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Norwegian Maritime Authority (NMA) Requirements for Seafarers on Recreational Crafts of Various Sizes

pleasure craft norway

To operate recreational craft in Norway you may need a boating license. All persons born on or after 01/01/1980 need a boating license in order to operate a recreational craft under Norwegian flag of more than 8 metres in length or with an engine with a greater effect than 25 HP.

Boating licenses or other qualification documents issued in another EEA country are valid in accordance with the contents of the document. The International Certificate of Competence (ICC) gives you the right to operate a recreational craft in Norway. An ICC issued in Norway gives master's rights of recreational craft of up to 15 metres. In Norway the ICC is only issued for coastal waters for motor boats and/or sailing vessels.

For recreational crafts over 15 metres, a certificate of competence is required as per the regulations of Norwegian Maritime Authority (NMA). The Certificate for Deck Officer Class 5 Pleasure Craft entitles the holder to operate pleasure craft with a hull length of up to 24 metres, which are not used for commercial purposes, in great coasting trade.

nma pleasure craft licence

A pleasure craft is a large boat which takes people for trips on rivers, lakes, or on the sea for pleasure. 

General Requirements for Seafarers on a Pleasure Craft



  • Medical certificate issued by a medical practitioner confirming satisfactory eyesight, hearing and colour vision
  • They may also require safety training, crowd & crisis management, safety familiarization or more, depending on the certificate sought

Certificate for Deck Officer Class 5 Pleasure Craft

The Certificate for Deck Officer Class 5 Pleasure Craft may be issued to persons who have turned 18 years and who have:

  • Successfully passed an examination covering Annex III table A-II/3, exam for masters of recreational craft taken at a course organizer approved by the Norwegian Maritime Authority or have been a holder of a Deck Officer certificate issued in accordance with the STCW Convention;
  • At least 12 months of seagoing service, had the disposal of and regularly used a vessel of more than eight metres in length for at least three years or have passed a practical final evaluation at an approved school;
  • Following a specific assessment of each individual case, the issue of a Certificate for Deck Officer Class 5 Pleasure Craft may be refused in the event of illness or other health failure if the state of health involves increased risk to the safety of the applicant or other persons.
  • Holders of the Master’s Certificate for Pleasure Craft have the same rights as holders of the Certificate for Deck Officer Class 5 Pleasure Craft.
  • The trade area for the Certificate for Deck Officer Class 5 Pleasure Craft may be extended after relevant additional training.
  • Seagoing service for the issue of the Certificate for Deck Officer Class 5 Pleasure Craft shall be documented by a sea service book, record of service or a statement authenticated by the police or others who are considered to have knowledge of the seagoing service for which approval is sought.

Seafarers on Ships without a passenger Certificate (12 passengers or less)

  • Masters of ships of less than 15 metres in overall length which can carry 12 passengers or less are required to hold the Certificate for Deck Officer Class 5 Pleasure Craft and shall have completed basic safety training.
  • Masters of ships of 15 metres in overall length or above which can carry 12 passengers or less without a passenger certificate shall at least hold the CoC Deck Officer Class 5. The ship’s size and trade area may require a higher certificate.
  • Masters as referred to in the first and second paragraphs shall have successfully completed an approved course in crowd and crisis management and safety on passenger ships.
  • Seafarers pursuant to this provision, who are not masters, shall have undergone passenger ship emergency familiarization training; and documentation of completed safety training related to management of passengers in an emergency.

Seafarers on Ships Certified to Carry Passengers on Lakes and Rivers

  • Masters of passenger vessels of less than 24 metres in length (L) carrying passengers during the period from 1 May to 31 September on lakes and rivers shall have - a Certificate for Deck Officer Class 5 Pleasure Craft; successfully completed a restricted safety course; and successfully completed a course in crowd and crisis management.
  •  Seafarers on passengers ships engaged in trade on lakes and rivers, who are not masters, shall have - relevant qualifications; successfully completed a restricted safety course; and undergone safety familiarisation and passenger ship emergency crowd management training.
  • Masters of ships without passenger certificate approved to carry 12 passengers or less and engaged in trade on lakes and rivers during the period from 1 May to 31 September shall have - a Certificate for Deck Officer Class 5 Pleasure Craft; successfully completed a restricted safety course; and, undergone safety familiarisation and passenger ship emergency crowd management training
  • Qualification documents documenting competence as master on a specific vessel in a specified trade area issued under previous legislation may be renewed and replace the requirement for a Certificate for Deck Officer Class 5 Pleasure Craft pursuant to this provision

Dsclaimer: For general information purpose only. Please check with NMA for the latest and accurate information

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