Book today and pay your deposit of £150.00

The 5 day, RYA Day Skipper Sailing practical course is for aspiring skippers who have some yachting experience and basic navigation and sailing ability.

You should already know how to sail and have;

  • 5 days aboard a yacht
  • 100 nautical miles logged
  • 4 night hours

Your knowledge of coastal navigation and meteorology should be to the standard of Day Skipper shorebased course.

Each trainee skipper will be asked to skipper the yacht on a short passage. The instructor will be on hand to give advice and encouragement, ensuring that your destination is reached safely.

The essential element is that you experience being in charge, taking the credit when all goes well and also being responsible when it does not. The end of each day is usually spent around the chart discussing the passages and gaining from each other's experience. At the end of the course you should achieve a level of seamanship and boat handling up to the standard required to skipper a small cruising yacht safely by day in tidal waters with which the student is familiar.

Minimum age: 16

What’s included?

  • You will be coached over the full RYA course syllabus as you live aboard one of the school owned yachts.
  • All meals are provided for the duration of the course including a home cooked wholesome and hearty evening meal, exactly what you need after a day’s sailing and learning!
  • Accommodation on board – you are required to bring a sleeping bag with you & you can expect to stay overnight at other local marinas
  • Parking – available at Suffolk Yacht Harbour
  • All mooring fees, safety equipment, fuel and tuition from one of our experienced RYA instructors.

Maximum teaching ratio - 4:1 

Course language - English

Five day course - Five consecutive days on board, commencing at 2030 hours on Sunday or Tuesday evenings.

Two weekends - Cover the 5 day course over two weekend, please select one 2 day weekend and one 3 day weekend below. 

  • 3 day weekend: commencing Friday at 2030 hours and ending approximately 1700 hours Monday
  • 2 day weekend: commencing Friday at 2030 hours and ending approximately 1700 hours Sunday.

Three weekends – 3 x 2 day weekends commencing Friday at 2030 hours and ending approximately 1700 hours Sunday for those who find it difficult to take time off during the working week. Please select your three desired 2 day weekends below. 

Combined Theory & Practical course – An intensive 9 day combined Day Skipper shorebased and practical course. First 4 days are spent learning the theory in the classroom (non-residential) followed by the remaining 5 days on board (residential) putting into practice what was learnt ashore whilst it is still fresh in your mind.

RYA Day Skipper Practical Certificate.

Holders of this certificate wll be able to obtain the International Certificate of Competence (ICC) - this is a certificate which is intended to provide evidence of competence when requested by officials in foreign countries. You will often be required to show this when chartering vessels abroad.

If the weather is not looking great or is forecast to be a bit chilly or windy you can hire wet weather gear from us.

Musto Waterproofs available in S, M, L, XL and XXL. £20.00 for a weekend course & £30.00 for week courses.

You are expected to bring the following comfort pack items with you; however if you don't want to bring your best duck down pillow or you haven't got a sleeping bag, don't worry you can hire a comfort pack from us!

A Comfort Pack comprises of a freshly laundered sleeping bag with liner, pillow, pillow case and towel - £15.00

Preparation for Sea

Understand basic stability and buoyancy for small vessels

Is able to prepare a yacht for sea, including engine checks, selection of sails, securing and stowage of all gear on deck and below.

Deck Work

Can reef, shake out reefs and change sails to suit prevailing conditions

Can prepare an anchor, mooring warps and take charge on deck when mooring alongside, coming to a buoy, anchoring, weighing anchor and slipping from a buoy or an alongside berth.


Is proficient in chartwork and routine navigational duties on passage including:

  • Taking and plotting visual fixes

  • Use of electronic navigation equipment for position fixing

  • Can use secondary means of position fixing
  • Use of waypoints and routes

  • Can use knowledge of IALA buoyage

  • Maintenance of navigational records

  • Can use echo sounder 

  • Understands working up DR and EP

  • Understnds the use fo lead line, or similar
  • Knowledge of the uses and limitations of AIS


Can prepare and execute a pilotage plan for entry into, or departure from, harbour

Understands the use of leading and clearing lines


Use of transits and soundings as aids to pilotage


Knows sources of forecast information

Can interpret shipping forecasts and use a barometer as a forecasting aid.

