How To Charter A Boat For Travel

How to Charter a Boat for Travel

If you want to try something new for your next trip, charter a boat. You get all the fun of sailing without the year round cost of docking and maintaining it.

Images from Cory Thoman and ipsener, Phil Roeder, osseous, David Weekly, namoscato

If you've never been on a boat for an extended period of time, you should definitely try going on a day voyage if possible to make sure you're OK staying on the water for hours at a time. If you know the water is for you, here's how to charter a boat for travel.

Go Over Your Options

How to Charter a Boat for Travel

When you charter a boat, there are several things you'll need to decide to narrow down your options. Before diving into any of these areas, have an idea of what kind of budget you want to spend. Keep in mind that in general the cost of chartering a boat can be similar to staying at a nice hotel (although with a boat you get transportation, a home base to sleep, relax, and cook meals all rolled into one place).

  • Make sure someone knows how to sail. One option is to hire a skipper to operate the boat. This will increase the cost of the trip but can be worth it if no one in your group knows how to sail. If you choose to go bareboat, where you sail the boat yourself, the charter company will put you through a brief test to see your skills in action.
  • Pick a location. This can be influenced by the season. Some areas are much nicer to sail in during certain times of the year — but that will often push the price up. You might also want to use the boat as an alternative to other forms of transportation, such as ferries or planes between islands.
  • Figure out what features you want the boat to have. Choose the size of the boat based on how many people you're travelling with, so there is enough space for everyone to sleep and hang out. If you want certain features, like an advanced music system or an area to hang out, then make sure to look for those during the selection process.

Once you have all of the above figured out, the most laborious part is done and you'll pretty much be set until you actually arrive at the boat rental site.

Gather Supplies

How to Charter a Boat for Travel

Most charter boats will be equipped with emergency supplies such as a rubber dinghy, flares, some replacement parts, life vests, first aid kits, a fire extinguisher, and sometimes emergency rations. However, you'll generally need to provide food. You can pay the company to stock the galley, or you can buy the food yourself. Either way, make a meal plan to have all the food supplies you need for the trip.

Make The Most Of The Boat

How to Charter a Boat for Travel

Most boats come with kitchens, showers, music systems, and maybe even a BBQ, so utilise everything to make for a great trip! If you choose to tie up at night, you'll likely pay a fee but will have closer access to land and its amenities. Get as much use out of your boat rental as possible by using it as a place to relax, hang out, sleep and eat.

Clean Up And Ship Out

How to Charter a Boat for Travel

In order to avoid fees, leave the boat in the same condition that it was when you arrived including removing trash. This will help you get the deposit back, which is usually around 25% of the overall charter cost. If you like the company that you've used, keep them in mind for future travels since you know they provide an acceptable level of quality both with equipment and customer service.

While it isn't for everyone and it can be expensive, sailing offers a relaxing and unique experience not easily found on other forms of transportation. If you want a way to get away from it all without having to be too far from civilisation, try charting a boat for your next trip.


    Nice article,

    for direct chartering experience (as skipper) would add something about the great feeling of freedom and simplicity as well as greateness of constant contact with nature. Sailing is a great way of spending holidays and see places you cannot see from land side.

    to give an example and make it clearer, now I am chartering in Naples area, Procida, Ischia, Capri, Amalfi Coast, and less famous yet amazingly beautiful Pontine Island. Nothing stops a me and clients (let' use the world crew) to stop on a harbor, spend a day in land to go and visit Pompei, Ravello, Naples and the Vesuvio vulcano, as an example) and sleeping in some unique coves not reachable land side. or just stop in front of a nice coastal village, get the rubber boat, spending a few hours enjoying it, and in the evening sleep a few hundred meter off, enjoying silence and village view in full quietness.

    Or decide never to step on land and just living a week .

    So sailing is very unique indeed

    Something important to be said is that

    a good skipper always starts the week with a briefing which explain program and explain the boat essentials. it is a good way to start knowing each other

    weather and sea conditions are essential, which means that in case of bad weather plans can change to guarantee the highest safety to crew. Plan changes are always shared with clients and good navigation options, or alternative, are chosen also to grant holiday is always great

    Normally skippers do not cook as duty, as our main duty is provide experiences and safe navigation. if client do jot want to cook than is strongly suggested to hire a hostess. of course skippers know to cook and often happen but it is not to be expected as a rule

    Skipper is the commander and he has full responsibility for crew safety. He is responsible to assure you spend a great holiday and sailing experience

    Sea sickness nowadays is easily fought with great medicines and remedies. we too feel sea sick from time to time but never show ))) so do not worry. Only a few % of people suffer of chronicle sea sickness, all the others have only to give time to their body to get acquainted with movement.

    the type of holiday you want to do is up to you. it can be full relax, or you can participate to sailing. action, under skipper instruction. I personally love to share my knowledge with clients who are willing to help, assuring what they do is safe for them

    Sailors do jot say good buy or good luck but "fair wind"


    fair wind to all of you

    Captain Luca

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