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You are looking at a preview of what’s in the timed Pennsylvania Boat Ed Course. Feel free to look around, but you’ll need to register to begin progress toward getting your Pennsylvania Boating Safety Education Certificate.

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Placement of registration numbers and validation decal on a boat

The registration number and validation decals must be displayed as follows.

  • Number must be painted, applied as a decal, or otherwise affixed to both sides of the forward half of the vessel.
  • Number must read from left to right on both sides of the bow.
  • Number must be in at least three-inch-high BLOCK letters.
  • Number’s color must contrast sharply with its background.
  • Letters must be separated from the numbers by hyphens or by spaces equal to the width of the numbers or letters.
  • No other numbers may be displayed on either side of the bow.
  • Decals must be affixed on both sides of the bow within six inches of, and in line with, the registration number. The decals may precede or follow the number.
PWC showing registration number and validation decal

PWCs also are required to display the registration number and validation decals.

Correct letter and number spacing of registration number

Correct spacing of decal and registration number; decal may precede or follow the number.

The requirements for displaying numbers and decals are different for small vessels.

  • Kayaks, sculls, and sailboards are exempt from displaying their registration number but must display the validation decals.
  • Canoes must display both the number and the decals.
  • Inflatable boats may display their number and decals on boards that are tied to each side of the boat.