Gulf Coast Maritime Academy (USCG Approved Training Center for United States Mariners)

4.8 Average rating: Read reviews

Gulf Coast Maritime Academy is the premier maritime training provider, located in Port Tampa. We offer a large range of courses for every aspect of the maritime industry. Our goal is to provide each student with a quality training experience at an affordable cost. Our courses are designed for full interaction with our students and to engage each one with a fulfilling and rewarding product.

Our courses include entry level Captain's Licenses such as Operator of Uninspected Passenger Vessels (OUPV), Upgrade to both Master 100 GRT and Master 200 GRT. We also offer commercial and yachting crew training such as (STCW) Basic Safety Training, Advanced Fire Fighting, Vessel Security Officer, Able Seaman, Leadership courses, Crowd Control, and much much more!

Contact us today or go to our courses page to view our current range of courses. New courses are submitted each week to the National Maritime Center for approval so sign up for our monthly news letter for the latest course offerings, maritime news, maritime employment, and anything else maritime related!

STCW Training Centers

Gulf Coast Maritime Academy (USCG Approved Training Center for United States Mariners) have their training center located in Tampa, Florida, United States of America.

Terms and Conditions

View the training school's Terms and Conditions.

Customer Reviews

Gulf Coast Maritime Academy (USCG Approved Training Center for United States Mariners) reviews as published on Google:

  • Colin Mattson

    Colin Mattson

    Average rating: a week ago

    Very AWESOME CLASS and Chris's manner and attitude are just as AWESOME he is very passionate about what he's doing and I'll be back very soon for my Master Captain endorsement.
    Thank you Chris.
    Colin L. Mattson Jr

  • Hamilton Lopez

    Hamilton Lopez

    Average rating: a month ago

    Captain Chris's teaching methods are truly remarkable, leaving a lasting impression on his students. His approach is both engaging and effective, making learning an enjoyable experience. Highly recommended!

  • Wesley Pfiffner

    Wesley Pfiffner

    Average rating: a month ago

    Gulf Coast Maritime Academy was such a great experience, the material was taught in a way that you really learn how to apply it practicable. Chris is such an outstanding instructor, his knowledge and ability to teach is a reason enough to attend Gulf Coast Maritime.

  • Pete Sharpe

    Pete Sharpe

    Average rating: a month ago

    Fantastic week!! Tons of info in a fun and interactive way. Capt Chris is a walking nautical book...
    He makes darn sure you know your stuff.. mixes in real life experiences to bring info to life.
    Don't waste time searching for how to get 6pack..Gulf Coast is the only way!!
    Pete Sharpe



    Average rating: a month ago

    The class was something I always dreamed about and the one goal I wanted to achieve. This was a complex class however the teacher was amazing and simplified the material. I would definitely recommend this Academy to others and it’s 100% because of Captain Chris Hayes.

  • Jack Taylor

    Jack Taylor

    Average rating: May 27, 2023

    Wonderful instructor with a great attitude and personality helpful with any topic to ensure that everyone in the class obtains the information regardless of skill level or experience. Very structured and engaging with students allowing all different learning styles and abilities be able to understand and retain the information. Highly recommend this course for anyone interested in hitting the seas with serious knowledge.

  • Craig Toth

    Craig Toth

    Average rating: May 6, 2023

    I had a great experience here when I took the 6-pack course. Chris definitely knows his business and he kept the class moving so you were engaged.
    The other thing I liked about Chris is his willingness to keep helping you after you completed the class.

  • Ryan Addy

    Ryan Addy

    Average rating: April 15, 2023

    This experience was beyond what words can explain. Chris is an amazing instructor. He brings real world examples on how he teaches. I have pretty bad testing anxiety and the atmosphere that Chris made, I felt comfortable and more confident than ever. Please keep up the good work I hope to take more classes with you soon.

  • Byodeon


    Average rating: August 23, 2022

    You found your school stop looking and start booking! I will be back for all my maritime needs. Chris makes it fun and engaging and makes sure you understand all the material, just do what he says and you are golden!

  • Sailor V 92

    Sailor V 92

    Average rating: November 30, 2021

    Loved going to this school! I 100 percent will be back for more courses. The instructor Chris will help you in every way to make sure you understand and learn the material. He’s a very intelligent captain and a pretty cool guy. He’s been to sea basically his whole life. Anyone wanting to Advance their career in the maritime industry needs to book some classes here. From charter captains to ocean going seaman. This is a family owned business. You won’t be disappointed!!

  • Patrick Masi

    Patrick Masi

    Average rating: November 7, 2021

    Can’t thank Chris enough, guy is great if you’re in the Tampa area or close take the class you’ll be glad you did

  • simone boutin

    simone boutin

    Average rating: October 22, 2021

    Clear and concise instruction and, keen to detail. Very informative.

