SAS Yachtmaster Offshore Course

RYA Yachtmaster Offshore Course

SAS Yachtmaster Offshore Certificate of Competence


To qualify for SAS Yachtmaster Offshore Certificate of Competence, you will first have to have earned your SAS Yachtmaster Coastal Certificate of Competence.  The SAS Yachtmaster Offshore Certificate of Competence allows the holder to skipper a sailing vessel on any extended or ocean passage on a Leisure Vessel.


There is no Practical training or exam to earn this qualification.  The Offshore exam consists of an Offshore theory exam, which is made up of colregs and chartwork.  This is followed by an oral exam, which is conducted by a SAS Offshore examiner.  Based on your oral results, should the Examiner have concerns about your knowledge or experience, he may request a further practical exam.


The pre requisites for a SAS Yachtmaster Offshore Certificate of Competence are listed below:


  • Hold a SAS Yachtmaster Coastal Certificate of Competence
  • SAMSA SRC Radio Licence
  • Visual Acuity Test, to confirm your vision, and not colour blind
  • Elementary First Aid Certificate
  • 2500 nautical miles
  • 48 night hours on watch
  • Three overnight passages of at least 100 nautical miles as Skipper

The International Certificate of Competence

The International Certificate for Operators of Pleasure Craft – more commonly known as the International Certificate of Competence or ICC – was established under Resolution 40 of the Working Party on Inland Water Transport of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE). It has become quite common for charter companies in the Mediterranean to request the ICC. Both SA Sailing and the RYA recommend that people wishing to go cruising around Europe and the Mediterranean obtain an ICC.


SA Sailing has been authorised to issue the ICC. The prerequisites are:


  • The person must be at least 16 years of age.
  • The person must be a South African national or a South African resident with a valid South African ID document.
  • The person must hold an appropriate SA Sailing or SAMSA Certificate of Competence. For SA Sailing certificates the minimum requirement is a SA Sailing Day Skipper Certificate of Competence, and the ICC issued is for power and sailing vessels <24m in coastal waters. For SAMSA certificates the minimum requirement and the corresponding ICC is given in the table below.
SAS International Certificate of Competence

SA Sailing is not authorised to issue an ICC based on older styles of certificates such as those issued by Pretoria for category A1(1) or A1(4). Holders of these certificates must have them converted by SAMSA to the new format before applying for an ICC. There are ICC certificates for inland waters and coastal waters.


SA Sailing only issues the ICC for coastal waters because ICC for inland waters requires detailed knowledge of the European CEVNI regulations for inland waters. The International Certificate of Competence issued by SA Sailing is valid for 5 years.

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