Rent your sailboat
No matter where in the world you prefer to sail and you keep going back to, you would no doubt be sad if it was suddenly overflowing with plastic waste or if the corals were dead due to bleaching.
Here are 4 simple things you can do to help preserve your favourite destination and to keep it in its best condition.
Remember that it's possible to purchase a travel insurance through Seatravel.
Please be aware that you are not covered by public health insurance when travelling to countries like Turkey or other countries outside the EU. Your return trip is never covered by public health insurance.
It is also possible to purchase a cancellation insurance through Seatravel. This covers in case of accidents, illness, divorce, etc. before your trip and the affected traveller will be able to get his/her share of the cost covered.
The boat's insurance does not cover deliberate damage or carelessness, and the persons on board, personal property and liability are also not covered by the insurance. Therefore, we offer a separate travel insurance and cancellation insurance which covers in case of sickness before the start of the holiday. Contact us for insurance terms and conditions.
For a sailing holiday, it is required that the skipper has a certificate of proficiency in navigation as well as some sailing experience. Co-skipper must also have some sailing experience. A few months before the sailing holiday, you will need to send us a copy of your sailing certificates, a description of your sailing experience, a crew list and a copy of your and your co-skippers’ passports. We will then send these documents to the base, who will issue a special certificate for you, the hired boat and week. Sending the documents to the base in advance reduces the risk of unnecessary waiting time before your charter.
For yacht charters in Croatia, it is also required that one person on board holds a VHF-radio certificate or the new SRC certificate.
If you do not have the necessary sailing certificates or experience or maybe feel a little insecure at the prospect of sailing in foreign waters, it is possible to hire a skipper to sail for you.
The indicated deposit is deposited with VISA-/Euro-/MasterCard or in cash. Make sure that the spending limit on your credit card is sufficient for the deposit to be blocked. For security reasons, several credit cards have a maximum spending limit of €2,000-3,000. This limit can be reached very quickly when you start off with blocking the deposit covering the excess on the boat. Bring several credit cards check that you have enough money for your holiday at home. The amount is refundable after the return of an undamaged boat at the agreed upon time and place and in a tidy condition. It can take up to three or four weeks before the security deposit is released on your credit card. This is due to the transaction time between the boat rental company, credit card company and your bank.
Alternatively, with most charter companies you can purchase a non-refundable risk insurance that eliminates/reduces the deposit. Boat insurance does not cover intentional damage or negligence. With both types of insurance, the people on board, their personal property and liability are not covered by the insurance.
Before leaving home, you can also take out external charter insurance with Pantaenius Insurance. This insurance must be bought online and covers in case of an accident during the holiday. The insurance that only covers the excess, Pantaenius calls "Bond Insurance Plus" and is found at the bottom of the page – we cannot help in purchasing it. It is an external insurance, so when arriving at the base you'll have the excess blocked as usual. If an accident occurs, the insurance you have taken out with Pantaenius will cover any possible damage. This insurance can be taken out through this link: Pantaenius Bond Insurance.
If you sail with a skipper, you still must make the deposit - the skipper is responsible for the boat and sailing, and you're not liable for any damages caused by him.
Pack light and sporty - preferably in soft bags. Although the boats are spacious and well designed, it is difficult to stow away suitcases on a boat. You cannot expect the charter company to store your luggage if you arrive before your check-in time.
Flipflops and snorkel kit provide great opportunities to explore life beneath the surface. Remember a T-shirt. Your back may easily get sunburned during the many hours of snorkelling.
The best and cheapest way to get from the airport to the base is to go to the airport’s website and look at the different possibilities for transfer there. You can usually book a transfer on the website. The address of the base can be found by clicking on the link in one the emails that you have received from us.
