Essential Navigation and Seamanship – Online

The RYA Essential Navigation and Seamanship course is a great online course for anyone interested in sailing, power boating, sea angling or diving, or anything else on the water!

Key Course Details

Duration: 6 Hours (approx)

Minimum Age: None

Assumed Knowledge: None

Pre-Course Experience None

Course Price: £99 per person

Where will this course take place? Online (at home)

This RYA online theory course will give you the essential knowledge needed when you’re afloat, from navigation to safety and seamanship and passage planning.

The Sea Training Sussex RYA Essential Navigation and Seamanship course can be taken online using the RYA Interactive website. The online the course will take around six hours, but the beauty of it is that you can work through it at your own speed, whenever and wherever you like, but still with the benefit and experience of our recognised training centre. No prior experience is necessary. There is no minimum age for this course. Successful completion of the course will gain the candidate a full RYA Essential Navigation and Seamanship Certificate.

The course is applicable for sail or power boaters plus divers and sea anglers. The course also suits those who are new to boating and are keen to spend time developing their theoretical knowledge. In addition this RYA navigation and Seamanship Course is a perfect step after Powerboat Level 2 or ahead of the Intermediate Powerboat.

This is a great RYA course to take as it goes into much more detail about aspects of safety, boat types, weather, navigation, charts, collision regulations, etc., than can be achieved over the duration of a short practical course.

Course topics include:

  • Visual and Electronic Navigation
  • Passage Planning
  • Engine Checks
  • Tidal Awareness
  • Charts and Publications
  • Safety
  • Buoyage
  • Rules of the Road
  • Weather Forecasts
  • Pilotage

Charts, publications and terms

  • Basic terms
  • Chart overview
  • Introduction to chart datum and depths


  • Lateral buoys
  • Cardinal buoys
  • Where to find information


  • Plotting a position
  • Measuring distance and bearing
  • Position fix
  • Heading


  • Personal and boat safety equipment
  • Safety procedures and briefing
  • Communications
  • Engine checks
  • Rescue procedures


  • Where to anchor
  • How to anchor


  • Tidal streams
  • Tidal heights

Electronic navigation

  • GPS terms
  • GPS use
  • Using waypoints

Rules of the road

  • Risk of collision
  • Who gives way

Weather forecasts

  • Sources of forecast
  • Terms used in forecasts


  • Harbour information
  • Transits
  • Pilotage plan

Passage planning

  • SOLAS V requirements
  • Pre planning
  • Chart choice

No pre-course experience is necessary and there is no minimum age.

£99 per person

This online course will take candidates approximately 6 hours to complete.

Looking for other powerboat and sailing training courses? See our full range of powerboat, shorebased and online training courses here.

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