Certificate of safety training

This is an international qualification for Australian registered vessels operating in international waters.
The Certificate of safety training (COST) is the first international qualification you need to become a seafarer.

This certificate may be recognised by some overseas or foreign maritime administrations to operate their Flagged ships.  This Certificate may also be used for Domestic Commercial Vessels catering crewing.

This is an entry level Certificate which is a prerequisite for further international certificates.


To get a Certificate of safety training (COST) you must meet the course requirements listed below. The requirements depend on whether you are applying for an initial issue of a COST or you are applying to revalidate your existing COST.  

This certificate is issued under Marine Order 70 (Seafarer certification) 2014 made under the Navigation Act 2012.

Important disclaimer

These instructions are summary information only. We make decisions about seafarer certificates under Marine Order 70 (Seafarer certification) 2014Marine Order 71 (Masters and deck officers) 2014Marine Order 72 (Engineer officers) 2014Marine Order 73 (Ratings) 2014 and Marine Order 74 (Master and deck officers — yachts) 2015. Please refer to these marine orders for full details of eligibility and other requirements for certificate applications.

New certificate

What do I need to do?

To get this certificate, you need to:

Revalidate certificate

What do I need to do?

To revalidate your certificate, you need to:

Replace a lost or damaged international certificate

Get an endorsement for your international certificate

If you hold a Certificate of safety training (COST) you should apply to us to revalidate your certificate before it expires, if it has not been suspended or revoked. Whether your certificate is valid, or has expired, the revalidation requirements are the same.

You must complete a sea service and course component to revalidate your certificate. Read more about these in the revalidate tab above.

Continued competence courses

Australia is a party to the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW). Under this convention, we comply with the standards required in STCW A-1/11. These standards require all seafarers to demonstrate continued professional competence in safety of life at sea and security. Completion of these courses is commonly known as a demonstration of continued competence.

Medical courses

Under the standards in the STCW, there is no requirement for revalidation of first aid, medical first aid, and medical care certificates. However, as required by the Maritime Labour Convention, you should undergo refresher courses every 5 years to allow you to maintain and increase your knowledge and skills to keep up-to-date with new developments. Refer to Maritime Labour Convention 2006 Regulation 4.1, Guideline B4.1 Medical care on board ship.

Revalidating from overseas

If you hold a Certificate of safety training and live overseas you can still revalidate your certificate. You must meet the sea service requirement and we will accept refresher training conducted with an administration we have an agreement with. Read Country eligibility for Certificates of recognition.

You will need to meet a number of requirements before we can accept refresher courses you have completed overseas:

  • Be a resident overseas—permanently living in a country other than Australia.
  • Make sure you are doing the course in a country which has an agreement with Australia.
  • Contact that country’s flag state administration to obtain information regarding the location of an approved course provider.
  • On completion of the course, obtain a course completion certificate.
  • We may require you to obtain a letter from the overseas course provider that states the course is approved by the administration of that country and you have attended the course.

We recognise these courses from countries with which we hold an agreement, if the applicant meets the above requirements:


Certificate type

STCW short courses

(approved by an administration with which we have an agreement)

Certificate of safety training

  1. Personal survival techniques (STCW section A-VI/1, paragraph and
  2. Fire prevention and fire fighting (Section A-VI/1, paragraph

Security awareness training endorsement

Overseas Security awareness Training course (STCW Code A-VI/6 para. 4) is not acceptable for the Security Awareness Training endorsement. However we recognise either of the following overseas courses:

  • Designated security person—Reg VI/6  course or 
  • Ship security officers—Reg VI/5 course  

Last updated: 

Friday 20 January 2023