Regulations about croatian legal obligations for charterskippers sailing licence and VHF

Important Croatian Charter law obliges skipper to provide sailinglicence + VHF

Important Information if you want to charter a yacht in Croatia

Since 2005 croatian officials, Harbour Masters (Kapitanerie), Port Police and Coast Guard ask insistingly for the existence of a legal proof of a charterer´s knowledge, either brought with an international valid official sailing licence of the country, where the charterer comes from, or a croatian licence.

Both must include the VHF-licence, because in Croatia all charterboats are obliged to have a VHF-device on board - if one charters such a boat (and he can´t charter without one!), he MUST have that VHF-licence as well!

The skipper is obliged to have this papers in original with him (no copy) and the papers must be official sailing/boat/yachting licences.

The formely often accepted private confirmations of sailing clubs or other private papers are not acceptable anymore!
Usually, this is controlled at the issue of a transitlog, which lists all crewmembers on board and must be presented to the Kapitanerie of each port one calls.

If you come from a country, that does not issue sailing-licences, and allows sailing under certain circumstances without licence (e.g. Holland or Scandinavia), ask for the currently legal regulations, because that is about to change at any time! Some Kapitanerias asked to make a croatian licence in such cases, others accepted the home-regulation, as international usual! But that is subject of each Kapitanerie individually, and we recommend to check that and arrange arrivals under the respect to the local courses or examination-hours!

There are controls outside the harbours as well, done by the Coast Guard, and a skipper, who sails without a legal confirmation can be forced to end his sailing trip the same moment and pay a fine of some hundred Euros or more! The payment must be done cash! The sailing trip will be stopped, until there is a skipper with legal papers on board!

To be secure, we recommend to fax your sailing licence to the number, we give you in your booking- and payment-confirmation, so in case of a problem, the chartercompany can inform you early enough!

If you do not have a licence from your home-country or if you have a licence that does not contain a VHF-licence, you can achieve a licence from the croatian officials. There are 1-day-instant-courses held on Fridays, Saturdays and Mondays. It is not obligatory to visit one of this courses, but we recommend it.

The examination itself needs 15-20 minutes after an average waiting time of 2-3 hours, and after you get a croatian licence, which is valid in croatian waters only! The costs are 150-200 €

The chartercompanies help to arrange the courses and registration for the examination.

One needs:

currently valid passport + 2 passport-pictures

Some subjects of the examination are:
a.. Navigation
b.. lights on board and navigational lights
c.. security on board and on sea
d.. right of way
e.. nautical VHF spelling

There is no practical examination, but all charterercompanies reserve the right of giving you the boat only if you have appropriate practical knowledge!

Please note as well: it is NOT possible to have more people on board, than licenced for the boat! As well small children count as a person on board!


Biograd Zadar & Sukosan  
registration 6 weeks before 6 weeks before  
Courses Friday 4.p.m. - 8 p.m. Thursday and on appointment  
Examns: Saturday 2 p.m. - 3 p.m. Thursday and on appointment  
languages german, english, croatian german, english, croatian  
bring with you 2 passport fotos,
+ copy of passport or ID-card
+ Original passport or ID-card
2 passport fotos,
+ copy of passport or ID-card
+ Original passport or ID-card
costs 200 € cash, no credit cards 200 € cash, no credit cards  
Course-fee unknown 100 € shared with number of parties in course, max 6  

Other ports on request



All information above without any obligation for us - please make sure, the local regulations are currently acceptable for you , especially the arrival 1 or 2 days in advance of your sailing-trip!