Marine Pilots Licence - New South Wales

Service summary

You will require this licence if you intend to act as a pilot of a vessel in a pilotage port. A marine pilot is an experienced seafarer who assists masters of visiting commercial vessels in ports.

Pilotage is compulsory in every pilotage port, meaning that a master of a vessel cannot enter, leave or move within a pilotage port with a vessel before taking on board the marine pilot made available by the pilotage service provider for that port. Please note that you cannot act as the marine pilot of a vessel in a pilotage port unless you have been authorised to do so by the relevant pilotage service provider for that port.

A pilotage port means any of the following ports:

  • Sydney Harbour
  • Botany Bay
  • Newcastle
  • Port Kembla
  • Yamba
  • Eden.

Please consult the Contact Officer for more information.

Service type


A licence defines the need to obtain recognition / certification and registration to undertake a certain business activity.

Eligibility requirements

To be eligible for this licence you must:

  • meet the health requirements set out in the marine pilotage code
  • hold a relevant qualification
  • provide evidence of your competence to carry out unsupervised duties as a marine pilot in the relevant pilotage port.

Relevant qualifications includes either:

  • a certificate of competency under the Commonwealth legislation as a master for the gross tonnage of vessel to be piloted
  • a certificate of recognition issued Commonwealth legislation in relation to an international qualification equivalent to a certificate of competency
  • a marine pilot's licence from another Australian jurisdiction (other than a coastal pilot licence), and at least one year's experience piloting all vessels in the port to which the licence relates
  • a demonstrated level of competency equivalent to any of the above qualifications.

Please consult the Contact Officer for more information regarding eligibility requirements.


Licence is ongoing unless withdrawn.



Extend licence to add a new port.




Application for Marine Pilot's Licence - Please consult the Contact Officer for information on forms to be submitted with your application.

Other resources

Administering agency

Transport for NSW
Roads and Maritime Services
NSW Maritime Division

Act(s) name

Marine Safety Act 1998 (New South Wales)

Regulation(s) name

Marine Safety Regulation 2016 (New South Wales)

Contact details

Transport for NSW
Roads and Maritime Services
NSW Maritime Division

Operating address:
James Craig Road
New South Wales 2039
Mailing address:
Locked Bag 5100
New South Wales 1450


13 12 56


02 9563 8557


02 9563 8522


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