Jet skis are small, lightweight watercraft known for their speed and maneuverability. Since jet skis are so compact, many individuals choose to purchase one rather than a bigger boat. However, jet skis do not need a special jet ski license. You read it right. Jet ski requires the same license as a boat license. Despite its numerous differences from boats, the law treats a jet ski the same as a boat over 100 feet in length.

Since there is no special license for jet skis, most states require a boating safety course before learning how to operate a jet ski safely on the water. 

This article will instruct you on where and how to get your “jet ski license.”

Do You Require a Jet Ski License to Drive Jet ski?

In most states, you’ll need a boating license to operate a jet ski legally. Depending on your age and the laws in your state, you may or may not require a license to operate a jet ski. If a license is not required by law in your state, you should still consider getting one.

Jet skiing is dangerous in several ways, and getting a valid license is necessary. Despite their small size compared to the larger yachts and vessels they share the water with, jet skis may pose a significant threat if their operators are careless. Almost one-fifth of All watercraft accidents in 2012 used jet skis, resulting in 770 fatalities.

Because learning how to operate the boat and following water safety regulations is a part of the boat license course. You may know how to be a better driver and what to do in an emergency. It also guarantees you have the necessary documentation on hand if you decide to take your holiday in a state or country that requires a boat license.

Since a jet ski license is now required in over 40 states, it’s probably a good idea to acquire one whether or not you need one. Ensure you know the local regulations before heading out on the lake.

Where Do You Get a Jet Ski License?

Enrolling in Boat Ed’s boat safety course may earn a boater education certificate. Because each safety course has boating laws and regulations specific to that state, visit your state’s approved system to determine if you need the card to get on the water legally.

The materials for Boat-online Ed’s courses for each state have been reviewed and authorized by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) and the United States Coast Guard. You can get your jet ski certificate right here on this page.

Over 40 states and Canada have approved Boat Ed’s printed and online safety training and courses. All modern mobile and desktop computers, tablets, and smartphones may access the systems online.

The curriculum for the license is easy to understand, fun to do, and teaches all the necessary skills and knowledge. Each course is divided into six modules that comprise manageable information. You may go through the lessons quickly since they are adaptable.

Boating emergencies, water manners, ship handling, and the law are discussed. Before moving on, you must complete a quiz at the end of each chapter. If you don’t get a passing grade on a section, don’t worry; review it again until you do. You are required to complete a final examination at the end of the course. If you do well, you will be issued a certificate allowing you to use your jet ski immediately. As you wait for your official boating license to come in the mail, you may use this temporary certificate in its place.

In addition to this permanent license, many rental businesses now provide a temporary jet ski license, which you may get right there on the spot.

How Much Does a Jet Ski License Cost?

You must pay for the lessons. Depending on the state, the average cost of a license is between $30 and $40.

How to Get a Jet Ski License

You can get a Jet ski license quickly. Here is what you need to do:

One alternative option is to sign up for a classroom. Find local classroom instruction through an internet search. Courses like this often include topics like how to operate various boats and how to be safe while doing so. You will get a comprehensive understanding of the topic. Once your training is complete, you can test for your license. Finally, you may receive your license by taking classes in an online classroom.

This option is suitable for busy people who don’t have a classroom nearby. You will get the same quality education as in a school. The rate at which you complete tasks is also flexible.

States Requires Jet Ski License

Without your license, you may face fines and other penalties. Let’s discuss jet ski licensing restrictions in each state.

The license in Florida State

By law in Florida, if you were born on or after January 1, 1988, and you want to operate a boat with ten horsepower or more, you must complete a boater safety course and always have a boater education card.

Anyone who wants to get a license can take the safety course. It is not necessary to be a Florida resident to enroll in the course. There’s no minimum requirement to complete the training, but PWC operations may have various rules.

Jet Ski license in Florida State

The license in New York State

New York jet ski and watercraft restrictions are complicated and should be studied carefully.

New York started an age-based law requiring a new age group to be certified yearly. It requires all motorized boats and PWC operators to pass a boater’s safety course and carry a New York boater’s card by January 1, 2025. By January 1, 2020, all New York boat operators born on or after January 1, 1993, must have a boater’s card.

California Jet Ski License

Starting on January 1, 2018, all boat and PWC operators in California must undergo a boater safety course and hold the California boater card as part of an age-based regulation. By January 1, 2020, operators who are 35 or younger will have to have a California Boater Card.

Jet ski License in California and New York State

Texas Jet Ski License

Currently, a safety certificate is not mandatory for PWC operators in Texas. In Texas, everyone born on or after September 1, 1993, must have a jet ski license to operate a personal watercraft legally. Anyone born before that date is exempt from mandatory safety training.

Under conditions, children under 13 may use a PWC: They have an adult (18+) in charge of them. The supervisor must be on board as soon as the PWC begins to move. The person in charge must have the appropriate credentials to operate a personal watercraft.

