Regulations

District of Columbia Boating Regulations and Laws

The District of Columbia Boating Safety Certificate (also referred to as the District of Columbia boating license) is proof that a boater has taken and passed an approved boater education course. The District of Columbia Harbor Patrol currently has a mandatory education requirement that requires all boaters on District of Columbia waters to carry a Boating Safety Certificate with them while they are on the water.

Many boating fatalities occur because boaters aren't educated about boating safety. The District of Columbia Harbor Patrol believes that an educated boater is a safer boater.

Where can I take my safe boating exam and get my Boating Safety Certificate?

You can write your safe boating exam directly on the Internet at BOATERexam.com®. Once you pass the exam your boater education card is mailed to your home. In the meantime, you can print off a Certificate of Completion that can be used as a temporary license to satisfy the District of Columbia boating regulations until your permanent boating safety certificate arrives.

Where can I get the boater safety education course material?

All the required safe boating training material to get your boating safety certificate is available at BOATERexam.com®. Simply visit our District of Columbia Safe Boating Course section to gain access to the training material. The District of Columbia Safe Boating Course is accredited by the District of Columbia Harbor Patrol.

Where can I get more information about District of Columbia boating regulations and the District of Columbia boater education card?

Answers to most of your questions about the District of Columbia boater's license can be found on our Frequently Asked Questions page. You may also visit The District of Columbia Harbor Patrol for additional information, or you can contact us and we will be glad to answer any of your questions.

Did you know?

Many boaters incorrectly use the term "District of Columbia Boating License" when referring to their Boating Safety Certificate. The Boating Safety Certificate is NOT a boating license. Unlike a driver's license, your Boating Safety Certificate cannot be revoked and is good for life.

Education Requirement

Anyone operating a vessel on District of Columbia waterways is required to have a Boating Safety Certificate.

District of Columbia Boating Safety

An Educated Boater is a Safer Boater. By taking a boating safety course, you help ensure our waterways are the safest they can be. Not to mention, completing a course may reduce your boat insurance 10-15%!