Register a vessel

A vessel including a boat and PWC, that uses (or is capable of using) an engine for propulsion in Victorian waters must be registered and seaworthy.  Registration renewal is required every 12 months.


To register a vessel in your name, you must be at least 14 years old.

A company or incorporated association can have a vessel registered in its name.

A vessel can only be registered in one name.

Registering your vessel

Your vessel must be in a seaworthy condition.

Check steps below on how to register your vessel and information about those vessels that are exempt from registration.

The trailer used to tow your vessel will also need to be registered. Check the requirements for registering your trailer.

You will need to complete a Vessel (Boat & PWC) registration form [PDF 247 Kb] and include the following information about your vessel:

  • the type, make and model of the vessel
  • the date of manufacture
  • the length, breadth and colour
  • the construction material
  • the number of hulls
  • the Hull Identification Number, where fitted
  • the number of engines and their serial number, type, make, horsepower and fuel type
  • any registration number previously assigned to the vessel
  • whether an Australian Builders Plate has been affixed to the vessel.

Club Identification Number

If you are a member of an approved club and wish to have a club identification number assigned to your vessel, you will need a letter from your club allocating a number to your vessel.

This letter must be submitted along with your registration form.

To register your vessel in Victoria, you can submit your registration application to VicRoads by posting your completed Vessel (Boat & PWC) registration form [PDF 247 Kb]and the registration fee to VicRoads, GPO Box 1644, Melbourne, VIC 3001.

Alternatively you can make an appointment to attend a VicRoads Customer Service Centre by calling us on 13 11 71. 

Your vessel does not need to be inspected as part of the appointment.

When you attend your appointment to register your vessel, you will need to:

* A card payment fee applies

You will be given a registration certificate and label with the assigned vessel identification number.

If you can’t attend the appointment

You can appoint someone else to attend the appointment on your behalf. You will need to provide them with an original and signed Authority to act as an agent form [PDF 253 Kb]. Your representative will also need show their evidence of identity when attending the appointment on your behalf.

The registration label must be kept fixed in a clearly visible position on the outside or upper portion of the vessel.

The vessel identification number must be displayed on each side of the hull of the vessel, forward of the beam, so that the highest part of each digit starts at a point no more than 75 millimetres (25 millimetres for personal watercraft) below the gunwale, and:

  • no less than 150 millimetres high (100mm for personal watercraft)
  • in proportionate breadth and
  • coloured in contrast to the surface on which they are displayed.

You don’t need to register a vessel if it: 

  • doesn’t have an engine that can propel it, 
  • is a recreational tender, 
  • is a domestic commercial vessel (ie it’s used for commercial, government or research activity), 
  • is a kayak or canoe that has an engine with 40 pounds or less thrust, and can’t operate at more than 5 knots. 

Interstate vessels don’t need to be registered in Victoria, as long as the vessel: 

  • will be operating in Victorian waters for less than 3 months, 
  • is registered interstate (or is exempt from registration interstate), and 
  • displays an identifying mark or number that was issued by the interstate authority. 
If you’re not sure whether or not your vessel needs to be registered, check with Maritime Safety Victoria

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