Boating And Water Sports Regulations, Fee Changes In Effect

Boating and watercraft regulation changes aimed at increasing customer service and public safety on Arizona’s waterways went into effect Saturday, Aug. 5.

The Arizona Game and Fish Commission approved the amendments to the state’s Article 5 rules, which outline boating and water sports regulations and fees, at its April 7 meeting. The Governor’s Regulatory Review Council approved the proposed changes on June 6.

The changes were recommended as part of a legally required five-year review of the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s administrative rules.

The following are among the changes:

  • Increases the valid timeframe for a temporary certificate from 30 to 45 days, and allows a watercraft agent to issue a temporary certificate with the sale of a used watercraft.
  • Persons will no longer be allowed to rent or lease personally registered watercraft, unless the watercraft is registered as a livery business. A placard must be affixed to the watercraft being rented or leased that displays the business name and telephone number.
  • Requires a wake surfer to wear a personal floatation device and that an operator ensures an observer is watching if a person is being towed behind the watercraft and/or surfing a wake created by the watercraft.
  • Prohibits teak surfing, which is pulling a person from a vessel’s swim platform.
  • Requires towing companies to notify the owner/lienholder that they have taken possession of a vessel within 15 days of obtaining the information from the department.
  • Makes the owner financially responsible for the towing and storage of a watercraft illegally moored.

The following fee changes also are going into effect:

  • Watercraft transfer fee to $13,
  • Duplicate decal and certificate number fee to $8,
  • Dealer certificate of number fee to $20,
  • Establish an abandoned/unreleased watercraft application fee of $100, and
  • Transfer of ownership of a towed watercraft application fee to $100

This is the first time that watercraft fees have increased in more than 30 years. For more information on boating in Arizona or to sign up for a safety course, visit



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here