Colorado’s Boater Safety Education Program

Colorado joins more than 40 states with educational requirements for operating a boat or PWC on state waters.

By completing and passing this Colorado–approved online boating license course, you will have satisfied the educational requirement for Colorado.

It’s the Law!

Get Safe. Get Certified.

Who Needs the Card?

A person 14 or 15 years of age may operate a motorboat or personal watercraft on Colorado’s public waters only if he or she has passed a boating safety course approved by Colorado State Parks and has in his or her possession a boating safety certificate issued by the boating safety course provider.

Important! You must be at least 16 years of age to take this online course.

Even if not required by law to get the Colorado boating license, many boaters take the boat safety course in order to save on their PWC or boat insurance.

Do your part to make boating in Colorado a safe, enjoyable pastime! Become an educated, responsible boater by completing the Boat Colorado course and practice what you learn.

Age Restrictions

To operate a vessel on Colorado’s public waters, a person:

  • under 14 years of age may not operate any motorboat or personal watercraft on Colorado’s public waters.
  • 14 or 15 years of age may operate a motorboat or personal watercraft on Colorado’s public waters only if he or she has passed an approved boating safety course and has a Boating Safety Certificate issued by the boating safety course provider.

A person 16 years of age or older may operate a motorboat or personal watercraft on Colorado’s public waters.

Boater Education Exams

With regard to boat safety education courses, a person:

  • must be 14 years of age to take a proctored exam in a classroom setting and get the state-issued boating safety certificate.
  • must be 16 years of age to take the online boat safety exam and get a boater education card.

Reciprocity

All states, territories, and provinces will recognize boating education cards that meet NASBLA requirements and Canadian Pleasure Craft Operator Cards that meet Transport Canada’s requirements. (This is known as “reciprocity.”)

Enforcement

Colorado law enforcement officers patrol the waterways to make your boating experience safe and pleasant. Cooperate with them by following the laws and guidelines.

Carry the Card Vessel operators who are required to have a Boater Education Card must carry the card on board the vessel and have it available for inspection by an enforcement officer.

Penalty Not carrying your Boater Education Card when one is required can result in a fine.

For More Information

For details about the boater education law, who is exempt from the education requirement, which courses are approved, the Certification Exam, and the application for the Boater Education Card, visit http://www.parks.state.co.us/Pages/HomePage.aspx.

Quick Links

Is the Boating Card the same as a Boating License?

The Colorado Boating Safety Certificate is proof that you have successfully completed an approved boating safety course. Since the boater education card does not expire and does not need to be renewed, it is not called a Colorado Boating License.

Colorado Boating Safety Certificate

How do I get my state boating license?

You may have heard that you need the Colorado Boat License to operate your boat, but what you really need is the Colorado Boating Safety Certificate. You can get the Colorado Boating Safety Certificate by taking this Boat License Safety course at boat-ed.com. Find out if you need the card.

Did you lose your card? Replace it here.

Approved by:

Colorado State Parks
1313 Sherman Street, Suite 618
Denver, CO 80203
(303) 866-3437
http://www.parks.state.co.us/Pages/HomePage.aspx