All crew members working aboard MCA (Maritime and Coastguard Agency) vessels are required under their legislation to be in possession of a minimum of a yacht rating certificate.
This certificate can only be obtained from the MCA directly however there are two routes which can be followed in order to obtain this certificate.
Firstly, a crew member can spend a minimum of 6 months signed on board a vessel and complete a task book. The task book contains a list of many tasks which need to be completed and signed off by the Captain or an officer on board the vessel. Once the task book has been successfully completed and the 6 months on board has been achieved, then the candidate can send off their supporting documentation to the MCA for the issue of their MCA Yacht Rating certificate.
The second option available as a means of obtaining this certificate, is to successfully complete a Yacht Rating course through an approved MCA training provider such as PYT. With this certificate the candidate is now only required to spend 2 months signed on board a vessel and NO task book needs to be completed. Once the 2 months have been logged and signed off, you are able to then submit your sea time and course completion certificate to the MCA for the issue of their official MCA Yacht Rating certificate.
Although the first option requires no course and is therefore the cheaper way to obtain the certificate, the second option will certainly help you obtain the certificate in a much shorter period of time, without the hassle of having to complete a very comprehensive task book.