Register a Boat in Georgia

Georgia is one of the south’s greatest boating destinations with many lakes, trout streams, reservoirs, and shorelines. Before visiting one of the state’s top spots, be sure you know the requirements for boating registration and regulation.

Register Your Boat
Boat Registration


All boat operators need to know the safe boating basics and must abide by the boating rules of the road set forth by the state. Boaters can learn more about safe boating basics, filing a float plan, what to do during times of inclement weather, environmental considerations and personal flotation devices by taking a boating education or safe boating class.


Having your boat registration means that a boat legally belongs to you and that you are licensed to operate the vessel in Georgia waters. There is a Georgia boat registration fee that you will have to pay that helps to fund resources that promote safe and responsible use of state waterways.

Anyone can operate a boat in Georgia, with restrictions. Children 12 and under may not operate a vessel over 16 feet long that is non-motorized or has a motor of 30 horsepower or less if accompanied by a competent adult. Children 12 to 15 can operate a boat less than 16 feet long including personal watercraft after passing a boat education course approved by the Department of Natural Resources or are accompanied by a competent adult.

Anyone 16 and older can operate a boat in Georgia with proper identification on board. Boaters born after January 1, 1998, must successfully complete a boater education course and keep the card on board.

Registration Requirements

All mechanically propelled vessels and sailboats longer than 12 feet must be registered in Georgia. Sailboats less than 12 feet long, vehicles that are paddled, poled, oared or windblown such as canoes, kayaks, rowboats, and rubber rafts do not have to be registered. Boats operated exclusively on private ponds or lakes do not have to be registered.

To register a boat, proof of ownership, the hull identification number, and the length, make, year, and construction material must be provided.

Proof of ownership can be a bill of sale, dealer’s invoice, statement of gift, court order showing a transfer, insurance claim, or pawn shop claim. A signed Georgia Vehicle Registration Application must be submitted. A paper title, out of state registration, or HIN number may also be required.

Boats can be registered online at Go Outdoors Georgia, by emailing a copy of the documents to, faxing documents to 678-515-9470 or mailing documents to:
GA Dept. of Natural Resources
P.O. Box 934943
Atlanta, GA 31193-4943

Registration fees are based on the length of the boat. Boats shorter than 16 feet in length are $35, from 16-26 feet are $70, from 26-40 feet is $140, and boats 40 feet and longer are $210. A duplicate registration costs $11.

Marine Toilet

All boats with a marine toilet must be registered with the Department of Natural Resources and have a permit.

Marine Toilet Certificates are $5 and a Standalone Marine Toilet Certificate is $15.

It is illegal to operate a boat with a marine toilet, galley or sleeping quarters (including houseboats) on Lake Burton, Bull Sluice Lake, Goat Rock Lake, Lake Harding, Lake Jackson, North Highlands Lake, Lake Oliver, Lake Rabun, Seed Lake, Tallulah Falls Lake, Tugalo Lake, Lake Oconee, and Yonah Lake.

Marine Toilets must be equipped with a holding tank that can be pumped out on Lakes Allatoona, Blackshear, Blue Ridge, Clarks Hill, Hartwell, Russell, Seminole, Sinclair, Sidney Lanier, Walter F. George Reservoir, or West Point and pump-out records must be maintained for a minimum of one year.