California Boat Course


Complete this accredited course to get your California Boater Card that is good for life! To operate a motorized vessel in California, you will be required to have a California boating card, which is being phased from 2018-2025 based on year of birth.

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California License

Approved by California State Parks Division of Boating and Waterways

There is no minimum age to take the course and you do not need to be a resident of the state. Pass the course and be certified for life!


Who is required to have the California Boater Card?

California passed a boating education law effective January 1, 2018 requiring all California boaters 20 years of age or younger to have the California Boater Card, and all California boaters to have one by 2025, by increasing age increments each year.

Effective January 1, 2021, all California boaters 40 years of age or younger are required to have a California Boater Card. Effective January 1 of 2022, 2023, and 2024, California Boater Cards are required for boaters of the age of 45, 50, 60 and younger, respectively. As of January 1, 2025, this applies to boaters of all ages.

 

Is it called the California Boater Card or the California boating license?

While it is often called a boating license in California, the correct terminology is that is the California Boater Card. This card is proof that you have successfully passed an accredited California boating safety course and can operate a boat on all state waterways.

 

Is there a penalty for operating a boat without the California Boater Card?

Yes, the convictions are $100, $250 and $500 for your first, second and third convictions, respectively.

 

Does the California Boater Card expire?

No

You are just 3 steps away from getting your California Boater Card

online boat course

Complete Course

State-accredited online course for all ages

online boater exam

Print your Certificate of Completion

After successfully completing the online course, you’ll be able to immediately print out and save your Certificate of Completion

temp boater license

Apply for your California Boater Card

To obtain your California Boater Card, you will need to apply at http://californiaboatercard.com/applynow/. You will be asked to provide your Certificate of Completion, as proof that you took an educational course

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FAQs


Course

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In California, boating law requires boaters to obtain and carry a California Boater Card (CBC) while operating a recreational motorized vessel within California waterways. This card is often called the ‘California boating license’. The CBC requirement is being phased in over 8 years as follows: January 1, 2018: Persons 20 years of age or younger January 1, 2019: Persons 25 years of age or younger January 1, 2020: Persons 35 years of age or younger January 1, 2021: Persons 40 years of age or younger January 1, 2022: Persons 45 years of age or younger January 1, 2023: Persons 50 years of age or younger January 1, 2024: Persons 60 years of age or younger January 1, 2025: All persons regardless of age

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Yes, the minimum age to operate a boat is 16 years of age or older by a motor of 15 HP or more

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In California, boating law requires boaters to obtain and carry a California Boater Card (CBC) while operating a recreational motorized vessel within California waterways. This card is often called the ‘California boating license’. The CBC requirement is being phased in over 8 years as follows: January 1, 2018: Persons 20 years of age or younger January 1, 2019: Persons 25 years of age or younger January 1, 2020: Persons 35 years of age or younger January 1, 2021: Persons 40 years of age or younger January 1, 2022: Persons 45 years of age or younger January 1, 2023: Persons 50 years of age or younger January 1, 2024: Persons 60 years of age or younger January 1, 2025: All persons regardless of age
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No, there is no minimum age to take this course

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No, you can do it over one sitting or as many sittings as you would like

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No, you do not need to be a resident of California to take this course

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No, you did not fail the course and need to try again

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You need to score 80% to pass chapter quizzes
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You need to score 80% to pass the final online exam

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There are quizzes at the end of each chapter in the boater education course

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No, it is not an open book exam

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Yes, you must pass the course before taking the exam

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No, we do not the materials available offline

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Yes, you must pass (the course and) the exam before you can drive a boat

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Yes, the boater education course provides a foundation for other boating courses

Certification

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While it is often called a "boating license" in California, it is called the California boater card

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To obtain your California Boater Card, you will need to apply to the government's website at http://californiaboatercard.com/applynow/. You will be asked to provide your Certificate of Completion, as proof that you took an educational course. As mandated by the government, the California Department of Parks and Recreation's Division of Boating and Waterways charges $10 to register and mail your card, after completing the course with all accredited providers, including BoatTests101.com. Follow the steps, and you are all set!

