Recreational craft tonnage measurement

The BSH also issues internationally recognised tonnage certificates for recreational craft (including sailing and motor yachts). They are a prerequisite for registration in a shipping register for sea-going ships and are issued according to two procedures. It depends on the length of the vessel which of the two methods is used.

Recreational craft under 24 m in length

For recreational craft less than 24 m in length (in accordance with Article 2, paragraph 8 of the International Convention on Tonnage Measurement of Ships, London 1969) a simplified measurement shall be carried out, limited to the determination of the length. A bilingual tonnage certificate is issued, supported by drawings, information from the applicant and information from ships of the same series type, which shall also contain other identification features such as yard number, building material, engine type, power and engine serial numbers. This tonnage certificate is generally sufficient for registration of the vessel in a shipping register for sea-going ships.

On request, these smaller recreational craft can also be measured in accordance with international regulations.

Recreational craft of 24 m length or more

For recreational craft of 24 m in length and over, an exact measurement is carried out on board in accordance with the rules of the International Convention on Tonnage Measurement of Ships (London 69). These ships receive an International Tonnage Certificate (1969) which, in addition to the above information, shows the exact size of the ship in gross and net tonnage (GT/NT).

Application for survey of recreational craft

Please use this application form for an application for measurement of a recreational craft / issuance of a tonnage certificate.

Please also note the Guide (for filling out) – Electronic Forms (PDF, 119KB, Not barrier-free file.)

You can download the form

  • fill in online as well as print out the completed form and save it locally, or
  • print out empty and fill in by hand.

Register entry

Recreational craft can be registered either in a shipping register for sea-going ships or inland waterway register. The register in which the entry is to be made is determined, on the one hand, by the predominant trading area of the ship and, on the other hand, by certain sizes of the ship. From a hull length of 15 m, a recreational craft must be registered in the shipping register for sea-going ships (SSR). Below this length, recreational craft may be registered voluntarily to secure ownership or for mortgaging. Each ship can only be registered in one register.

The competence of the registers depends on the home port. This must be located in Germany and should be the same as the place of registration in the case of mostly international voyages. In addition, these vessels must bear their ship's name on each side of the bow as well as the ship's name and the name of the home port on the stern in clearly visible, firmly attached characters.

The owner receives the Certificate of Registry of the ship and the right to fly the German flag as a document of registration.

Details are laid down in the Schiffsregisterordnung and the Flaggenrechtsgesetz.