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Rottnest Island

Shared Mooring System

Mooring Licencees

With the exception of Rottnest Island Authority rental moorings, all moorings in Rottnest Island waters are licensed to private boat owners. There is a waiting list to become a mooring licensee. Contact the Marine Administration Officer on +61 8 9432 9320.

Applications to join the moorings waitlist will incur an administration fee (please see Waitlist Application form below for more information). Licensed moorings may only be used by licensees or their authorised users. Penalties apply to any other vessel using a licensed mooring.

Authorised Users

A Mooring Licensee may nominate owners of other suitably sized vessels to use their mooring. This permission must be given on the official form available from the RIA's Fremantle Administration Office or on our website. Authorised User status is only recognised on display of a valid sticker.

Application forms must be processed and appropriate stickers issued well in advance of your visit to the Island.

If you wish to become an Authorised User of a mooring during the boating season, you can nominate yourself to the RIA. Following completion of the application forms and payment of fees, you will be allocated use of suitable moorings depending on availability.

Please note that licensees maintain priority use of their own mooring at all times.

Tender and Secondary Vessel Management

In order to manage the use of secondary vessels greater than 3.75 metres (tender) and up to 6.75 metres (secondary vessel), the guidelines below have been implemented following an extensive trial period. The system allows such vessels that are part of the Shared Mooring System (SMS) to be tied alongside to a Licensee’s or Authorised User’s primary vessel whilst on a certified mooring.

The following criteria apply:  

  • Mooring site licensees must provide written certification to the RIA from their mooring contractor that the mooring apparatus will support the rafting of both primary vessel and registered secondary vessel on the site. The mooring buoy must clearly identify that the apparatus has been certified for additional vessels by the mooring contractor by adhesive stickers “+6.75m”.
  • Tender use on moorings is only open to vessels owned by applicants that are part of the Shared Mooring System, i.e. Mooring Site Licensees’ and current Authorised Users.
  • Secondary vessels must be no greater than 6.75m in length if it is to tie up to a primary vessel on a mooring. All additional vessels greater than 6.75m are unable to access a mooring whilst tied alongside another vessel.
  • Secondary vessels must be registered on the RIA moorings database to the mooring site Licensee or Authorised User applicant. Registration and insurance documents must be supplied to the RIA with appropriate payment of admission fees.
  • Secondary vessels must have adequate insurance as per all other vessels registered to the SMS.
  • Mooring site Licensee or Authorised user must have only one secondary vessel rafted to the nominated primary vessel on the mooring site at any time. You may also have a tender.
  • All hire swing moorings are certified +6.75m

Due to congestion and manoeuvrability issues within moorings areas, the RIA requires the rafting up of tenders along side mother ships (rather than off the transom) to improve access, safety and minimise congestion in the bays.


Rafting of all other vessels excluding those involved detailed above will be managed according to the current Rottnest Island Regulations 1988. That is, such vessels can not raft up to another vessel while on a mooring site.

Unattended Tenders / Secondary Vessels

Under current policy only mooring site Licensees are able to attach and leave a tender/secondary vessel unattended on their mooring during the summer months. This is providing the vessel is secured in a way that does not preclude other vessels within the Shared Mooring System from using the mooring site (ie. authorised users and vessels using the site under casual access). Only Licensees can directly secure their tender or secondary vessel to their own registered mooring site without the primary vessel in attendance. This is not available to authorised users’ tenders. Licensees tenders may be left on moorings between 1 October and 30 April, but outside these dates must be removed from Rottnest Island waters.  


All vessels accessing the Rottnest Island Reserve (other than tenders less than 3.75m) must have paid the appropriate admission fees and clearly display a current RIA sticker.

Additional Information

Due to high demand within the Shared mooring system availability for new RIA allocated authorisations is limited and the outcome of applications may not be known until the end of October of each season following the completion of the existing Authorised User renewal process.

Casual Access of the Shared Mooring System

Licensees and Authorised Users of the Rottnest Shared Mooring System (SMS) are also permitted to use other moorings within the SMS on a casual basis. Coloured discs attached to the mooring buoys indicate the rated vessel size for that mooring. The mooring ratings are based on the certified length of a site.

This season the RIA is trialling the addition of the colour coded discs to all hire swing moorings to incorporate them into the Shared Mooring System (SMS). This will allow Licensees and Authorised Users to access appropriately sized hire moorings if required whilst waiting for their allocated mooring to become available. The 41 hire moorings all have green floats, and will be fitted with colour coded discs.

Conditions for this use is that you must first check with the Rottnest Visitor Centre by phone – 9372 9730 to ensure the hire mooring is not already booked and a competent operator must remain on your vessel at all times.

During casual access a competent operator must remain on board the vessel so that it can be moved immediately should the Licensee or any nominated Authorised User arrive to use the mooring site. Licensees have priority over the use of their own mooring sites at all times.

Application Forms and Information Sheets

Please click here to view Marine and Boating forms.