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Yachtmaster Offshore Preparation

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Yachtmaster Offshore Preparation

Allow up to 48 hours at the end of this course for the MCA assessment.


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About This Course

5 Day Yachtmaster Offshore Preparation + exam

During the Yachtmaster Offshore preparation, the instructor will take you through the Yachtmaster exam syllabus. This  includes advanced skippering techniques, close quarters handling under power and sail, navigation and pilotage by day and night, man overboard recovery and overall yacht management skills. The 5 day Yachtmaster Offshore Preparation will be followed by an MCA examination. At this advanced level we do not expect to teach these skills but build on existing experience. The course will take place in the Solent and surrounding waters. It is unlikely that a long passage will be undertaken during the course as this is a course where emphasis is on honing skills gained through the recommended mileage and experience. The RYA recommend that you take the Yachtmaster Coastal as preparation for the Yachtmaster Offshore Preparation. You may also find it useful to join one of our Milebuilding Weekends or longer Milebuilding Trips in order to gain experience, mileage and undertake skippered passages.

Go sailing for less!

Standby places – save up to 20% on course prices!

We will offer you a place shortly before the course date.

Pre Requisites for Yachtmaster Offshore:

  • 50 days on board
  • 5 passages over 60 miles measured along the rhumb line from the port of departure to the destination.
  • At least 2 passages acting as skipper which have involved overnight passages.
  • 5 days experience as skipper.
  • 2500 miles (50% tidal)
  • All qualifying seatime must be within 10 years prior to the exam.
  • Yachtmaster Theory Certificate or navigation to the standard of the RYA Yachtmaster Shorebased course
  • You will need to hold a RYA VHF Licence and in date First Aid certificate – please check the RYA website for acceptable First Aid certificates

What is included:

  • 5 full days Yachtmaster Offshore Preparation + exam period
  • Maximum 4 students on board
  • Services of senior RYA Instructor
  • Accommodation on board your yacht
  • Breakfasts, lunches and one evening meal during training. All meals during exam.
  • Berthing Fees*
  • Use of foul weather gear
  • Use of a life jacket and all safety equipment
  • Modern marina facilities at base within easy walking distance of public transport

What is not Included:

  • Exam Fee – £220
  • Evening meals eaten ashore
  • Secure parking at Gosport Marina (capped at £15.00 for duration of course)

What to expect:

  • Up to 4 students on board
  • You may share a cabin or saloon although we try to match boat layout to mix of students.
  • There is a sole occupancy option for anyone who would prefer the privacy of their own cabin
  • The best plans are drawn in the sand at low tide – be prepared for your instructor to make changes based on wind, tide and anything else that can effect the course.

You must take the Yachtmaster Offshore Preparation as a 5 day course.

Our team of RYA experienced RYA instructors will ensure you learn in a safe environment. Their aim is also to ensure your time on the water is as enjoyable as possible.

If you are interested to see life on board during a RYA course check out the film clip at the bottom of the page!

What next?

After passing the Yachtmaster Offshore exam you should be able to skipper a yacht on offshore passages by day and night up to 150 miles from a safe harbour.

You may wish to further your training and maybe become a professional yachtsman. The next steps are to gain more experience through skippering or crewing. You may then consider taking the RYA Cruising Instructor course.

* Free berthing throughout the YM prep. During the exam, we offer free berthing at Premier Marinas (Port Solent, Swanwick, Southsea and Chichester). Berthing fees will be paid by candidates should a non Premier marina be used.

Yachtmaster Offshore Preparation

You will need to study Yachtmaster Theory or have sufficient knowledge to pass a Yachtmaster Theory exam before taking the Yachtmaster Preparation.

You can even book a cabin to yourself for your course.

Yachtmaster Offshore

Yachtmaster Reviews

Emma’s preparation for the exam was excellent and she drilled us on many areas which was excellent preparation for a tough exam

Graeme – Yachtmaster Offshore

Fantastic course, just wish there was another level to reach!

Andy – Yachtmaster Offshore

Duration5 days training + exam period
8-12 hours for 1 candidate, 10-18 hours for 2 candidates. No more than two candidates can be examined in 24 hours and no more than four candidates can be examined in one 2 day session.
Maximum students : instructor4:1
LocationSolentMinimum ageCoastal 17, Offshore 18
What’s includedAccommodation on board one of our Bavaria yachts. Breakfast, lunch, two evening meals during course + all exam meals. Drinks on board, berthing fees, free hire of wet weather gear (adult sizes only).ExtrasEvening meals eaten ashore during the course and on joining night if required. Log books if required £6.99. Exam fee Yachtmaster Coastal £189.00, Yachtmaster Offshore £220.00
Parking at Gosport Marina - £15 maximum fee for course duration
WhenSat 0900 hrs to Wednesday afternoon 1600hrs + exam, Monday 0900 hrs to Friday afternoon 1600hrs + duration of exam. You can join the boat 1900 hrs the evening before your course begins.
All year round
Don’t forgetAnything you cannot travel without as we cannot cater for everyone’s special favourites! First Aid certificate and GMDSS radio licence, passport sized photograph
Let us know aboutAny special dietary requirements and needs.
Please note, we will do our best to cater for vegetarian diets or food allergies but not general food fads! Please call the office if in doubt.
Cost£690.00 Exam fee £189.00 - £220.00 payable to the examiner

Yachtmaster Offshore Exam 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. In Yachtmaster Offshore exams the candidate will be expected to demonstrate competence based on broad experience.

  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) D
  • istress signals (Annex IV)
  1. Safety – Candidates will be expected to know what safety equipment should be carried on board a yacht, 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
  • Lifejackets
  • Distress flares
  • Fire prevention and fighting
  • Liferafts Knowledge of rescue procedures
  • Helicopter rescue
  1. Boat Handling – Candidates for Yachtmaster Offshore 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
  2. General Seamanship, including maintenance
  • Properties, use and care of synthetic fibre ropes
  • Knots
  • General deck-work at sea and in harbour
  • Engine operations and routine checks
  • Improvisation of jury rigs following gear failure
  1. 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
  1. Navigation
  • 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
  1. Meteorology
  • 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
  1. Signals
  • Candidates for Yachtmaster Offshore must hold the Restricted (VHF only) Radio Licence

I was very impressed with your whole setup. Marina location, office barge, staff, instructors and how comprehensive the course was (yactmaster prep and first aid). Overall I had a fantastic week.

Per – Yachtmaster Offshore + First Aid Course, June 2019

The Small Print

We will provide breakfasts, lunches and evening meals for night sail and exam with some cakes and biscuits for coffee / tea breaks. We are unable to provide an endless supply of food  / fruit / snacks including crisps and chocolate. Should you like to snack throughout the day or have particular food favourites we respectfully request that you purchase these yourself. 

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