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Music,

It really comes down to your personal goals.

If you own a Sailboat, you can just go sailing. If you need a refresher course, Either ASA and US sailing can provide various levels of on-the-water instruction. If you want to teach sailing they each have pathways to becoming an instructor.

Additionally many US states, have now imposed a requirement that you possess a Boating Safety Certificate ( usually for: Jet Skis, motor boats or sailboats with auxiliary engines) That's the 1st thing you should look into,IMO. What does your state require?

That requirement is often waived if you possess a USCG license.

If your goal is to take passengers for hire, you will need the relevant CG license ( here in the states) That includes sailing instruction ( passengers for hire) if it's a powered sailing vessel.

Passing a CG exam is only one phase of the requirement. Medical exam, eye test, drug testing, a TWIC card and documented sea time are also required. I've heard it said here that people can lie about their sea time, and I don't doubt that it's done. But, the fact remains that if you take passengers for hire, you'll need the license.

Deliveries are private arrangements between you and the owner, or agent. No license other than the State requirements are needed. But, clearly you would need to establish some level of credentials/proven capabilities before someone will entrust their vessel in your care.

There are many pathways and levels to gaining experience both formal and informal.

if you want to turn that experience into the ability to earn money then the regulations get very specific depending on where you are what you're doing.

The only RYA schools/programs I've seen in the US are in Ft Lauderdale Fla. and Newport, RI.

ASA and US sailing are the predominant schools/programs in the States. While I have no doubt that RYA is a superb program, their presence in the US is somewhat limited.

There's a member here, who doesn't own a boat, but volunteers to crew on every passage he can.
 

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Great info Tempest and I think I'm getting the idea how it works.

A long time from now I may need that medical so this brings up an additional question.

I have had some heart issues so this is my question and comments to clarify.
1-for a truck driver with a history of heart problems in addition to your normal doctor who is trained to give you a medical a cardiologist must also check you out.
2- for a pilot in the same situation it sounds similar but is very different.
Not only must a cardiologist check you out and perform additional tests but the results of the test get shipped off to a 6 person panel of cardiologists paid by the GOVERNMENT and not by you : and they determine the outcome.
3 - So my question is would the medical be more like the truck driver or more like the pilot with regard to a Captains license ?
Interesting question.

Here's a link that leads to other links..that should provide some guidance:

Medical Requirements page United States Coast Guard National Maritime Center

I'd say generally it could depend on how your Doc writes up the condition..whether or not it raises a flag. And, perhaps the level of license being applied for.

Additionally, an employer may have their own requirements and level of clearance, base on their risk management assessment.

Higher level licenses that have STCW requirements have seen changes in the last few years..
 
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