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The RYA day skipper practical is for aspiring skippers with some yachting experience and basic navigation and sailing skills.

Previous Experience Required - 5 days sea time, 100 miles and 4 night hours. Navigation to Dayskipper  shorebased or equivalent and basic sailing ability (competent crew), minimum age for the award of the certificate is 16.


Preparation for sea
  • Is able to prepare a yacht for sea, including engine checks
  • Selection of sails, securing and stowage of all gear on deck and below.
  • Can reef, shake out reefs and change sails to suit prevailing conditions.
  • Can prepare an anchor and mooring warps
  • Can 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;
  • Working up DR and EP;
  • Use of electronic navigation equipment for position fixing;
  • Use of waypoints;
  • Knowledge of IALA buoyage;
  • Estimating tidal heights and streams;
  • Working out course to steer to allow for tidal stream, leeway and drift;
  • Maintenance of navigational records;
  • Use of echo sounder and lead line.
  • 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 working knowledge of the 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 ropes.
  • Knows how to change fuel and water filters, pump impeller and how to bleed the fuel system.
  • Understands how to victual a yacht.
Emergency Situations
  • Is able to take correct action as skipper for recovery of man overboard.
  • Understands distress flares and how to use a liferaft.
  • Can operate a radio telephone and send a distress message.
  • Understands how to secure a tow.
  • Understands rescue procedures including helicopter rescue.
Yacht handling under power
  • Can bring a boat safely to and from an alongside berth, mooring buoy and anchor under various conditions of wind and tide.
Yacht handling under sail
  • 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.
Passage making
  • 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.

As a prerequisite, dayskipper theory must be started with a minimum of 75% completed before undertaking this course.


5 days




per person and includes all meals and accommodation onboard.



+61 402 429 152

All courses dates

Mainstay Sailing, through its owners, directors and all its staff will deliver the highest level of training and services to its customers and associates. We will keep up to date with the latest available equipment and technology, and share the information and knowledge to improve the enjoyment and safety in sailing, cruising and in boating in general. We will do our best to make it fun and interesting and stimulate a spirit of adventure in the process. We will tailor our teaching style and methods to cater for persons of all abilities and learning styles.



All Courses

RYA Training (internationally recognised)

Whether you have never been on a yacht, or you just want to learn a bit more, we offer professionally run courses which will give you internationally recognised qualifications.

If you are planning to charter locally or internationally, we can offer courses which will give you the knowledge and ability to make it safe and enjoyable, as well as the certificate to present to the charter company.

Our practical courses are run on “Mohawk” a Bennetau 40.7, which is ideal for training in a safe and comfortable environment. Our training ground is the Whitsunday region in Queensland. All courses are run from our base at Coral Sea Marina in Airlie Beach.

Your instructors are RYA qualified and will ensure your learning experience is fun, and exciting. We adapt the courses to suit all learning styles and personal preferences. The accommodation and food will set the ideal learning environment to ensure that you have a fantastic week with us.

Current course dates