Instead of getting a Missouri boating license, you must obtain a boater education card in order to operate a vessel on state lakes. To obtain this card, you must complete an approved education course. However, keep in mind that not everyone is required to obtain this card. As a general rule, this credential is only necessary for motorists who were born after January 1, 1984. If you were born on or before January 1, 1984, you are not required to get a boat safety certificate in MO.

Additionally, this certificate is only necessary for operating watercraft on Missouri lakes. Therefore, you do not need this certificate if you are operating a vessel on rivers, streams or private bodies of water. In any case, even if you do not need to obtain this certificate, it is recommended that you still participate in a boater education course before you operate any vessel on the water for your own safety and the safety of those around you.

Do you need a license to drive a boat in Missouri?

You are required to get a boat education card if you were born after January 1, 1984 and wish to operate any type of motorized vessel on the lakes in Missouri. On the other hand, residents who are born on or before that date or who are only operating their vessel on streams, rivers and private waters are not required to obtain this card.

Furthermore, motorists who have been convicted or found guilty of certain boating-related crimes will be required to pass a boater certification course.

Missouri Boat License Requirements

There is not a specific boating license age that applicants must reach in order to enroll in an education course and obtain a certificate. Despite the fact that there is not an age limit for these education courses, there are age requirements for boat operations in Missouri. For instance, state law requires residents to be 14 years of age or older to operate a boat without supervision. Applicants who are younger than 14 years of age may also operate a boat, but only if accompanied by an adult.

Another important boating license requirement is that any motorists born after January 1, 1984 must carry both their boater certification card as well as a photo ID in order to legally operate the vessel on lake waters. This type of identification credential may be an MO driver’s license or a photo ID card. If a boat operator is caught operating a vessel without carrying an education card and ID, he or she will receive a citation for a Class B misdemeanor and will be responsible for paying a fine.

Getting a Boat License in Missouri

If you want to know how to get a boating license in Missouri, it is important to understand which steps you must take. For example, in order to obtain this credential, you must enroll in a boaters safety course. To do so, you must:

  1. Enroll in a course approved by the NASBLA (National Association of State Boating Law Administrators).
  2. Go through the course and pass the boat license test.
  3. Pay any applicable fees.
  4. Receive your card.

In order to obtain your card, you must follow the steps outlined by the boating license course of your choice. For example, if you opt for a program offered by the Missouri State Highway Patrol, you have a few different options for requesting your card after you complete the course. You can either order the card in person, by mail or online as long as you provide information such as when you completed the course, your personal details and payment for the card.

Missouri Boater Safety Courses

You may participate in an online boating course or an in-person classroom program. Overall, you may choose from in-classroom courses offered by the Missouri State Highway Patrol, U.S. Coast Guard or U.S. Power Squadrons, or you may choose the online option provided by third-party institutions. Once you have made a selection based on what is most convenient under your circumstances, you must enroll in the program and complete it.

Each boating education course varies slightly depending on its length of time and what topics are covered. However, regardless of the course you choose, you will learn about what equipment is necessary to carry on your vessel, how to handle emergency situations and the consequences for not abiding by state laws for boating.

Renewing and Replacing a Missouri Boating License

Many residents wonder, “Do Missouri boating licenses expire?” Because you receive a safety certificate instead of an actual license in MO, there is no set expiration date for this credential. Moreover, because the certificate does not expire, it also does not need to be renewed.

If your boat education card gets damaged or lost, you must obtain a duplicate. To get this replacement, contact the establishment that issued the card to you and follow the steps that they provide.

Missouri Boat Registration Basics

You must apply for a Missouri boat registration if you own a motorized watercraft in the state. To get your boat title and register the vessel, you must submit an application form, provide a paid personal property tax receipt and a notarized lien release (if applicable). You must also pay any applicable fees, which will vary depending on the type of vessel that you own.

It is very important for your vessel to have the proper boat registration stickers on it before you can operate it. You will face serious consequences if you are caught operating a vessel that has not been properly registered.

Missouri Boating Rules and Regulations

Whenever you drive a boat in Missouri, you must follow the boating laws that are set in place by state authorities. Overall, these boating regulations are created in order to keep everyone safe on public waterways. As an example, boat requirements state that you must not:

  • Operate a boat while intoxicated or under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
  • Allow for negligent operation of a vessel.
  • Operate a vessel on a lake without a boating safety education card (if you are born after January 1, 1984).
  • Fail to yield to an emergency watercraft.
  • Leave the scene of an accident.

In addition, you must also ensure that you have all of the necessary equipment on your vessel, including personal flotation devices, navigation lights, a ventilation system and fire extinguishers.

Missouri Boating License Fees

The fee for getting a boater education card in Missouri will vary depending on the course you opt for. For example, the State Highway Patrol charges a $15 fee for the card, but does not charge a fee for the course. On the other hand, you may be required to pay more if you choose to undergo a program offered by different institutions.

Last updated on Friday, March 6 2020.