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FAQ

Rev040717

Canadian Boating License Laws and Regulations

Learn More About Safe Boating @ BOATNBOB.COM

 

Do I need a Boating License?

Yes! Excluding the Northwest Territories or Nunavut, all persons who operate a motorized pleasure craft in Canada that is used for recreational purposes must carry a Transport Canada Accredited Pleasure Craft Operator Card (PCOC) or equivalent proof of competency on board. A Pleasure Craft Operator Card is commonly reffered to as a boating license.

 

How do I get my Canadian Boating License?

You may have heard the term Canada Boat Licence, Canadian Boating License or Boaters Card and that you need one of them or a driver's license to operate your boat in Canada. What is really required is the Pleasure Craft Operator Card (PCOC). Since it is regulated by Transport Canada under the Competency of Operators of Pleasure Craft Regulations, it is valid across Canada, and is the only card that is required to operate a powered pleasure vessel in Canada. You can get the Pleasure Craft Operator Card by taking the Better Boating Safe Boat Training ® online safe boating course today!

 

Exceptions

Certificates for boating safety courses completed before April 1, 1999 will be recognized. If you've already taken a course prior to these regulations - and have proof - then that course certificate or card will be accepted as proof of competency! If you have completed a course and would like more information on obtaining proof of competency please contact the Ministry of Transport Office of Boating Safety at 1-800-267-6687or obs-bsn@tc.gc.ca .

 

Marine Certificates

If you hold a marine certificate recognized by Transport Canada, you can carry your certificate or a copy on board as proof of competency. If you still wish to obtain a ""Pleasure Craft Operator Card" you are required to pass the Transport Canada boating test.

To verify your certificate is recognized by Transport Canada contact them at 1-800-267-6687 or visit http://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/marinesafety/debs-obs-courses-pcoc-list-marine-safety-certif-1323.htm

 

Is there a "Grandfather Clause"?

No

 

Is my Operator Card good for life?

Yes! Once issued, your Operator Card is good for your life. If you lose your card one can be re-issued for you.

 

Do visitors from foreign countries need to obtain a Pleasure Craft Operator Card?

Non-residents operating their pleasure craft in Canadian waters for more than 45 consecutive days are required to obtain an Operator Card. An operator card or equivalent issued to a non-resident by their state or country may be considered as proof of competency. Please contact the Ministry of Transport Office of Boating Safety at 1 -800-267-6687 or visit http://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/marinesafety/debs-obs-quick-quick_visitor-1610.htm  for more details.

 

Do commercial operators need a Card?

No. As long as you are operating your craft for commercial purposes then you are not required to show proof of competency. However, if you operate your vessel (or any other pleasure craft) for recreational purposes you are required to obtain and show the card.

 

Do I need a card to rent a boat?

No the rental agreement allows you to operate the boat for the duration of the agreement.

 

Are these Federal or Provincial Laws ?

The laws governing the Pleasure Craft Operator Card are a federal requirement. Meaning they apply from coast to coast.

 

Is my Original Pleasure Craft Operator Card still valid?

Yes! Although the PCOC test changed in 2011, the original cards are still valid for life!

 

Are you old enough to operate a motorized boat?

Find out from the char​t below.

 

What is the fine for not carrying proof of compentency?

The fine for not carrying proof of competency is $250.00

For more information on the regulations please visit:
http://ww w.tc.gc.ca/eng/marinesafety/debs-obs-paperwork-paperwork_operatorfaq-2233.htm#u
or CALL TRANSPORT canada @ 1 800 267 6687

 

I  have not received my Pleasure Craft Operator Card

If you do not receive your card within 60 days of passing your PCOC test, please contact info@betterboating.ca. Waiting beyond the 60 days will result in a re-issue fee to have another card issued. Please ensure that you have supplied BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® with your correct mailing address

You may contact BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® by mail
1 Wexford Road Unit 9, P.O. Box #44083 Brampton Ontario L6Z 2W1

 

My name or DOB is incorrect on my Pleasure Craft Operator Card

Although every effort is made to ensure your card arrives with the correct spelling and D.O.B errors sometime happen. If there is an error on your operator card, such as an incorrect spelling of your name or date of birth, you must report it to BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® within 30 days of recieving the card. If reported within the 30-day period and the error is found to be found to be a clerical made by us , BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® will reissue your card at no charge. Client clerical errors and or waiting beyond the 30 days to report an error will result in a re-issue fee.

