Getting a British Columbia Boating License

British Columbia Boating License

It is tough to beat a solid day out on the lake on your own boat. Having that freedom to leave shore whenever you want to unwind is a unique luxury. Of course, purchasing your own boat is a sizable investment, and if you are looking for new ways to maximize your leisure time in the great Canadian outdoors, you are going to have to do a fair amount of preparatory work first. A good place to start is typically figuring out what it is you are looking for in a boat. Do you like to fish? Are you a fan of waterskiing or other water sports? Maybe you are looking for something more modest for sightseeing purposes? Once you have a good idea of the type of boat you want, you can begin getting to know the various makes and models out there. You should also consider whether or not you can afford a brand new boat, or if you should look for a deal on a used vessel. It is important to remember that boats can also be expensive to maintain and store, so that should factor into your budget as well. There will also be some paperwork to navigate when jumping into boat ownership, and you may want to start with a British Columbia boating license.

Whale boating is an expression of freedom, vessels can also be large and powerful, so it is important to exercise safe operation tactics at all times. Part of this is learning how to safely work a motorized vessel. The best way to do this is by obtaining a boating license, which is technically called a pleasure craft operator card (PCOC). A PCOC functions similarly to a driver’s license for a car, as it demonstrates that you have a fundamental competency for operating a motorized vessel. You can get your PCOC by enrolling in a boat safety course and passing the subsequent exam administered by Transport Canada. While this is a good starting point, it is typically not the end of your vessel documentation journey–read on to learn more.

Forms Outside of the British Columbia Boating License

Once you have your PCOC in hand, you may think you have the all-clear to start making waves. This is, however, not always the case. Depending on the type of boat you have, and what you plan to use it for, you may need to obtain some Transport Canada documentation for your vessel. If you have a boat that is purely used for leisure activities, and it features an engine of 7.5 kW (10 horsepower) or more, you will need to apply for a pleasure craft license (PCL).

If your boat is used for commercial purposes or will be traveling internationally under the Canadian flag, it will need to be registered. This will also hold true if you obtained a bank loan in order to finance the purchase of your boat.

British Columbia Boating License

Fill Out Your Paperwork Online

If you need vessel registration or a PCL for your boat, you can use our online forms to apply online. Simply select the document you need from our navigation menu and follow our easy-to-read prompts. For more information, please consult our Frequently Asked Questions page.