Please select your home edition
Edition
Safety at Sea - Baltic - 3

Six Top Tips for the best chartered yacht holiday ever

by Des Ryan on 10 Feb 2014
Chartering in Turkey .. .
Wanting to charter? How do you decide which destination, which boat is suitable for you? Des Ryan interviews a number of brokers and charter operators and comes up with the following Six Top Tips which will be useful to achieve that fantastic holiday experience on a chartered boat, whether crewed or bareboat:

1. Location, location, location:
Whether you are bareboat chartering or want your chartered boat to come with a skipper, the location is naturally all-important. Your sailing skills, the type of boat, your preferences for non-sailing activities, your age, the budget and your family status will all have an impact on the destination you choose. If you're over 40 you won't appreciate a predominance of teenage drinking bars when you go ashore, if you're relatively new to sailing you won't want stormy conditions that might be scary for you and the crew. Similarly, if you love a challenge and a fast sail, you will want to choose an area that will, occasionally, give you a thrill.

The cost of air fares will be of major importance, as it will can be a high proportion of the overall cost, but it would be a mistake to choose a destination just because the air fare is cheap

But, if you haven't been to a destination, how can you be sure that it's right for you?

2. Broker, broker, broker:
At the end of the day, unless you are very lucky and get some personal recommendations from friends you can trust, you will probably have to rely on your broker to advise you, so the initial choosing of a broker is all-important. A series of telephone calls will inform you which brokers are knowledgable and which are not, and once you've found the right broker, stick to him or her.

When you ask questions laid out in Tip 1, the answers will soon sort out the good brokers from the others.


3. Budget, Budget, Budget:
You're best to tell your broker your budget expectations, including airfare, right up front. This can save a lot of time for both you and the broker. If your expectations are unreasonable, it's just as well to find out in advance. However, if you find you have to economise on anything, give the air fare the first consideration, and choose a nearer destination that isn't as far to fly. After all, there's probably just as good sailing in a destination which is cheaper to reach than one at the other end of the world.

If you still need to economise, much as you may not like this advice, DON'T insist on the newest shiniest boat in the fleet. When chartering, it's likely that you and your group will spend an extensive amount of time savouring the delights of the destination, and the time sailing, as a percentage of time spend on your holiday, will be probably less than 20%



Don't forget that you will also need to budget for food and entertainment, so it's a good policy to find out some indication of the average cost of this.

In addition, if you are chartering a crewed boat, don't forget to budget for the gratuity for the crew. The broker should be able to advise you on the appropriate level of tipping in the destination you are considering.

4. Crew, crew, crew:
While we're speaking of crew, if you have one, bear in mind the importance of the crew. They can make or mar your holiday experience, and are much more important than the quality or performance of the yacht. When getting references on a boat you are considering, pay particular attention to the comments by past charterer on the crew. No comment is likely to be a red flag

5. The boat, the boat, the boat:
As mentioned above, choosing the flashiest boat in the fleet may not result in the happiest holiday. Share with your broker the relative skills and preferences of ALL the people in your group to allow him or her to make the best suggestions. Do they get seasick? Do they like wake-boarding? Can they swim? How will you divide your time between anchoring and visiting marinas? How much cooking will you do on board or do you need to stop somewhere near a restaurant each night. Knowing these details will dictate your preferences in the facilities you are going for on the boat.

Don't forget, also, that on a sailing vacation people rarely spend much time in their cabins. Economise on these to put more emphasis on the public spaces such as the saloon and the on-deck spaces. Make sure that access to the water is an easy thing, and that the tender or dinghy is large enough and powerful enough for the job.


6. Season, season, season:
You may not have the luxury to decide when to go, and if this is the case then you have to go for a destination where the season is right for your dates.

However, obviously the more flexible you can be with dates the more options the broker will be able to give you, and the earlier you can book the better - say at least six months in advance. If there are deals offered, you'll have to consider why the deal is available. It may be that you will have less reliable weather, or maybe many of the local restaurants will be closed. If you are going for high/high season (Christmas or school holidays etc) you may have to book 12 months ahead to get your dates, and it will be sure to be at the highest price (with no weather advantage)

This is where a really good broker can help you find the greatest charter holiday, just especially designed for you and your group, whether you are a couple, a group of friends, or a family.

