Day Skipper (Motor)

Why do your RYA Day Skipper Motor (Tidal) training with Club Yachting?

Club Yachting are the most southerly RYA motor cruising school in the northern hemisphere - so offer great weather all year around for motor boating. In the summer daytime temperatures are in the high 20's, and in the winter in the low 20's.

We have access to two motor yachts:

  • Our main school yacht is an Island Gypsy - at 14m long, with two cabins (1 double and 1 twin) as well as accommodation in the saloon she is perfect for RYA training with a twin helm position, dual engines and separate throttle and gears is perfect for teaching. Completely refurbished in 2015 with new Garmin electronics (including RADAR and AIS) she is state of the art, as well as being a fantastic sea going yacht.
  • We also have a luxury Sealine S42 which is perfect for cruising the Canary Islands while soaking up the sunshine.

Unlike other schools we include:

Unlike other schools we include:

  • warm sunshine
  • plenty of time to practise boat handling
  • accommodation
  • fuel

- and like all our courses the price we quote is the price you pay with no hidden extras

Course length

The RYA recommends a minimum of 4 days for the RYA Day Skipper Tidal practical course, and 5 days when combined with the RYA Helmsman course. As we do not like to do the minimum we offer the course over 6 days (7 nights) to give you time to consolidate your learning. For those with more experience we offer the option of extending the course (join us on the Friday, live on board for 10 nights and complete the RYA Day Skipper and RYA Coastal Skipper, leaving on the Monday (2 weekends and a week).

If you can not spare 6 days / 7 nights then why not do our Day Skipper Masterclass over 4 days? Jump to 4 day RYA Day Skipper Motor Masterclass

Pre course knowledge

The Day Skipper (Motor) course is very much a hands-on course with little time to teach tidal navigation or other theoretical subjects. The syllabi covered can be seen further down this page.

We therefore recommended that you study your theory before you join us. There are a number of options available:

If you wish you can join us for a two week Combined Theory and Practical Day Skipper Motor course which covers both the theoretical and practical aspects of the Day Skipper course.

Refresh your Day Skipper Theory knowledge

If you just need to refresh your theory knowledge we suggest the great RYA Navigation Exercises book which is available from the RYA

What’s covered during the course?

During the course you will get plenty of time to practice being a skipper. The course includes:

  • Preparation of a motor yacht for sea - including checking the engine and fuel, and making sure there is enough food and water on board
  • Skippering ability - can manage the yacht and crew on board
  • Anchoring - including preparation and calculating tidal heights (seeing if there is enough water under the hull at low water)
  • Boat handling - in various wind and tidal situations - steering, turning in a confined space, which warps to use, berthing stern to and alongside, picking up a mooring buoy
  • Passage planning - putting your CTS (course to steer) into practise
  • Navigation - building on your theory knowledge and using to: take fixes, do an EP (estimating position), keeping up a log
  • Electronics - using a GPS / chart plotter, depth sounder, VHF radio, RADAR etc
  • Meteorology - where to get a weather forecast and reading a synoptic chart
  • IRPCS (International Rules for Prevention of Collisions at Sea) - lights, shapes, sound signals and rules of the road
  • Maintenance - how to look after your boat
  • Diesel Engines - including a session on our engine in our classroom so you really do know how to bleed an engine and change an impellor
  • Heavy weather – how to handle a motor boat if it gets very windy (including tacking!)
  • Man-over-board including williamson's turn, and dealign with other emergencies

This is the most popular of the Motor Yacht courses. During the course you will:

  • practise managing the crew and boat
  • gain some night cruising experience
  • learn about navigating
  • experiencing entering and leaving different harbours.

During the course there is plenty of time for the all important boat handling to ensure that you feel comfortable handling the motor yacht.

On the Day Skipper Motor course you will be spending six days on board the yacht visiting the beautiful areas of the Canaries away from the beaten track.

If you have had no experience of Motor Yachts we suggest completing our Combined Helmsman and Day Skipper course over 6 days / 7 nights.

Suggested reading

Our recommended companion book for the course is the RYA Day Skipper Handbook Motor which is available from the RYA

Ability after course

Once you have completed the course you will gain your RYA Day Skipper Motor licence for tidal waters. This will enable you to take out a motor yacht up to 24m in length in day light.

