Superyacht Deckhand Career Course

Competent Crew/Day Skipper Theory & Practical/VHF/PB2/STCW/Deckhand

This 34 day package is specifically designed to incorporate a variety of basic courses to help you build a CV and improve your chances of finding work in the yachting industry, especially the superyacht industry.

Course Description

The course is designed for those who have a minimal knowledge of sailing. Students begin their practical training at the Competent Crew level, where they learn basic seamanship such as rope-work, sail handling, keeping a good lookout and assisting with all the day-to-day handling of a yacht. After a week on the water (5 days and 4 nights) students move to the classroom where they spend another week (5 days) learning the basic theory involved in boating (power and sail), with an emphasis on safety, rules of the road and fundamental navigational methods. Theory is then put into practice as student’s head back to the boat for the Day Skipper Practical course and another 5 days of sailing. This is followed by the STCW (Standards of Training for Crew and Watch), where students learn basic first aid, fire fighting and life-raft training. In the final week students will participate in an exciting 2-day Power Boat course on one of our 400hp Ballistic Rigid Inflatable Boats (RIBs). This Power Boat Level 1 & 2 course is now a prerequisite for most crew if they want to handle the yachts tender. Students will then spend a day in the classroom earning their RYA VHF radio licence. The last  4 days are on the Deck Hand course where maintenance, knowledge and application, wash-downs, teak maintenance, deckhand duties (navigational watch and guests on board), line handling and anchoring duties, etc are covered. Students learn how to assess damage and begin the repair process, starting with damage control and protection of surrounding areas, application of anticorrosive primers and fillers, all the way to applying the Polyurethane Topcoat. Another part of the maintenance section of the course focuses on woodwork and varnishing skills. Protection of surrounding areas, correct taping up, knowledge of sandpaper, sanding with the grain, staying inside taped up areas, correct mixing and applying of the varnish. As an added benefit students also get help with tips on the interview process and creating a CV fit for the industry.
  • Competent Crew 5 days
  • Day Skipper Theory 5 days
  • Day Skipper Practical 5 days
  • SRC/VHF Radio 1 day
  • PB2 Powerboat 2 days
  • STCW/CSA 11 days
  • Deckhand 4 days


Additional courses that we highly recommend to compliment the Superyacht Dekhand Career:

  • RYA PWC (Jetski) 1 day
  • RYA RADAR 1 day
  • RYA DIESEL 1 day

General Course Information (All Courses)

  • Students stay on the boat during the multi-day practical courses in order to get a real feel for onboard living. A stipend for essentials (tea, coffee, cereal, milk, etc) is included in the course price. During the theory week and STCW, students have the option of staying at our Academy in the Waterfront.

  • For practical courses we ask that students bring a sleeping bag, towel, toiletries, change of clothes, and suitable wet weather gear. Sunglasses and sunscreenare also a good idea.

    For the theory course students will need a 2B pencils, a pen, a notebook and where possible, their own Portland plotter and dividers (we can also loan to the student). We can also help with the purchase of any of these materials.

    For STCW you will need your Passport or ID book on day one of your course. You will also need to wear old clothes for the fire fighting (MFF) element, for Personal Safety Training (PST) you will need swimwear, a towel and a set of clothes to get in the pool with.

  • PRACTICAL sailing courses start with a briefing at the school, 11 Portswood Road at 8.30am.
    THEORY courses take place at the school and commence at 8.30am
    STCW training takes place in the Cape Town foreshore, training starts promptly at 8.30am
    STEWARDESS training takes place in Gordon’s Bay and starts Mondays at 9.00am

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