There is nothing better to spend a good holiday than sailing a boat on the enchanting blue waters of the Mediterranean. However, the process of chartering a yacht can sometimes seem confusing and even intimidating. Here are our practical tips for a worry-free yacht charter experience. Please do not hesitate to contact us, we are available to assist you with your yacht charter project and answer any questions you may have.
Calling on the services of a yacht charter specialist
It is essential to use the services of professionals for your boating vacation. Thanks to their experience and knowledge of the rental market, they will be able to advise you on the best options and destinations for your cruise project. Yachts are designed and fitted out to meet the requirements of their owners, they differ in their characteristics and layout and in the conditions in which they are found, while the crews differ in their skills and personalities. Only experienced professionals who inspect the yachts, meet the crews and become familiar with the equipment, can direct you to the boat and crew that best suits your needs.
Be precise about your expectations and needs
With a large number of yachts available for charter across the Mediterranean, you will need to be specific about your desires and needs. When requesting availability, please make sure to give as many details as possible to your charter planner and in particular the number of passengers and the adult/child distribution, the size of the boat or possibly your budget, your dates and the cruising area. Every detail is important. Let us know if you have children and therefore need a family-oriented charter crew, if you need a shipowner’s cabin and a VIP cabin of equal size because you are sharing the cost of the charter with a friend, if the passengers require special equipment such as a lift or bathing platform or if you are planning to go scuba diving… Your indications and details will allow us to refine our selection of boats available for charter.
Once you have selected a yacht, your charter planner will submit suggestions for your cruise itinerary. Your comments are essential to make your cruise unique and memorable. Whether it’s water activities or discoveries ashore, the possibilities are endless when chartering a yacht. However, follow our advice, it would be unfortunate to turn what should be a relaxing vacation into a frantic race to complete an overloaded cruise itinerary.
Check the terms of your yacht charter contract
Once your charter yacht has been chosen, your charter planner will draw up a charter contract. For yacht charters in the Mediterranean, the most commonly used contractual document is a standard contract provided by MYBA – The Worldwide Yachting Association. Each contract has a unique serial number and will usually be signed by 4 parties: the owner, the charterer, the owner’s representative and the charter planner. The document should include details such as the name of the yacht, charter dates, port of embarkation/disembarkation, cruising area and detailed cost – all of which will be discussed with you in advance. The charter contract also specifies the terms of payment. Usually, the charterer pays 50% of the charter fee when signing the contract and transfers the remaining 50% as well as the local tax and APA one month before the start of the charter.
Fill out the preference questionnaire carefully
After signing the rental agreement, you will be asked to fill out a preference questionnaire. This document contains various questions designed to get to know the passengers: habits, state of health, food and drink preferences and dietary needs. When you fill out the document, make sure you have a small discussion with the rest of the passengers. This document will be given to your captain to help the crew prepare for your charter and to supply the yacht before you board. The Captain will also reserve berths in marinas in advance (subject to availability) and organize activities. The more detailed the document, the better prepared your crew will be to meet your specific needs. The Preference Questionnaire is key to making your yacht charter an absolute luxury in terms of service.
Make sure you understand the payment structure
We remind you that the rental fee is not the total cost that you will eventually have to pay. Your charter planner will inform you of additional charges, including local tax and APA (Advance Provisioning Allowance) – possibly a repositioning fee to cover the cost of transporting the boat to the requested port of embarkation. If you have any questions about the subject you can read our yacht charter prices article on our blog. As far as tipping is concerned, it is customary for a charterer who is satisfied with the service provided to thank the crew. As a general rule, the tip represents about 10% of the charter fee – adjusted up or down depending on your level of satisfaction. Remember to give your envelope to the Captain to reward the entire crew.