Royal Yachting Association is a United Kingdom-based entity that administers yacht and motorboat cruising, sailing, wind-surfing and other watersports. They have established safety and training standards for onshore activities that are recognized worldwide. South Africa is no exception to that. Getting an RYA Powerboat Certificate in South Africa is a big deal that boosts your knowledge and skills in operating a powerboat. But for that, first, you will have to understand the types of RYA Powerboat Courses you can take in South Africa.

In this article, we are specifically focusing on different levels of powerboat courses and certificates by RYA. Let’s get to know more about it.

What is a Powerboat?

A powerboat is a fast sea vessel that is usually used for water sports such as racing, or recreational activities such as tours, paragliding, and other tourism-based leisure activities. Powerboats are also known as motorboats or speedboats and they come in various sizes and engines. There are many types of powerboats that serve different purposes. For example, you wouldn’t use a powerboat that is designed for fishing and hauling cargo for watersports.


RYA Powerboat Courses in South Africa

So as we have established already, Powerboats are fast sea vessels that also possess risks to humans, other boats, or even the ecological system of the sea. This is where one should understand the importance of safety and proper handling of a powerboat.

In South Africa, you will need a powerboat license to operate one. And for that, we highly recommend the RYA Powerboat courses. It is a set of courses that will help you in learning your way around a powerboats. The RYA certificate of competence is recognized globally and it will be useful for you if you are planning to sail or work abroad.

These RYA certificates are backed by MCA – Maritime and Coastguard Agency. MCA is a government body of the UK responsible for coastal safety and security.

Let’s have a deeper understanding of RYA Powerboat Courses in South Africa and other complementary courses that may help you.

1. RYA Powerboat Course – Level 1 (PB1 course)

This course is the ‘ABC’ of powerboating. If you are completely new to the seas and powerboating, this is the course you should seek. Most people would dismiss this course but it is worth considering whether you would benefit from this course or not. As you go for the Level 2 course, the knowledge you have acquired in this course will help you.

RYA Powerboat Course – Level 2 (PB2) does not necessarily require you to complete this course beforehand. If you have some experience on the seas or are confident about your knowledge, and if you are looking for a more challenging course then you can directly go for a PB2 course.

This is a one day course that covers the basics, such as follows:

  • Preparations for the boat and crew
  • Handling the boat
  • Picking up, securing a mooring buoy
  • Man Overboard (theory)

2. RYA Powerboat Course – Level 2 (PB2 Course)

This is the most sought RYA course by many aspiring sailors and sea adventurers. As mentioned previously, this course is the go-to choice for many sailors and they ignore the PB1 course completely. Of course, it depends on your confidence level, knowledge, and the challenge that you desire.

This is a 2-day course that covers all the basics thoroughly for operating a powerboat. This course includes:

  • Launching and recovery
  • Confined space manoeuvring
  • Mooring
  • Man overboard (theory and practical)
  • Anchoring
  • Towing
  • Engine checks
  • High-speed handling
  • Collision regulations
  • Buoyage
  • Basic chart work and navigation
  • Tides
  • Communication afloat
  • Emergency procedures

3. RYA Intermediate Powerboat Course

Looking to master your skills at handling the powerboat? Then what you will need is an advanced powerboat course. But before that, you will have to cross a bridge to qualify yourself. RYA Intermediate course will refresh your PB2 knowledge as well as prepare you for the advanced techniques to survive rougher seas. If the RYA PB2 course is a detailed ‘elementary’ course, then RYA Intermediate is the middle school. This course acts as a bridge between RYA PB2 and the RYA Advanced Powerboat course. This 2 days long course includes:

  • Pilotage
  • Navigational tactics
  • Fuel and engine monitoring
  • Effect of waves and other rough conditions on the sea

You cannot enrol on the course unless you are at age of 16 and you must possess PB2 or equivalent experience. Your navigational skills should be on par with a Day Skipper’s standard.

4. RYA Advanced Powerboat Course

The advanced version of RYA’s powerboat course. This 2-days course covers the following:

  • Boat handling
  • Seamanship
  • Day and Night pilotage
  • Coastal Navigation – able to sail a boat on tidal waters day and night.

The prerequisite is that you have to have the experience and qualification to the level of RYA Intermediate Powerboat course or equivalent. You need to be at least age 17 before you can enrol on this course. Also, we strongly recommend you to have a first-aid certificate (STCW or RYA first aid certificates are valid) and a VHF operator certificate.

This course also includes a night navigation exercise.


Sail & Power RYA Powerboat Courses

Sail & Power SA offers high-quality and highly engaging RYA Powerboat Courses in South Africa. We are an RYA accredited skipper training academy in South Africa. All our Powerboat courses are instructed by RYA certified and experienced instructors who will guide you throughout the entire process. Furthermore, we also provide international commercial and recreational ICC certificates.

Sail and Power also provide assistance in obtaining an RYA or STCW endorsed First-Aid Certificate and a VHF Operator Certificate. If you need further assistance in understanding these courses, please feel free to connect with us anytime. To know more about our RYA Powerboat courses, check out our course section.