California Boater card,
we make it simple

Get your California Boater Card in 3 Easy Steps

USD $29.95 Per Boater

California Boater card,
we make it simple

Get your California Boater Card in 3 Easy Steps

USD $29.95 Per Boater

Take the online course

Watch, listen & learn on any device. Our fully animated & Narrated boating course puts you right in the Captain’s seat.
  • Made for boaters, by boaters
  • Animated, narrated & brilliantly illustrated
  • Study at your own pace, we’ll auto track your progress
  • Perfect for all ages

Ace the official test

The Online Boating Test is 100% open book and available to California boaters of all ages, including boaters under 16 years of age.

  • Official NASBLA approved boating safety test
  • No minimum age
  • Unlimited free retries

Yeah Buoy! You’re a Captain

Awesome job! You’ve gained the knowledge and confidence to boat safely. See you on the water.
  • Print your temporary boating license immediately
  • Receive your permanent card within 4 weeks
  • Good for life

“It’s all about freedom. No roads, no lines, no boundaries to guide my adventures”

Smart Boater – Karl McDonald

North America’s Online
boating safety course

The BOATsmart! Course is 100% NASBLA Approved and includes all the knowledge required to obtain your Boating License. Take the Course online at your own pace with easy-to-understand, step by step lessons.

any device

We’ve made our course available accross all platforms and devices. Start it on your mobile, finish it on your desktop!

Study at
your own pace

Study at your own pace, and we’ll automatically track your progress, so you can take your time and pick up where you left off.

Perfect for all
ages & skill levels

Our animated and narrated course is perfect for all ages and skill levels – including the kids!


BOATsmart! has a rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars based on 6516 ratings and reviews.

Step inside the course


The Boating Basics
Parts of a Boat and PWC
Boating Terminology
California Age and Horsepower Restrictions
California Mandatory Education Requirements
California Registration and Tilting Requirements
Boat Capacities
Reciprocity Regulations and Federal Documentation
Boat Theft Prevention
Module 1 Summary and Quiz


Boating Equipment

Lifejackets and Personal Flotation Devices (PFDs)
Lifejacket Classifications
Flotation Aids and Throwable Devices
California Life Jacket Laws
Lifejacket Laws for Children
Fire Extinguishers and Federal Requirements
Navigation Lights and Requirements on Boats
Sound Signal Devices and Requirements
Visual Distress Signals and Requirements

Module 2 Summary and Quiz


Getting on the Water

Local Weather and Water Conditions
Weather Reports and Stormy Weather
Boat Maintenance
Developing a Float Plan
Boat Storage
Towing and Trailering
Launching and Loading
Fueling a Boat or PWC
Docking and Casting
Anchoring your Boat
Module 3 Summary and Quiz


Safe Boat Operation

Environmental Laws and Regulations
Toxic Substances
California Waste Disposal Laws
California Aquatic Nuisance Species
Alcohol and Drug Use
California Laws for Operating Under the Influence
Boater Common Courtesy
California Laws for Negligent/Reckless Boat Operation
No Wake and Limited Wake Restrictions
Homeland Security Measures
California Muffler and Noise Level Laws
California Law Enforcement Authority
Module 4 Summary and Quiz


Navigation The Waterways

Navigation Rules
California Boat Speed Limits and Restricted Areas
Position and Course of Direction
Navigation Sound Signals
Navigating at Night
Navigation Lights
Lateral Marking System and Buoys
Red Right Returning
Non-Lateral Marking System
Intracoastal Waterways
The Western Rivers System
Module 5 Summary and Quiz


Emergency Preparedness

Diving, Snorkeling, Towed Sports
Use of Hand Signals
Boating Hazards and Dangers
Safe PWC Operation
Safety Tips for Paddlers
Capsizing and Person Overboard
Running Aground
Fire Emergencies
Hypothermia and Cold Water Immersion
Hunters and Anglers as Boaters
Rendering Assistance and Reporting Emergencies
California Boat Accident Reporting Requirements
Module 6 Summary and Quiz

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Get Certified and Save!

We’ve teamed up with the best outdoor, adventure and travel brands to help you get the most out of your outdoor pursuits. Your BOATsmart!, HUNTINGsmart! or ATVsmart! course fee includes free membership to Campfire Collective and instant access to exclusive partner discounts.

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Campfire helps people have awesome outdoor adventures.

Campfire was founded with the belief that we’re at our best when we go to our wild. Collective membership is free. Join now to get exclusive discounts from leading outdoor brands, access high quality online courses and inspire others. Your wild awaits, go boldly.

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In partnership with 1% For The Planet, Campfire pledges a percentage of our annual revenue directly to nonprofits that sustain and protect the wild.

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Go boldly, tell your story. Campfire is building a collective of ambassadors who share a passion for the wild. If you’re an influencer, publisher or sport expert drop us a line. Let’s hook up and inspire others.

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