In Rhode Island, residents can obtain boating licenses to drive motorized water vessels in the state. The process to receive certification involves a variety of steps developed by the RI Department of Environmental Management. Understanding how to get a boating license and complete this process in advance is helpful for new applicants. Residents should first ensure they meet all eligibility standards for driving personal watercraft.

Eligibility requirements are important factors for determining whether applicants are granted driving privileges. These regulations are based on the age, education level and residency status of boaters. Residents are required to take education courses to ensure they understand all rules and laws associated with operating watercraft. Online boating license classes are available. Find out more information on this topic by reading the sections below.

Do you need a license to drive a boat in Rhode Island?

In certain situations, residents are required to get licenses in Rhode Island. These requirements depend on the type of watercraft being used in the state. To obtain licensure, boaters safety courses should be taken by applicants. These education courses are used to teach boaters safety techniques and relevant laws in the state.

Education class certification is used in RI as boating permits. Boaters must keep these documents on hand when operating motorized water vessels. The steps to get a boat license may begin when drivers meet eligibility standards for boating privileges based on age and education level.

Rhode Island Boating License Requirements

Rhode Island boating license applicant age and educational qualifications establish eligibility for acquiring permits. Boaters born after January 1, 1986 are required to obtain licenses if they wish to operate boats throughout the state.

Additionally, any drivers who wish to operate personal watercraft, such as jet skis, are required to attend education classes. This rule applies to residents of any age.

Education courses must have approval from the RI Department of Environmental Management to be considered valid. This boat license requirement is waived for drivers born before January 1, 1986. Residents with Coast Guard or commercial license certification are also exempt from these standards.

Getting a Boating License in Rhode Island

Understanding how to get boater education cards is helpful for residents of Rhode Island. Drivers have the option of obtaining licensure online or in person. A certain amount of hours must be spent taking either form of the education class.

Additionally, final examinations are administered for both types of courses. Drivers must pass exams to be given boating privileges. Boating license certification steps in RI include the following tasks.

  1. Determine whether to take in-person or online classes.
  2. Check with third party agencies to find specific courses available in the state. Course prices vary among institutions. Make sure the selected class is approved by the state.
  3. Attend class for the necessary amount of hours.
  4. Fully prepare for the final exam by going over the state drivers guide and all information covered during class.
  5. Successfully pass the boat card exam and by answering the minimum amount of questions correctly.
  6. Pay the required fees, if applicable.

Rhode Island Boater Safety Courses

Online boaters safety courses and in-person classes are available to new boaters in Rhode Island. A variety of important concepts are covered during these instructional courses.

These include safety laws and regulations, boating practices and emergency response actions. This information is especially useful for inexperienced boaters who may feel uncomfortable behind the wheel of a motorized watercraft for the first time.

Renewing and Replacing Rhode Island Boating Licenses

Rhode Island drivers are required to keep their boater exam certification forms on hand when operating motorized water vessels. It is imperative that replacement occurs immediately if these documents are lost or stolen

Otherwise, the possibility of fines and/or tickets being applied by law enforcement is very real. In any case, new credentials are acquired when drivers directly contact these institutions to receive replacements.

Rhode Island Boat Registration Basics

Boat registration is an important factor for drivers who own personal motorized watercraft in the state. In addition to registration certification, boat titles are also required. Special eligibility standards are established for title and registration in Rhode Island.

To demonstrate eligibility for obtaining title and registration certificates, the following documents should be presented:

  • Valid proof of motorized water vessel ownership
  • One or more proofs of identity
  • Bill of sale certificate, if applicable

Drivers should place boat registration stickers to their boats or watercraft upon receipt of these items. The stickers must be placed in appropriate areas, so that law enforcement can easily read them when needed.

Replacement registrations or titles should be obtained as soon as possible when originals are lost or stolen. Residents can request forms by contacting the RI Department of Environmental Management online or by mail.

Rhode Island Boating Rules and Regulations

The boating regulations in Rhode Island are used to help boaters practice safe and enjoyable driving techniques on state waterways. Additionally, boat requirements help protect individuals who are enjoying watersports around boats and other watercraft.

Additionally, these laws help conserve natural areas and maintain wildlife populations. Law enforcement takes infractions against these laws seriously. Tickets and/or fines could be assessed for failure to adhere to boater rules and regulations. Below are some of the boating laws in Rhode Island:

  • Boating under the influence of alcohol or drugs is against the law and never allowed.
  • All boats and personal watercraft must be registered in the state.
  • Boat registration and titles should be renewed periodically to avoid driving on expired certification.
  • Bells and whistles should be maintained and used on certain size boats.
  • Fire extinguishers should be maintained and accessible on certain size boats.
  • Lifejackets must be kept on board in case of emergency.

Rhode Island Boating License Fees

There are no boating certificate fees in Rhode Island. This applies to both online and in-person classes offered in the state. Additionally, obtaining replacement certificate forms is free of charge. Fees may be assessed for replacement and/or renewal of registration documents.

Last updated on Thursday, March 7 2019.

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