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You can print your temporary certificate from your dashboard after logging in

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Once you pass and pay for the California boater course, you will be able to immediately print out the Certificate of Completion. This is your proof of online course completion. You can print the Certificate of Completion right then, and/or request that a PDF be emailed to you

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The California boater card is good for your lifetime

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No, if you took a boater education course in another state or in Canada, it will be recognized in California

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No, you do not need to renew your boater education card. It is good for life

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You can use your temporary certificate for 90 days to operate a personal watercraft, after which you are required to have your California boater card

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You are required to have a California boater card if it is mandatory for your age and you are planning to operate a vessel with 15 horsepower or more.

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No, you do not need a proof of competency to operate a non-powered watercraft

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Your boater education from another state or Canada is proof of competency

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Yes, your California boater card can be revokable and suspendable if laws are broken

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Your card will be mailed within 60 days. If it is not delivered, please contact the California State Parks Division of Boating and Waterways

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Yes, there is a penalty for not carrying your California boater card while boating

Course Accreditation

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Yes, our California boater education course is approved by the California State Parks Division of Boating and Waterways

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For visting boaters, all US states, US territories, Canadian provinces, and Canadian territories will recognize boater eduation cards that meet NASBLA (National Association of State Boating Law Administrators) and Canadian Pleasure Craft Operator Cards that meet Transport Canada's requirements

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The phone # is 1-888-326-2822 and the mailing address is 1 Capitol Mall, Suite 500 Sacramento, California 95814

Price & Billing

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The California boater education course costs $24.99

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Yes, our website is secure and it is safe to enter your credit card information

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Customers can using debit and credit. We do not accept Bitcoin or other digital currencies at this time

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No, there is no annual cost

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The California boater course is valid for your lifetime from the time of registration and payment

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Please email us your issur or concern and we will review on a customer-by-customer basis

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Yes, we have an affiliate program where we reward referrals. Below is the link for more information and to sign up: https://www.shareasale.com/shareasale.cfm?merchantID=57099

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We offer referrals through our affiliate program (https://www.shareasale.com/shareasale.cfm?merchantID=57099). We may do promotions from time to time

Replacement Documents

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You can re-print your temporary card after logging into your account, assuming you passed the course and exam

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The Calfornia government is responsible for mailing and replacing the California Boater Card. Please visit CaliforniaBoaterCard.com where you will find their instructions and contact info

Account

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Select a course and click the "Sign Up!" button

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On the Login screen, click "Lost Password?" and follow the steps

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Please email [email protected] or call 1.888.885.8830

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No, you will not lose your progress

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You can login as many times as you would like

IT

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Yes, you can access the course on a mobile phone

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Yes, you can access the course from a desktop, mobile phone or tablet

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If you lose your internet connection, it will take you back to the point in the course you were currently at

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Yes, the course will run on any web browser

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You can take the exam on any computer that has an internet connection and a browser

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There are no videos in the course

Moving to California

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California does not accept reciprocity from other areas. If you are a California resident and have a boater card from outside of California, you will need to complete the California boating safety course, pass the corresponding exam, and then apply for your California Boater Card to operate on California waters via CaliforniaBoaterCard.com

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California does not accept reciprocity from other areas. If you are a California resident and have a boater card from outside of California, you will need to complete the California boating safety course, pass the corresponding exam, and then apply for your California Boater Card to operate on California waters at CaliforniaBoaterCard.com

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You cannot drive a boat without having a California Boater Card in California waters

General

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If you cannot find the answer to your question, please contact us directly at [email protected] or by phone @ 1.888.885.8830

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Our hours of operation are 9am-midnight EST

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We offer an official online boat course to get your boater card, which is accredited by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA), the US Coast Guard Auxiliary and the California Division of Boating and Waterways

Ready? Get Certified Today!