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Motorboat Operator

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What is a Motorboat Operator?

Career Description Operate small motor-driven boats. May assist in navigational activities.

Motorboat Operator Responsibilities

  • Oversee operation of vessels used for carrying passengers, motor vehicles, or goods across rivers, harbors, lakes, and coastal waters.
  • Organize and direct the activities of crew members.
  • Issue directions for loading, unloading, and seating in boats.
  • Arrange repairs, fuel, and supplies for vessels.
  • Maintain equipment such as range markers, fire extinguishers, boat fenders, lines, pumps, and fittings.
  • Secure boats to docks with mooring lines, and cast off lines to enable departure.

What Every Motorboat Operator Should Know

When polled, Motorboat Operators say the following skills are most frequently used in their jobs:

Operation and Control: Controlling operations of equipment or systems.

Operation Monitoring: Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Other Motorboat Operator Job Titles

  • Speedboat Operator
  • Boat Captain
  • Rivers and Lakes Boatman
  • River and Lakes Boatman
  • Speedboat Driver

Motorboat Operator Employment Estimates

In the United States, there were 3,600 jobs for Motorboat Operator in 2016. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 8.3% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 300 new jobs for Motorboat Operator by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 400 job openings in this field each year.


The states with the most job growth for Motorboat Operator are Texas, Florida, and Washington. Watch out if you plan on working in Rhode Island, North Carolina, or Minnesota. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Salary for a Motorboat Operator

The salary for Motorboat Operators ranges between about $23,830 and $78,120 a year.


Motorboat Operators who work in New York, Illinois, or New Jersey, make the highest salaries.

How much do Motorboat Operators make in each U.S. state?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $47,270
Arizona $50,430
California $47,420
Florida $38,550
Hawaii $51,190
Illinois $67,270
Louisiana $50,140
Massachusetts $34,780
Michigan $44,890
Minnesota $39,130
New Jersey $56,740
New York $65,120
Oregon $54,010
Tennessee $49,250
Texas $48,440
Virginia $44,360
Washington $55,040

What Tools do Motorboat Operators Use?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Motorboat Operators:

  • Web browser software
  • Global positioning system GPS software
  • Cartography software

How do I Become a Motorboat Operator?

Are there Motorboat Operators education requirements?


How many years of work experience do I need?


Who Employs Motorboat Operators?


The table below shows the approximate number of Motorboat Operators employed by various industries.



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More about our data sources and methodologies.

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