A yacht charter broker operates as a travel agent specifically for yachts all over the world, they consider your needs, and search for the perfect fit of boat and crew for you. There is no cost to use their services. The owner of the yacht will pay them if you choose to book through their website
Good Brokers visit Boat shows Internationally every year, these are held over a few days and allow the broker to see the boat and meet the crew. In our case, we have previously been crew and have many connections Internationally with regards to boats and crew, we pride ourselves on making sure not only is the style of yacht a good fit for you, but that the personality of your crew fits too.
The owner of the yacht chooses a Clearing House, this business operates as the go between, between the boat and the broker, the clearing house manages the boats calendar of charters, they also collect the money for the charter, and keep it in an escrow account, until it is time to release it to the yacht.
A broker will offer you a selection of yachts to choose from, once you have decided, the broker can put what is known as a “ hold”with the clearing house that represents that boat, a “ hold” lasts for 2 weeks, this gives both you and the broker time to sort out contracts, time for you to look into airfares and put down a deposit. No one else can put a “ hold” on this yacht whie you are holding it, except if another broker has guests who wish to book the same dates and are willing to pay in cash, you can be “challenged” on those dates. Being “ challenged”, means that you have 48 ( business hours) to place a deposit on the dates you are holding, or lose those dates
Once it has been confirmed that the dates are open, the rate is checked, you will then sign the contract sent by your broker, you then make a deposit. The broker puts your money in escrow, either with the clearing house or a yacht broker trust fund. The crew on board the yacht are notified, by their clearing house, of your dates and the financial arrangements.If it is more than 6 months from your charter date, you will pay a 25% deposit immediately , and then a further 25% 6 months out, the remaining 50% is due approximately 2 months from your starting date,different boats do have different arrangements with regards to how the final payment is made. Some crew take the final payment on board in cash or travellers cheques, some boats only want it in advance. Your broker will know which way to go.10 days from your starting date, 35% of the charter fee is released to the boat from the escrow account, this enables the crew to provision for your charter. The balance is then paid out to the boat on the day of your charter.
Your broker will send you what is known as a “ preferance sheet”. this a series of questions pertaining to you and your group, which includes everything from, passport information, date of birth, travel plans, fins size, what your interests are for your charter ( eg sailing, diving, beach time, dining ashore, visiting bars, shore excursions, and special celebrations, and a series of questions relating to your menu for the week. Make sure you give the chef as much information as you can with regards to dietary requirements, dislikes, allergies, etc….), the broker will also give you contact information for the crew.
Your broker will immediately contact the clearinghouse and they will open those dates up. If the boat is rebooked for the same time frame, and at the same rate, you will receive a refund, less the brokers commission ( generally 15%)
If only a few days of the charter are rebooked, then the refund is prorated.Depending on the boat, in some cases a boat will move the dates around for you, with no penalty. Each case is different. It is wise to obtain travel insurance.
We have been in the charter yacht industry for the past 26 years both as crew on board yachts Internationally and also as brokers. We understand how important it is for you to find the perfect fit of both the yacht and the crew. We have insiders knowledge of the yachts and crew. We will be with you all the way, helping assist you with contracts, ensuring your money is safelty held, helping you with travel arrangements, and if you have any difficulties, we can opperate as the mediator, if necessary.
This means that there will be a crew on board with you for the entire charter, depending on the size of the boat, depends on the size of the crew, ranging from - Captain/Chef team, to engineers, 1st mates, stewardesses, deckhands.
The crew are their to assist with ensuring your trip is safe and comfortable. Your cabins are cleaned, your chef will provide you with daily meals. A crew member will assist with watersports or arranging shore activities. ( If you are happy with the crew it is encorouged for you to tip between 15 and 20% of the cost of the charter at the end of the week, this can be paid by cash, cheque or via credit card).
This means that your food and beverages are included in the cost of the charter, boats have a standard ships bar, that will include your preferances at moderate prices. If you are looking for more expensive spirits, wines, Champagne, this will need to be paid for separately.
This means that you have chosen to charter your boat with just a Captain and possibly a first mate.The Captain is in charge of the boat at all times, he may require your help at different times,setting sail, coming into a marina to dock the boat, assisting with anchoring the boat, this will be explained to you prior to these situations. You will pay extra for food provisions, fuel, water, dockage, etc…. You will be in charge of the cooking and cleaning, you are responsible for providing meals for your Captain.
This means that you are choosing to sail the boat yourself with your guests. You must be able to prove you are able to sail, on the first day of your charter, you will go out with a Captian from the yacht company, who will observe you doing basic sailing techniques to make sure you are capable. The boat will have the basics on board, for example, bed linens, basic kitchen untensils, some basic cleaning supplies, each yacht company will differ. You should be able to obtain snorkelling gear at no extra cost. You will need to arrange and pay for ingredients for your meals, extra cleaning supplies, the hiring of watersports gear, such as water skis, kayaks etc…
Each boat is different. In general most fully crewed yachts provide wifi, it is best to check. If you are bareboating, you will need to arrange for this prior to your trip by talking to the Charter Yacht Company you have chosen to use.
Tipping is an important part of the crews income. Crew work long days. If you are happy with your charter, the tipping rate ranges between 15 -20% of the full charter rate. Cash is most popular choice, but credit card payment via the boats clearing house can be used or payment via cheques.
Absolutely Yes! The term used to hire 2 or more boats for charter together for the week is known as Tandem charters. The crews of the boats will communicate together to ensure that everyone is following the same plan.