergency situations
Ability after courseSkipper a yacht on coastal passages by day and night
Minimum duration5 days

 

Motor

Coastal Skipper course summary

Pre-course experience15 days, 2 days as skipper, 300 miles, 8 night hours
Assumed KnowledgeBoat handling to the standard of the Day Skipper practical motor cruising course and navigation to the standard of the Coastal Skipper/Yachtmaster shorebased course
Course contentSafety, passage planning, pilotage by day and night, boat handling and emergency situations
Ability after courseSkipper a motor cruiser on coastal passages by day and night
Minimum duration5 days

 

Coastal yachtmaster certificate of competence (COC)

The next level is to take the coastal skipper to coastal yachtmaster . This requires good theory and practical skills.

There is an external assessment by an RYA appointed examiner. We make sure you are well prepared.

The yachtmaster coastal COC  can be commercially endorsed with the addition of several short courses.

 

Yachtmaster Coastal exam pre-requisites

Minimum seatime30 days, 2 days as skipper, 800 miles, 12 night hours (if you hold the Coastal Skipper course certificate this is reduced to 20 days, 2 days as skipper, 400 miles, 12 night hours)
Form of examPractical
Certification requiredVHF/SRC and first aid certificates
Minimum exam duration6-10 hours for 1 candidate, 8-14 hours for 2 candidates

The exam will include an assessment of your skippering skills, boat handling, general seamanship, navigation, safety awareness and knowledge of the IRPCS (collision regulations), meteorology and signals.Full details can be found in the Sail Cruising and Motor Cruising logbooks available from the webshop (ref codes G15 and G18).

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