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Excitement and Generosity Drive Private Yacht Charter Maven into 2016

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Happy New Year 1800yachtcharters logo
About a year ago, we rebranded our business with a new focus, driven by our motto, “What if we built our business for Generosity?”

As leaders in arranging Mediterranean yacht charter vacations, along with private yacht holidays throughout Greece and the Caribbean, we recognized an opportunity, and an obligation, to grow our business for the  greater social good.

Realizing you can rent a yacht from a number of qualified charter brokers around the world, we came up with a simple reason to book your yacht with us:   “Charter a Yacht and Change the World.”

Wow – what a year 2015 turned out to be!

We are so proud of our clients – both repeat charterers and new customers.  They embraced our commitment to sustainability and generosity.

With enthusiasm, they chose our reusable water bottles in lieu of disposable plastic bottles (to help reduce plastic pollution in our oceans). When we told them a portion of their charter cost would be donated to charity in their name, and that we wanted their input in selecting the charity, they were quick to direct multiple donations to their favorite causes.

Jana Sheeder poses with Guy Harvey representative - both holding mooring reef buoys

Thanks to our clients, among MANY other things, we were able to:

  • Install multiple mooring buoys in Biscayne Bay, the hub of the Florida yacht charter marketplace, to protect coral reefs from damage from boat anchors, as well as to educate the public about the plight of coral reefs and historical underwater wrecks.
  • Purchase a medical autoclave to sterilize surgical instruments for an international group that provides low-cost spay and neutering services for dogs, cats, rabbits, and other animals, enabling the medical team to alter many more pets and rescued animals each day.
  • Help cover the cost of private luxury Virgin Islands yacht charter vacations on a 155 foot superyacht for veteran wounded soldiers and their spouses.

Looking back, 2015 was a fantastic year.

We enter 2016 with a number of new yachts and new destinations to offer our clients.  We have the brand new expedition yacht LEGEND, available for experiencing Greenland and Norway’s Fjords; and  the world’s largest sailing yacht for charter made of wood, the yacht LAMIMA, available in the exotic islands of Thailand and Burma.

Our team is energized to share these yachts and destinations with our clients – for each charter vacation will give our clients a chance to reconnect with family and friends, embrace diverse cultures, and rejuvenate mind, body, and spirit.

Together, we will make a difference.  When you choose to live a generous life, you start to change…and so does the world around you!!!

Happy New Year,

Jana Sheeder, President of 1-800 Yacht Charters poses with garbage bag during bay cleanup

Jana Sheeder, President of 1-800 Yacht Charters, cleaning plastic and debris from coastline near her home in South Florida




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Seabirds Eating Plastic At Alarming Rate

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The National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America has released a disturbing study detailing the threat of plastic pollution in the ocean, and its impact on seabirds.  Plastic trash is found in 90 percent of seabirds. The rate is growing steadily as global production of plastics increases.

According to the Academy, the “Threat of plastic pollution to seabirds is global, pervasive, and increasing.”

seabird surrounded by plastic and trash in yacht charter destination

The areas of impact facing the greatest threats are the southern boundary of the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic Oceans.

Plastic found inside birds includes bottle caps, plastic shopping bags, and tiny pieces the size of rice that have been broken down by the sun and waves.

After reading the study’s abstract, Jana Sheeder, President of 1-800 Yacht Charters commented on the health impact facing the seabirds.  “Living along the coast of South Florida, I have seen the small plastic pieces of plastic that wash up into our mangroves and our shoreline,” says Sheeder.  “The wildlife rescue groups that we support tell us sharp-edged plastic pieces can kills birds by punching holes in their internal organs. Some seabirds eat so much plastic, there is little room in their stomachs for food.  Lack of food affects their body weight and jeopardizes their health.”

Sheeder echoes the concerns of scientists and environmentalists:  “At current levels, virtually every seabird will be consuming plastic by 2050.  If we don’t address this issue, we are looking at a major contributing factor to the possible extinction of many seabird species. We can’t let that happen.”  

Sheeder feels her yachting industry can do more in terms of effective waste management to reduce the threat.  “Almost all of the yachts we represent for private yacht charter vacations have the onboard capability to generate fresh drinking water. Now, when our clients request plastic bottled water to be placed onboard prior to their charter, we encourage them to forgo plastic and drink the yacht’s purified water.” 

In lieu of plastic water bottles, Sheeder even offers her clients complimentary reusable beverage containers.

Jana Sheeder, President of 1-800 Yacht Charters poses with garbage bag during bay cleanup

Jana Sheeder, President of 1-800 Yacht Charters, cleaning plastic and debris from coastline near her home in South Florida


Sheeder is confident the tide can be turned. “While the report by the National Academy of Sciences paints a grim future, it also points out that effective waste management can reduce the threat.  Protecting our future means preserving the marine environment and promoting responsibility onboard our yachts, in the seas, and along our shores.”

Sheeder further comments, “Everyone can do something.  Even just one thing every day.  It’s not hard to take that extra moment to help another. Sadly, so many prefer just to stick their heads in the sand rather than being role models and making a difference.”

She encourages others to:

  • Be the change and leave all areas better than you found them
  • Pick up trash
  • Properly dispose of your own trash
  • Give back to the environment, to animals, and to others
  • Practice random acts of kindness to people, animals, your community, and the environment
  • Show your #Gratitude for the beauty of the wildlife and joy that they give you by protecting them
  • Use reusable totebags (versus plastic shopping bags) and be a 1-800 Yacht Charters Eco Hero!

