Do You Need a License to Drive a Jet Ski

Jet Ski on a Beach

Are you planning your next summer vacation to the State of Florida to finally ride a Jet Ski? Well, do you have a license to operate a personal watercraft (PWC) in the State of Florida? This post will guide you about it in the most understandable way.

Most tourists and vacationers in the State of Florida get confused about state requirements and laws regarding boating licenses to operate a personal watercraft. Although the boating license requirements vary from state to state, Florida is the least troublesome!

Many states require Jet Ski riders and those operating a vessel to get into boating safety courses to receive a boating/Jet Ski education certificate beforehand. On the other hand, some states allow 12-year-olds to ride a Jet Ski with adult supervision, while other states have set a minimum age of 16 for doing so. So, do you need a license to drive a Jet Ski? Let’s find out!

What is a Jet Ski License?

Do you need a boating license for a Jet Ski, or is it a Jet Ski license? Well, it depends on the state requirements, of course. However, we will discuss what a Jet Ski license refers to. It’s something that most Jet Ski and boat rental companies don’t usually discuss with their customers.

A Jet Ski license is issued and governed by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators. It’s a safety certificate in most states.

Although getting a Jet Ski license (i.e., boater’s safety certificate) is mandatory in several states, you can opt for a temporary certificate to ride a Jet Ski worry-free as well.

How Can You Get Your Jet Ski License?

All that information must bring you to a common question: how to get a Jet Ski license? Since the State of Florida will require a license from you if you wish to operate a PWC, you must know how you obtain it.

Follow these steps to get your Jet Ski license in the State of Florida:

  1. Visit the US Coast Guard’s website to sign up and select your state
  2. Check for the available boating safety courses
  3. Select an approved and recognized boater safety course to get your boat license
  4. Pay for any payments using your credit card
  5. You can start completing the boater safety course online
  6. When you successfully complete one of the chosen boating safety education courses, you will obtain your license

Do You Need a License to Rent a Jet Ski?

The answer to that question is “yes.” You will require a boating license that also works as a Jet Ski license, even if you don’t own the Jet Ski. It’s a must-have like a life jacket, whether you’re operating a Jet Ski, boat, or any other PWC.

A few boat rental companies inform their customers about the boater safety course card and provide one for a safe adventure. So, make sure you’re dealing with a reliable and reputable company on your vacation.

In case your chosen boat rental or Jet Ski rental company doesn’t provide you with a boater safety course card, you can opt for it through your local DMV.

Do You Need a Jet Ski License in Florida?

Do you need a license to ride a Jet Ski even if it’s a rental? Well, you can show up for a boating safety course and successfully complete it to get your safety certificate. This will allow you to ride a Jet Ski and even a boat rental worry-free.

Yes, it’s a mandatory requirement set forth by state authorities. However, the license and safety certificate requirements apply to only those who were born on January 1st, 1988, or later. You can also get a temporary certificate since it’s mandatory, but it will be valid for only 90 days.


If you plan to take your next vacation to the State of Florida or any other coastal city with Jet Skiing facilities, you can get a license to operate a water vessel.

Read more about the requirements and boating/Jet Skiing laws by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators.