Do I need a California Boater Card?
Posted by Andrew Law (4/28/2021)
This answer all depends on your age for the most part.
In California, each year a new age group is being added to those who are required to possess a valid card. By 2025, all persons who operate on California waters will be required to have one. Once issued, the card remains valid for a boat operator’s lifetime. The lifetime card fee is $10 and the replacement fee is $5.
- January 1, 2021 – Persons 40 years of age or younger
- January 1, 2022 – Persons 45 years of age or younger
- January 1, 2023 – Persons 50 years of age or younger
- January 1, 2024 – Persons 60 years of age or younger
- January 1, 2025 – All persons regardless of age
- Persons 12 to 15 years of age may operate a vessel powered by a motor of 15 hp or more, including PWCs, if they are supervised on board by a person at least 18 years of age and in possession of his/her California Boater Card.
- There is no age restriction for operating a sailboat under 30 ft. long (with wind as the main source of propulsion) or a dinghy used between a moored vessel and shore or between two moored vessels.
What if I am renting a boat? If you are renting a boat it is NOT required to have a California boater card.
For more information check out the California Boater Card Website: https://californiaboatercard.com/applynow/
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