Calling all eco heroes!   Comment on this post and include your email address,  and we will contact you to send you your own customized totebag so that you can be an #ecohero with us!

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Trash in Luxury Yacht Charter Marinas. It’s Simple to Make a Difference.

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sampling of debris picked up on dock in a marina - washer rope bolt fishing line plastic cloth

We took this photo during the Yachts Miami Beach Boat Show.  We were inspecting several private luxury yacht charter vessels docked at the Deep Harbour Island Gardens marina, near downtown Miami.  As we walked along the docks, I noticed our company President, Jana Sheeder, often pausing, bending down, picking up something, and putting it in her “Eco-Hero” tote bag.  I asked Jana what she was picking up, and she paused and poured a few of the contents of her bag onto a locker box on the dock.  “Take a look,” she sighed. “This debris can easily end up in the water where it becomes part of the ocean pollution problem, as well as a threat to birds and marine life.”

 So, I snapped the photo you see above…


When I look at this photo, I see beautiful superyachts that serve as a gateway to experience the wonders of our oceans.  I see a segment of the tourism industry – private luxury yacht charter – that generates millions of dollars of revenue annually.  I see a support network of thousands of crewmembers, dockhands, marina workers, and maintenance and repair staff – all supporting their families from a livelihood that is inextricably dependent upon healthy oceans.

For me, the trash in the foreground of the photo is a harsh reminder that the refuse we see floating in marinas and along the seawalls and walkways is a direct threat to the health of our waterways, and therefore, a threat to our own livelihood.

As you read this blog, I can guess what some of you are thinking – “I’m not part of the problem – I would never throw trash in the water.”  Good intention, ladies and gents, but you or someone you know might still be directly responsible for pollution in our waterways.



It’s a common misconception that most trash comes from people throwing things directly into the water…  

“Believe it or not,  much to the trash in our waterways comes from litter thrown out of cars, litter that blows from surrounding areas into the waterways, illegal dumping, and this item really irks me – cigarettes left on the ground,” says Jana.  “During a big rainstorm, all that junk ends up in the watershed, and some of it eventually makes its way down to the bays, harbors, marinas, beaches, and worse – onto our fragile coral reefs and into the stomachs of marine life (like fish and turtles) and shorebirds.”



Efforts are underway to rid our waterways of trash.  In Baltimore, Maryland, two (rather cute) trash wheels are pulling debris from the harbor before it flows into Chesapeake Bay. Mr. Trash Wheel (male) and Professor Trash Wheel (female with eyelashes) are solar and hydro-powered trash interceptors in place in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. Over a million pounds of trash has been pulled out of the water by Mr. Trash Wheel since it was installed in May 2014 (Professor Trash Wheel was installed in December 2016).

Mr. Trash Wheel in a marina


Professor Trash Wheel - with eyelashes

John Kellett (a true ECO-HERO!) invented the trash wheels and tracks the debris collected.  Since May 2014, when Mr Trash Wheel went operational, almost nine million cigarette butts and over 300,000 plastic bags have been collected.   Additionally, Mr. Trash Wheel picks up an average of 14,000 Styrofoam containers a month – second only to cigarettes.

Kellett echoes Jana’s thoughts that the problem starts on shore.  “I thought we were being ambitious with the harbor, but now people are talking about cleaning up the ocean,” Kellett said. “But I think the most effective solution is to get the trash before it gets there.” 


No matter where you live, you CAN make a difference and help protect our natural resources.  Let’s review some simple steps we can all take:

  • No butts about it!  Are you a smoker, or know someone who is?  Don’t throw your cigarette butts out of your car window or onto the ground.  It takes just a second more to locate an ashtray or garbage receptacle.
  • Say “NO” to single use, disposable plastic products.  Reusable shopping bags are available everywhere!  They’re affordable and many places give them away as promotional items.  Please think twice when your grocer asks you, “paper or plastic?”  Say no thank you to either option, and hand your grocer a reusable bag.  Many stores give discounts (Target and Whole Foods, for example) when you use them, and you can turn your discount around and donate it to charity, through the store!
  • Pick up at least one piece of “someone else’s trash” and properly dispose of it today.  If everyone did this, it would make a HUGE impact and keep trash from finding its way into our waterways and environment.  It’s amazing how many people just don’t care…  (Many people refer to picking up refuse left by others as “karma trash,” or cleaning up poop at dog parks as “karma poops.”  It’s just good KARMA to help the earth and the environment!)
  • Be the change you want to see in the world.  If you have children, lead them by example when they are young and/or are especially eager to learn.  Show them that you refrain from disposable plastic bags… Get them to drink from reusable water bottles and not plastic water bottles.  Take them to the beach and show them the pollution that washes up on the shore and share with them how it harm the birds, creatures, and corals in the sea.   Track down a video of a sea turtle eating a plastic bag (thinking that it is a jellyfish)…or a seabird or sea lion with a plastic six-pack ring around its neck (which can easily eventually kill the animal).  They will follow your lead!

What do I hope will happen?  I look forward to the day that Mr. Trash Wheel and Professor Trash Wheel are forced to take days off because there is no debris for them to clean up!

Jana Sheeder sitting on the aft couch of a yacht in a marina

Jana Sheeder, President of 1-800 Yacht Charters and 1-800 BAREBOAT, with Eco-Hero Reusable Tote Bag


If you are ready to make a difference, text HERO to 305-720-7245 and we’ll send you an “Eco-Hero” tote bag – just like the ones Jana carries with her and also uses at boat shows.  It’s Jana’s gift to you – from Jana and our team at 1-800 Yacht Charters!

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