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4. Coastal Skipper


Day Skippers who have a well-developed understanding of sea navigation can level up their skills and undertake coastal passages by night in challenging weather conditions after taking the RYA Coastal Skipper course. Learn intricate details about passage planning, boat handling, sailing safety and how to handle emergencies while diving in deeper into detailed navigation skills.

Dive much deeper into the finer yachting skills of passage planning, boat handling, sailing safety, and the handling of emergencies with the RYA Coastal Skipper Course. This course is perfect for sailors who already have a well-developed understanding of seamanship and want to take their sailing skills to an advanced level by developing competency in undertaking coastal passages by night in challenging weather conditions.

This is a great stepping stone to help you reach your higher-level skippering goals. Build your expertise as a skipper and learn more techniques that will continue to help you to prepare for the more advanced Yachtmaster™ Coastal Certificate of Competence—if that’s what you want to do. Even if you are not interested in the higher-level classifications just yet, this course is ideal if you simply want to increase your skippering skills.

The five-day, RYA Coastal Skipper Course provides advanced training for more experienced skippers who want to learn how to navigate safely on coastal and offshore passages. After a quick review of the basics in navigation theory, Coastal Skipper students will quickly move on to advanced navigation, meteorology, collision avoidance, safety at sea, and passage planning.

Sailors will skipper more challenging passages with the help of experienced instructors. Your navigation and passage planning skills will accelerate and prepare you to undertake longer coastal passages by day and by night.

The Coastal Skipper course equips students with strong navigational and boat-handling skills in tidal waters, providing them with the knowledge and experience to handle longer offshore passages. Sailors learn advanced passage planning, detailed yacht preparation, engine checks, safety briefings, and how to handle emergency situations at sea. Most important, sailors increase their leadership skills to become a safe, confident skipper.

The Coastal Skipper course counts toward the eligibility requirements for taking the Yachtmaster™ Coastal exam, if that’s what you want to do. Coastal Skipper will give you a boost toward the 30 days sea-time, including two as a skipper, with 800 miles and 12 night hours required for that higher level certification. Students who have earned an RYA Coastal Skipper course completion certificate will receive a partial reduction to the sea-time of 400 miles and 20 days at sea.

If you are ready to advance your sailing training to the next level, the RYA Coastal Skipper course is the obvious next step for you. Get ready to tackle challenging weather conditions and develop competency on coastal night passages as you prepare for the more advanced Yachtmaster classification, if that’s what you want to do next.

What you’ll learn?

Position Fixing

Advanced Passage Planning

Tidal Knowledge

Use of Almanacs and Admiralty Publications

Plotting Weather Systems

Adverse Weather Conditions

Collision Regulations

Customs and Excise Regulations for Cruising Abroad

Emergency Situations


‍The RYA Coastal Skipper course includes five days of hands-on, practical training.

Experience Required

  • RYA Coastal Skipper & Yachtmaster Theory Course
  • 300 nautical miles
  • 15 days of sailing (2 of which as a skipper)
  • 8 night hours onboard a sailing yacht

It is a general requirement in sailing that the participant is in good physical shape.

What’s included?

  • Marina fees
  • Insurance while aboard
  • All mooring and fuel costs
  • All essential safety equipment and life jackets

Please note, price does not include accommodation on shore, travel insurance, and any other trip expenses.

What to Bring?

Out in the open sea, you are exposed to the elements and can be subjected to sudden shifts in weather. You’ll want to make sure you come prepared with a variety of clothing options and sun protection. We advise you to bring along with you a list of items that you can find in the following page.

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