New boat license: what changes and what you need to know


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licenseMore practice, less notionism and anachronistic questions to obtain a boat license. Examinations are finally changing with the publication in the Official Gazette of the decree adopting the new examination syllabuses (theory and practical) for obtaining a boating license.

New boat license, what changes

Several streamline the procedure.

Do they fail you at practice twice? Don’t despair!

Those who have passed the written test, but have failed – for the two times allowed – the practical test, can retake within 30 days only the practical test without starting the course again from the beginning, as was the case until now.

Within the validity period of the examination application, the candidate has the option of repeating only the written tests that he/she may have failed, or, in case he/she has failed the charting (for the “no limit” license), he/she may apply to continue the examination by finalizing it to obtain the “within 12 miles” boating license. The possibility for those who do not pass the “Sailing Quiz” to continue the examination for the purpose of obtaining the equivalent motor license remains in place.

It is possible to request the application of personalized compensatory measures for the performance of examination tests by people with disabilities and people with specific learning disorders (SLDs).

Less anachronistic, “streamlined” (and electronics-assisted) theory

As far as examination programs are concerned, the “nomenclature” of the unit is limited to the main parts of the hull, as well as the part relating to minor breakdowns, which affects only those that may involve non-specialized intervention by the yachtsman. About the signals of Colreg (Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea) one will have to know “by heart” the main ones, including those of pleasure craft and vessels less than and greater than 50 meters, vessels at anchor and fishing units.

Notions of the hazards of operating the unit under the influence of alcohol or while under the influence of mental and physical impairment are introduced, and the use of electronic instruments for positioning the ship’s point is included.

With the same overall number of questions, there is an increase in quizzes on “maneuvering and conduct,” precautions to be taken when entering and leaving ports and when sailing near the coast and bathers, those on speed limits, and elements on protecting the marine environment. A candidate who has completed at least 5 total hours of maneuvering, attested by a nautical school, is eligible for the examination.

How the theory test is structured

  • “Basic” quiz, valid for all licenses, with 20 multiple-choice questions, each consisting of three answers
    alternatives of which only one is correct, and the test is passed if the candidate gives at least 16 correct answers.
  • The Quiz on “charting elements,” consisting of five single-answer questions, for the “within 12 miles” license. The test is passed if the candidate gives at least 4 correct answers 5. It is replaced by the card test for the “over” license.
  • The “sailing” Quiz, with 5 single-answer questions, passed with at least 4 correct answers.

A step forward, says Confindustria Nautica

This is one more piece in the modernization of our regulatory body that we have been relentlessly pursuing for four years now and which began with the revision of the Boating Code,” says Confindustria Nautica President Saverio Cecchi. “Now we expect-and ask Minister Giovannini for-rapid adoption of the Code’s implementing regulations that can accommodate the competitiveness needs of businesses, the Italian system and the needs of simplification for users.”


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