The RYA Day Skipper course is one of the most popular we run from Southampton. Whilst most of what you need to know is set out on the course page (including the latest prices) there are some questions we are often asked about both the Practical and Theory courses.
Here are just a few of those FAQs answered for you.
How long is the Day Skipper Theory exam?
In total the Day Skipper Theory exams are three hours long.
There are two exams for Day Skipper Theory. The first is a general exam paper which is one and a half hours long, and then a chartwork exam which is also one and a half hours long.
Can you fail Day Skipper Theory?
Yes, it is possible to fail the Day Skipper Theory exam, but we will give you the chance to re-take it free of charge if you do.
Do you need Day Skipper Theory for Practical?
You do not need Day Skipper Theory for Practical. However, you will need to demonstrate that you have the knowledge to the same level as if you had completed Day Skipper Theory.
The Day Skipper Practical course is about putting together your theory knowledge and your practical sailing skills to help you to become a skipper and to start thinking like a skipper. There isn’t time on the Practical course to go over all that is covered in Day Skipper Theory course, hence you either need to do the theory first or have knowledge to the same level.
It’s quite difficult to get knowledge to the same level without having done the course. It would take several years of crewing and even then, you would likely have some gaps.
Does Day Skipper cover VHF radio?
Day Skipper does not cover VHF radio, but you will be shown how to operate a radio telephone in an emergency and send a distress message.
We offer a standalone VHF Radio Course which then leads to you taking a VHF Radio Assessment. Upon successful completion of the Assessment, you will be issued with a VHF Radio License.
How long is Day Skipper Practical?
The Day Skipper Practical course is five days long. Like the Competent Crew Course, it can be carried out over two weekends (a short and a long) or five consecutive days.
Can a Day Skipper sail at night?
Day Skippers are not allowed to sail at night. However, on the course we will go sailing in the dark evening, just so you have experience in case of emergencies.
The Day Skipper certification indicates that a sailor has the knowledge and skills necessary to navigate and handle a yacht during daylight hours in familiar waters.
However, it is not recommended for a Day Skipper to sail at night, as the challenges and risks increase significantly in low light conditions. Navigation becomes more difficult, and there is a higher chance of colliding with other vessels or running aground.
If a Day Skipper wants to sail at night, they should undertake further training to gain the necessary knowledge and experience to do so safely.
What size boat can you skipper with Day Skipper qualification?
When you qualify with Day Skipper you can safely take charge of a 30 to 45 foot sized sail cruising yacht and its crew by day in familiar waters.
Can you charter a yacht with Day Skipper?
Yes, to charter a boat in many countries, you will need to have the RYA Day Skipper qualification or similar. First Class Sailing is one of leading providers of RYA courses, and you can read more about chartering a yacht here.