Advanced Maritime    Education
Smart, Affordable Captain's Licensing TM

Which License is for Me? 

Be $mart - know the facts! Save money and time, and avoid being misled by rumors:

The type of license required depends on the type of vessel being operated:

OUPV Operator of Uninspected Passenger Vessels (the "6-pack" license) is
            required for operating most recreational power and sail vessels.

Master  25/50/100 Gross Tons is required for operating inspected, commercial  
             vessels, such as ferries and water taxis.  Actual license tonnage is                        determined by tonnage of vessels operated in your sea service history.

OUPV - Thousands of captains enjoy earning a living carrying passengers for  hire under their 6-pack licenses.

This license is for operating   uninspected, recreational-type vessels up to 100 gross tons capacity.  These are vessels that are not specifically designed, approved nor built for commercial service. Examples would be recreational power boats and most auxiliary sail boats. 

​The scope of the OUPV License is the 75% 
base of the Master's License, including 
Rules of the Road,Navigation General, Deck 
General/Safety, and Chart Plotting. 

The Master's License requires an additional 
25% classroom time and includes information 
such as fixed firefighting systems and lifeboat 

You can easily upgrade from an OUPV License to a Master's License later, without having to bite off the entire informational "apple" at once.

Regardless of the size of vessel or whether you hold a master's license (see below), uninspected vessels may only carry a maximum of six paying passengers.

MASTER 25/50/100-Ton - Master's Upgrade three-day course follows the OUPV Course.

This license is for operating inspected vessels up 
to 100 gross tons and built for commercial use. 

Examples would be ferry boats, sightseeing 
vessels, tugs, water taxis and dining event cruise
 vessels. Design, construction and stability testing
 are all overseen by the U. S. Coast Guard. 

The Master's license allows you to operate vessels within your maximum gross tonnage range - 25, 50 or 100 GT - with the maximum number of passengers determined by the ship's certified passenger capacity.

Both licenses are fully recognized U.S. Coast Guard Captain's Licenses.

USCG Licenses
The OUPV license allows you to carry a maximum of six paying passengers (abbreviated as "pax" in the ship's log), hence the popular term "6-pack" license.