Upon arrival, you must present yourselves at the base office where the final paperwork will be handed out and signed. Upon arrival, you will be given a good and thorough instruction in good English in the boat's use, etc. by the base personnel. Let the skipper and co-skipper participate in this instruction - you will be given a lot of information, and two people will hear and perceive more than just one person, and too many people may cause confusion. The instruction is an important part of the sailing holiday, because not only will the boat's structure and operation be shown and tested, but the instructors will also gladly provide all their tips and advice on anchorages, nice places to visit, swimming and snorkelling sites and much more. Do a thorough review of the boat yourselves - it's easier to fix any deficiencies before starting from the base than it will be if you discover it along the way.
In case of arrival after the base's closing hours, please give notice well in advance. Please indicate your flight number and arrival time on the crew list. This allows the base personnel to leave you a key to the boat so that you can board it for the night. Check-in of the boat will happen the next morning when the base opens. Note, however, that most bases are closed on Sundays, but if they know that you will be arriving after hours on Saturday night, someone will come to meet you on Sunday morning.
It is often possible to purchase early check-in, e.g., at 1 PM-2 PM. Guests who have purchased early check-in will be prioritised. This also means that those who have not purchased early check-in cannot expect to gain access to the boat earlier than usual. When chartering with a company that does not offer the option of an early check-in, you may contact the company by telephone (the phone number is available through the link to: "About the port of departure" in your order confirmation) around 11:00-11:30 AM on the day of the takeover. By this time, they will have an idea of when the boat is expected to be ready for takeover. Neither Seatravel nor the charter company can say anything about the possibility of an early check-in of the boat before this time, as the boat must first be returned and handed over by those who chartered the boat the week before.
The base staff can refer you to a nearby supermarket. There is usually an agreement with a supermarket for free pickup and transport of goods. Deciding what to purchase is simple - you will need something from every shelf, as the boat is empty.
In Croatia, you can order provisioning directly to the boat via Jam Yachtsupply
In Greece, you can order provisioning directly to the boat via Yachtness
Buy plenty of drinking water and do not drink the water in the boat taps. According to our experience, each person drinks about 1½ litres per day.
Ensure that the water tanks are full before departing from the base harbour. Save water - do not do the dishes under running water. Fill up the water tanks whenever possible. If the tank is completely emptied, the pump motor will run continuously and thus overheat. Turn off the electric water pump, if this happens. There will only be hot water when the engine has been running for at least 30 minutes. After showering in the toilet room, the water on the floor can be pumped out by activating the pump button on the wall, if it is not pumped out automatically.
On the boat, there are bed linen, ordinary towels and tea towels included in the price or comfort package (be sure to check that there is enough for everyone). At some companies, linen and towels are paid for separately.
You will find lifejackets onboard but check before departure that there are vests that fit each person. Other sizes are handed out by the base personnel. For small children, we recommend that you bring along your own lifejacket. There are stricter requirements for lifejackets in rental boats. Therefore, you will often find that the lifejackets are very large and clumsy. - see picture below:
If you wish to bring your own lifejacket, you may. Just check with the airline that you can bring it.
There are good and detailed charts on board - check that all the charts are there for your desired sail area. There are at least 1 GPS in all the boats, and most are also equipped with a chart plotter. However, the chart plotter may be located down in the cabin.
Usually, you´ll see a lot fewer markings in the southern waters than we are used to in Northern Europe. That is because it is normally much easier to sail here. As a rule, you can sail where there is water and, from experience, the base commander will be very careful to point out reefs and islands that you need to pay extra attention to not hit. When sailing in the Caribbean, keep in mind that here the IALA system B is often used, entering the ports with the red buoys to starboard. Their mnemonic reads: "Red Right Returning". That means keeping the red buoys to the right when returning to the harbour.
Night sailing is not allowed in charter boats.
If problems arise during your holiday, you have gotten a contact number for the base, which you must call before you begin to fix something yourself. Staff members will do what they can to remedy the situation either by phone or by coming to you. If you find any deficiencies, you must report it to the base immediately – do not leavel it for the delivery of the boat, as the staff will not have been given the chance to resolve the deficiencies and any subsequent complaints will not be valid.
