New York Boating License

New York Boater Safety Course

Education is mandatory for all personal watercraft (PWC) operators. All personal watercraft operators must successfully complete an approved boating safety course before they can operate a PWC on any waters of New York. All PWC operators must be a minimum of 14 years old - no one under the age of 14 may operate a PWC.

Boating Age Requirements

Persons under 10 years of age:
Not able to operate a boat alone. Students must be at least 10 years to take a boating safety course.

Persons born after May 1, 1996:
Must be at least 10 years of age and have proof have proof of successful completion of an approved boating safety course or…

Must be under the direct supervision of an adult over the age of 18 who holds a boating safety certificate, or any adult born before May 1, 1996, or…

If the operator is the owner of a recently purchased vessel, he or she may operate the vessel without the otherwise required boating safety certificate for a period not exceeding one hundred and twenty days from the date of purchase. The provisions of this subdivision do not apply to persons who meet the following criteria:

  • Born before April 30, 1996
  • Certified by the commissioner as boating safety instructors
  • Members of the United States Power Squadrons
  • Members of the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary
  • Holders of public vessel licenses pursuant to section 64 of this article; police officers, peace officers, fire personnel, rescue personnel or lifeguards, when any such person is acting pursuant to assigned duties; or licensed to operate vessels by the United States Coast Guard or the Canadian Coast Guard

The commissioner, by rule or regulation, may provide the exemption of additional persons not listed in this paragraph from the requirements of this section.

Persons 18 years of age and older:
Persons born before May 1, 1996 may operate without restriction.

Get your New York Boater Card in
3 Easy Steps

Get your New York Boater Card in
3 Easy Steps

Take your Boater Exam and be certified for life!

Study the Course

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Study on Any Device

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Visual Exam Questions Help You Learn

Visual Exam Questions

Visual Exam Questions
Help You Learn

We found out a long time ago that people learn best when they can see what they're learning. Shouldn't you be tested the same way? Every one of our exam questions is illustrated to help you get your boating licence.

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Hundreds of Engaging Videos

Engaging Videos

Hundreds of
Engaging Videos

Our New York boating course features hundreds of rich engaging boating videos and animations. That means you aren't just reading: You're watching, listening and learning.

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New York Approved, Trusted Nationwide® is trusted by agencies across the United States to deliver the best of quality in boating safety education. Our courses consistently receive the highest level of approval from agencies and from boaters.

This official New York boating safety course is approved by New York State Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.

New York State Parks,
Recreation and Historic Preservation

Albany, New York, 12238-0001

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