North Carolina Boating Laws and Regulations

Passing this Boating license course will complete your online safety education for North Carolina.

Do you need North Carolina Boating education?

North Carolina

You need education if you were born on or after Jan. 1, 1988, and will be operating a boat or PWC of 10 hp or more in North Carolina.

There is no minimum age requirement to take this online course.

You do not have to be a resident of North Carolina to take the online course.

Elsewhere

Boating education is currently required in several U.S. states and Canadian provinces.

Enforcement

North Carolina 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.

Is the Boating Card the same as the Boating License?

The North Carolina Boater Education Certificate is proof that you have successfully completed all of the components of an approved Boating safety course and allows you to go boating. Because the Boating education card or certificate does not expire and does not need to be renewed, it is not called the North Carolina Boating License.

Even if not required by law to get the North Carolina 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 North Carolina an enjoyable pastime! Become an educated, responsible boater by completing the Boat North Carolina course and practice what you learn.

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.”)

Need help? Here are the answers to the questions North Carolina Boating students most frequently ask.

Frequently Asked Questions