You dock with the aft to the quay: letting the anchor go at a suitable distance to the pier and hill the boat in. Other places, you pull a mooring line out of the water and moor - also with the aft to the quay. It requires some practice, but once you've tried it a few times, it is no problem. Be careful, if the boat is equipped with a bow thruster and make sure that the loose mooring line does not come into the bow thruster. If necessary, tighten the towline to the dinghy, so the mooring does not get caught in the screw during this manoeuvre. Check out this video about docking in the Mediterranean, with and without mooring line (lazy line): Click Here
Look for the direction in which the other boats have cast their anchor, and cast it, so it doesn’t cross. Let it go in good time - plenty of chain is available. When you leave the spot, sail out (remember to not drag your boat out by the windlass) and pull the anchor straight up - this minimizes the risk of pulling up another anchor.
There may be fixed mooring lines, in which case you should not use your anchor. Read about this in your water pilot. A sign on the dock with an inverted anchor indicates that you must not drop your anchor here.
In the Caribbean, you generally always dock at a designated buoy. One may proceed fairly close to the coast - please mind the corals. Many coral reefs along with their fantastic animal and fish life have been destroyed by sailors with a dragging anchor chain. Use buoys, where possible! There are many designated mooring buoys = Night-time Moorings = you must pay to dock at these buoys. Some places there are designated buoys = "Day Time Moorings" in different colours that can only be used during the day when anchoring/diving in protected coral areas. In The Virgin Islands, you will get a Day Time Mooring Permit - this is paid in advance as part of the boat rental price.
In Greece, there are not really any harbour fees - max. €5 for a week - but expect no facilities such as showers, toilets etc. You often dock at a tavern or alongside the local fishermen, private yachts and /or smaller ferries that sail between the islands.
In Croatia, they have built 18 modern ACI marinas with lots of good facilities and great service. A dinghy from the marina will often greet you as you're approaching, and they will help you find a place and with the mooring. They also arrange the paperwork with the harbour master. It is relatively expensive in these marinas. If there are many boats, or if you do not want to pay the expensive port money, it's usually possible to use a mooring buoy located at a distance from the quayside. This is a much cheaper option, but it's not free.)
For other areas in the Mediterranean, the port charges are somewhat expensive, but the service level at the marinas are generally high.
In the Caribbean, a night-time Mooring typically costs around $30.
Croatia: In Croatia, it may be an advantage to reserve a berth in a harbour in advance. This can be done at e.g., Porthop or http://www.my-sea.com/. Here you can also see the price level of harbour fees.
Greece: First come, first served!
Mallorca: For the public ports (Ports IB). Otherwise, it's first come, first served.
Italy: Here the practice is to call the harbour office over VHF as soon as you are within reach and reserve a berth.
In the Caribbean: At night-time mooring typically costs around $30 and cannot be reserved in advance.
On the boats, there are 12 V "cigarette outlets" for recharging video cameras and mobile phones. It's a good idea to bring an inverter that converts 12 V to 220 V, so you can always charge your tablets, camera, mobile. etc. Some of the newer boats have regular outlets.
We recommend placing an ice pack at the bottom of the refrigerator and turning on the motor for a few hours daily, as a minimum, for charging the batteries. Turn off the refrigerator at night if possible. There are a lot of other things aboard that requires power.
Tip: Place the rack from the oven at the bottom of the fridge so food does not get wet.
There are plenty of waste containers for disposal at the dock in all ports.
Tip: Waste can be assembled in black trash bags and stored in the anchor storage compartment.
Never put paper in the toilet. Collect it in a plastic bag next to the toilet. Most boats are equipped with a holding tank. If the holding tank is not empty when you receive the boat, be sure to open the valve as the first thing you do when you come out of the harbour. It's a bad start to the holiday to start with a clogged toilet. Never put paper in the toilet but gather it in a plastic bag next to the toilet. Remember to empty the holding tank before returning the boat.
