Courses information

The following boating safety courses are the only courses approved by the State of California and the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators. The fee charged is determined solely at the discretion of the course provider. The Division of Boating and Waterways does not receive any money from course fees charged. Some online courses are free and others have a fee. Successfully completing an exam from one of the courses listed below meets the qualifications to apply for a California Boater Card.

Ace Boater

  • Name of course: Safe Boating Course
  • Course Type: Online
  • Course Cost: $24.95
  • Customer Service: 1.800.607.2329
  • Certified through 2017

Boat Ed

  • Name of course: Boat California Course
  • Course Type: Online
  • Course Cost: $29.50
  • Customer Service: 1.800.830.2268
  • Certified through 2018

Boater Exam America

BOATsmart! 

  • Name of course: BOATsmart! Boating Course
  • Course Type: Online
  • Course Cost: $29.95
  • Customer Service: 1.705.745.2878
  • Certified through 2017

Boat Tests 101

  • Name of course: California Boater Education
  • Course Type: Online
  • Course Cost: $29.00
  • Customer Service: 1.888.885.8830
  • Certified through 2017

BoatU.S. Foundation

California Division of Boating and Waterways

U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary

  • Name of course: About Boating Safely
  • Course Type: Classroom
  • Course Cost: Varies
  • Customer Service: 1.877.875.6296
  • Certified through 2019
  • Name of course: Boating Skills and Seamanship
  • Course Type: Classroom
  • Course Cost: Varies
  • Customer Service: 1.877.875.6296
  • Certified through 2019

U.S. Power Squadrons

  • Name of course: America’s Boating Course
  • Course Type: Classroom/Online
  • Course Cost: Varies
  • Customer Service: 1.888.367.8777
  • Certified through 2018

US Sailing/US Powerboating

  • Name of course: Basic Powerboat Cruising
  • Course Type: Classroom/On-the-water
  • Course Cost: Varies
  • Customer Service 1.401.683.0800
  • Certified through 2019
  • Name of course: Safe Powerboat Handling
  • Course Type: Classroom/On-the-water
  • Course Cost: Varies
  • Customer service: 1.401.683.0800
  • Certified through 2019

The State of California does not grant reciprocity beyond 60 days for out-of-state boaters in possession of his/her state issued boater card. Please view our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s) for more details.