Please note that the minimum age for the certificate is 16 years.


All our courses are run by one of our experienced instructors.


We ask our clients to arrive on Friday. We clean our boats and do any maintenance between 10:00 and 17:00 so if you arrive earlier we will look after your bags for you. At 17:00 we invite you to get on the yachts and meet your Instructor, and at 18:30 we hold a welcome drink in our club house to introduce you to the crew on the other boats, and all our Instructors.
Notes: Because of our location you have the advantage that you normally arrive in our marina within 15 minutes of collecting your bags.

On the Friday we ask you to get off the yacht at 10:00 so we can clean her ready for the next week. If you have a later flight we can look after your bags for you – and why not think of our one day courses:
Diesel Engine ; First Aid ; RADAR ; Sea Survival and VHF (SRC) course

Course duration

A minimum of 4 days tuition for the Day Skipper Motor course (6 days when combined with the helmsman or 10 days when combined with the Coastal Skipper)

Can’t spare a week? Join us for our 4 day RYA Day Skipper Motor Masterclass

If you can not spare a week why not join us for our 4 day RYA Day Skipper Motor Masterclass?

It is the same course, only more intensive, and run for a maximum of 3 persons. Arriving on the Friday evening you will spend just 4 days training and leave us on the Tuesday night / Wednesday morning.

Don't worry we will have time cover all the items included on the course but with a maximum of 3 persons on board you will get plenty of time on the helm.

As usual with Club Yachting the following is included

  • Six days of teaching and seven nights accommodation – that extra time helps you consolidate your knowledge, and also we understand that you are on holiday and give you time to relax as well as learn
  • Tuition from an experienced Instructor – we do not use instructors who have just qualified
  • Light weight waterproof jacket – just in case of the odd wave
  • Food and drink on board – breakfast and lunch, evening meals when sailing late and a glass of wine, or a beer after a days sailing
  • Fuel (no one likes extras)
  • All mooring fees & gas – no hidden extras
  • Your own berth – no need to share (unless you want to)
  • Freshly laundered sheets, duvets and 2 pillows and towels per person – no sleeping bags with liners or any need to bring your own (we suggest you may be able to fly with hand luggage only)

Notes: We do not include flights, travel insurance or evening meals ashore.

Must bring your own

  • Sun protection – Sun glasses, sun hat and non oily sun cream (without carotene) are a definite must!
  • Music / DVD – there is a radio that that can be connected to an iPad on the boat and a DVD player on the yacht, so please bring with you a CD / DVD or 2.
  • Mobile phone charging – There is a 12v “cigarette” style socket on board the yacht which is live even when sailing, and a 240v socket (Spanish type) for when connected to shore power.
  • Medication – If you are taking any medication please advise your Instructor on commencement of the course.
  • Health care – Health care in the Canary Islands is good, but it is a good idea to go on line for your EHIC card or collect a form from your local post office. Other European nationalities can get information from the European Commission
  • Seasickness - It is advisable to bring with you a seasickness remedy if you have suffered in the past. There is a local chemist in the town of Las Galletas – ask your Instructor where it is at the Friday night drink.
  • Travel insurance – While our boats are insured we do ask you to have your own Travel Insurance and suggest Top Sail if you live in an EU country.

Notes: All bedding, bed linen (sheet, duvet cover and pillow) and two towels per person are provided. Please make sure that you let us know if you suffer from allergies as we provide feather pillows as standard.

Recommended clothes

The climate in the Canaries is temperate. You are recommended to bring with you shorts and t-shirts, a jumper/cardigan, long jeans/trousers and jumper for the odd cooler evening in the winter months, shoes with non-marking bottoms for use on the boat, swimwear and something for dinners ashore. As the boat has limited storage space a sailing bag / holdall is the most suitable luggage.

Notes: We lend you a shower / wind proof jacket (normally only needed for the sea spray). Please give it back to us on the Thursday evening.

How much does it cost?

The cost of our 4 day RYA Day Skipper motor course in tidal waters includes accommodation and fuel. See for further details of our 4 day Day Skipper Motor course

If you prefer to do the course over 6 days this is also available. See for further details of our 6 day / 7 night option