Considering a yacht charter for your next holiday? Perhaps it’s your first time and you are unsure of what is involved, or the necessary steps involved? If you’re looking to make some unforgettable memories, a yacht charter can be the ticket to your dream vacation. The thrill of chartering across blue waters, dropping anchor in secluded bays, and living the luxe life on a floating palace – what’s not to love? However, like all first-time adventures, organising your first time yacht charter can daunting without the right help and guidance.
With over 10 years of experience organising yacht charters worldwide, our team of yacht experts at 212 Yachts have sat down to create the ultimate guide for those looking to charter. We’ve rounded up the seven most common mistakes people make when chartering a yacht for the first time. By the end of this article, you’ll be equipped to ensure smooth sailing for your maiden voyage.
1. Not Choosing a Reputable Yacht Charter Broker
In the yachting world, all yacht charter brokers who have achieved MYBA (Mediterranean Yacht Broker Association) member status, have access to the same database of yachts- worldwide. You may ask, ‘so why does it matter what broker I choose?’. Well, it is very important. Although professionally crewed charter yachts can be chartered by a myriad of yacht broker companies, ultimately your experience will come down to the work of the yacht charter broker. From organising meals onboard to the best destinations to visit, the level of personalised service offered by your yacht charter broker is paramount to ensuring an amazing experience onboard. So before you start researching yachts, or perhaps even locations, do your research on the best charter brokers available. Check reviews, ask for client feedback and get chatting to the broker directly- you will soon get a sense of whether they are the right broker for you.
2. Not Doing Enough Research
Yes, the internet is flooded with pictures of gleaming yachts and azure waters, but don’t let the aesthetics blind you. One of the most common mistakes first-time yacht charterers make is not doing enough due diligence. Ensure you:
- Check Reviews: As mentioned earlier, check the Google Ratings and read reviews about yacht charter companies.
- Ask for References: Good charter companies will be happy to provide references from past clients.
- Understand the Area: Familiarise yourself with your chosen destination. Are there any specific sailing conditions, regulations, or seasonal factors to consider? A good charter broker should be very familiar with the various yacht charter locations worldwide, and should guide you to make the best decisions.
3. Not Matching the Yacht to Your Needs
There’s more to choosing a yacht than just its size or looks. Consider your group’s needs and ensure the yacht’s amenities match. For instance, if you’re traveling with kids, is the yacht child-friendly? If someone loves fine cuisine, is there a suitable chef who can provide this onboard? There are a lot of important things to consider when thinking about your first time yacht charter. Match the yacht to your vacation goals to avoid disappointment. The key here is to be open and honest with your yacht charter broker from the start. They will have a vast knowledge of the yachts for charter, and will listen to your requirements to find you the best array of options.
4. Not Respecting the Crew
While the yacht itself is crucial, the crew can make or break your experience. A seasoned crew will know the best spots, ensure safety, and cater to your needs. Your yacht charter broker will have knowledge of the good, and the bad, crews on yachts. Having organised hundreds of yacht charter experiences, they soon become aware from their clients of what yachts provide the ultimate experiences. When you do choose your favourite yacht, if you are happy with the service of the crew, it is important to respect their work while onboard. While tipping is a personal choice, remember that the crew works hard to ensure you have a fantastic time. Knowing standard tipping practices in the yachting industry is beneficial. Your yacht charter broker will best advise prior to the charter.
5. Forgetting to Communicate Preferences
As has been mentioned previously, ensuring you have an amazing yacht charter expert by your side when organising your charter is crucial. But yacht charter brokers are not mind-readers! The yacht charter is all about personalisation. You must ensure that you make clear to your yacht charter broker any items in particular you would like onboard, or any personal preferences that you feel would benefit your experience prior to boarding. Whether you have dietary restrictions, specific routes you’d like to explore, or activities you’d love to do, ensure you communicate your preferences well in advance. This ensures the crew can prepare accordingly.
A first time yacht charter is a magical experience. The freedom to plot your course, the luxury of a floating villa, and the adventures that await can make for lifetime memories. By avoiding these common pitfalls, you’ll be set to make the most of your maiden voyage. Our team of yacht experts at 212 Yachts would be more than happy to discuss your plans further, and ensure an amazing yacht charter experience for you and your guests.