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Intra-port vessel registration

General Direction 32 requires all commercial intra-port vessels on the tidal Thames to be registered with the PLA, regardless of any other registration, licence or certificate held.

A portal is available to allow owners and operators to register their vessels at

You will need to create a user account in order to start the registration process. You should add all vessels within your fleet, regardless whether they are currently in service or certificated. If your vessel has previously been issued with a Vessel Licence by the PLA, entering the PLA Vessel Number will automatically populate the Vessel Details Field.

This requirement entered force on 31st December 2021.

Is there a charge for registration?

No, there is no charge for registering your vessel.

My vessel is already licensed by the PLA, do I need to register?

Yes, all vessels need to be registered under this scheme.

My vessel is currently laid up/not in service, do I need to register?

Yes, all vessels need to be registered, even if they are not currently in service. There is an option to mark the vessel as laid up in your portal account.

Why does the PLA need this information?

The PLA needs to have awareness of all commercial vessels operating on the tidal Thames, including those that are operating under MCA and other forms of certification.

Providing the PLA with this information will assist us contacting the owner/operator in emergency situations.

What is an intra-port vessel?

An intra-port vessel is one that normally navigates wholly within the Thames, including to and from the Medway Ports.

What is the definition of a commercial vessel?

A commercial vessel is one that is not a pleasure vessel as defined in the Merchant Shipping (Survey & Certification) Regulations 1995 - see:

What happens with change of ownership?

Upon the sale of the vessel, it should be removed from your account and the new owner should add the vessel to their account. Annual reminders will be sent in future.

What if I only use the vessel occasionally?

If the vessel’s permanent mooring is on the tidal Thames, it must be registered – even if not in regular use or laid up. However, a visiting vessel can be navigated or moored on the tidal Thames for three occasions in a 12-month period without the need for registration.

Who do I contact for additional information?

If you still require assistance then please email [email protected]

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