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The Pleasure Craft Traffic Card

The navigation title required for all recreational vessels operating in both maritime and inland waters, the traffic card is a mandatory administrative document. This authorization for pleasure related to the grey map of land vehicles includes information about the boat and its owner.

In what form does the traffic card appear? How to obtain it and for what period of validity? Which pleasure craft are required? Our service dedicated to pleasure boaters and shipwreck professionals accompanies you and advises you in your administrative procedures for obtaining a navigation title.

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Navigation titles: circulation card and act of francization

Similar to the regulation of land traffic, the rules of sea and river navigation impose on each owner of pleasure craft (sailboat, motorboat, yacht ...) or VNM (Vehicle Nautique to Engine: jet ski, scooter of the seas ...) grouping certain characteristics of possessing a navigation title. This applies to both the new vessel and the used vessel.

If the traffic card is compulsory for all, the act of francization is only in certain cases, depending on the area of navigation (maritime or inland water), the type of pleasure craft, its length of hull and its engine power.

The Pleasure Circulation Card: What is it?

This document proving the registration and ownership of a vessel is the most widespread in France. It is issued by DDT (Territorial Direction of the Territories) for inland navigation (rivers, canals, lakes ...) or by the DDTM (Direction Départementale des Territories et de la Mer) commonly known as the Maritime Affairs Bureau for marine navigation (coastal zone and offshore area).

Only usable for the vessel for which it was issued, the traffic card is required:

  • At sea for pleasure craft with a length of boat hull less than 7 metres and a motor power not exceeding 22 administrative CVs, and for all VNM;
  • In inland water for pleasure craft with a length of 5 to 20 metres or with a real power engine of 4.5 kW (6 fumes vapor) as well as for VNM.

It must be in the possession of the owner on board the pleasure boat on the water as during any ground movement (towing ...) and available to any agent authorized to control the pleasure craft that would make the request.

The act of francization of pleasure craft: when is it necessary?

The francization of a pleasure craft is an authorization to fly the French flag. In this case, the vessel (and its owner) is subject to French law and must follow its rules and be in good standing at the tax level. Issued by the Customs Service, the act of francization is mandatory for all pleasure craft with a length of hull equal to or greater than 7 metres, regardless of its mode of propulsion (manual, engine or sail).

It also applies to any ship with engine power greater than or equal to 22 administrative CVs and all motor vehicles with engine with a power of 90 kiloWatts or more.

Francization is essential if the pleasure boat is flying a foreign flag or if you intend to sail in foreign territorial waters. Its owner must then pay the annual Law of Francisation and Navigation (DAFN).

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How do I get your recreational boat traffic card?

The recreational traffic card must be requested from the dedicated administrative department: DDT or DDTM (or to the Customs for the act of francization). Do you not want to undertake this tedious procedure yourself? Entrust the development of the administrative record and your request to our advisors.

The documents to be provided for obtaining the traffic card

As soon as the deed of sale is signed by all the signatories and the pleasure craft belongs to you, you haveOne month to complete your requests for a navigation title Required, both for the purchase of a new vessel and for the purchase of a used vessel. When you entrust us with your file, you must also provide us with certain mandatory documents, you will receive this list once the online form has been completed and the file reviewed by one of our experts.

When and how will I receive my card?

For navigation in the maritime area, your application for a traffic map is processed by the DDTM on the PUMA (Single Maritime Portal) software.

For inland navigation, your application is processed on the SSIMBA (System of Registration of Boats).

In both cases, when your document is ready, it is sent to you by e-mail in dematerialized form. Be careful, the turnaround time can vary from 8 days in low season up to 45 days in summer. The health crisis linked to COVID-19 has also lengthened the deadlines.

How does a Pleasure Traffic Card show up?

There are two forms of circulation cards: the old one is a paper document, while the new one, which came into force on 1 October 2019, is a digital document.

Maritime Traffic Map Recreational Boat Model

Traffic Map (old model)

General characteristics of the ship:

  • Type of vessel
  • Type of propulsion: manual, sail or motor
  • Category of design: category for which the ship is registered, corresponding to its ability to cope with data navigation conditions (A for the high seas, B for the wide, C for the coastal zone and D for the protected waters)
  • LPG: mention if the engine is powered by LPG fuel
  • Hull Number-Number CIN (Craft Identification Number), HIN (Hull Identification Number: Old Name) or WIN (Watercraft Identification Number): hull identification number for CE-certified vessels, unique and not subject to change
  • Serial name or unit reference: ship's serial name
  • Constructor/importer: name of manufacturer of vessel
  • Year of construction
  • Shell Width (in metres)
  • Inshell length (in metres)
  • Insubmersibility: the vessel is declared insubmersible or not during its manufacture after having undergone a battery of tests validated by the maritime administrations, characteristic not modifiable.

General characteristics of the engine or engines:

  • Engine Brand
  • Engine number: non-modifiable serial number
  • Power (kW): engine power expressed in kW.

