Frequently Asked Questions - Hong Kong Yacht Registration

Can any national apply for the Hong Kong yacht registration?

Boat registration is open to both Hong Kong residents and non-residents. It does not matter the nationality of the applicant, as long as they meet the eligibility criteria for boat registration.
For Hong Kong residents, they must be a permanent resident of Hong Kong and own the boat.
For non-residents, they must own the boat and intend to use it in Hong Kong waters. They will also be required to provide a local contact person and address in Hong Kong, and they may be subject to additional requirements such as obtaining a cruising permit.

What paperwork is necessary to register the yacht?

The following documents are required to register a boat in Hong Kong:

  • A bill of sale or other document that proves the applicant is the legal owner of the boat.
  • A certificate of compliance with the safety regulations, such as a safety survey certificate, issued by a recognized organization.
  • A valid insurance policy that covers the boat and its use in Hong Kong waters.
  • A copy of the applicant's identification, such as a Hong Kong ID card or passport.

Can I register in Hong Kong as a commercial or bareboat charter?

Yes. In Hong Kong, boats used for commercial purposes, such as bareboat charter, are required to be registered with the Marine Department, just like private boats.

Do you accept paperwork in any language?

In Hong Kong, the official language is Chinese and English. All official documents, including those related to boat registration, are generally required to be in English or Chinese.
If any of the documents are in a different language, they will need to be translated into English or Chinese by a certified translator.

What is the estimated time it will take for my yacht to be registered in Hong Kong?

The registration process typically takes around 4-6 weeks from the date of submission of the application, providing all the required documents are in order.

How does the registration document look like?

The certificate of registration is typically a paper document that contains the following information:

  • Name of the registered owner
  • Description of the boat, including its make, model, and serial number
  • Date of registration
  • Registration number
  • Expiration date of the registration
  • A photo of the boat
  • The name and address of the owner.
It also includes the marine department's stamp and signature, as well as an official seal.

How long is the Hong Kong registration valid for?

In Hong Kong, the registration of a boat is valid for a period of one year, after which it must be renewed.

Is inspection needed?

Yes, an inspection of the boat is typically required as part of the registration process in Hong Kong. The inspection is conducted by the Marine Department to ensure that the boat meets the safety regulations and standards set by the department.

What flag do I need to fly on my yacht once the registration is done?

Once your yacht is registered in Hong Kong, it is required to fly the Hong Kong maritime flag.

What boats can be registered with Hong Kong flag?

Pleasure boats: This includes boats that are used for recreational or personal use, such as yachts, sailboats, and motorboats.
Commercial boats: This includes boats that are used for business purposes, such as charter boats, fishing boats, and cargo boats.
Bareboat charter boats: These are boats that are chartered without crew, and the charter is responsible for the operation and maintenance of the boat.

Do you help with the MMSI license?

To apply for a Hong Kong MMSI license, you will need to:

  • Proof of ownership of the vessel like bill of sale/sale purchase contract
  • A valid registration certificate

What payment methods are accepted?

We accept all methods of payment.

What kind of license is required to sail?

For recreational boats, the Hong Kong Marine Department does not require any specific license for the operation of pleasure boats under 15 meters in length, however, the operator must comply with the safety regulations and standards set by the Marine Department.
For boats over 15 meters in length, the operator must hold a valid Hong Kong Pleasure Vessel Driving License (PVDL), or a valid Pleasure Vessel Driving License issued by a recognized foreign country, and the vessel must comply with the safety regulations and standards set by the Marine Department.
For commercial boats, the operator must hold a valid Hong Kong Commercial Vessel Driving License (CVDL) or a valid Commercial Vessel Driving License issued by a recognized foreign country, and the vessel must comply with the safety regulations and standards set by the Marine Department.

How may the owner of a valid Hong Kong registration be changed?

In Hong Kong, the ownership of a registered boat can be changed through a transfer of ownership process. The process typically includes the following steps:

  • The current owner and the new owner must agree on the terms of the sale and sign a bill of sale to transfer the ownership of the boat.
  • The new owner must submit the bill of sale, along with proof of identity and proof of ownership of the boat, to the Marine Department.
  • The Marine Department will review the documentation and, if everything is in order, will register the new owner on the vessel's registration certificate.
Once the registration has been updated, the new owner will receive a new registration certificate with the new name and details of the new owner.

How can I cancel the current Hong Kong registration?

To cancel the current Hong Kong registration of a boat, the owner of the boat will need to follow these steps:

  • Notify regarding the cancellation of the registration by submitting a written notice.
  • Provide the Marine Department with the original registration certificate and any other relevant documents, such as the bill of sale or proof of ownership of the boat.
  • If the boat is to be exported, you will need to prove that the boat has been exported, typically by providing the Marine Department with a copy of the shipping document.
  • Once the Marine Department has confirmed that all necessary documents have been received and that the boat is no longer in Hong Kong waters, the registration will be canceled.

Is Hong Kong registration valid around the globe?

Unfortunately, no. The registration is valid within Hong Kong waters.

All International Payment Methods Accepted