What is a Washington Boater Education Card?
The Washington Boater Education Card is proof that a boater has successfully passed the Washington Boating Safety Test. Boat operators in Washington are required to obtain the card in order to operate a boat or PWC powered by a motor of 15 hp or more.
Is the Washington Boater Education Card the same as a Boating License?
A Washington Boater Education Card is proof of having successfully completed a state-approved boater education course. The Boater Education Card is commonly referred to as a ‘license’ however, unlike a license the boater card does not expire and does not need to be renewed.
Who needs a Washington Boater Education Card?
All boat operators in Washington are required to obtain a Boater Education Card in order to legally operate a boat or PWC powered by a motor of 15 hp or more.
Who is exempt from having to obtain a Washington Boater Education Card?
- Any person born before January 1st, 1955.
- Operators of commercial fishing boats who have a commercial license.
- Operators who possess a Coast Guard Marine Operator’s License.
- Operators of rented, leased or chartered boats, who are carrying a commission-approved educational checklist.
- Operators from another state or country who are operating in Washington for less than 60 consecutive days.
- Operators from another state or country who possess a valid Boater Education Card from their state or country, and who are operating in Washington for less than 60 consecutive days.
- A person purchasing a boat can use the bill of sale for up to 60 days, in place of a Boater Education Card.
What is the fine for not having a card?
The fine for operators caught boating without the card is $87.
How do I get a Washington Boater Education Card?
You can obtain your official Boater Education Card from BOATsmart! in three steps:
- Take the BOATsmart! Washington Boating Safety Course online.
- Pass the Washington Boating Safety Test online.
- Print a Temporary Card immediately.
Will my Washington Boater Education Card ever expire?
No. Your Washington Boater Education Card will be good for life. But don’t be a stranger – BOATsmart! offers free refresher lessons that will help you keep your boating knowledge up to date! Washington’s boating laws may change over time.
How do I replace my Washington Boater Education Card?
You can easily purchase a replacement Washington Boater Education Card from the Washington State Parks Boating Program by calling 1-877-902-8555 or visiting http://parks.state.wa.us
Do I need a Driver’s License to operate a boat in Washington?
No. The state of Washington does not require boaters to have a driver’s license in order to operate a boat. However, boaters who wish to operate a boat powered by a motor of 15 hp or more, are required to get certified with their Washington Boater Education Card.
Do I need a Boater Education Card for all types of boats?
The Washington Boater Education Card is required for boats or PWCs which are powered by a motor of 15 hp or more.
How long does the Washington Boater Course take?
The state of Washington requires that you spend a minimum of 3 hours studying the online course. The purchase of your BOATsmart! Washington Boating Safety Course includes unlimited lifetime access.
Is my Washington Boater Education Card valid in other states?
Yes. The Washington Boater Education Card is accepted in 40 states, which extend reciprocity. This means the BOATsmart! Course meets the National Standards established by NASBLA. This law applies to operators of motorized boats, but not in all states to operators of personal watercraft (PWCs). Always check the boating laws in the state you plan to visit prior to operating a boat or PWC there.