RYA Powerboat Advanced Professional Qualifications

Find out more about working commercially with an RYA Powerboat Advanced qualification

RYA powerboat courses are primarily for those using small powered craft such as RIBs, dories and sportsboats that don't generally undertake long or offshore passages.

The types of commercial craft requiring this level of certification are typically: charter fishing boats, small passenger launches, thrill ride operators, harbour patrol launches, construction site safety boats etc.

If you will be using larger boats with accommodation and the capacity to cruise or work further offshore you are likely to need a certificate within the motor cruising programme such as Day Skipper, Coastal Skipper or Yachtmaster Offshore.

There are two types of Advanced certificate:

a) A course completion certificate awarded by a training centre on successful completion of a two-day training course

b) A certificate of competence awarded by the RYA/MCA on successful completion of an exam

If you need a Powerboat Advanced certificate in order to work on board a commercial craft subject to the MCA's codes of practice, you will need to get it commercially endorsed. You can then work on commercial vessels up to 24m in length, operating in category 3, 4, 5 and 6 waters - that is up to 20 miles from a safe haven.

Please note: it is only possible to commercially endorse an RYA/MCA Powerboat Advanced Certificate of Competence (option b above). The only exception to this is if you were awarded a course completion certificate (option a above) prior to 1 January 2005, in which case you may obtain a commercial endorsement without having to pass the exam.

Advanced course summary

(for gaining the course completion certificate)
Pre-course experience Candidates should be competent to the standard of the Intermediate Powerboat Certificate
Assumed Knowledge Navigation and chartwork to the level of Coastal Skipper/RYA Yachtmaster Shorebased certificate
Course content Includes pilotage, navigation and boat handling techniques for planing boats on coastal waters by day and night
Ability after course Able to plan and execute coastal trips including return to a familiar port by night
Minimum duration 2 days including at least 1 night navigation exercise
Minimum age 17


Advanced exam pre-requsites

(for gaining the certificate of competence)
Minimum seatime 30 days, 2 days as skipper, 800 miles, 12 night hours. (if you hold the Advanced course certificate this is reduced to 20 days, 2 days as skipper, 400 miles, 12 night hours)
Form of exam Practical
Certification required VHF/SRC and first aid certificates
Minimum exam duration 4-5 hours for 1 candidate, up to 7 hours for 2 or 3 candidates