There are two types of luxury yacht charter vacations: Fully-Crewed and Bareboat.
Fully-crewed charters are for travelers who prefer to leave all aspects of the yacht's operation in the hands of a skipper and a host of able-bodied seamen (and or women).
Crewed catamaran charters, for example, are currently the most popular form of yachting in the Caribbean, with charter guests boarding 50 to 80 foot sailing catamarans in locations such as St. Thomas (USVI) and Tortola (BVI), and sailing with a captain, first mate, and cook. The crew operates the yacht and prepares all of the meals.
Conversely, a bareboat charter means the yacht is rented to the charterer without a skipper or accompanying crew. The charterer and his travel companions navigate the yacht and perform all duties on board.
The closest analogy is the rental car market, and the fleet of vehicles operated by companies like Hertz, Enterprise, and Avis.
In some regions of the world, the lead charterer will be required to hold some type of license in order to reserve a bareboat.
Whether a license is required or not, before they can rent a bareboat charter vessel, ALL prospective charterers must submit a boating resume detailing their qualifications and boating experience.
A typical sailing resume, for example, will require the following details:
Please let us know which of the following you have experience of:
Picking up a mooring
Which Qualifications do you hold?
Basic Coastal Cruising
Advanced Coastal Cruising
Basic Small Boat Sailing
Trailerable Multihull Standard
The bottom line to enjoying a self-drive boat vacation: If you have sailed before, even if you have not spent much time as the skipper, you will most likely qualify to charter a bareboat yacht.
While some of the more technical destinations, like a Greek yacht charter will require more experience, an understanding of basic seamanship, boat handling and navigation is all that is required for a Caribbean yacht charter or a bare boat rental in many of our locations.