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Q: What is the cost of a crewed charter?
A: The cost of crewed charters vary depending on the size of vessel, power or sail, number of people on board, etc. The duration of the charter is usually a week, but can be any length. Generally, all food, beverages and water activities are included. Diving is usually extra.
The price per person starts around $1200. Motor yachts cost more than sailboats. Groups on larger yachts can often be less expensive per person than a couple on a small yacht. Yachts are available for parties of two or more. Large groups may prefer to charter more than one yacht and travel as a flotilla. This is very common, especially for corporate groups.
The summer season may be less expensive than winter in the Caribbean. Summer season is May 1st to December 14th. Winter season is December 15th to April 30th.
Christmas and New Years usually have an additional fee.
Dockage and shore excursions are extra.
Gratuities are customary when the service merits it. Remember that your crew work hard to ensure your vacation is a great one. They are your chef, bartender, tour guide, waiter, etc...
Q: What kind of activities are available?
A: All yachts have waters sports and will vary depending on equipment. These might include snorkeling, scuba diving, knee boarding, water-skiing, wind surfing, kayaking, fishing, and of course, sailing.
Most water sports are included but some are extra, and can be arranged by your crew. These would be diving and parasailing.
Onshore activities can be recommended by your crew and will vary depending on the island.
Q: What type of food and drinks are served?
A: The menus are designed around your food preferences. The chefs are excellent and can usually prepare any dish requested.
Drinks such as wine, beer and liquor are included as part of the "ship's bar". The amount and variety will vary depending on the cost of the charter with larger, more expensive yachts providing finer wines and premium liquors.
Q: Where do we go?
A: The itinerary is based on your preferences of activities. The crew know the territory very well and will tailor the cruise to fit your requests. The Virgin Islands and the Caribbean offer a tremendous variety of bays, anchorages and towns to visit.
It isn't possible to see everything in one visit. You may need to adjust your itinerary to accommodate your schedule and activities you have chosen or return again in the future for another charter.
Q. What should we bring?
First, only bring soft-sided luggage since space is limited and storage is easier. Also hard luggage can damage woodwork and paint.
For clothing, bring casual wear, mostly shorts and T-shirts, and swimsuits. A few of the more formal restaurants require long pants and collared shirts and occasionally a jacket, but "smart casual" is the norm.
Your own mask and snorkel if you're inclined, but all yachts carry an assortment of sizes. If you are expecting to scuba dive, check with your broker to make sure of the available equipment on board the yacht.
Most yachts carry sunscreen of the type they prefer used, so generally it is on board. If you bring your own, please don't use oily lotions as it stains the yachts upholstery.
Q. Where can we cruise?
The 3 most popular cruising areas in the Caribbean are:
Generally, your cruising would be contained within the island group mentioned above.
To cruise other areas in the Caribbean is possible, but it will require more planning and usually cost, due to airfare, provisioning, etc. Check with your broker for more information.
There are cruises to meet almost every need. Some of these include:
Many programs are available for diving from beginner up to Advanced Diver. The variety of diving and the beauty is unmatched in the Caribbean and includes reef, night, cave and wreck dives.
Learn To Sail
Most yachts are happy to share their knowledge of sailing with you and there will be opportunities to steer the boat and adjust the sails if you want. There are, however, captains that are qualified sailing instructors for those charter guests that are interested in learning more.
A few yachts are available with the Captain only. The yacht is available with the Captain at a lower rate than fully crewed and the charter guest pays all the expenses. These would be provisions (including enough for the Captain), fuel, water, taxes, etc. Also, you prepare the meals and look after your cabins. This might be a good choice for those that want to eat ashore frequently and don't need the personal service that a fully crewed charter includes.