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A Guide to the Coastal Skipper

By Kenneth Rumball, Monday, 14th August 2017 | 0 comments
Filed under: Adult Sailing.

Chief instructor Kenneth Rumball details what's involved with Coastal Skipper qualifications.

What the Coastal Skipper is…

Firstly, we should detail what the Coastal Skipper and the Yachtmaster Coastal Assessment are and the requirements for each. The Coastal Skipper Practical Course is a 5-day course that involves intensive passage planning and the execution of such.

Prior to this, participants are required to have obtained the following; minimum 15 days at sea, 300 miles logged, and at least 8 hours at night and 2 days as skipper. It is also essential that you will have completed the Coastal Skipper and Yachtmaster Offshore Theory Course. Successful graduates of this course will be issued with a RYA Coastal Skipper Course Completion Certificate.

To obtain a Yachtmaster Coastal (or to use its full name “RYA Yachtmaster Coastal Certificate of Competency”) candidates must complete a two day assessment and have the following pre-requisites; Sea time - 800 miles logged within 10 years prior to examination, 30 days living on board, two days as skipper and 12 night hours. Half of the qualifying sea time must have been accrued in tidal waters.

For holders of the Coastal Skipper Practical Course Completion Certificate the sea time requirement is 400 miles, 20 days living on board, 12 night hours and two days as skipper. Half of the qualifying sea time must have been accrued in tidal waters. It’s strongly recommended that candidates for the assessment attend a Yachtmaster Preparation Course, which consists of 5-days training and drills designed to iron out any issues that may crop up during the assessment.

Candidates must also hold a Radio Operator’s Qualification, GMDSS Short Range Certificate (SRC) or higher, and a valid first aid certificate.


Programme Dates…

Coastal Skipper Practical Courses 2018

  • Course 1 2018: Monday 19th to Friday 23rd February 2018
  • Course 2 2018: Monday 1st to Friday 4th October 2018

More Information…

Coastal Skipper Theory Course

This can be completed online, and requires about 40 hours of work. Training is interactive, with an instructor able to help you if you run into difficulty. 

More Information…


Further Questions…

We hope this guide answers some of your questions regarding these qualifications, however, we would expect that prospective students would have further questions. We’re very happy to answer these, so please do get in touch with us either by email to, calling 01 2844195 or dropping into our offices on the West Pier in Dun Laoghaire.

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