Our RYA Competent Crew course is a great place to start your journey – especially if you already suspect you will love sailing. No experience is assumed and you're sure to have fun while you learn.

The Competent Crew course is ideal if you aspire to be an active crew member on board a sailing yacht. It's a particularly popular choice for those who sail with friends or family and want to know more about what they are doing and, most importantly, the safest way to do it!

What's covered on this course?

You’ll be kept busy on this training course! You’ll learn to helm (steer) a yacht, raise and lower sails, keep a lookout, row a dinghy and assist in all the day to day duties on board. Check out the course itinerary below:

RYA Competent Crew Course Itinerary

What to expect:

  • What to expect:
  • Experience living on board for 5 days
  • Really get to know a yacht
  • Sail to a new place every day - exploring nearby Spanish and Moroccan ports 
  • Have great fun and get to know other like minded people

What's included?

  • Accommodation onboard throughout the course
  • Breakfast, lunch, refreshments and two evening meals
  • Waterproof clothing
  • Bedding and towels
  • Safety equipment
  • Mooring fees
  • All charts and publications
  • A jolly good Instructor
  • Fun!

On successful completion you'll be awarded the RYA Competent Crew qualification.

Experience required:

None – just a sense of humour and the desire to learn how to sail.  

The RYA recommend the minimum age for this course is 12 years old. Children under 12 are generally not strong enough or large enough to use the yachts equipment effectively

Course schedule:

Sunday to Friday: 18:00 hrs on Sunday evening until 16:30 hrs on Friday afternoon.

Tuesday to Sunday: 18:00 hrs on Tuesday evening until 16:30 hrs on Sunday afternoon.


We are aware the Sunday easyJet flight arrives into Gibraltar late in the evening which means you won't make the course joining time of 18:00.  If this is your flight, please get in touch


  • Please note, the earliest return flight you could make from Gibraltar Airport is from 17:00

How to book:

It's easy! Just select the course date you want below. Click on book, confirm that this is the course and date that you want and then complete your details on our secure online booking system. A 25% deposit is all that's needed, with the balance payable 30 days before your course starts.

What's next?

Once you’ve completed the RYA Competent Crew course, the perfect next step is our RYA Day Skipper Fast Track course which will allow you to charter and skipper yachts all around the world!

You may prefer to do your Day Skipper theory qualification in the comfort of your own home and go at your own pace? In which case, take a look at our online theory courses.

Note: If you already know that you love sailing and have longer term ambitions, you might want to consider our Novice to RYA Day Skipper programme, which offers the RYA Competent Crew, RYA Day Skipper Theory and RYA Day Skipper practical courses in one 14 day experience.


Book online now

Course cost:

Low Season (1st November - 31st March) from:


High Season (1st April - 31st October) from:


Option for own cabin:

To guarantee your own cabin for the duration of your training course, please select available dates below

Low Season (1st November - 31st March) from:


High Season (1st April - 31st October) from:


Please note: If you choose not to guarantee your own cabin, you may be allocated a saloon berth.

If you are making a booking for two people and are happy to share a cabin with each other, you do not need to select the own cabin option.

RYA Training Center

See what our clients say

  • My 2 daughters (aged 14 and 11) and I spent a wonderful 5 days on the water, to achieve our Competent Crew accreditation, under the confident, capable care of Tom White. Instructive, inspiring and really, really good fun! Great facilities, lovely food and the company of wild dolphins - what more could anyone ask for? We loved it! Thank you Tom and all the JP team!​

    Lauren & Cris x
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  • I did the Competent Crew course and was instructed by Greg. Greg was a great instructor, always very calm and patient. He instilled me with confidence and explained everything really well. Thank you Greg. The course was good fun, I learnt a lot and we had a good team on board. It was great sailing over to Africa and seeing the dolphins. All in all a very memorable week. Hope to return to do Day Skipper in the not too distant future.

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  • With a little previous sailing experience a long time ago, I was approaching this like a newbie. I was doing the competent crew course alongside 2 others who were doing their Day Skipper. It was an amazing week in a great location.

    We joined the boat, Playful Parrot, on the Sunday and met our Skipper Jason. We started in the Bay, sailing amongst the fuel tankers and container ships. We spent the rest of the week, sailing across the Med and stopping in different Marinas.

    I'm excited to return to complete my Day skipper and highly recommend the experience.

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  • A few months back I came to Gibraltar to visit my father who was learning to sail with Jolly Parrot. After my visit, I immediately booked on to take the Competent Crew course.

    It was an incredible week. So transformational that I have booked on for an additional week.

    I was fortunate enough to spend my mile builder under the guidance and expertise of Ian. A rarity to find someone so passionate, knowledgeable, and patient. It was a privilege to be on his boat.

    I am leaving my two weeks with Jolly a more confident, sailor keen to return to continue my sailing adventure. Thank you, Josh, Ian and Jolly Parrot

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