Do You Need a License to Hire a Boat?
Posted - 03/12/2012
Hiring a boat is as easy as renting a car. In a state like Florida, you do not need a license to hire a boat. In California, on the other hand, you need a license to be able to rent the boat. It is best to contact your State's Boating License Department months before you sail because you may be required to attend a boat safety course. You can also call local boat rental companies to ask the question and get more information. They will gladly tell you what you need, since you are a potential customer. The rental stores are accurate sources of advice and sailing information.
It is highly recommended to rent boats from rental stores because the boats in these places have passed state inspection. They are equipped with provisions that are designed to save your life in case of an emergency. Examples of these are whistles (to alert other boats in the area), life jackets (so you and your companions stay afloat before rescue), fire extinguishers, flares (to make your location visible at night), GPS or compass, etc. Before deciding, do thorough research and talk to as many rental companies as possible. Your safety is foremost.