Coasties’ guide to Merchant Mariner Credentials

February 02, 2018

As an active or former Coast Guard member, you may have considered the possibility of pursuing a Merchant Mariner Credential (MMC) or “license” at some point during your career. You likely have received training and knowledge that transfers over to the merchant maritime industry from your service in the Coast Guard. If you moved beyond consideration and began researching the steps, you may have quickly become intimidated by the process, list of requirements, and financial investment required. If so, you are not alone, as this is a common frustration throughout the Coast Guard.

In order to better assist members with navigating the process to apply for a merchant mariner credential, the Office of Cutter Forces (COMDT CG-751) partnered with National Mariner Center (NMC) to update The Coasties’ Guide to the Merchant Mariner Credentialing Process that was initially promulgated by the Cutterman’s Association in 2013. The fleet has expressed great interest in pursuing merchant mariner credentials, and the updated Guide is intended to reduce confusion that is often associated with Coast Guard sea service and qualifications and how they translate to the requirements for merchant mariner licensing. This guide is applicable to all members with creditable sea service, which is 90 days of sea service in the previous seven years for military applicants.