There’s nothing more important than selecting a memorable destination for your first luxury yacht charter. It sets the tone for dreaming about future adventures in exotic locales. “Will it be a St. Lucia yacht charter this spring, or should we wait till summer and plan a Greece yacht charter vacation?”
But what about your fifth charter – or your sixth? You’ve “been there…done that…got the t-shirt.”
The preferred “brand” of superyacht now comes into play, and multi-repeat charterers find themselves daydreaming about a week “anywhere” on, perhaps, a brand new Perini Navi yacht charter.
At this point, selecting the right vessel for an odyssey at sea becomes a matter of personal tastes and expectations. But with dozens of yachts seeking rental business, how does a person choose?
Enter the professional charter broker.
More than a destination specialist, the charter broker knows the yachts and the crews that operate them. A good broker will work to identify a yacht and crew most compatible to a client’s lifestyle.
To do this, brokers attempt to delve into the customer’s personality and background by asking key questions: Where do you live? What are your hobbies? Do you like to entertain at home?
The answers to these type of queries helps the broker understand the overall lifestyle of the charterer. From this point, the broker can glean his or her records to identify yachts and crews that might be compatible with the charterer and his or her guests.
Jana Sheeder, the President of 1-800 Yacht Charters, explains the strategy. “If a client lives in a world of white-glove service and refined style, the broker must identify a crew that can deliver that same level of service.” She continues, “Crew, however, is only part of the equation, as the vessel’s decor and amenities must also be reflective of the client’s tastes.”
Many American clients prefer the style of a US-built ship, such as a Trinity or a Westport. European customers often prefer the old world elegance of a Feadship or Benetti.
For many multi-repeat customers, destination remains secondary to the pedigree of the yacht and the subsequent talents of the crew. Says Sheeder, “The key to success is understanding the client’s lifestyle before you begin to promote one yacht over another.” Sheeder concludes, “You don’t promote a yacht with an onboard spa and a masseuse to a client who doesn’t get manicures.”