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Start airboat tour How???

I want to start an airboat tours. How does one go about starting an airboat tour business??? Can anyone get their Captains License??? I am very new to this but love it so much I want to share it with everyone!!!
Thanks for any help.

Olf Art

Silent Prop
R. I. P.
PG77, my advice would be to locate your nearest U.S. Coast Guard office and talk with them. They should be able to give you some direction. Good luck!

scott wheeler

Well-known member
Have you got your captains liscence for uninspected vessel. You can carry 6 or less. Any more people you need a masters liscence for inspected vessel. That was the hardest school I ever went to. Scott


Well-known member
Alot of tour operators here in south Louisiana are just 6-pack operators, i wouldn't go as far as calling them captains, for a 6-pack OUPV (operator uninspected passenger vessel) any time counts as long as the boat your on is registered and has numbers, it could literally be a 12ft flat with a 5hp outboard. But if your carrying more than 6 passengers, and you yourself the operator is inlcuded in that 6, son really only 5 passengers, you would need to upgrade to a master's license, now little known fact is that if you dont have access to a vessel that qaulifies for the tonnage for a 100-ton masters upon inland waters, coast guard will then issue you a 50-ton Capt license, to qualify for that you need a minimum of 365 8hr days on a vessel over 5 tons, 10,000lbs. I'm a licensed 100-ton master 200ton mate upon near coastal waters, I just got hired by Edison Chouest to run a 165ft quad screw crewboat offshore, 4xs 3412ti Cat turbos. Just like someone had said earlier, the class is alot to grasp cause in my opinion its a lot of information crammed into such a short class, you have plotting, deck gen, nav gen, rules of the road. Most people that I have seen have the most trouble with plotting and rules of the road. Most maritime training centers give you three chances to past all four tests and then I believe you have 3months off then you can go test again, I was one of the very few people in my class to pass all 4 tests the first go around. The best school for the price and the well educated instructors not being very familiar with florida at all, I would say Sea School in Mobile, Alabama, they provide on campus housing and meals, and they are very reasonable on the price of the course, you also need to realize that you need to take a CPR course too and get your FCC Radio operators license too, and now its been pushed back until 2009 but its a matter of time when this is required, your TWIC card, (transportation worker identification credential) cause from what our local coast guard rec center told us, is you can have your license and radar endorsement and radio permit but if you don't have your twic card then your not valid. Hope any of this information is of some sort of help to you...


Well-known member
Insurance will be a kicker also, I would go with a six pak and specialize in small groups. I doubt you will need the TWIC card because you will not be using or accessing ports or MARSEC docking facilities i.e. (Chemical facilities, oil facilities and shipping transport ports.) I would still check into it to be sure but I doubt it.

loco pato

Well-known member
Twic card is mandatory for all licensed captains(I know its silly for fishing guides and tour boat captains but still mandatory) just think of it as another federal tax.The amazing thing is my commercial airboat insurance is cheaper than if you get regular Recreational insurance I got it quoated both ways, Markel is the cheapest. I use my AB for hauling duck hunters to and from the blinds three months a year and some joy riding in the summer, I would think running an Airboat everyday for tours would be a complete nightmere as far as maintaince is concerned. Calm Seas....