Pennsylvania Boating Laws and Regulations

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

Do you need Pennsylvania Boating education?

Pennsylvania

You need education if you will be operating a PWC, and if you were born on or after Jan. 1, 1982, and will be operating a boat over 25 hp in Pennsylvania.

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

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

Elsewhere

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

Exemptions

Residents of other states who were born on or after Jan. 1, 1982, and operate on Pennsylvania waters for 60 days or less are exempt if they hold a boating safety certificate issued by their home state.

Enforcement

Pennsylvania 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 Pennsylvania Boating Safety 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 Pennsylvania Boating License.

Even if not required by law to get the Pennsylvania 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 Pennsylvania an enjoyable pastime! Become an educated, responsible boater by completing the Boat Pennsylvania 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 Pennsylvania Boating students most frequently ask.

Frequently Asked Questions