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FAQ's: RYA Coastal Skipper Practical Sailing

Pricing - How much will the RYA Coastal Skipper Practical Sailing course cost including exam fees?

Up to £550/750 EUROS/$820 depending on when and where you take the course.

What will you get out of it?

The Coastal Skipper practical sailing course is the next step for those who already have a Day Skipper (Sailing) certificate and wish to learn more about sailing skills for more adventurous trips such as a multi night passages up the coast.

It is very much about the longer passage under sail – both night navigation and other cruising skills will be taught.

What are your limits on passing the course?

Essentially you will be able to do similar passages to that of a Day Skipper, with the inclusion of overnight trips.

As an example you might wish to do a run from Eastbourne to Falmouth over a couple of days. With the Day Skipper you would only sail during daylight and into twilight – you would be expected to undertake the passage through the night with some confidence. 

Is the RYA Coastal Skipper Practical Sailing course theory, practical or a combination of both?

There will be theoretical elements, such as being able to recognise cardinal marks’ lights and other elements of pilotage in the dark that come into play, however this is a mainly a practical offshore based course. 

Where can you take it?

You can take this anywhere in the world that offers the course and is accredited by the RYA to do so.

What level of experience do you need before taking it?

Course Prerequisites;

  1. You will need a minimum of 8 night hours aboard
  2. You will need 15 days of cruising experience at sea (of which 2 must be as skipper, and 300 logged miles of passages).

Put in perspective over a 24 hour period you can cover at least 200 miles so 8, 2 day passages will eat up the miles in no time.  

Length of course - How long does this take to complete?

You should complete the Coastal Skipper (Sailing) Practical course within around one week.

Syllabus - What exactly does this course involve?

  • You will build your confidence in all basic sailing skills, and learn assertive leadership skills so that you are decisive in all situations.
  • You will cover seamanship and sailing skills through repeated drills, until for example dealing with a man overboard situation becomes second nature. 
  • You will also develop your navigational skills for both day and night.

Next Steps - How do I progress after completing it?

You can do the this course as part of your preparation for the Yachtmaster Coastal exam, or do the Yachtmaster Coastal as a next step.

Does it give you international accreditation?

No, but you can apply for an International Certificate of Competence with this qualification

Where can I learn more about this RYA practical sailing course?

Check out the official RYA webpage.

Please also review the syllabus here.

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