Find Out the Meaning of Boat Numbers in Canada

Boat Numbers in Canada

No matter your age or background, something is alluring about owning a boat. Whether you sit on the ocean coastline, or you enjoy exploring Canada’s hundreds of thousands of lakes, when you have your vessel, you have the freedom to venture out wherever you would like. Yes, when it comes to truly liberating pastimes, it is pretty hard to beat boating. Of course, it is also worth mentioning that with that sense of liberation comes a certain amount of work and responsibility. At the outset, even purchasing a boat means working hard to allocate and budget the appropriate funds, not to mention doing the work of finding the right make and model for you. Once you do own a boat, you will also need to be diligent about performing routine maintenance and cleaning your boat to keep it in good working condition. Another responsibility that you will have to contend with from time to time is completing paperwork with Transport Canada. If you are new to boating, you may not know much about this, and perhaps a good starting point is learning a bit about the meaning of boat numbers in Canada.

Transport Canada is a government agency with thousands of employees, headquartered in Ottawa. In charge of managing the country’s transportation infrastructures on both land and sea, Transport Canada is one of the more important arms of the government. One of their duties is to manage who and what is on our waters, and one way in which they do this is by issuing vessel registrations and pleasure craft licenses (PCLs) to boat owners across the country. Transport Canada also supplies boaters with pleasure craft operator cards (PCOCs), which indicate that an individual has a basic competency for the safe operation of a motorized vessel. You will likely need multiple forms of documentation from this agency over your years as a boat owner, but the PCL is the one that will provide you with boat numbers. Read on to learn more.

Boat Numbers in Canada: Knowing the Facts

A PCL is a requirement for any motorized vessel that carries an engine of 10 horsepower (7.5 kW) or more–though any boat can apply for one. Once issued, your PCL will provide you with your boat number, often called a license number. You will want to display your boat numbers in characters of at least three inches in height on the exterior of your boat’s bow (both sides). Your boat numbers should also clearly contrast with the color of your boat. Your PCL will be valid for 10 years, at which point you will have the opportunity to apply for a renewal.

Boat Numbers in Canada
Get Your PCL Online

You can use our fillable, online forms to apply for your PCL over the web. Simply select the appropriate option from our navigation menu and follow our helpful prompts. To get a little bit more information, please feel free to visit our Frequently Asked Questions page.