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RYA Coastal Skipper Practical

Price: from £899 (Finance now available)

Location: Starts from our base at Premier Gosport Marina, and visits different ports around the Solent and adjacent waters.

Duration: 5 days

The RYA Coastal Skipper Practical course is the next progression step from being a qualified RYA Day skipper. With more advanced skills and valuable techniques being taught along with the planning and executing of much longer passages, it’s the next natural step-up from the RYA Day Skipper course, giving you more confidence in planning those all-essential Channel crossings.

Take a look at our live course calendar for dates for the RYA Coastal Skipper Practical course!


Course Information

Joining Instructions: Please click here for course joining instructions

What is included in the course cost:

  • Yacht hire
  • RYA Qualified Instructor
  • RYA course materials and certificates
  • Breakfast, lunches, snacks and three evening meals (One evening meal is taken ashore at the students own cost)
  • Tea, coffee & soft drinks
  • Accommodation on board
  • Harbour dues & fees
  • Diesel
  • Cooking gas
  • Wet weather kit hire (not footwear)
  • Hire of a Baltic automatic life jacket

We can accommodate most dietary requirements, such as vegetarian, vegan, pescatarian or gluten free. Just let us know when you fill out the booking form.

Recommended Reading: RYA Yachtmaster Handbook Sail (G70), RYA Yacht Sailing Techniques (G94), RYA Yachtmaster scheme and syllabus (G158)

Course Prerequisites: 15 days at sea, 2 days as skipper (Not on a course), 300miles sailing, 8 night hours sailing. Yachtmaster Theory (or knowledge to the level of).

Minimum Age: No minimum but Under 16’s must be accompanied by adult. Persons aged 16+ can be unaccompanied subject to other pre-requisites having been met

Holiday Insurance: We would advise ALL our customers to ensure they have suitable holiday insurance in-place. Yachtsman’s insurance is available from a variety of souces like Topsail Insurance and can cover things like cancellations and personal effects cover.

The RYA Coastal Skipper course can only be run over 5 consecutive days due to the sea-miles you will be covering and the timing of the sailing you will be doing. This course will only have RYA Coastal Skipper students and RYA Competent Crew students onboard. You will start your course with a quick recap of the RYA Day Skipper skills first thing on the first day and then move onto longer passages and lot more night navigation.

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Who is the course for:

The RYA Coastal Skipper Practical course is designed for anyone who has successfully completed the RYA Yacht Master Theory course (or has sufficient theory knowledge to this level) and wants to learn the skills and techniques required to skipper a cruising yacht safely on coastal passages by day and night.

You will need to have completed the Yachtmaster Theory course or have knowledge of navigation theory to this level before taking the RYA Coastal Skipper Course as there is insufficient time to teach you the theory during the week. It is also preferable that you have completed the RYA Day Skipper Practical Course as there is insufficient time on the course to teach the required basic boat handling techniques.

You will learn more about advanced passage planning, pilotage by day and by night, boat handling and emergency procedures on this course.

Remember, If you are short of a few days experience then why not try one of our sailing mile builders!

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What we cover on the course:

This is an amazing course to help build your confidence as a Skipper. This course will take you to the next level and the skills you will learn are the vital ones to have in your tool box for when things go wrong. From sailing to a pontoon and berthing under sail, to handling a yacht under sail in small or confined spaces. Learn how to find your position when you are lost, you’ll practice the navigation skills that are so rarely used but when you need them you will have the ability to use them.

Passage planning

  • Can plan a coastal passage including a consideration of the capability of the yacht, navigation, victualling, weather, ports of refuge, tidal heights, and tidal streams, publications required and strategy
  • Know Customs procedures


Preparation for sea

  • Is aware of safety equipment required for offshore passages
  • Can prepare a yacht for sea including stowage, safety briefing, watch keeping, delegating responsibilities and equipment and engine checks



  • Can prepare a pilotage plan, with consideration of surroundings, transits, clearing bearings, buoyage, port or harbour regulations and tidal considerationsb. Can pilot a yacht by day and night


Passage making and ability as skipper

  • Can take charge of a yacht and direct the crew
  • Can organise the navigation, deckwork, and domestic duties of a yacht on passage
  • Is aware of the significance of meteorological trends
  • Is aware of crew welfare on passage
  • Can use electronic navigational equipment for planning and undertaking a passage, including the use of waypoints and routes


Yacht handling under power

  • Can control the yacht effectively in a confined space under power
  • All berthing and unberthing situations in various conditions of wind and tide


Yacht handling under sail

  • Characteristics
  • Can use the sails to control the yacht in a confined space
  • Anchoring and mooring in various conditions of wind and tide
  • Can sail efficiently on all points of sailing


Adverse weather conditions

  • Preparation for heavy weather and yacht handling in strong winds
  • Navigation and general conduct in restricted visibility


Emergency situations

  • Recovery of man overboard under power and sail
  • Understands action to be taken when abandoning to the liferaft and during helicopter and lifeboat rescues

Please be aware that RYA Coastal Skipper Courses completed in the Solent and other tidal waters are demanding.
This course is held in high regard with yacht charter companies worldwide due to the challenging waters, winds, tides and busy waterways you will encounter. Courses run in the non-tidal waters of the Mediterranean are generally not accepted by the UK yacht charter industry. 

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Course formats & details:

Courses run in a choice of three formats:

  • 5 consecutive days: (Monday to Friday)
  • 5 consecutive days: (Saturday to Wednesday)
  • 5 consecutive days: (Wednesday to Sunday)

The course includes accommodation aboard our immaculate, well-maintained yachts with breakfast, lunch and snacks and three evening meals onboard with the remaining evening meal taken ashore at the students cost. We also include all fuel and safety kit such as lifejackets and waterproofs. Every student has their own bed on board for the duration of the course. In some instances sharing a cabin may be required.

We also offer our Complete RYA Coastal Skipper Package which includes both the RYA Yachtmaster theory and RYA Coastal Skipper Practical courses. This will take you from having a good level of sailing experience and knowledge through to passing your RYA Coastal Skipper first time round if you follow the instructors advice.

We highly recommend Students do a one day marina skills day before the course. It is also highly recommended that you also have your SRC VHF licence.

Fancy going VIP and having your own exclusive private course for you and your friends or family? You can book the whole yacht just for your own exclusive course from only £899 per person.

Enjoy the course in style, with up to five persons on the boat being taught by one of our friendly, experienced Yachtmaster Instructors! What a way to continue your sailing adventure!

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Our Chief Instructor says this about the RYA Coastal Skipper Course:

This course steps things up a bit from your RYA Day Skipper level but teaches an excellent range of really useful additional skills which are essential for more adventurous sailing. It’s a great course to undertake as you really do get out there for some cracking sailing and longer passages! Make sure you’ve got the pre-requisites for the course beforehand, by spending a few days brushing up on your skills to ensure on the day you are fully prepared and ready to go!

You’ll be in safe hands throughout the course with one of our Yachtmaster Instructors on hand to ensure you get the best out of your five days with us. So what are you waiting for? 

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