 

To correct an error on the Pleasure Craft Operator Card within the 30 day period

Please send BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® the following:

  • A photo copy of a government document that states your official name
  • A photo copy of your original card
  • Your current complete mailing address and physical address if it is different than your mailing address Telephone number including area code
  • Send the above to BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® 1 Wexford Road Unit 9, P.O. Box #44083 Brampton Ontario L6Z 2W1

Note: that we do not make corrections by telephone or email

 

To correct an error on the Pleasure Craft Operator Card after the 30 day period

Please send BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® the following:

  • A certified cheque or money order made payable to BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® in the amount $22.60 taxes included
  • A photo copy of a government document that states your official name
  • A photo copy of your original card
  • Your current complete mailing address and physical address if it is different than your mailing address
  • Telephone number including area code

Send the above to BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® 1 Wexford Road Unit 9, P.O. Box #44083 Brampton Ontario L6Z 2W1

Note: that we do not make corrections by telephone or email

 

Is My Paper Laminated Card Still Valid?

 

NO.

Prior to the year 2000 the Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) provided course providers to develop and issue their own unique pleasure Craft Operator Card (PCOC). BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® as well as other companies in the business issued numbered paper cards the size of a standard business card. It became quite obvious that this needed to be changed. After consultations in the fall of 1999 with industry stake holders the CCG standardized the format for the PCOC.

BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® cards all started with a unique letter and number system. Although every effort has been made to contact and update  original paper card holders, we understand that you may still posses one.

If you would like to upgrade to the current card please remit the following:

  • Your original paper card
  • Your full name
  • DOB
  • Current complete mailing address, physical address if different than the mailing address
  • Telephone number
  • Certified cheque or money order made payable to BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® with payment of $15.00 HST included

Send the above to BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® 1 Wexford Road Unit 9, P.O. Box #44083 Brampton Ontario L6Z 2W1
Once received, you will be issued a standard card. Please allow six weeks delivery time.

NOTE: We can only issue a standard card if we receive an original BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® paper PCOC.

 

How do I change the name on my Pleasure Craft Operator Card 

If you need to change the name on your card, you may do this online using our name change .

To request a replacement card via Canada Post service, please send BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® the following:

  • A certified cheque or money order made payable to BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® in the amount $22.60 taxes included
  • A photo copy of a government document that states your official name
  • A photo copy of your original card
  • Your current complete mailing address and physical address if it is different than your mailing address

Send the above to BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® 1 Wexford Road Unit 9, P.O. Box #44083 Brampton Ontario L6Z 2W1

 

I have lost my Pleasure Craft Operator Card

If you have lost your card you may use our online replacement card form.

Note: we can only issue cards to those individuals whom received their card form BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING®

 

What options do I have for training so I may pass the PCOC Test?

Do your course and PCOC test online with BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING®

Order your copy of the Watercraft Safety Manual  and take your PCOC test with a BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® Agent.

Study online for Free and take your PCOC test with a BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® Agent.

Take Classroom Course with a BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® Agent.

Each format is recognized and approved by Transport Canada and includes all the knowledge you need in order to obtain your Pleasure Craft Operator Card!

 

What will I learn?

All training formats include all the knowledge you need in order to obtain your Pleasure Craft Operator Card. Topics include:

  • Canadian Boating Rules and Regulations
  • Properly Equipping Your Craft
  • Operating Your Boat Safely
  • Ensuring the Safety of Your Passengers
  • Understanding Navigational Aids
  • Properly Maintaining Your Craft and Equipment
  • Responding to Emergencies and Distress Signals

 

About the online Course

 

How long will it take to complete the online course?