Formally, the rules for emptying holding tanks also apply in the Mediterranean, but in practice, they aren't implemented. It's almost impossible to get far enough away from land to be able to comply with the rules. On many boats, it is therefore normal for the charter company to have blocked the valve to the holding tank in the open position. This is done because the holding tanks and hoses used in modern boats are not made in 100% odour-proof material. This results in a bad smell developing in the lavatories when the boat is around three to five years old. This process will be delayed if the holding tank is not full all the time. Therefore, it is entirely deliberate that the charter companies make this change on the boats.
When a boat is 2-4 years old, it often happens that meters for diesel, water and holding tanks no longer work. Be careful not to run the diesel tank empty even if the meter shows a full tank. Use common sense combined with the knowledge that various tank gauges do not function correctly.
In the ports, most boats are docked with the stern to the quay. You may be a bit unfamiliar with this "reverse parking". It's a good idea to do a reverse test as the first thing after you have left the base port. Sail forward by 4-5 knots. Put the boat in neutral. Check that the boat is sailing perfectly straight. Hold the wheel and put the engine in reverse. It's very likely that the boat "pulls" towards one side. Take note of which side the boat naturally prefers and use it when you must choose which way you will turn when you need to "park backwards". As with all other parts in sailing, it is an advantage when the boat works with you and not against you during the manoeuvres.
If you take the dinghy in tow, then pull it close to the hedge, especially in rough weather.
When you go sailing in warmer climates, it is tempting to open the hatches during the voyage to get some cooler air into the cabin. Be careful that especially the genoas do not pull the skylights of when you tack or jibe.
If the shower is not working, it’s probably because the hose is in a knot. You will find a hatch in the stern on the side where the shower is placed, where the hose can be unknotted.
Many places have designated buoys, which you may stay overnight. Be aware that you will probably be charged for this. Tip: When you choose to moor at a designated buoy, it is very difficult to reach down from the bow to tie on to the mooring. It is much easier to tie to the mooring while sitting on the stern platform.
You must be ready to leave the boat no later than the agreed upon time. The base will be obliged to charge a fee for each hour that the return of the boat is delayed. The boat must be returned in a neat and cleaned condition. Bed linen must be removed and waste carried ashore, even if you've paid for compulsory final cleaning. Remember to empty the refrigerator and freezer.
You must be ready to leave the boat no later than the agreed upon time, which is normally around 9AM. The base is obligated to charge a fee for every hour that the return of the boat is delayed. The boat must be returned in a neat and cleaned condition. Bed linen must be removed, and waste carried ashore, even if you've paid for compulsory final cleaning. Remember to empty the refrigerator and freezer.
You will receive the boat with full diesel tanks, and it must be returned with refilled tanks unless there is another agreement in place.
From 12th of January 2009, stricter requirements are in place for travellers to the USA under the Visa Waiver Program. No later than 72 hours before departure travellers must provide a range of information via the website: https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov.
It should be emphasized that the submission of this information, as well as the accuracy of this, is the sole responsibility of the traveller. Lack of, or inadequate submission of information, may lead to extensive consequences for the traveller. Seatravel has no liability for the (correct) submission of the information mentioned above, in which case Seatravel cannot be met with demands that may emerge due to missing or incomplete information. Questions relating to the process of submitting the required information should be directed to the US embassy.
As of October 31st, 2009, all passengers are obligated to independently submit the following personal information to their travel agent or airline company to be able to travel to/via USA (registration of APIS - Advanced Passenger Information System):
It should be emphasized that there are more stringent safety procedures for luggage at entry and stopover in the USA. When you arrive at your first arrival airport in the USA, you often must pick up your luggage from the baggage claim and then deliver your luggage at the customs clearance, as they will provide transportation onwards. Many airline companies erroneously inform at check in that baggage is checked through all the way, and that the travellers don't need to pick up their luggage.
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