How to Place Your Vessel in the Transport Canada Boat Registry

Transport Canada Boat Registry

If you have a passion for boating, there are not many better places on Earth to explore than the waters of Canada. This beautiful, northern nation is home to hundreds of thousands of pristine lakes, as well as many winding rivers and thousands of miles of ocean coastline on both the Atlantic and Pacific. While Canada’s many waterways make it an ideal location for recreational enthusiasts, some also use their boats to earn their livelihood. If you are planning to engage in commercial activities with your new vessel, you will want to learn a bit about how to enter it into the Transport Canada boat registry

As the nation’s main agency for all matters of transportation on both land and sea, Transport Canada is tasked with a wide area of important duties. One way in which they aim to protect our waters for future generations of boaters to enjoy is by documenting who and what is on our lakes and rivers. Transport Canada accomplishes this by issuing pleasure craft operator cards (PCOCs), pleasure craft licenses (PCLs), and vessel registrations. In your time as a boat owner, you can expect to navigate Transport Canada paperwork on occasion.

While buying your own boat is an exciting occasion, it is also typically the culmination of months, perhaps years of research and saving the necessary funds. Just as there are many types of fish in the sea, there are nearly endless possibilities for the types of boats you can purchase. From humble canoes to mega-yachts, there are boats for all budgets and needs. Ultimately the vessel that is right for you will largely come down to what your plan on using it for, as well as how much you are comfortable spending. Once you have determined the make and model that suits you, you can then begin perusing print and online listings for boats that are for sale in your area. After finding the right boat for you, you can then negotiate a fair price with the seller and finalize your transaction. With the keys in your hand and your boat hitched up to your truck, you will undoubtedly be antsy to get your vessel in the water. Before you get ready to launch, though, you will want to look into whether or not your vessel belongs in the Transport Canada boat registry

What Vessels Belong in the Transport Canada Boat Registry?

When you start thinking about what type of Transport Canada vessel documentation your boat will need, it is important to assess what exactly your boat will be used for. The reason for this is that only certain types of boats must enter the Transport Canada boat registry, though it is available to all (and, as you will read, there are benefits to registering a vessel). In Canada, any boat that is used for commercial purposes, be it sightseeing charters, commercial fishing, or any other act of commerce, must be placed in the national vessel registry. This is also a requirement for any boat that is planning to travel on international waters under the Canadian flag, or any vessel that has been financed via a marine mortgage.

When you obtain vessel registration, your boat is assigned a completely unique name of your choosing. This can allow you to really put a personalized touch on your boat, not to mention, you can more easily stand out from your peers down at the marina. A registered vessel also has the luxury of being able to fly the Canadian flag while travelling to foreign ports, and your documentation can allow you to pass through customs.

If your boat requires vessel registration, or you are simply interested in the benefits it can offer, there is a process that you will need to complete. First, you will need to sit down and fill out some paperwork. To register a vessel, you will need to complete Form 1 – Application for Vessel Registration, along with Form 3 – Statement of Qualification for Vessel Registration. You will also need to prepare four photographs of your vessel (one of each side), as well as obtain a tonnage measurement. You can then package these items together and submit them to Transport Canada’s office in Ottawa for processing. 

Transport Canada Boat Registry

How to Process Your Documents Online

Whether you need a pleasure craft license or a vessel registration, there are a couple of avenues you can explore for obtaining these documents from Transport Canada. You can always visit the government agency’s website, locate the correct PDF documents, download them, print them out, fill them in by hand, and mail them in for processing. Of course, you can also save a considerable amount of time by working with a private service such as ours at the National Vessel Registry Center. We have online forms that you can use to process all of your Transport Canada documentation online.