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New certificate

New certificate

What do I need to do?

To get this certificate, you need to:

Provide proof of medical fitness

Prior to the initial issue of a certificate of competency and Certificate of recognition you must obtain a Certificate of medical fitness in Australia. As per Marine Order 76 (Health—medical fitness) 2017 you can only perform the duties of a seafarer on a relevant vessel if you are medically fit to perform those duties.

The medical examination can be organised by contacting Sonic HealthPlus. We strongly recommend that you complete the medical examination before you commence training to ensure that you are medically fit for a seagoing career.

To book a medical examination, you can:

Read more about medical fitness.

Complete training courses

You will need to complete these courses:

  • Watchkeeper deck less than 3000 gross tonnage (yachts) certificate of competency that includes vocational training
  • Basic safety training, including security awareness training.
  • Proficiency in survival craft and rescue boats other than fast rescue boats.

These courses must be completed with an approved training organisation.

All of the certificates and training you complete and provide evidence of must comply with the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW).

Provide evidence of sea service

You will need to provide evidence that you have completed one of the following options:

Option 1

You must have completed at least 36 months sea service (or at least 18 months if part of an approved and monitored course) performing watchkeeping duties or functions in the deck department. This service must have been completed on vessels greater than or equal to 12 metres.

Of this 36 months, at least 8 months must have been served on vessels greater than or equal to 20 metres on voyages of at least 24 hours duration.

Of this 8 months, at least 6 months must have been served as understudy of the officer in charge of the navigation watch.

Option 2

You must have served as an officer in charge of a navigation watch on a vessel that AMSA considers equivalent to watchkeeping service.

All sea service must be documented qualifying sea service. Read more about sea service.

Pass an oral examination

Once you have been assessed and issued with an assessment letter you will need to book and successfully pass an oral examination.

Additional requirements

You will need to hold one of the following valid certificates:

  • GMDSS radio operators certificate
  • GMDSS certificate of recognition

If you are serving on an ECDIS equipped ship, you will also need to hold an ECDIS endorsement.

Endorsement to Master less than 200 gross tonnage (yachts)

For endorsement as a Master less than 200 gross tonnage (yachts) you will need to pass a separate oral examination.

How to apply

You will need to lodge a formal application using the Seafarer form 419 to be assessed towards the requirements for a Watchkeeper deck less than 3000 gross tonnage yachts certificate of competency.

Lodge from within Australia

You will need to fill out the Seafarer form 419, attach all required supporting documents and lodge it at a participating Australia Post retail outlet.

You will need to pay the fees for your application at the post office at the time of lodgement.

Lodge from overseas

You will need to fill out the Seafarer form 419, attach all required supporting documents including a colour passport-style photograph and send the paperwork to us by email to When we receive your email we will let you know how to pay the fee for your application via AMSA online portal.