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Licensing a Pleasure Craft - Transport Canada

Licensing a pleasure craft

The pleasure craft license is not the same as the Pleasure craft operator card commonly known as the boating license, which is required in order to drive a power driven boat.  

A pleasure craft licence is a document with a unique licence number for a pleasure craft.

The law requires all pleasure craft powered by 10 horsepower (7.5 kW) or more engine, to have a pleasure craft licence. 

The pleasure craft licensing system allows Search and Rescue personnel to access information 24 hours a day, seven days a week in the event of an emergency.

You must display your pleasure craft license number above the waterline on both sides of the bow, as far forward as practical, and where it is easy to see. The numbers must be in block letters, at least 7.5 cm (3”) high, and must contrast with the colour of the background. You do not need a pleasure craft licence if a boat is registered

Pleasure craft license

Pleasure craft licences are free

Pleasure craft licences in Canada are free and valid for ten (10) years. They can be obtained by applying to the Pleasure Craft Licensing Centre in Fredericton and can be transferred to successive owners of the pleasure craft. It must be kept on board at all times. instead of licensing their vessel, pleasure craft operators could register it with Transport Canada. However, a pleasure craft license does not prove ownership. When entering another country, be sure to have proof of ownership for your boat along with its pleasure craft licence. Not having the proper documents on board can result in delays or trouble clearing customs, or even a fine. The information on the licence must be kept up to date. A pleasure craft may be operated without an accurate name or address on the licence until the day on which the owner of the pleasure craft receives an updated licence, up to a maximum of 90 days from the day of the change of name or address, if, in addition to the licence, documents are carried on board confirming the new name or address and the date of the change.

To obtain a licence for a pleasure craft online, you can refer to the website of Transport Canada and complete the application from.

So do not confuse pleasure craft license with the pleasure craft operator card which is actually the card that operators of power boats must have on board their vessel at all times.

You must carry a copy of your Pleasure Craft Licence on board at all times and display the pleasure craft licence number on the bow of your boat above the waterline on both sides in block characters.

Make sure that you get your boating license for this summer, if you have not already done so.

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