eFoil riding regulations/laws

Were you riding on a river or lake?


Hi flightjunkie,
I definitely agree with you on picking a different lake. My preferred lake so far was a smaller one with easy access (parking 10m from lake) and I didn’t mind the water police boat stationed on that very lake. In hindsight I did the equivalent of doing motorcycle donuts in the backyard of a police station. :slightly_smiling_face:

On the registration front, that 30EUR saved won’t get you very far as a war chest and missing registration is so obvious for them that I believe you will be stopped every time they see you. And once they are onto you, they might indeed (want to) get you every time. Then again, my impression was they are not that aware about what efoils are and are not allowed to do. E.g. they told me about staying in the “Fahrrinne” on Müggelsee but concurred when I said that is only mandatory for boats with “Verbrennermotor”.


In a lake. But I encountered a boat making a wake so I did a nice arc to chase those wakes…
in my excitement (not many boats on the lakes this time of the year) I didn’t see the second blue boat some 100m behind. So a bit of bad luck there, I guess.

Hahaha what did they expect you to do, ride in a straight line until you hit the bank? Do they fine every boat that turns?

The problem in Germany is. You are not allowed to ride on lakes. you need to get a permission from the city administration first. Most of them won’t give it to you. I called a lot of them and and asked. If you have a vehicle registration you are only allowed to ride on rivers. But be careful there are also areas where it’s not allowed.
If you want we can discuss. This in German later on. I paid some money too ^^


Unter 2,2kw ist kein Kennzeichen erforderlich.
Gruss Frank

@Nibbler: Boy, I had some trouble putting your comment together with what the water police inferred yesterday. After some additional study of even more legal texts I came to the following conclusion… If efoils fall under WasMotRV (again, somewhat debatable, I will have to talk to a lawyer at some point) then you are technically allowed to ride them on “Bundeswasserstrassen” which luckily includes most of the lakes in my area. See WaStrG for full list of “Bundeswasserstrassen” and included lakes. So yes, there are lakes you can ride on, but yes they are mostly connected by rivers :slight_smile:
By the way (again I am no lawyer), if efoils are not under WasMotRV, then we are just “small boats” and hence are free to ride where they are not explicitly forbidden. Wouldn’t that be nice…

Happy to discuss offline (&in German).

@Jezza: Yeah, well jetskis (as which we seem to be treated) will be fined, boats won’t. Now, even jetskis have to turn some time but what they will charge are constant changes of course aka turns for fun. Which I did yesterday so stupidly obvious just in front of their boat to chase a wake.

I will share some information about registration of your efoil in the Netherlands.

I tried to register my efoil so I had to pay €54 and wait for there response. First I got an email to sent some pictures also with a hull number, so I made it and sent it to them. Than they told me they would investigate it. One week later I got a letter telling me that I could not register because it doesn’t fit in there catogory of fast boats. In the Netherlands you have to register if your boat has mechanical power to make you faster than 20km/h and you also need a boat license for it (witch I already have). So now I am not sure if I am alowed to ride it legaly. I have asked them for more info so if I know more I will let you know.

What about riding it in lakes ? Wondering if all this still applies there…

They called me and they told me first that I had no CE registration so that was a problem. Also it did not fit in any catagory because it is basicly a motorised surfboard. After that he told me that it had sharp edges underwater so that was also a problem. He knew that people are riding these things but he could not tell me were or if it is alowed. So there is no one in the Netherlands that has registered an efoil. I am going to ride ot anyway and will see what the waterpolice says about it.


Ok but you are mainly speaking about riding on the sea. Is there any problem riding efoil or anything else in lakes ? I doubt but still I am no expert.

No I was speaking for al inland waters. On the sea there are not so strict regulations here.

It is very good news that an efoil doesn’t fit in a box because what isn’t forbidden is allowed. In case of fine, you could say that you have done your maximum to comply with the law but the law doesn’t consider you as a valid craft. So long the law is not ready, you should not be fined for an infringement that doesn’t exist.
I am not a lawyer but this looks like a legal vacuum and the legal vacuum always benefits the citizen.

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I was thinking the same😉

Do you have any writings of all of this as what as been said over the phone will not be considered as a proof when time comes ? If not, just ask them to write a summary. If they don’t want to, I would send them a letter (recorded delivery) summarizing what has been said over the phone and with whom.

I have a letter from them, where they say that it can not be registered because it does not comply with there registration catogory. So I think this should be enough to show the police.


Hey Rienk, interesting news. So far I have always been riding in the evenings to avoid crowds and attention.
Have you already encountered police so far at all?

I have never encountered waterpolice but I think I will this year, because I am planning to ride more on the river. Last year I only did this once and most of the time I was at my local water where you don’t see the waterpolice very often.

Take this letter and have it on you, or take a picture of it, or better yet, get it laminated and keep it in your board. If you get stopped show them the letter. What doesn’t fit a category, what isn’t prohibited is allowed I would think. Good luck!

I’m in Hawaii. I researched the rules. They basically say anything with a motor has to be registered. So, I would have to put identification numbers on both sides of the nose, and a registration sticker.

As I dug deeper I found something that said “Surfboards” are exempt from requiring safety equipment.

However…my concern is that as these things become more popular the authorities will probably crack down and regulate them like “Jet Ski’s”, “Thrill Crafts”, “PWC”. Then they will be super regulated and only legal to ride in a few specific locations.

I’m not gonna register mine. I stay away from boat harbors, beaches with lifeguards, and parks or beaches with lots of people.

Don’t draw a crowd. Stay under the radar. If authorities bother you play dumb. Say sorry and leave. I’ll let you know how it goes!


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