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Alberta boating, here we come!

Whether fishing, wakeboarding, pleasure boating or heading out for a rip on the jet ski, Alberta’s stunning lakes and rivers offer something for every boater – and we haven’t even touched on canoeing and kayaking.

Before you head for that pristine mountain river or lake, make sure you have your boating license onboard. Keep on reading to find out about Alberta boating regulations.

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Alberta Boating Regulations

Do you need a boating license in Alberta? If you you operate a boat with a motor, then the answer is yes. As of September 15, 2009 all boaters operating in British Columbia waters – and right across Canada – are required to have a Pleasure Craft Operator Card, often called a Boating License, onboard in order to operate a powered watercraft.

This is a federal law that applies in Alberta and all other Canadian provinces. Powered watercraft includes any vessel fitted with any size motor — even an electric trolling motor!

There are two easy methods for you to get the required certification:

1. Online Course and Exam

Take your exam on the internet. You can take this online course, which is followed by a Transport Canada online final test. In approximately 3 hours, you can have your Boating License.

2. Challenge Exam

Students can challenge the Transport Canada test in person at recognized boat shows and events across Canada, such as at Bass Pro Shops or the Calgary Boat & Sportsman Show.

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Boat License Tip

Get fitted up for an Alberta angling adventure at Bass Pro Shops and while you’re there, take your boat license exam. It’s one of the most convenient ways to get your Pleasure Craft Operator Card.

Visit our Bass Pro Shops page for more information about how to get your boat license at Bass Pro Shops.

Convinced? Get certified today!

Get your Alberta boat license online.

Alberta Boating License or Pleasure Craft Operator Card?
Same thing!

If you are looking for an Alberta Boating License, then you’ve come to the right place. What many people call a boating license is officially called a Pleasure Craft Operator Card. The Pleasure Craft Operator Card is a federal, rather than provincial, certification that unlike a provincial driver’s license, never needs to be renewed.

Whether you call it an Alberta boating license or a PCOC, you need to carry one onboard if you operate a boat with a motor. Get your PCOC with®.

  • TC Canada
  • Canadian Boating Council
  • Better Business Bureau
  • Coast Guard
  • Official Boating Educator


Q. Who needs the Pleasure Craft Operator Card and when?

A. All operators of powered watercraft used for recreational purposes within Canada require the card as of September 15, 2009.

Q. Is there an age exemption clause?

A. No, there is no age exemption – this law applies to all operators, regardless of age.

Q. Is the card good for life?

A. Yes. The Pleasure Craft Operator Card is good for life with no annual fees.

Q. In which provinces is the Pleasure Craft Operator Card valid?

A. The card is valid in each province; Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Manitoba, British Columbia (BC), Prince Edward Island (PEI), Saskatchewan, Alberta and Newfoundland and Labrador (NFLD).