PWC operators in Texas must adhere to stricter regulations. Operators of PWC must, in addition to following all laws and rules governing the operation of motorboats in general, also abide by the

New Jersey Jet Ski License

Residents must complete boating instructions to operate a motorized watercraft in New Jersey.

You may also require a non-tidal boat license in certain circumstances. Regarding personal watercraft (PWC), New Jersey has strict regulations regarding age and eligibility. No minor under 13 can operate a personal watercraft (PWC) in New Jersey. Anyone between 13 and 16 must complete a recognized boater’s safety course. Once they’ve done so, they’ll be able to operate powered boats of 12 inches or longer, provided that the electric motor is no more potent than ten horsepower.

A boating education certificate is necessary for anybody 16 or older.

Jet ski License in New Jersey and Texas

Georgia Jet Ski License

The law mandates that everyone born on or after January 1, 1998, who operates a motorized watercraft, must complete a boater’s safety course and have a boater’s education card.

North Carolina Jet Ski License

A boater education card is mandatory in North Carolina for anybody who was born on or after January 1, 1988, and will be operating a watercraft with more than ten horsepower.

Jet ski License in North Carolina and Georgia

Minnesota Jet Ski License

If you’re between the ages of 12 and 17 and want to operate a boat with more than 25 horsepower in Minnesota without adult supervision, you must complete a boating instruction program. If you’re 14 to 17 and unsupervised, you require PWC training. It is against the law for anybody younger than 13 to operate a PWC (PWC). Anyone above 18 is free to use any motorized vessel or personal watercraft.

Pennsylvania Jet Ski License

In Pennsylvania, everyone who wants to ride a jet ski must have a valid license. Any Pennsylvania resident who intends to operate a personal watercraft (PWC) on a public body of water must first receive the appropriate safety certification.

Children less than 11 years old are not allowed to operate a PWC under any circumstances. Those between the ages of 12 and 15 are not allowed to use a PWC if they have anybody younger than 15 in their group.

Anyone from out of state who was born on or after January 1, 1982, is exempt from Pennsylvania’s safety regulations. They must have a valid boater’s safety certificate from their home state and be visiting Pennsylvania for fewer than 60 days.

Jet Ski License in Pennsylvania and Minnesota State of America

Virginia Jet Ski License

As of July 1, 2016, PWC operators must complete a boater safety course. Anyone less than 14 years old

is not allowed to operate a personal watercraft (PWC). Operators aged 14 or 15 must prove they have a license.

Although minors under 14 are not permitted to operate PWC, there are no restrictions on completing the required safety training. The state-approved course has no age or residency requirements.

Tennessee Jet Ski License

Anyone born in Tennessee on or after January 1, 1989, must complete a boater safety course and have

a boater education card. You are exempt from the education requirement if you were born on or before January 1, 1989. However, you may still take the test and get your temporary boater education certificate by completing the online course. With this course’s approval, you may get a discount on your boat or personal watercraft insurance and access Tennessee state waterways.

If you were born after January 1, 1989, you must complete an exam conducted by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency. The online Study Guide is available to help you prepare for the in-person exam.

The online training is open to anybody, regardless of where they live, not only Tennesseans.

Virginia and Tennessee States Jet ski License

Washington Jet Ski License

Washington law requires anybody operating a 15-hp-or-more boat to undergo a boater safety course and have a boater education card. People under 12 are not permitted to enroll in this online program.

Regardless of where they call home anyone can enroll in this course online, irrespective of where they call home.

The License in Wisconsin State

Suppose you were born on or after January 1, 1989, and want to operate a motorboat or personal watercraft in Wisconsin. In that case, you may be required by law to complete a boater safety course and have a boater education card.

Jet ski License in Wisconsin and Washington States

Michigan Jet Ski License

Every person who operates a motorized vessel born after June 30, 1996, must complete a boater education course and hold a boater education card. All PWC operators born on or after December 31, 1978, must also have boater education.

The License in Illinois State

It is mandatory by law for anybody born on or after January 1, 1998, to complete a boater safety course and possess a boater education card while operating a watercraft with a motor of more than ten horsepower.

Jet ski License in Illinois State and Michigan State

The License in Alabama

As of 2015, Alabama law mandated that anybody operating a motorized vessel over 12 complete a boater

safety course and have a boater education card.

The License in Mississippi State

Suppose you were born after June 30, 1980. In that case, you may be required by law in Mississippi to have completed a boater safety course and have a boater education card when operating a motorized boat or personal watercraft.

Jet Ski license in Alabama state and Mississippi State

More information

Jet Ski License Benefits

Jet ski licenses are beneficial. First, the knowledge and practices you acquire on the course will make you a safer, more skilled rider and help you make better choices about when and where to ride.


Jet skis need a boat license in most states. Additional restrictions include minimum ages and the use of specific safety equipment. It’s straightforward to get a boating license.

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