Lifejackets and lifejacket servicing go hand in hand with boating, and before you head onto the water, you must make sure your vessel is registered. Fortunately, boat registration in NSW is a fairly straightforward process. However, there have been some recent changes to the system, so we thought we would write this blog post answering the most common questions we get asked.

Recreational Boat Registration

To register a vessel in NSW, you have to be over 16 years of age. Commercial vessels fall under a different category, so the following vessels are assumed to be recreational.

  • Personal watercraft.
  • Vessels with a mooring license (including marina berths).
  • Any power-driven or sailing vessel 5.5 metres or longer.
  • Power-driven vessels powered by an engine with a power rating of 4.0 kilowatts or more (greater than 5 horsepower).

Do I Need a Boat Registration Number?

Yes, registration numbers need to be displayed. Specifications for display registration numbers are as follows. A boat registration number must be:

  • Displayed at all times on both sides of the vessel ( on the transom of a sailing vessel).
  • In a contrasting colour to the hull.
  • Printed in solid characters in a clear, uppercase font.

Please note, a registration label is no longer required..

How Do I Get A NSW Boat Registration?

If it’s an initial boat registration, you will need to bring a completed vessel registration form to a Service NSW centre. You will also need to bring

Registering your boat is a good time to think about boat insurance. While it’s not compulsory, insuring your boat brings peace of mind and will cover you (depending on your policy) in the event of an unexpected event like fire, theft or damage to someone else’s property.

NSW Boat Registration Cost

Registration fees depend on the size and type of your vessel. There are separate fees for the transfer of a vessel or if you wish to personalise your registration. You can view the full list of registration fees here. In brief, NSW boat registration costs are:

  • $65 for vessels up to 3 metres ($10 per half a metre up to max $649)
  • $329 for personal watercraft (i.e. jet skis)
  • $165 concession for personal watercraft

Payments can be made online or over the counter at an RMS service centre.

Heading out on the water? A lifejacket is the most important piece of safety equipment on your vessel. Make sure yours are the correct size for your passengers and have been properly serviced. Not sure where to get your lifejacket serviced? Visit one of our lifejacket servicing kiosks on the NSW South Coast.