Course Overview

RYA Day Skipper Solent course is a hands-on course that is highly recommended for anyone who regularly sails on board a yacht. It’s designed to improve skills and build knowledge of all aspects of life at sea whilst skippering a sailing yacht during short passages.

The RYA Day Skipper course will give you knowledge to take charge safely and confidently. Skippering is much more than just navigation. You will spend 5 days navigating and sailing your way across The Solent, including some night sailing. Under the watchful eye of your instructor, you’ll practice your skippering skills, ensuring your crew are safe and happy. You will plan and put into practice a variety of different passages, including the execution of pilotage plans skills in to (and out of!) busy rivers, anchorages and marinas. Other key skills include interpreting weather forecasts, engine maintenance, sail handling and sail trim.

Armed with your RYA Day Skipper theory and practical qualification, you will boost your confidence to take charge of a sailing yacht and explore beautiful harbours and anchorages. You can also apply for your International Certificate of Competence (ICC) required by most European countries to allow you to charter a sailing yacht during a holiday at home or abroad.

Book and complete this course between October and March and receive your RYA SRC Radio course for just £39.00 (normal price £99.00).

Price : From £399.00

Pre-Course Experience

5 days, 100 miles, 4 night hours on board a sailing yacht.

Assumed Knowledge

Knowledge of being on board a boat to Competent Crew level. We also strongly recommend that you do the Day Skipper theory beforehand. This course can be done online or in a classroom and enables you to put chartwork knowledge into practice rather than learning everything whilst afloat.

Student Instructor Ratio

Maximum 5:1


5 days (3 weekends or 3 days plus 2 days)

Course Content
  • Preparation for sea
  • Deck work
  • Navigation
  • Pilotage
  • Meteorology
  • Rules of the road
  • Maintenance and repair work
  • Engines
  • Victualling
  • Emergency situations
  • Yacht handling under power
  • Yacht handling under sail
  • Passage making
  • Night cruising
Ability after Course

On successful completion you will be able to skipper your own yacht or charter yacht. This course also allows you to obtain and International Certificate of Competence, (ICC) the requirement for charter abroad.

Course Syllabus
  1. Preparation for sea

    • Is able to prepare a yacht for sea, including engine checks, selection of sails, securing and stowage of all gear on deck and below
  2. Deck Work

    • Can reef, shake out reefs and change sails to suit prevailing conditions
    • Can prepare an anchor, mooring warps and take charge on deck when mooring alongside, coming to a buoy, anchoring, weighing anchor and slipping from a buoy or alongside berth
  3. Navigation

    • Is proficient in chartwork and routine navigational duties on passage including:
    • Taking and plotting visual fixes
    • Use of electronic navigation equipment for position fixing
    • Use of waypoints
    • Working up to DR and EP
    • Estimating tidal heights and tidal streams
    • Working out course to steer to allow for tidal stream, leeway and drift
    • Knowledge of IALA buoyage
    • Maintenance of navigational records
    • Use of echo sounder and lead line
  4. Pilotage

    • Can prepare and execute a pilotage plan for entry into, or departure from, harbour
    • Understands the use of leading and clearing lines
    • Use of transits and surroundings as aids to pilotage
  5. Meteorology

    • Knows sources of forecast information
    • Can interpret shipping forecasts and use a barometer as a forecasting aid
  6. Rule of the road

    • Has a working knowledge of the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea
  7. Maintenance and repair work

    • Understands and is able to carry out maintenance tasks
    • Knows the properties and uses of common synthetic fibre ropes
  8. Engines

    • Knows how to change fuel and water filters, pump impeller and to bleed the fuel system
  9. Victualling

    • Understands how to victual a yacht
  10. Emergency situations

    • Is able to take correct action as skipper for recovery of man overboard
    • Understands distress flares and how to use a liferaft
    • Can operate a radiotelephone in an emergency and send a distress message
    • Understands how to secure a tow
    • Understands rescue procedures including helicopter rescue
  11. Yacht handling under power

    • Can bring a boat safely to and from an alongside berth, mooring buoy and anchor under various conditions of wind and tide
    • Can steer and trim sails effectively on all points of sailing
  12. Passage making

    • Can plan and make a coastal passage, taking account of relevant navigational hazards and limitations imposed by the type of boat and the strength of the crew
  13. Night cruising

    • Has experienced sail cruising at night, including leaving and entering harbour. Understands the special consideration for pilotage plans, keeping a lookout and identifying marks by night.
  14. Seasickness

    • Working efficiency is unaffected/partially affected/severely affected by seasickness
  15. Helmsmanship and sailing

    • Understands the basic principles of sailing and can steer and trim sails on all points of sailing
    • Can steer a compass course, under sail and power
Support Courses

RYA SRC VHF (required for anyone wishing to charter a boat)

RYA First Aid Course (highly recommended for skippers)

What’s Included

When you book a course with Bacchus Yachting we do our best to ensure there are no extra fees – everything you need to complete your course is included:

  • A shared cabin on board one of our yachts
  • Meals and refreshments whilst on board (except the evening of joining and one other)
  • Mooring fees (home marinas only)
  • All fuel costs
  • Use of safety kit (wet weather gear can be hired should you need it)
  • RYA certification for all successful students


Why not join the RYA today?

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