Marine Pilot


What is a Marine Pilot?

A Marine Pilot does NOT fly planes!

Pilotage is a very specialised job. The main job of a Marine Pilot is to guide the ship in or out of port and as well as control all movements once inside the harbour.

This job can be quite tricky during severe weather conditions.

A Captain navigates a ship while at sea. The Marine Pilot ‘steers’ the ship when greater skill is needed. The Marine Pilot advises the Captain on what course to take and what changes need to be made. It’s a very responsible job.

What does a Marine Pilot do?

  • handle a boat or ship while in harbour
  • guide the vessel in our out of port
  • liaise and advise captain of ship’s movements
  • liaise with harbour master
  • obey rules and regulations

Are you . . . ?

  • passionate about a career at sea?
  • very responsible?
  • safety conscious?
  • a person with good vision?
  • a person with good spatial awareness?
  • a team player?
  • able to deal with stress?

How do I become a Marine Pilot?

TETA suggests the following:

You will first need to complete a Certificate of Competence: Deck Officer in charge of watch through SAMSA. You can do this through Transnet School of Ports.


Once completed you will need to do a Certificate of Competence in Marine Pilotage


  • Medically and physically fit (you will be tested)
  • Good eyesight
  • Good hearing


OTHER CAREERS TO CONSIDER: Deck Hand (Able Seaman) or Automotive Spray Painter

Is becoming a Marine Pilot right career choice for me?

See below for more info.


Maths Required Qualification Required Science Required