What is an ICC?

international yacht training international certificate of competency photo card
a picture of an ICC photocard

The ICC or International Certificate of Competency is a qualification which is given to individuals who have demonstrated competency to command a pleasure boat.

The ICC is a result of people wishing to sail pleasure boats along inland water ways and stretches of coastline in between different countries.

What makes the ICC a step forward in pleasure boat qualifications is that it is internationally recognised.

Where did the ICC come from – the history

Before the ICC existed there were one or two challenges people faced when they were sailing recreationally. The first centred around sailing on inland water ways in Europe, and the second came when sailors wanted to take their qualifications over seas.

The first part is easily understandable. Some of the rivers in Europe are long enough to span several countries. This caused a problem if you happened to be from the Netherlands but where sailing along the Rhine and just so happened to sail into Germany.

Suddenly you where in a different country and all of a persons qualifications may no longer be recognised. This creates even more problems with insurance, where that is no longer valid because ones qualifications are not valid.


The ICC, because it’s internationally recognised gets round this issue and solves a lot of these problems.

But just how international is the qualification?

Well the official answer to this question centres around a U.N. agreement called ‘resolution 40’ which covers a lot of different things. Most importantly for us it covers the safe operation of recreational vessels in the majority of Europe. A long list of countries have agreed to the resolution. For more specifics please see the wikipedia page about the ICC/resolution 40.

Why do you want an ICC?

Lets just assume that you’ve grown up sailing in Ireland and that you are in fact Irish. Alright you can sail a boat. But could you sail one in say Croatia or Italy?

Physically yes, but legally no. What you need is the ICC to charter a boat in one of these countries. Also the tuition received on a course is able to offer new and helpful insights. On top of this and not to be overlooked is the local knowledge that you can pick up from instructors.

As a result of resolution 40 and the U.N. the ICC is more and more becoming the bench mark for sail training and standards of competency. I can’t honestly say that its the best qualification, but its the one I have chosen to invest in and instruct.

So if you think this is for you, you can learn more about the course and what you can expect. The challenges you will find yourself facing and the skills which you can take away.

You can find more about all of this in the e book i wrote called …



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