Sailing Qualifications


Gain Internationally recognised qualifications


The best way to learn to sail is time on the water and out on the water is where our sailing courses are conducted.    The sailing theory is integrated with practical application so you learn through doing.   Relevant eLearning courses are provided so you can learn the lingo and get to grips with some of the theory before your course.

As you and your sailing partner may have different experience and ability, our instructors will tailor the content and assess for certification appropriately.  Depending on the sailing holiday selected and competencies demonstrated you may gain recreational sailing qualifications from both YNZ (Yachting New Zealand) and IYT (International Yacht Training).

With the IYT certification you may take individual modules to work towards certification and you may complete certification courses at any one of IYTs 250 partner schools around the world.

Sailing Theory

As Great Escape is an IYT Accredited Partner school you are welcome to register as an IYT student and take any of their free eLearning courses.

If you want to get a great text book for your sailing course we recommend “Safety in Small Craft” by Mike Scalan – purchase from good chandlery’s and boating book shops such as Boat Books.

Browse through the qualifications we offer to see which suits you best;


Introduction to Keelboat Sailing (Level 1) Yachting New Zealand

This course is an introduction to Keelboat Sailing. No prior experience is assumed or required. Suitable for all ages.

Overnight Skipper (Level 3) – Yachting New Zealand

Overnight Skipper

YNZ Level 2 and / or at least 15 days sailing…

International Crew (IYT)

International Crew

14 years old and over. No other prerequisites. It is recommended you complete the IYT eLearning International Crew Course prior to your sailing holiday.

IYT International Bareboat Skipper (International Flotilla Skipper)

The International Bareboat Skipper course is a five-day course. It is not for beginners and the recommended entry level requirements are a VHF maritime radio operators certificate, and to have logged over 200 nautical miles and 10 days at sea before advancing to this level. The recommended minimum age to obtain this certification is 18. Sailors should preferably hold the IYT International Crew Certificate or equivalent.