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International License

Discussion in 'Becoming a Captain' started by Rick Blades, Jun 14, 2012.

  1. Rick Blades

    Rick Blades Garibaldi


    I am currently the captain of a Newton 36 custom Scuba Dive boat, but am in an area where a skippers license is not required. I would like to get myself a ticket, however I am so very confused about all the different licenses. I have noticed most Americans are going for the Coast Guard "six pack." However, I am Canadian and this is not an option for me, and seems only to be recognized in America.

    I am looking for a license that is internationally recognized. I have been told to look at RYA, and IYT. What I am looking for is one that is recognized the most on an international level as I never stay in one country more than a year.

    So my question becomes, which is the best training organization license I can use to drive scuba dive boats around the world?

    Thank you so much for any help you can offer.

  2. Wookie

    Wookie Secret Field Agent ScubaBoard Business Sponsor

    You can't have a USCG license, you aren't a US citizen. You must get a Canadian license for it to mean anything. An RYA or IYT are nice if you want to charter a sailboat in the Bahamas, but don;'t really mean much when you want to hire yourself out as a merchant mariner. Merchant mariners are licensed by their country as officers in the Merchant Marine. Maybe a Canadian Captain can chime in with some place the OP can get the requirements for a license, but at a minimum, get a sea service letter and a recommendation from the boat owner you are currently working for. You will have minimum sea time requirements as well as physical requirements (you gotta be warm and breathing), pass some knowledge and maybe skills tests, it's pretty involved and takes a bit of time.

    The rest of the story is that your home country license is internationally recognized. Anyone telling you that any other license is recognized as a merchant marine license is trying to sell you something. Although USCG rules prohibit me from hiring a Canadian captain (just like Canadian rules would prevent a Canadian vessel from hiring me for a coastwise voyage) Insurance and International Maritime Organization rules do not prohibit me from doing so. I could hire a Canadian engineer, for instance.
  3. nolatom

    nolatom Captain

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: New Orleans
    Yeah, as long as the country issuing your license is signatory to all the right conventions (SOLAS, STCW) under IMO (and all major maritime nations are, along with most Flag-of-Convenience countries too (Liberia, Vanuatu, Marshal Islands etc)), then it's a recognized license, subject to any restrictions of the flag state of he ship you're on.

    But the FOC licenses typically are issued only after some 'real" country had already issued you a 'real' license. Almost no one holds, say, a Liberian master's license and nothing else, except a real Liberian citizen/captain.

    The other 'certificates' are private, not public. Frank is right about that. Some are certificate mills, some not I guess. But they don't permit you to carry cargo or passengers for hire. they may get you a job on a private yacht, though those folks are likely looking for a 'real' license too.
  4. never stay in one country more than a year?

    Sound like you should go for a "Somali Pirate Skippers Certification"

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  5. EastEndDiver

    EastEndDiver Captain

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Long Island NY
    This is a despicable thing to say.You are nothing more than a typical internet *******!!
  6. Doppler

    Doppler Dive Equipment Manufacturer

    For the record, I think what you are looking for if you are a Canadian citizen is a Canadian Marine Seafarer Certification (compliance with the International Maritime Organization’s Conventions). This rating is earned through Transport Canada rather than the Canadian Coasties. Canadian Coast Guard certified captains are a little different to dive boat captains :wink:
  7. JZA

    JZA Angel Fish

    I was the chef on a couple liveaboards in the great barrier reef - the captains I worked with were from all over the world. How does this work? I find it hard to believe that Americans can ONLY work in America, etc...

    Like the original poster, I don't usually stay in one place for too long. I'd like to get licensed as a captain but not be limited to work in only one country.
  8. mbitton

    mbitton Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Toronto, Canada
  9. ZamaTim

    ZamaTim Course Director

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Germany right now

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