Pleasure Yachts and Pleasure Yacht Plus

The Isle of Man register current holds over 300 pleasure yachts of every size and type.  Guidance with respect to statutory requirements for such vessels is provided below. 

Owners of pleasure yachts of 24m and above wishing to apply internationally recognised standards of safety (and wishing to better maintain resale value) are invited to consider asking for the yacht to be subject to the same survey regime as a commercial yacht of the same size and type.  This is the Pleasure Yacht Plus route.  We will be pleased to discuss bespoke application of requirements on application - email us for further information.


For registration purposes, the yacht’s tonnage is determined as follows:

  • Yachts <24m: measurement by one of the organisations listed in RAN 03.
  • Yachts ≥24m: measurement by a recognised Class Society.

There is no requirement for an Isle of Man Surveyor to attend a pleasure yacht for survey before or after registration.

Statutory requirements

International requirements applicable to pleasure vessels include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • International Tonnage Convention;
  • MARPOL Convention;
  • AFS Convention
  • International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea (ColRegs)
  • Ballast Water Management Convention (from September 2017)

Requirements with respect to life-saving and fire-fighting appliances are detailed within relevant Merchant Shipping Regulations.  While such regulations remain applicable at all times, it bears mentioning that compliance with requirements is not policed by this administration.  In the event of an accident, however, any subsequent casualty investigation will include a review of the adequacy or otherwise of the yacht’s equipment and systems including those related to life-saving and fire-fighting.  In the event the yacht is found to be seriously deficient, the owner is at risk of litigation and the yacht’s insurance may be placed in jeopardy. 

Merchant Shipping Regulations applicable to pleasure yachts are undergoing a review process.  Until such time as this is completed, the application of the Large Commercial Yacht Code (LY3) is considered a satisfactory equivalent arrangement for yachts over 24m.


Pleasure yacht manning requirements are detailed in our MSN 033.