Rules of the Road

Has a practical understanding of the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea (I.R.P.C.S.)

Maintenance and Repair Work

Understands and is able to carry out maintenance tasks

Knows the properties and uses of common synthetic-fibre ropes.


A working knowledge of the prevention of common engine faults and is competent in the following areas:

  • The need for periodic maintenance checks on engines and electrical installations

  • Requirements for tool kits, spares and lubricants

  • The location of filters and bleed points for fuel

  • The tension of drive belts and how to adjust or replace them

  • Can arry out checks before startig, while running and after stopping

  • Is able to clean water filters and knows the location of impellors

  • Can estimate fue consumption at various speeds and knows the effect of fouling

  • Can carry out basic troubleshooting


Understands how to victual a yacht for the planned passage

Emergency Situations

Is able to take correct action as skipper for recovery of man overboard


Understands how to issue distress signals by all avilable means

How to use a liferaft

How to secure a the yacht for a tow


Understands rescue procedures including helicopter rescue

The effects of cold-water shock on a casulty in the water and the aftercare requirements for the casualty ho has been in the water

Yacht Handling Under Power

Has knowledge of the effect of waves on boat handling and crew comfort

Understand the different styles of hull and propulsion systems

How to moor and leave a bow/stern-to mooring

Can carry out the following manouvers in various wind and tide conditions:  

  • Steer a straight course
  • Turn in a confined space 
  • Anchor at pre-determined position
  • Berth alongside 
  • Leave an alongside berth 
  • Pick up a moorning buoy 
  • Be aware of other water users

Yacht Handling Under Sail

  • Understand the characteristics of differennt types of keel

  • Can bring a boat safely to and from a mooring buoy and anchor under various conditions of wind and tide

  • Can steer and trim sails effectively on all points of sailing. Can steer and trim sails effectively on all points of sailing.

Passage Making

  • Knowledge of marina locks

  • Understands the practical benefts and limitations of a chartplotter or GNSS
  • Can plan and make a coastal passage, taking account of relevant navigational hazards and limitations imposed by the type of boat and strength of the crew.

Night Cruising

Has experienced sail cruising at night, including leaving and entering harbour

Understands the special consideration for pilotage plans, keeping a lookout and identifying marks by night

Course Availability

2 Day Weekend

Date Availability Price Book
24th September '21 Places Available £315.00 Book Now
01st October '21 Places Available £315.00 Book Now
08th October '21 Fully Booked £315.00 Unavailable
15th October '21 Fully Booked £315.00 Unavailable
22nd October '21 Places Available £315.00 Book Now
29th October '21 Places Available £315.00 Book Now
05th November '21 Places Available £315.00 Book Now
12th November '21 Places Available £315.00 Book Now
19th November '21 Places Available £315.00 Book Now
26th November '21 Places Available £315.00 Book Now

3 Day Weekend (inc Monday)

Date Availability Price Book
24th September '21 Fully Booked £425.00 Unavailable
01st October '21 Fully Booked £425.00 Unavailable
08th October '21 Fully Booked £425.00 Unavailable
22nd October '21 Fully Booked £425.00 Unavailable
29th October '21 Places Available £425.00 Book Now
05th November '21 Places Available £425.00 Book Now
12th November '21 Places Available £425.00 Book Now
19th November '21 Places Available £425.00 Book Now
26th November '21 Places Available £425.00 Book Now

5 Day Course

Date Availability Price Book
26th September '21 Places Available £695.00 Book Now
10th October '21 Fully Booked £695.00 Unavailable
24th October '21 Fully Booked £695.00 Unavailable
31st October '21 Places Available £695.00 Book Now
14th November '21 Places Available £695.00 Book Now
21st November '21 Places Available £695.00 Book Now
--> --> --> -->