Membership and Benefits

Membership benefits 

As a United States Power Squadron® member, you can save on many products and services.  Due to our exclusive relationship with these terrific organizations, you can received huge discounts on boating products, insurance, travel and lodging, and many more items.  Your USPS certificate number is your ticket to real savings!  The Membership Committee is especially excited to announce a new Webinar Series to introduce and explain some of our most popular benefits.

Our members are boating families who contribute to their communities by promoting safe boating through education.  We enjoy participating with our fellow members on the water and in the classroom. Enjoy friendship and camaraderie on-the-water and off with members who are skilled in boating.  From on-the-water activities like cruises, rendezvous, raft-ups or fishing derbies to activities ashore, such as marine programs, picnics, ice cream socials and educational programs, we offer many opportunities for fun and boating education. Learn More

Education

Public Boating Programs:

America’s Boating Course provides you with basic boating knowledge to decide what type and size boat you need, what to do when meeting another boat in a crowded waterway, and how to recognize and handle hazards.  Become a more competent boater, learn from the best, and enroll in America’s Boating Course today.

This course is offered as a classroom course or as an interactive, online home study course for people whose schedule and obligations would make it difficult to attend a classroom course. Successful completion meets the boating education requirements for operator permits of licensure in most states.

Many boat insurance companies will offer discounts on boating insurance to boaters who successfully complete America’s Boating Course. And, this course provides a sound basis for continuing your recreational boating education.  Learn More

What’s included?

    • Types of boats and their uses
    • Boating laws, both federal and state
    • Safety equipment, both required and recommended
    • Finding your way, and adverse conditions
    • Communications
    • Trailering, knots and lines, and water sports topics
    • Optionally, introduction to electronic navigation using paper charts and chartplotters

Membership Education Program.  Our members are eligible to take other boating classes including:

  • Seamanship –  Build boating confidence and competence for safe and fun on-the-water adventures.  Seamanship provides a foundation of knowledge and skills in boat handling and maneuvering, boat operation, skipper’s responsibilities, and boating techniques that will advance your boating enjoyment. Learn more
  • Piloting  and Navigation – Five piloting and navigation courses are offered by USPS. The first four below are designed to be taken in sequence because each builds on skills taught in the previous course. The last one, Electronic Navigation, can be taken at any time. However, you should be familiar with basic charting concepts such as latitude, longitude, the compass, course plotting, and time/distance calculation, to get the most out of the course. Learn more
  • Piloting – Learn the essentials of safe coastal and inland navigation using basic GPS in conjunction with charts and other marine data.  The Pilotingcourse teaches you how to use the GPS along with traditional dead reckoning techniques for planning and laying out safe routes, as well as ensuring that you are on-course while underway. Learn More
  • Advanced Piloting – Do you want to navigate unfamiliar waters in limited visibility or take an extended cruise with confidence?  Learn to use radar, chart plotters, AIS and other electronic tools to supplement basic GPS navigation.  Obtain a thorough understanding of piloting techniques in a variety of coastal tide, current and wind conditions. Learn more
  • Junior Navigation – Celestial Part 1  –  What happens when your GPS fails? Have fun and satisfy your curiosity about boating in the days before electronics in the Junior Navigation course.  Learn to use a marine sextant to take sights on celestial objects such as the sun.  Even if you are not traveling long distances off shore, remember that GPS is not infallible, nor always available.  Be confident when no aids to navigation or land objects are in sight.  In Junior Navigation, you will continue to use GPS as the primary position sensor as you learned in Piloting and Advanced Piloting, but with celestial navigation as your backup technique. Because terrestrial landmarks are no longer visible to the offshore navigator, you will learn to use a marine sextant and the sun as your reference point, derive a line of position, and develop a running fix. You will also learn to calculate your latitude from a noon sight on the sun.   Learn More
  • Navigation –  Celestial Part 2  – Learn navigation using all the celestial bodies! Use navigational software tools to plan and execute an offshore voyage. In the event of a loss of electronics on board, you’ll be glad you took this course and developed the necessary backup skills for an offshore voyage. Even if you have no plans to travel offshore, you will be able to impress your boating friends with your depth of celestial knowledge.  The Navigation course will teach you how to use the moon, planets, and stars to determine your position at morning and evening twilight to supplement daytime sights on the sun, moon, and bright planets. You will also get access to and use navigational software tools that can be used to plan and execute any voyage.  Learn more
  • Cruising and Cruise Planning – Want to take a “road trip” on the water?  Gain the confidence and practical skills needed to explore ports and coves for a weekend or weeks at a time.  Take Cruising and Cruise Planning and join your fellow boaters for raft-ups and rendezvous up the river, down the bay, and along the coast. Learn More
  • Engine maintenance – Every skipper needs to understand the fundamentals of gas and diesel engines to perform basic maintenance and diagnose problems under way.  Learn about transmissions, propellers, and steering.  Get the knowledge you need to keep your boat in tiptop shape.   Learn more
  • Marine Communications Systems – Become a better boater by mastering your radio in the digital age.  Learn voice communications and the use of digital selective calling (DSC), and get the skills you need for a day sail or offshore adventure.  Learn from experienced instructors in an interactive classroom environment. Learn More
  • Marine Electrical Systems –  Learn the ins and outs of your boat’s electrical systems.  Gain the confidence to tackle direct current, shore power and communications installations.  Ensure the safety and reliability of your vessel Learn More
  • Sailing – Learn about basic sailboat designs and nomenclature, rigging, and safety from experienced USPS sailors.  Then tackle the physical aspects of sailing forces and techniques, sail applications, marlinespike, helmsmanship, and handling of difficult sailing conditions.  This course will benefit non-sailors as well as novice and experienced sailors.  Learn more
  • Weather –   For boaters, knowing the forecast isn’t enough; you need to understand its impact on you and your boat.  Gain the knowledge and confidence to venture out on the water.  Be a responsible skipper, protect your friends and family and take this course today.  Learn more

Current Class Underway:   No class currently underway but monitor this page to see when next class will begin.

Become a Member.   If you like having a fun time on the water, join us.  Take boating courses, join your fellow members on cruises and rendezvous, and participate in civic service activities.  Becoming a member of USPS requires passing a boating safety course taught by a local squadron (or another approved organization) and being sponsored by a squadron member.  Successfully completing the USPS boating course meets the educational requirements for boat operation in all U.S. states.

How do I become a member?  Learn more.

Recognition.  

  A “merit mark” (MM) is awarded by the chief commander to a member for substantial personal effort in furthering the interest, programs and objectives of USPS, its districts and squadrons. It is a coveted award; it is by and large the only official recognition members receive for their efforts. Learn more.

USPS Boat Insurance Program. 

This program is available only to USPS members and is based on the premise that USPS members represent a class of “preferred risk” boaters by the virtue of their formal education in the care and operation of boats.  Boaters can expect to save a lot of $$ over other boat insurance policies. Learn more.

Boating safety courses

FSPS offers boating safety courses for the public several times each year as well as advanced training courses for our members.  These will be posted on this site as they are scheduled.

For Boaters, By Boaters

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