This is an ambitious milestone within your sailing 'career'. The course does not follow a pre-defined syllabus, and it is more of a specific and practical preparation to the exam. This is conducted by an external examiner and lasts 6-8 hours.
Course type: Practical
Duration: 1 Week (7 days)
Location: Marina Kremik, Primosten (HR)
Included: 6 days tuition onboard a modern yacht, RYA Yachtmaster Handbook. Linens, Marina fees at home port, Examiner travel costs.
Not included: Food (also for the Instructor), marina/anchorage fees, Diesel, Tourist tax (approx 10 Euro p/p), Travel to/from Primosten, exam fee (must be booked/paid separately)
During the course we will exercise all key manoeuvres to bring you to the required level. Man over Board under engine and sail, anchoring, navigation, blind navigation. Harbour pilotage at night, reefing under way and of course mooring are some of the areas we will focus on. At the end of the week you will have refreshed and practised your skills and feel confident to sustain the exam.
All of this whilst spending the week aboard a comfortable yacht, visiting many beautiful bays and harbours in Croatia.
With a maximum of 4 students per course, your instructors can devote plenty of time to your needs and focus the program to the areas you need most. Safety is paramount in all RYA courses, so we will also spend plenty of time to ensure that the boat is properly prepared, and you know how to operate flares, lifejackets, safety harnesses, liferafts, etc.
Scroll down below to see the full course syllabus.
This preparation course is then followed by a two-days practical exam, to be booked separately, to obtain the RYA Yachtmaster Offshore Certificate of Competence.
In order to be able to sustain the exam, there are a few requirements:
- 50 days at sea, 2500 nautical miles (of which at least half in tidal waters), 5 passages of at least 60 nm each, 5 days as skipper
- VHF / SRC (Short Range Certificate) marine radio license
- Valid First Aid certificate
The RYA Yachtmaster Offshore Certificate of Competence can be then 'commercially endorsed' to enable the holder to work onboard british flagged yachts.
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The Yachtmaster Offshore preparation course does not have a pre-defined syllabus. Candidates may be given the opportunity to demonstrate knowledge of competence in the areas listed below. In each section the examiner will expect to see the candidate take full responsibility for the management of the yacht and crew.
1. International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea
Questions will be confined to the International Regulations and although candidates must be aware of the existence of Local Regulations, they will not be expected to memorise specific local regulations.
- General rules (1-3)
- Steering and sailing rules (4-19)
- Lights and shapes (20-31)
- Sound and light signals (32-37)
- Signals for vessels fishing in close proximity (Annex II)
- Distress signals (Annex IV)
Candidates will be expected to know what safety equipment should be carried on board a yacht. This based either on the recommendations in the RYA Boat Safety Handbook (C8), the ISAF Special Regulations or the Codes of Practice for the safety of Small Commercial Vessels. In particular, candidates must know the responsibilities of a skipper in relation:
- Safety harnesses
- Distress flares
- Fire prevention and fighting
- Knowledge of rescue procedures incl. Helicopter rescue
3. Boat Handling
Candidates will be expected to answer questions or demonstrate ability in more complex situations and will also be expected to show a higher level of expertise:
- Coming to and weighing anchor under power or sail in various conditions of wind and tide
- All berthing and unberthing situations in various conditions of wind and tide
- Recovery of man overboard
- Towing under open sea conditions and in confined areas
- Boat handling in confined areas under sail
- Boat handling in heavy weather
- Helmsmanship and sail trim to sail to best advantage
- Use of warps for securing in an alongside berth and for shifting berth or winding
4. General Seamanship, including maintenance
- Properties, use and care of synthetic fibre ropes
- General deck-work at sea and in harbour
- Engine operations and routine checks
- Improvisation of jury rigs following gear failure
5. Responsibilities of skipper
- Can skipper a yacht and manage the crew
- Communication with crew
- Delegation of responsibility and watch-keeping organisation
- Preparing yacht for sea and for adverse weather
- Tactics for heavy weather and restricted visibility
- Emergency and distress situations
- Victualling for a cruise and feeding at sea
- Customs procedures
- Standards of behaviour and courtesy
- Charts, navigational publications and sources of navigational information
- Chartwork including position fixing and shaping course to allow for tidal stream and leeway
- Tide and tidal stream calculations
- Buoyage and visual aids to navigation
- Instruments including compasses, logs, echo sounders, radio navaids and chartwork instruments
- Passage planning and navigational tactics
- Pilotage techniques
- Navigational records
- Limits of navigational accuracy and margins if safety
- Lee shore dangers
- Use of electronic navigation aids for passage planning and passage navigation
- Use of waypoints and electronic routeing
- Definition of terms
- Sources of weather forecasts
- Weather systems and local weather effects
- Interpretation of weather forecasts, barometric trends and visible phenomena
- Ability to make passage planning decisions based on forecast information