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MCA Chief Mate Yachts Certificate of Competency Requirements for Serving UK Registered Yachts of over 24m (Large Yachts)

chief mate yachts

Chief Mate or First Officer Yachts is the second in command following the Captain or Master and head of the deck department on a large Yacht and manages all of the deck crew including the Second Officer, Bosuns and Deckhands. The main responsibilities include the safety of the yacht, crew and guests onboard. They also oversee all deck operations and including maintenance, administrative, and safety duties on board.

The position of Chief Mate demands firm knowledge of working on deck and they are usually graduated from working as a Deckhand or Bosun on superyachts. They also have good personnel management skills and the ability to assign duties and delegate crew on various projects.

A Superyacht (Mega Yacht or Luxury Yacht) is usually over 24 meters motor yacht and privately owned and professionally crewed. The legal distinction is between yachts above 24 meters and below. The route for yacht certification is structured by MCA to provide a progressive career path for those in the industry to achieve yacht Chief Mate Qualifications.

chief mate megayacht

Chief Mate or First Officer Yachts is the second in command following the Captain or Master and head of the deck department on a large Yacht and manages all of the deck crew and guests

UK MCA General Requirements for Chief Mate Yachts CoC


  • Meet the minimum age requirement
  • Complete the minimum period of seagoing service
  • A valid ENG1 (medical fitness certificate) or accepted equivalent
  • Hold applicable ancillary and safety course certificates
  • Complete the appropriate education and training meeting the minimum vocational and academic standard
  • If applicable, pass an oral examination conducted by MCA

MCA Chief Mate Yachts Less Than 3000 GT Unlimited (STCW II/2) Requirements

  • Hold an OOW yachts, less than 3000 GT, II/1, Certificate of Competency OR have completed all of the requirements for this Certificate of Competency
  • Hold either - An RYA Yachtmaster Ocean certificate and a certificate of successful completion of a shore-based Yachtmaster Ocean course (Not required if the candidate holds a Yachtmaster Ocean certificate issued before 31 July 2003) OR IYT Master of Yachts Unlimited
  • This certificate can be applied for at the same time as OOW yachts, less than 3000 GT, II/1, Certificate of Competency, providing all qualifying conditions from section 3.3 are met in addition to the Chief Mate, II/2, yachts less than 3000 GT, requirements listed above
  • Seafarers planning to obtain a Chief Mate, II/2, (yachts less than 3000 GT) Certificate of Competency at the same time as applying for an OOW, II/2, (yachts less than 3000 GT) Certificate of Competency will be required to complete both HELM operational and HELM management courses.
  • If you are to serve on ships to which the International Ship and Port Facility (ISPS) Code applies, you must hold a Security Awareness certificate (STCW A-VI/6- 4). If you are assigned designated security duties aboard a vessel you must obtain a Designated Security Duties certificate (STCW A-VI/6 - 6 to 8).

Chief Mate Yachts Ancillary and Safety Course Requirements

chief mate yachts course requirements
Table: Ancillary and Safety Course Certification for Chief Mate Yachts - Credits: MCA

  1. The MCA will accept certificates issued under the authority of any IMO 'White List' country.
  2. The MCA will accept certificates issued under the authority of any EU Member State, as well as Canada, New Zealand and South Africa.
  3. Certificates must be MCA-approved.
  4. The MCA will accept certificates issued under the authority of any EU Member State and those listed on the approved list.

Disclaimer: For general information purpose - please check with MCA for the latest requirements and accurate info

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