nautical-qualifications
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Guide of nautical titles to be a boat owner in Spain

  • Alvaro G
By Álvaro García
6 January, 2020
Do you want to be a boat skipper? In this guide we will solve all the typical doubts that the applicants have in obtaining a nautical qualification. In Spain there are several options for sailing and different types of boat licenses, which basically depend on the size of the boat you want to sail on, and the maximum distance of the coast from which you want to get away.
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  • Nautical qualifications in Spain
  • Navigation License - Your first boat card
  • Basic Navigation Pattern - Your first nautical degree
  • Recreation pattern - The most demanded nautical qualification
  • Yacht pattern - The qualification for tall navigators
  • Yacht Captain - The qualification for ocean navigators
  • Enable your nautical qualification for sailing vessels
  • What nautical qualification interests me?

Nautical qualifications in Spain

In Spain there are different types of regulated nautical qualifications. The legislation requires that to be able to carry a pleasure boat you must be in possession of the appropriate boat license, depending on the size of the boat that you want to take and the distance that you move away from the coast.

The existing nautical titles of less or more attributions are:
  • Navigation license:
  • Basic Navigation Pattern (GNP)
  • Recreational Boat Pattern (PER)
  • Yacht skipper
  • Yacht Captain

Navigation License - Your first boat card

The navigation license is the easiest option to start browsing. It is the permit formerly known as a "titulin" and will allow you to take boats of up to 6 meters in length, and stay up to two miles away from the coast. The main advantage of the navigation license is that in just 6 hours of training in a nautical school you will become a boat patron, that is, you do not have to pass any theoretical or practical exam, just attend the theoretical training- practice.

With this license you can take boats up to 6 meters in length, with the power allowed by the boat and you can move away from the coast up to a maximum distance of 2 miles.

With this navigation license you can navigate between sunrise and sunset. If you want to navigate at night you will need at least the Basic Navigation Pattern (GNP) title.

Basic Navigation Pattern - Your first nautical degree

The title of Basic Navigation Pattern, known by its acronym: "PNB", is the nautical recreational qualification that will allow you to sail in boats of up to 8 meters in length, to navigate up to 5 miles from the coast. Unlike the Navigation License, it allows night sailing, in addition to the day.

In order to obtain this degree, it is necessary to pass a test type exam that the competent public administrations provide in each autonomous community. In addition, it is mandatory to perform basic safety and navigation practices that consist of two four-hour departures. It is also mandatory to carry out a theoretical-practical demonstration of radiocommunications.

Recreation pattern - The most demanded nautical qualification

The well-known "PER" or Patron of Recreational Boats, is the most popular nautical qualification since it is the option that most attributions offers and does not require obtaining any previous nautical license or qualification, you can opt to obtain the PER directly. The title of Patron of Recreational Boats serves to carry boats of up to 15 meters in length and to navigate the maximum distance of the coast of 12 miles, or to make navigations between the Balearic or Canary Islands.

In order to obtain this qualification, it is necessary to pass a mutliple choice type test convened by the competent public administrations in each autonomous community and carry out basic safety and navigation practices, aboard a school ship, which consist of at least 16 hours. It is also mandatory to obtain the certificate of having completed the practical theoretical course of short range radio operator, which lasts 12 hours.

It is possible to expand the powers of the PER to carry boats of up to 24 meters in length and be able to make crossings between the peninsula and the Balearic Islands. For this, additional practices must be carried out in an approved nautical school consisting of a continuous 24-hour navigation journey.

Yacht pattern - The qualification for tall navigators

The title of Yacht Skipper will allow you to make tall navigations. With this title it is possible to sail up to a maximum distance of 150 miles from the coast in pleasure boats up to 24 meters in length.

It is necessary to be in possession of the title of Patron of Recreational Vessels (PER) in order to request the issuance of the title of Patron of Yacht. In addition, a theoretical exam must be passed and high-altitude sailing practices consisting of a 48-hour cruise on an approved school ship.

Yacht Captain - The qualification for ocean navigators

The title of Captain of the Yacht is the recreational nautical title with the highest powers. It allows navigation in all types of pleasure boats, without navigation limit.

To obtain the title of Captain of the Yacht, it is necessary to pass a theoretical exam type test carried out by the competent administration in each autonomous community. In addition, it is necessary to carry out 48-hour navigation practices in an approved nautical school.

Enable your nautical qualification for sailing vessels

If what you want is to take sailboats of more than six meters in length, you will have to carry out a specific qualification in a nautical school, consisting in the realization of specific sailing practices.

The practices are the same regardless of the degree you have obtained. The official program of these practices is carried out in four four-hour departures, usually in two days, in which the students on board receive all the practical training from the hand of an instructor in an approved school boat. Once you do these practices, the qualification will be valid for any nautical title that you have or that you will obtain in the future.

In the case of the title of Recreational Vessel Pattern, it is possible to combine the practice of qualification to sail and the practice of extension of attributions together. In this case, the practice will consist of a journey of 48 hours of continuous navigation that combines the program of both practices and that allows obtaining the two certificates.
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Sailing course

What nautical qualification interests me?

To know which nautical qualification interests you the most, you must think about the type of navigation you want to do. Without being short one-day trips to go fishing, a cove or snorkeling, the navigation license or the basic navigation pattern may help you . If you want to make trips of more than one day and navigate aboard a ship where you can sleep, you will most likely be interested in starting with the title of Recreational Boat Pattern.

To obtain the title of Yacht Skipper you must first obtain the title of Skipper of Recreational Vessels and to obtain the title of Captain of Yacht you will have to be in possession of the title of Captain of Yacht.
  • Alvaro G
    Álvaro García
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