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Learn to Sail

$885 This is the most thorough and effective beginner's course in New England.

Whether you're a complete beginner or a sometime sailor, we guarantee this course will teach you to sail safely and confidently, or we'll continue your lessons at no extra charge.

ASA 101

We've refined our Learn to Sail course over 35 years, so it combines our own proven textbook and lesson plans with the best elements of standardized national curriculums, such as the American Sailing Association - without ever forgetting that we all sail for fun.

In our classroom sessions you'll find informal chalk talks, question-and-answer, and carefully integrated video to help you understand the fundamentals of sailing - from knot tying to sail trim to navigation. On the water, we pair each instructor with a maximum of three students. So you'll get lots of one-on-one guidance developing steering, sail handling, and crewing skills.

The result? You'll graduate fully prepared to sail here in Boston or your favorite harbor anywhere.

Taught on





ASA 101 Basic Keelboat Sailing *Certification awarded upon successful course completion, written ASA 101 test, and a $39 ASA membership fee.

Text Books (included in course fee)

Sailing: The Basics by Dave Franzel

ASA's Sailing Made Easy

Prepares you for: 

Daysailing Membership
The Learn to Sail course is taught on Solings and covers all the basics, including:
  • Parts of the Boat and Rigging
  • Points of Sail
  • Tacking and Jibing
  • Landing at a Mooring
  • Balance and Sail Shape Control
  • Rules of the Road
  • Man Overboard Drills
  • Chart Reading and Navigation
  • Introduction to Spinnaker Handling

FREE 35-Day Student Membership

All Learn to Sail graduates can activate a FREE 35-day Student Membership upon completion of their course. Use your Student Membership to practice your sailing skills, take your friends sailing, and enjoy some of the benefits of membership here at the Boston Sailing Center. Some restrictions apply; refundable security deposit required.


The Learn to Sail Course is offered in 3 different formats - 5 Week, Vacation Week, or Weekend. All formats include 26 hours of instruction - 10 hours of classroom time and 16 hours on the water. 

5-Week: Classes meet for a lecture from 7-9pm one night per week for 5 weeks. A water session is also scheduled each week with your lecture instructor, usually on a weekday evening (typically 5-8pm) or weekend morning (typically 9am-12pm). The start dates below is for the lecture start date. 

5-Week Start Dates

Weekend: Held over two consecutive weekends - Saturday/Sunday, Saturday/ Sunday, 10am to 5pm. A new course starts every other Saturday.

Weekend Start Dates

Vacation Week: Offered each week, Monday through Friday. Classes meet 10am-12:30pm, followed by sailing from 1-4. Friday's class features an all-day cruise to the Harbor islands... a great ending to a great week!

Vacation Week Start Dates

Open: Choose the "Open" format if you would like to register now but choose the format and start date at a later time.

Open Format - Choose your start date later

Group Enrollment

Signing up with more than one person? We have a discount for that! Groups of two or more who sign up together for the same course qualify for discounts of 20% off the course fee after one student has purchased the course at full price (in other words, it's full price for the first person and 20% off for each additional person).

To qualify for the group enrollment discount, purchases must be made over the phone. Contact the office at 617-227-4198 to register your group. 

Course Policies

Rescheduling/Cancellation Policies

Course documents, including format outlines and student membership info


Contact the Boston Sailing Center office by phone 617-227-4198 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and an office manager would be happy to assist you.