BYC Membership Benefits

So Many Reasons to Join!

 Why and How to Join the Bellingham Yacht Club

       Hit the "Join BYC" button and complete the application!

Bellingham Yacht Club members hail from both Whatcom County and everywhere else summer members originate. While we enjoy boats and the company of each other, neither boat ownership nor sponsorship is required. We are a social bunch and work at welcoming new members, such as offering a new member orientation.

Benefits of Joining-Boating

Join the Bellingham Yacht Club


Racing and Regattas: Over 45 adult races including Wednesday Nights, Around the County, Anacortes Race Week, WOW (Women on the Water), Dale Jepsen One-Design Regatta, regional PITCH Regatta, and more

Cruising: Mixed power and sail cruises, weekend and week(s)long to the San Juans, Puget Sound, Canada, and Alaska for both beginners and experienced cruisers

Inati Bay: Lummi Island BYC Outstation exclusive use for members

Annual Boat Parades: Holiday Lighted Boat and Opening Day

Youth Programs: Sailing camp basics through racing programs for ages 8-18

200-foot guest dock: In front of BYC for day moorage at no cost and limited longer-term rentals

Reciprocity privileges with yacht clubs around Puget Sound, BC, and more


As a volunteer club, members run activities from regional, national, and international regattas, cruises around Puget Sound, Canada and Alaska and hold numerous social events at our clubhouse on Bellingham Bay. We value serving our community and host fund-raising events for various charities. Volunteering is encouraged and a great way to meet fellow members and entirely up to you. 

Benefits of Joining-Social Activities


BYC bar regular hours Wednesday through Friday


After races and regattas bar open and food available

Friday Night Steak Dinners once a month


Commodore’s Ball annual dinner- dance


Jazz Dinners featuring local and regional jazz bands 


Opening Day party, blessing of the fleet, and “parade of boats” 


Educational programs with speakers and videos 


Fridays at Five with refreshments 

Rental discounts for Marina Room, Ward and Commodores’ Rooms 

Membership FAQs


How much are annual dues and initiation?

See the current dues and initiation fees in the Dues and Initiation Fees table at the bottom of this page.  Dues are reviewed by the Board of Directors at least once per year. We strive to keep our initiation fee and yearly dues affordable while still offering the benefits of membership. Dues are currently structured by age and and function.  We offer junior (up to 18), junior 19-20, intermediate (21-29), active, senior and non-resident membership classes. Of these classes, only active members have the privileges to vote and to hold office. Senior memberships are available only to current members who have reached 70 years of age, been active members for at least one year, and apply for Senior status.


How do I join Bellingham Yacht Club?

To become a member, complete the online application, and submit it through the website. We strongly recommend you elect the Auto-Pay Enrollment (through the website portal after you have been approved) to simplify your  future dues and monthly charges you may make at the club. Our board welcomes new members monthly, and we vote on applicants at our board meetings on the 3rd Thursday of each month.


Are there other membership requirements? Do I need to own a boat?

Boat ownership is not required to become a member. All that is needed is an active interest in boating. We have members with varied interests, including social, cruising, racing and education. We think you’ll find that we are a diverse and welcoming club.


Do I have to be a previous BYC member to qualify for non-resident member status?

No, we welcome all non-resident (residing greater than 50 miles from the club) members to apply.

2022-2023 Dues and Initiation Fees


Active and Non-Resident Memberships

An Active membership is for members age 30 or older for local residents who reside within 50 miles of BYC. A Non-Resident Membership is for members age 30 or older where the applicant attests that they have a residency located more than 50 miles away which they occupy for more than six months per year.

Active and Non-Resident memberships pay a one-time initiation fee.


Junior/Intermediate Memberships

Junior Memberships: We offer two types of Junior memberships based on age. The first is a Junior membership for youth up to 18 years of age. The second is for young adults between 19 and 20 years of age. Junior members do not pay any initiation fees.

Intermediate Memberships: An Intermediate membership is for members aged 21 through 29.


Senior Memberships

Senior membership is available for active members aged 70 years or older, who have been Active or Non-resident members in good standing for a minimum of one calendar year. Senior members, however, are not eligible to vote for club officers, trustees or for by-law changes. To submit for Senior membership status after a minimum of one year as Active or Non-resident, please contact the BYC Commodore or Membership Chair. 

Membership Class  Initiation Fee Annual Dues
Active (Resident) $310 $683
Non-Resident $310 $456
Senior: Active member, age 70+ N/A $512
Junior: Through Age 18 N/A $27
Junior: Age 19-20 N/A $54
Intermediate: Age 21-29 N/A $205

Club-Year and Dues Proration:

Note, our club-year runs Oct. 1 through Sept. 30.  First-year dues upon joining is prorated quarterly depending on when you join.  Prorating is as follows by joining month:  Sep to Nov = 100%;  Dec to Feb = 75%;  Mar to May = 50%;  Jun to Aug = 25%.  So if you see a dues charge on your application that is different than the full annual dues noted, it is due to prorating.  The full annual dues is then charged to all members at the beginning of the club-year in October.


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