OUPV/Six-Pack General Information

What is a quick overview on the OUPV/Six-Pack? 

The OUPV/Six-Pack is the most popular of the captain's licenses and is required for those who wish to operate fishing and sailing charters, run a dive boat, or offer sightseeing tours, etc.  

 

OUPV Overview

This license is commonly referred to as a "Six-Pack" because it allows the holder to take up to six paying passengers and crew out on the water.  

 

Check out this e-guide on obtaining the OUPV/Six-Pack license. 

 

What does OUPV stand for? 

The Operator of Uninspected Passenger Vessels (OUPV) license is another name for the USCG Six-Pack captain’s license, which allows the holder to operate a commercial vessel with up to six paying passengers. 

 

What are the three types of Six-Pack captain’s licenses? 

The Six-Pack captain’s license, also known as the OUPV license, is a designation awarded by the United States Coast Guard that allows the holder to take up to six paying passengers and crew out on the water. The OUPV/Six-Pack license is issued in three forms: Inland, Great Lakes & Inland, and Near Coastal. 

 

The OUPV Inland allows the holder to operate “commercially” on bays, sounds, rivers, and lakes. You can use this license professionally on US inland waterways.  

 

The OUPV Near Coastal with Great Lakes allows you to operate on the inland waterways, Great Lakes and up to 100 miles offshore.  

 

The OUPV Near Coastal permits you to operate on both inland waterways as well as Near Coastal waters (out to 100 miles offshore). 

 

Check out this video on more information about the OUPV/Six-Pack. 

 

What is the OUPV Inland captain’s license?  

OUPV InlandThe OUPV Inland license is restricted to operation shoreward of the boundary line, excluding the Great Lakes. As a rule, the U.S. Boundary Line follows coastal shorelines and across the entrances to small bays, inlets, and rivers. This license is valid on uninspected vessels to 100 gross tons, power and sail.  

 

This license requires at least 360 days of documented experience in the operation of vessel. Ninety of the 360 days must be in the last three years. Experience gained prior to the age of 16 will not be counted. 

 

The Six-Pack Inland License can be upgraded to a Near Coastal License once 90 days experience seaward of the U.S. Boundary has been achieved. 

 

What is the OUPV Near Coastal with Great Lakes captain’s license?   

The OUPV Near Coastal with Great Lakes license allows the operator to use it on inland waterways, including the Great Lakes, and up to 100 miles offshore.  

  

The license requires 360 days total with at least 90 days service on the Great Lakes. Ninety of the 360 days must be in the last three years. Experience gained prior to the age of 16 will not be counted. 

 

What is the OUPV Near Coastal captain’s license?   

OUPV Near CoastalThe OUPV Near Coastal license is valid on U.S. inland waterways, excluding the Great Lakes, and up to 100 miles offshore.  

  

This license requires at least 360 days of documented experience in the operation of vessels, 90 of which must be gained seaward of the boundary line. Ninety of the 360 days must be in the last three years. Experience gained prior to the age of 16 will not be counted. 

 

How many gross tons can I operate with the Six-Pack captain’s license?   

The OUPV/Six-Pack holder can carry up to six paying passengers on uninspected vessels up to 100 gross tons (about 75-90 feet long). 

 

Is the OUPV/Six-Pack internationally recognized?   

The OUPV/Six-Pack is not internationally recognized. You may only use this license in U.S. waters. If you want to go into international waters, you must obtain a Masters license. However, you must start and end your trips in US waters with the same paying passengers using the Masters license. 

 

TIP: Reach out to the countries you plan on travelling into for their additional rules/regulations needed.