The key to a successful yacht charter experience is to know the crucial aspects for planning a yacht charter trip. Here’s a complete guide to book the perfect boat in the perfect way.
Monohull boats, are ideal for single families with children, or two couples holidays. The biggest advantage of a sailboat is their performance and maneuverability. Also their budgets are generally much more affordable than other options. From race boats to small cruisers they have a wide range of options in models and equipment.
The main advantage of a motor yacht is their speed. This means you can get quickly from one destination to another and spend the extra time relaxing on beaches or exploring secluded bays, taking day trips or go snorkeling in crystal clear waters. Besides their speed, one more great advantage is their stability and comfort because of their greater cruising autonomy. Because of their lower draught, they make anchoring in shallow bays an easy task. Other advantages include a spacious interior with plenty of headroom and a great view from the fly bridge. Also, motor yachts have no dependency on wind speed and allow you to always be the one who chooses the next destination, at any given time.
A major advantage of catamarans, both power and sail, is their minimal draft which allows you to tuck up close to a beach or anchor in shallow areas. Below decks, catamarans offer plenty of space, which makes them a perfect choice for a larger group of people or families. Catamarans are considerably more stable than a sailing yacht. They do not bang back and forth in swells, which makes them super comfortable and puts them on the list of all-time favorite boats for all of you who suffer from sea sickness! However, catamarans also have their disadvantages: A wide beam can make it difficult to find room at a dock. A crowded anchorage can also represent a challenge. Chartering a catamaran is more costly but the extra space allows more friends to split costs.
Charter gulets are prefect for people who want a hassle-free, relaxed and comfortable sailing holiday. They offer more comfort than any other sailing boat, more space and more privacy. These vessels though having sails, are more often propelled by their strong engines so the chances for sea-sickness are slim when on board a gulet. They come fully crewed and are made with high ceilings, wide corridors, comfortable cabins with en suite toilets, spacious indoor salon with galley and bar, and plenty of space in outdoor cushioned lounging areas. The outside areas are shaded, and the cabins are mostly double bedded. They are perfect for large groups.
It can be a pretty simple task to inflate an inflatable boat. However, there are a few guidelines that you need to follow to make sure that you do it right. Otherwise, you run the risk of over-inflating or under-inflating your blow up. Follow these procedures on how to inflate your boat for a safer, more satisfying ride:
Less is more
First and foremost –keep in mind that storage space on a sailing vessel is usually limited and not conducive to hard-sided suitcases. Please bring soft sided luggage as hard sided luggage can damage the glossy varnished woodwork and floors. It’s a good idea to chose bags with wheels or bags which have a collapsible trolley for ease of transport. Just remember –pack light!
Clothes for sailing
When it comes to choose what kind of clothes to bring with you, we have the following advice: “Bring half of the clothes and twice the amount of money that you think you’ll need!” Pack your bag and if it is uncomfortable for you to carry it then you’ve packed way too much! You will need casual wear such as shorts, T-shirts, swimwear and shoes that can get wet with saltwater. It’s a good idea to include a windproof jacket in case of stronger winds. Closed non-slip shoes are a must for safety on board!For early and late season sailing -before mid May and after September, a fleece/sweater and some warm trousers may be necessary and it’s wise to include wet weather gear too -just in case!
Toiletries and medication
Don’t forget to bring a sun hat, sunglasses and most important -include plenty of sunscreen as you will be spending a lot of time in the open! Although most yachts have a basic first aid kit, it is a good idea to carry one of your own which should include travel sickness pills, antiseptic cream, insect repellent, antihistamine cream/gel for insect bites and anything else you personally may need. For those passengers who need certain medications, be sure to bring enough for the length of the trip, and perhaps extra in case of emergency.
Don't forget to bring your passport, aswell as a copy of your passport to keep in a separate place in case your original is lost, and your charter package paperwork. If you travel to places which need extra permits/Visa, don't forget to bring those with you! When it comes to documents –alwayscheck, check and triple check to make sure you don't start your sailing trip without them!
Food and snacks
Food and drink are important aspects of any yacht charter. Be sure to include plenty of nutritious foods your kids will love because sailing as much fun as it is, it is a journey packed with activity and we all know how fresh air and activity can make one very hungry! Remember to pack saltines for possible occasional motion sickness or tummy-aches.
Sailing with children
Sailing with kids is both fun, exciting and rewarding. You children will never forget the time spent with you out on the sea and most probably will develop a deep love for sailing. Involve your kids completely, and plan for activities afloat and ashore. Involve your kids in on board activities so they never get bored and get all the fun and diversity they need for an unforgettable trip.
Preparation is the key
The most important thing is to be prepared for all possible situations that could go wrong. As the one being responsible for the little ones, you should always anticipate possible stressful situations and keep in mind to stay calm and handle every situation with confidence. Talk with your kids so they’ll know what to expect regarding what they can and cannot do while on board, safety, what to expect from the trip... Ask yourself some of these questions: Do i know where I have all the life jackets stored? What do I do if a child falls overboard? Do I know how to properly inflate the dinghy? Have I given precise roles and duties to all my crew members?etc. It is of the utmost importance that before embarking on a trip with your kids, you can answer these questions with confidence.
Bareboat or crewed charter
Before taking on a sailing trip, you should decide which type of charter suits your needs and skills the best. There are three types of charters: bareboat, skippered and crewed. What you will choose depends on your personal preferences and sailing skills. To make your decision easier, we have summed up all the main characteristics of each charter types.
Bareboat charter To put it simply, chartering a bareboat means you are chartering a boat without a crew. This means you are responsible for providing a licensed skipper. You yourself can be the skipper if you provide proof of your sailing skills. Usually, yacht owners willask for your skipper license, permit, certificate or other type of document which will prove you have the necessary skills needed for a certain type of boat. The biggest advantage of chartering a bareboat is your complete independence! This means YOU choose your route, YOU choose your next destination, YOU determine your schedule!
Skippered charter If you or none of your crew members, qualify as a licensed skipper, the skippered charter is a great choice for all of you who still wish to rent a boat for yourself and your chosen passengers because the yacht owner/charter agent will provide you a skipper and additional crew if needed. The skipper will take care of the yacht, your safety and the sailing route while you can just relax and enjoy your trip. Skippered charter offers you a great combination of independent exploration of the coast and islands, while someone else does all the work for you!
Fully crewed charter Another way to let someone else take care of the boat and sailing routes, while you relax and enjoy yourself, is to choose crewed charter. By choosing this option, you get maximum comfort and service, as not only will someone else navigate you through the seas but a crew will also take care of your meals, safety, cleaning etc. It is like being on a floating hotel which offers you a completely different view every day!
Everyone on board should have a lifejacket and everyone should be informed and know at all times where the lifejackets are stored. Small children (5-6 years old) and non-swimmers should wear fastenable vests. Always check with your agent/fleet operator if they provide life jackets for small children because many chartered boats do not have them on board or they will not be the right size for your kid.
We recommend you bring your own lifejackets for your child and make sure they wear them at all times, even when off shore! Kids should have the same sailing gear as the adults on board. This includes non-slip shoes, sailing gloves, hat, sunglasses, sun protective clothing and plenty of sunscreen.