You must spend a minimum of three hours studying the online course Our course was designed with you in mind it is our goal to entertain and educate you at the same time ! We are sure that you will want to spend more than the regulated time to become a competent and confident boater.

 

Do I have to complete the online course all at once?

No you may complete the course at your own pace. The course can be completed in one sitting or completed at your leisure but it must be completed within one year of registration.

 

Is the online PCOC Test an open book PCOC Test?

Yes the online PCOC test is an open book test!

 

Do I need a SUPERVISOR when taking the online PCOC Test?

No there is no requirement for a test supervisor for the online course or PCOC test

A test supervisor must be present when challenging the PCOC test in person at a BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® testing facility.

 

How long do I have to wait before I can go out on the water in my boat or PWC After passing the online course?

After passing the PCOC test, you may immediately print a temporary Certificate, which is valid for 60 days and serves as your temporary operating permit which permits you to go out on the water immediately. Your permanent card will arrive within 6 weeks.

 

Expiration Date 

The online course and PCOC test must be completed within one year from the date of registration. Failure to complete the course and PCOC test within the one year time period will require you to start from the beginning of the course.

 

What is Better Boating’s refund policy

There will be no refunds, unless you the customer were charged more than once due to technical problems during the transaction process. BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® must be notified info@betterboating.ca within 90 days of any technical problems in order to be eligible for a refund.

 

Challenging the PCOC Test

 

How long is the Challenge PCOC Test?

Whether in person or online the Challenge PCOC test contains of 50 multiple choice questions. You have a maximum of 90 minutes to complete the inperson PCOC test.You have a maximum of 75 minutes to complete the online PCOC test.

 

What score do I need to pass?

Whether in person or online you need to answer at least 38 questions correctly (75%) in order to pass the PCOC test and obtain your Operator Card.

 

Can I retry the PCOC Test if I happen to fail?

Whether in person or online you may retry the PCOC test.

Should you fail the online test you may attempt it again after waiting 24 hours and it must be completed within 30 days of the first attempt. Failing the online test a second time will require you to complete the online course from start to finish. Retries are unlimited and at no cost.

Should you fail the paper test you may attempt it again after waiting 24 hours. The second attempt may be subject to a nominal fee.

 

New PCOC Tests

 

Why did the PCOC Test change from 36 questions to 50?

This was in the works for a long time however the legislation did not allow for the change until after the original 10 year phase in period. We are pleased that the change has arrived!

 

Will I pass the new PCOC Test without studying?

It is strongly recommended that you study our new manual before you attempt the 50 question PCOC test.

Study for free online or order your copy of the Water Craft Safety Manual from our website www.betterboating.ca  today!

 

Security

 

Is it safe to pay by credit card?

Yes, this web site is 100% secure for accepting credit card payments, using the same security as that used for online banking. This web site has 128 bit encryption, on all pages where personal or payment information is submitted.

Who is BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING®?

BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® is a Transport Canada Accredited Course Provider. BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® was accredited originally in 1999 by the Canadian Coast Guard. BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® was one of the first original course providers and strives to make you a Competent and confident boater by entertaining and educating you at the same time!

 

What Information does BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING® COLLECT and how is it Used?

BETTER BOATING SAFE BOAT TRAINING®, collects two types of information: personal information and non-personal information.

With your consent we may use your personal information for a number of different purposes:

  • To complete requests for products, services or information
  • Provide customer service
  • Offer new products and services
  • Measure and improve the effectiveness of our web site
  • We may also collect and summarize customer information in a format that no longer identifies the individual for statistical purposes
  • Personal information includes your name, address, phone number, and e-mail address.
  • Non-personal information does not identify you as an individual, we may ask you for your postal code to help implement our advertising campaigns

All information required to issue a Pleasure Craft Operator Card (PCOC) is forwarded to Transport Canada for Enforcement purposes.

This web site has 128 bit encryption, on all pages where personal or payment information is submitted.

For more in formation on information we collect see our privacy policy