Name of vessel:

  • Name of baptism given to the vessel, modifiable at the request
  • Registration number given by the maritime administrations: the first two letters correspond to the registration area, followed by 6 digits and a letter-key. In the case of a change in ownership AND home port, only the first two letters will be amended accordingly on your transfer declaration of ownership.

Owner or co-owner information:

  • Name
  • First Name
  • Address
  • Locality
  • Postal code.

In case there are more than two co-owners of the vessel, only the first two are written in all letters, the following are registered administratively but do not appear on the circulation card.

Number of owners:

  • 1 if there is a single owner, 2 or more in the case of co-ownership of the vessel.

Maritime Affairs:

  • Cachet and signature of the instructor service: Maritime Affairs Office which has instructed the vessel registration file.

New Model Marine Traffic Map

Since 1 October 2019, the maritime traffic map is a secure digital document presented in this form:

New Traffic Card Template

Document identification code:

  • The management number of the traffic card application file given by the DDTM.

Owner data (s):

  • Name and First Name
  • Name of name
  • Link: owner, boat co-owner or manager (if applicable).

If there are several co-owners, the two main owners appear on the document (the others are not included but are registered administratively). You can also designate a ship's manager, who will act as an administrative referent in case of rental of the vessel and contact person in case of damage or damage.


Ship-to-identity data:

  • Registration number provided by the DDTM: The first two letters refer to the registration area, followed by 6 digits and a letter-key. In the case of change of ownership AND home port, only the first two letters will be amended accordingly on the declaration of transfer of ownership.
  • Francization number: number given by the Customs Service at the request for an act of francization of the vessel
  • Updated by the service: service instructor service to the DDTM
  • WIN Number (Watercraft Identification Number): The ship's hull identification number replaces the old HIN and CIN numbers.

Vessel data-vessel characteristics:

  • Name: name of the baptism of the boat, editable on request
  • Manufacturer: name of manufacturer
  • Model: name of vessel model given by manufacturer
  • Design category: ability of the vessel to meet certain navigation conditions (A for high seas, B for offshore, C for the coastal zone and D for protected waters)
  • Year of construction
  • Type of ship: motor ship, sailboat, yacht, catamaran, trimaran, jet ski ...
  • Inshell length in metres
  • Shell Width in metres
  • Recommended max power (kW): maximum engine power that can be borne by the boat, expressed in kiloWatts
  • Installed power (kW): the actual power of the engine currently installed.

Engine (s) - engine characteristics:

  • Engine Brand
  • Engine Model
  • Engine serial number: unique engine identifier
  • Power (kW): the actual power of the engine expressed in kiloWatts
  • Fuel: gasoline, diesel or LPG.

Special mentions:

  • May relate to the prohibition of the sale of a ship in a given period, relates mainly to the construction of a vessel

Date of issue: date of commencement of validity of navigation title

Date of validity: expiry date of the maritime traffic card (duration: 10 years).

New Model River Traffic Map

Since 1 October 2019, the river circulation card has also been shown in dematerialised and secure form:

Vessel Identification:

  • Ship's Motto: christening name of vessel, editable upon request
  • Number HIN or CIN: hull identification number for certified EC vessels, unique and not subject to change (CIN (Craft Identification Number), HIN (Hull Identification Number: former name))
  • Registration number: registration number provided by the river safety instructor centre (DDT), the first two letters of which refer to the registration area, followed by 6 digits and letter F.
  • Manufacturer: name of manufacturer of vessel
  • Series: boat model
  • Year of construction
  • Length (L), Width (L) and Waterfing (T): Hull measurements expressed in metres
  • Volume in m3: light movement of the boat, as achieved by the multiplication of the hull length by its width and by the draught (V - L x l x T)
  • Design category: the vessel's ability to cope with certain navigational conditions (A for the high seas, B for offshore, C for coastal area and D for protected waters)
  • Maximum number of people recommended on board: variable number depending on the type of boat and its size to ensure passenger safety
  • Type of propulsion: engine, sail or manual
  • Maximum power allowed in kW: maximum engine power that can be supported by the boat, expressed in kiloWatts
  • KW installed power: actual power of the engine currently installed.

Identification of the river traffic card holder:

  • Name
  • Name
  • Date of birth
  • Address (complete).

Owner or co-owner:

  • the owner's connection to the boat.

Cachet of authority:

  • DDT's signature in charge of the file.

Document identification code:

  • DDT's traffic card application file management number.

What to do if you change or change ownership?

If you make modifications to your pleasure boat or VNM such as an engine change, a change of name of the boat, a transfer to a new port of registration, if your pleasure craft goes to destruction or if it changes ownership, you must notify the DDT or DDTM within one month.

The validity of the traffic card

While the old paper circulation card had an unlimited validity period, its new dematerialized version is valid for 10 years. When the expiry date approaches, you will be able to apply for renewal through our services.

The Pleasure Craft Traffic Card – bateau-immatriculation