InSunSport - NZBIA 2016 Sydney Boat Show 660x82Pacific Sailing School 660x82 1

Related Articles

Reducing weight aloft with composite backstays
Reducing weight aloft is one of the most cost effective ways of increasing your boat speed and performance. Reducing weight aloft is one of the most cost effective ways of increasing your boat speed and performance. Every kilogram you take out of the rig is roughly equivalent to 4kg added to the bottom of your keel!
Posted on 26 Jul
Bavaria STYLE 46 Australian Premiere at Sydney International Boat Show
For everyone who appreciates luxury on the water, the STYLE package is now available for the Cruiser 46 and Cruiser 51?. For everyone who appreciates luxury on the water, the STYLE package is now available for the Cruiser 46 and Cruiser 51?. Making the most of your time on board, be it with family or friends, is becoming more important. Yacht owners want certain levels of comfort and an onboard living experience coupled with versatility.
Posted on 26 Jul
What to look for when buying a modern lifejacket
There is no doubt that modern lifejacket design has changed considerably. There is no doubt that modern lifejacket design has changed considerably and one of the biggest drivers of this change has been due to personal ownership. Rather than crew relying on lifejackets being on-board a boat, they want to own their own lifejacket as part of their kit bag.
Posted on 25 Jul
The New Bavaria Cruiser 34 - you won't believe this is a 34' yacht!
The Sydney International Boat Show sees the World Premiere of the Bavaria Cruiser 34 - 2 Cabin version. The Sydney International Boat Show sees the World and Australian Premiere of the Bavaria Cruiser 34 - 2 Cabin version. The new Cruiser 34 offers more space and more comfort than ever before with a bigger cockpit, dual helms and ergonomically designed seating. This is the first time the entry level Bavaria cruiser has been offered in twin helm!
Posted on 19 Jul
Navathome Australia brings RYA Theory to your door
The RYA Cruising Syllabus has been built up over years of best practice development in Sail and Power Boat skippering. The Royal Yachting Association Cruising Syllabus has been built up over years of best practice development in Sail and Power Boat skippering. Split into a theory and practical syllabus the training modules take you in steps from a Start Yachting orientation through to Yachtmaster for either power or sail.
Posted on 5 Jul
Free $US3,000 Carbon Vang with SouthernFurl boom orders in July
Southern Spars is giving a free carbon vang - valued at US$3,000 - with SouthernFurl in-boom furlers ordered in July Southern Spars is giving away a free carbon vang - valued at US$3,000 - with all of their SouthernFurl in-boom furlers ordered in July. Carbon gas vangs make a great addition to the furling boom package, though if you’d prefer to keep your existing one, Southern Spars will offer you a 5% discount on the price of your boom instead.
Posted on 29 Jun
Newport Bermuda Race - High Noon takes honours
As the Newport Bermuda Race fleet rushed to the finish line on Monday in the wake of the first-to-finish boat, As the Newport Bermuda Race fleet rushed to the finish line on Monday in the wake of the first-to-finish boat, the powerful 100-foot grand prix Comanche, to the surprise of many they were led by an unusual boat and crew. High Noon, at 41 feet, is fully 59 feet shorter than Comanche and tens of feet shorter than many other entries.
Posted on 22 Jun
Platino recovery - Family confirms that tug has made rendezvous
Reports in social media say a salvage tug has made a rendezvous with the Platino earlier than expected. Reports in social media by family and friends of Nick Saull, the crew member killed during a catastrophic incident abroad the 66ft yacht Platino say the salvage tug which left on Tuesday night has made the rendezvous earlier than expected. The Facebook report says the tug, Sea Pelican, arrived on Friday morning, the weather in the area has eased and with a more favorable outlook.
Posted on 16 Jun
Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron to ban bottled water
Approval has been given to create a ban on bottled water that comes in plastic containers. The RQYS Management Committee has confirmed that approval has been given to create a ban on bottled water that comes in plastic containers. This will place the club as a leader in environmental impact management in Australia and around the world. The Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club earlier this year did likewise. Who’s next?
Posted on 16 Jun
Platino recovery operation well underway as crew arrive in Auckland
An ocean-going tug has left Whangarei to locate and attempt to salvage the luxury yacht Platino An ocean-going tug left Whangarei late on Tuesday night to locate and attempt to salvage the luxury yacht Platino which has been abandoned 550km NE of New Zealand. Weather dependent, we could reach Platino by Saturday and have the yacht and body of the person on board back in New Zealand early next week,” says Inspector Graham of the NZ Police.
Posted on 16 Jun