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PWC Licence & Registration

What is a Personal Watercraft?

A personal watercraft (PWC) is defined under the Marine Safety Act 2010 (Vic) (MSA) as any recreational vessel that is of a kind that is required to be registered and that:

  • has an engine that is used for propulsion
  • has a fully enclosed hull
  • does not retain water on it if it capsizes, and
  • is designed to be operated by a person standing, sitting astride or kneeling on the vessel but not seated within the vessel.

Obtaining the PWC endorsement

To operate a PWC in Victoria, you must hold the PWC endorsement. This is commonly referred to as the ‘jetski licence’. In order to obtain the PWC endorsement, you must:

  • Be over the age of 16
  • Hold a valid Victorian marine licence
  • Successfully complete the PWC endorsement exam
  • Meet the eligibility criteria (outlined here)

You can find information on the yearly marine licence and PWC endorsement licence costs on VicRoads’ website here.

Registering a PWC

The owner of a registered recreational vessel, that is a personal watercraft, must ensure that the identification mark that is assigned by the Safety Director for that vessel is painted or displayed in appropriate characters:

  • on each side of the hull of the vessel
  • forward of the beam, and
  • so that the highest part of each digit commences at a point no more than 25 mm below the gunwale.

Appropriate characters means characters that are:

  • no less than 100 mm high
  • in proportionate breadth, and
  • coloured in contrast to the surface on which they are displayed

A person must not act as the master of a registered vessel on State waters unless an identification mark is painted or displayed on the vessel in accordance with the above. These identification marks must take preference over decals and striping provided to decorate or customise the PWC


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