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As with our sailing courses, you can enter the motor cruising programme at any stage according to your knowledge and experience. Be careful not to over estimate your skills and

book a course beyond your capabilities – discuss your experience and aspirations with your instructor first. A large proportion of motor cruising courses are conducted on the

owner’s own boat. The centre provides an instructor who tailors the course to the type of vessel and the owner’s requirements. Courses can also be taken on board centres’ boats.


A two-day course covering basic boat handling, engine checks and safety. This course is ideal for new owners conscious of the difficulty and hazards of boat handling in the marina. It is useful for crews as well as skippers. Apart from the obvious safety benefits of extra boat handlers on board, it adds interest if everyone can contribute to the trip.

Day Skipper

Take charge on short passages under instruction, with help and advice from your instructor. This course can also help you get the best from your modern electronic aids such as GPS and radar, which are now virtually standard equipment on modern motor cruisers. Before attending the course you should be able to navigate and

are well advised to attend the RYA Day Skipper Shorebased course to brush up your skills. (See page 6)

Coastal Skipper

For the more ambitious skipper to improve their skills, take charge and learn to make full use of the boat on longer, more complex passages. Before taking this course it is virtually essential to have attended the equivalent shorebased course, to ensure that time is not wasted teaching theory on board. An important aspect of this course is learning to take command and make decisions resulting in relaxed, well-planned passages and a happy crew. Don’t expect to coast through without making the occasional error – learn your strengths and weaknesses, and gain knowledge from your mistakes. By the end of the course you should be ready to build on your experience and maybe work towards a Certificate of Competence.


Helmsman’s Course

Day Skipper Coastal Skipper None





Boating safety, helmsmanship, boat handling, introduction to engine maintenance

2 days practical experience

15 days (2 as skipper), 300 miles, 8 night hours

Navigation to Day Skipper Shorebased & basic motor cruising ability

Navigation to Coastal Skipper Shorebased standard. Boat handling to Day Skipper Practical standard

Pilotage, boat handling, seamanship & navigation

Skippering techniques for coastal & offshore passages


Competent to handle motor cruiser of specific type in sheltered waters

Skipper a motor cruiser in familiar waters by day

Skipper a motor cruiser on coastal passages by day or night


2 days

4 days 5 days

Sail & Motor Cruising Courses 2011



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