PADDLERsmart! Canada Knowledge Base

Module 01 - Paddling Basics:


Vessel Registration is not required for recreational boat owners, and there are costs involved, however if you plan on travelling in international waters it is recommended.


  • Proof of boat ownership
  • A unique name and official number for their boat
  • The right to use their boat as security for a marine mortgage.

In order to register your boat you will be required to: 

  • Select at least three names for your boat (one will be approved)
  • Pay a registration fee
  • Complete an application for registry
  • Produce evidence of ownership/title
  • Provide a statement of qualification for vessel registration
  • Have your boat measured for tonnage.

Vessels can be registered by mailing the required application and documents to the Vessel Registration Office. For more information about Pleasure Craft Licensing and Registration visit the Office of Boating Safety or call 1-800-267-6687.

How to Transfer Boat Ownership

If you’re selling a boat you must:

  • Immediately transfer the boat to the new owner by signing the reverse side of your Pleasure Craft License.
  • Provide the new owner with the Pleasure Craft License, and have them fill out and sign the reverse side.

Once the Pleasure Craft License has been signed over to the new owner, they must submit it to Transport Canada’s Pleasure Craft Licensing Centre for transfer within 90 days.

The new owner may operate the boat for 90 days after the date of transfer, so long as the documents establishing the transfer of ownership are onboard.

Note: If the boat being transferred was registered, the new owner has the option of renewing the registration in their own name, or obtaining a free Pleasure Craft License.


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