  • Lewis Huffman

    Lewis Huffman

    Average rating: October 6, 2021

    Captain Chris Hayes taught us a ton of information is a short period but made it very simple to take in. Very good instructor

  • Meagan Lynn

    Meagan Lynn

    Average rating: August 22, 2021

    Captain Chris is very patient and great at explaining concepts. Coming from a land locked state and learning about the boating/yachting industry, his teaching has been invaluable to me. I’m so grateful and appreciate of the value I got from his classes.

  • FullScale Outdoors

    FullScale Outdoors

    Average rating: August 18, 2021

    Capt Chris is phenomenal at his job as a teacher, his ability to instruct individuals and the group as a whole is as good as it gets. I live in MN and could’ve taken this course online but I’m extremely thankful I traveled to Tampa to take it in person. I cannot recommend this course highly enough!

  • Dan Floen

    Dan Floen

    Average rating: July 23, 2021

    Captain Chris is a very thorough and entertaining instructor. A full week in his classroom went by very quickly and I feel very prepared to be a safe and responsible boat captain.

    Thanks Chris!

  • jose vazquez

    jose vazquez

    Average rating: July 22, 2021

    Capt Chris Hayes and Gulf Coast Maritime Academy were a great experience and very knowledgeable. The education received for the OUPV, the Upgrade OUPV to Master 100 tons was first class. I would recommend Gulf Coast Maritime Academy for any and all your Maritime needs.

  • Edward O'Brien

    Edward O'Brien

    Average rating: July 22, 2021

    Captain Chris and the team offer a top notch learning experience. I am an instructor and his OUPV program was engaging and on point for the duration of the course. If you are looking for quality instruction provided from a knowledgeable professional I highly recommend the Gulfcoast Maritime Academy team.

  • robert petrosino

    robert petrosino

    Average rating: March 19, 2021

    Awesome experience great teacher very professional recommend this school highly to all


  • Preston Harper

    Preston Harper

    Average rating: March 19, 2021

    Chris was great and the price was right!

  • Uriah Fackler

    Uriah Fackler

    Average rating: February 12, 2021

    what dose this school focus on.

  • Tampa Tico

    Tampa Tico

    Average rating: August 12, 2020

    Totally impressed with the entire experience from booking the class to finish. Chris is an awesome instructor who will go out of his way to help his students. Thanks to this school I’m now a Captain. Thanks again. - (James K.). Bay Area Boat & Ski Rentals LLC.

  • Manuel Portales

    Manuel Portales

    Average rating: July 27, 2020

    Amazing experience, every person who plan to drive a vessel need this course.
    Thank you Captain Chris..... Great teacher.
    Highly recommended.

  • Austin Warren

    Austin Warren

    Average rating: July 17, 2020

    Great School, Great Instructor. I had a wonderful experience attending Gulf Coast Maritme Academy. I would highly recommend this school to anyone who is searching for a school to attend.

  • Jon Talha

    Jon Talha

    Average rating: July 13, 2020

    Challenging, informative and fun. Chris simplified the process of getting my OUPV.

  • Derrick Glenn (TodayNew's)

    Derrick Glenn (TodayNew's)

    Average rating: April 29, 2020

    Highly recommended you will NOT be disappointed. Captain Chris is one cool cat and a great teacher. The course is tough but he makes it easy to understand. If you're looking to get your Captain license (OUPV) 6-Pack and go elsewhere then fail dont blame me. Do it right the first time. Apply today!

  • Mark Bowen

    Mark Bowen

    Average rating: March 8, 2020

    Just completed my OUPV class with Capt Chris. Great facility, great instructor and i would highly recommend GCMA to anyone interested in a USCG license of any kind. Thanks again Capt Chris and GCMA! Great experience!

  • ryan hunter

    ryan hunter

    Average rating: October 9, 2019

    Absolutely great teacher really cares about his students goes above and behond to make sure his students understand everything really takes time and this guy dedicates his life to his school and being above the rest look forward to taking more classes at gulf coast learned so much and very greatful to have such a fantastic instructor!

  • Giris Camacho

    Giris Camacho

    Average rating: September 29, 2018

    I researched for a while before selecting where to take the OUPV course. I am glad I selected Gulf Coast Maritime Academy and Captain Chris Hayes. He is very knowledgeable and has a lot of experience in real maritime world situations. His approach to the course material, course work and his students was spot on. If you really want to learn, not just pass the exam, I definitely recommend Capt C and the Gulf Coast Maritime Academy. Thank you Captain Chris!! Hope to be back later for the Master 200 Gross ton upgrade!!

  • joe diebold

    joe diebold

    Average rating: July 23, 2018

    Cpt Hayes is an exceptional instructor. Making sure all the students were well versed on the subject matter. His real world experience helped us to understand the class material. I highly recommend Gulf Coast Maritime Academy.

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