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Official Iowa Boating Safety Course

Take this Iowa–approved course to complete your online boating safety education. Boat-ed.com is a delegated provider for the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.

Iowa safety education card Lifetime Card

Do you need Iowa Boating education?

You need education if you are 12 to 17 years old and will be operating a motorized vessel over 10 hp or a PWC in Iowa.

Get boater certified in 3 steps.

  1. Study and pass the $34.95 course, and pay a $5.00 state fee.

  2. Print your online course completion document.

  3. Get ready to go boating!

Do you need a Boating License in Iowa?

Iowa law requires all boat operators between the ages of 12 and 17 to pass a boater safety course and to carry a boater education card.

Iowa Department of Natural Resources Requirements

You must be at least 12 years old to take this online course.

You do not have to be a resident of Iowa to take this online course.

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What to Expect From Boat Ed

Live‐Action, High‐Definition Videos

Our course videos feature a combination of professional educators (who double as professional actors), entertaining storylines, and up‐to‐date scenarios that give you one of the most effective ways to learn safe boating practices.

Watch this 54-second sample to see how we put you in the driver’s seat.

Comprehensive Instruction in Iowa Boating Safety Education

This official training program is developed to meet the standards for Boating safety education established by Iowa. Boat Ed is the only safety course provider that develops print materials on behalf of government agencies responsible for Boating laws and regulations.

Learn Your Way on Any Device

Boat Ed offers online courses that are fully mobile-friendly from start to finish. This safety course is designed to work on your smartphone, tablet, laptop, or desktop computer.

Boat course displayed on various devices

Saved Progress

You may complete the course at your own pace. The course can be completed in one sitting or a little at a time over several days. Log in and out at any time, and we'll keep track of your progress. Most students finish the course in a few hours.

Course outline displaying progress

Iowa Approved

Iowa Department of Natural Resources logo

Iowa Department of Natural Resources
502 E. 9th Street Des Moines, IA 50319-0034

Made in the U.S.A.

This safety course is proudly made to serve students, agencies, and organizations worldwide.

Is it the Boating safety license?

Boating safety education certification is not the same thing as a Boating license. What you really need is the Boater Education Certificate. You can get the Boater Education Certificate by taking this boat safety course at boat-ed.com. Find out if you need the card.

Did you lose your card? Replace it here.

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Iowa Frequently Asked Questions

Price and Payment

How much does the Iowa Boat Ed Course cost?

The Iowa Boat Ed Course fee is $34.95. You will also pay a $5.00 Iowa Department of Natural Resources fee.

Taking the Course

Do I have to complete the course all at once?

You may complete the course at your own pace. The course can be completed in one sitting or completed a little at a time over several days. All pay-up-front courses are available for 90 days from time of registration and payment.

What is the minimum age to take this online course?

You must be at least 12 years old to take this online course.

Do I have to be a resident to take the Iowa Boat Ed Course?

You do not have to be a resident of Iowa to take this online course.

Course Approval and Acceptance

Is the Iowa Boat Ed Course approved by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources?

The Iowa Boat Ed Course is approved and accepted by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.

Is my Iowa Boater Education Certificate accepted elsewhere?

For visiting boaters, 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.”)

Quizzes and/or Exams

I failed a unit quiz. Have I failed the course?

If you fail a unit quiz, you must restudy the unit and take the quiz again until you pass. You must score at least 80% on the unit quizzes to pass.

Do I have to take an online exam?

The Certification Exam is the exam you take at the end of the online course. You must score at least 80% on the Certification Exam to pass. You have 2 attempts to pass the Certification Exam. If you do not pass the exam in the 2 attempts given, you will be required to repeat the entire course. If you don’t complete the exam in one session, don’t worry. When you log in later, you will be taken to the first unanswered question of the exam.

About Your Certification

What is the proof of online Iowa Boat Ed Course course completion?

Once you pass and pay for the online course, you will be able to immediately print out the Boater Education Certificate. This is your proof of online course completion. You can print the Boater Education Certificate right then, and/or request that a PDF be emailed to you. This certificate EXPIRES 60 days after course completion.

What is the permanent Iowa Boater Education Certificate?

The Boater Education Certificate is proof that you have successfully completed all the education requirements. The Boater Education Certificate will arrive within 8-10 business days after you complete all certification requirements.

Replacement of Lost or Damaged Documents

How do I replace my Boater Education Certificate if I’ve lost it or it has been damaged?

To replace a lost, destroyed, or damaged Boater Education Certificate, go to https://ilostmycard.com/.

We’re people, not robots.

Your Boat Ed course comes with a dedicated customer service team made up of real people, not robots. We’re here to provide assistance to you through all channels—phone, email, and chat.

We’re available to help you:

9:00am to Midnight EST, seven days a week.
1-800-830-2268 (toll free)