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Does my Ontario boating license expire?

Ontario Boating License Expire

No your Ontario boating license, commonly known as a Pleasure Craft Operator Card (PCOC), does not expire. Once you obtain your Ontario boating license (PCOC) it’s good for life. There are no renewals or annual fees.

Ontario Boating LicenseA Pleasure Craft Operator Card (PCOC), or other proof of competency is legally required to operate a recreational power boat or jet ski in Ontario. 

The PCOC certification proves that you have successfully completed an accredited boating safety course and Transport Canada PCOC exam. Your PCOC certification is valid for life.

Note: As your PCOC does not expire, it is recommended to refresh your boating safety knowledge regularly by reviewing the boating safety guide and taking a free practice test.

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What’s the difference between a Boating License and a Pleasure Craft License?

It’s important not to confuse the Ontario boating license, also known as a Pleasure Craft Operator Card (PCOC), with the Pleasure Craft License. These are two separate documents.

The Pleasure Craft License is a document that has a unique identification (ID) number issued for the vessel itself, while the Pleasure Craft Operator Card (PCOC) is a boating license that is required for anyone operating a motorized vessel in Ontario.

To boat legally in Ontario waters, you may need to have both a pleasure craft license and a Pleasure Craft Operator Card, depending on the type of vessel you are operating.

Does my Pleasure Craft License expire?

Pleasure Craft License Number

Yes, your Pleasure Craft License expires every 10 years.

Pleasure Craft LicenseA Pleasure Craft License is a document issued by Transport Canada that provides your vessel with a unique identification (ID) number, which is valid for 10 years. This ID number allows police and search and rescue personnel to access important information in an emergency.

If you own a non-commercial boat in Ontario, powered by an engine or engines of 10 hp (7.5 kW) horsepower or more, including Personal Watercraft (PWC), you will need to obtain a pleasure craft license. Alternatively, instead of licensing the boat, you could register it with Transport Canada.

Your pleasure craft license number must be displayed on both sides of your vessel’s bow. Pleasure craft license paperwork must be kept on board at all times when the boat is being operated.

NOTE : Transport Canada has proposed to change the expiry period of the Pleasure Craft License from 10 years to 5 years. These changes are due to come into force in 2024.

Do I need to renew my boating license in Ontario?

Ontario Boater LicenseNo, you do not need to renew your Ontario boating license, commonly known as a Pleasure Craft Operator Card (PCOC).

Once you obtain your Ontario boating license (PCOC) it’s good for life. There are no renewals or annual fees.

Do I renew my pleasure craft license in Ontario?

Yes, you need to renew your Pleasure Craft License every 10 years in Ontario.

A Pleasure Craft License is valid for a period of 10 years from the date of issuance, transfer, or renewal. If you need to make any updates to your license, such as a change of name or address, you must do so within 90 days through the Pleasure Craft Licensing Center online or by mail.

What is the fine for not having a boating license (PCOC)?


Under the Contraventions Act, there is a $250 minimum fine for operating a motorized pleasure craft without a Pleasure Craft Operator Card or other proof of competency.

What is the fine for not having a valid pleasure craft licence?

Under the Contraventions Act, if you are caught operating a vessel without a valid Pleasure Craft License or registration, you could face a minimum fine of $250.

PLEASE NOTE : Operating a pleasure craft without a Ontario boating license (PCOC) or a valid Pleasure Craft License may void your pleasure craft insurance.

Be Safe, Get Certified.

Ontario Boating LicenseIt is illegal to operate a powered boat in Ontario without a boating license (or other proof of competency), and the fines for doing so can be significant.  Additionally, obtaining a boating license is a good way to ensure that you are operating your boat safely and responsibly.

By completing a boating safety course and obtaining your boating license, you can gain the knowledge and skills needed to operate a boat safely, protect yourself and others, and avoid costly fines. If you want to test your knowledge – why not try out the free boating license practice test.

With the convenience and affordability of’s online course, there is no reason not to get your boating license today. 

Join the over 2 million certified Canadians, and get your Ontario boating license today!


Boating License (PCOC)

Transport Canada approved Boater Safety Course is free.
Take the course in your own time and risk free.

Other providers try to get you to pay upfront before you even have a chance to try out their course!

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ACCREDITED.® is accredited by Transport Canada to deliver boating safety courses and administer tests for the issuance of Pleasure Craft Operator Cards, including replacement cards, under the Competency of Operators of Pleasure Craft Regulations.


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