Getting the best out of your holiday yacht charter
Your needs as a charter sailor are very much in the minds of the leading boat builders too; Beneteau, Jeanneau, Dufour, Bavaria and the like. With both yacht sales and prices on the rise, builders are focused on yachts that perform well, are modern, versatile and tough.
In Australia, the average use for a private yacht is less than 4 weeks a year, while some charter yachts do as many as 30! With the amount and intensity, of use in charter yachts, it’s no surprise the charter yacht industry is a great proving ground for new model yachts.
Yacht design these days is a perfect fit for the charter scene; lots of beam aft, which means more internal volume, big open cockpit, more stability, and more speed.
Reflected in our yacht bookings for both guided tours (Yacht Rally) and bareboat bookings, we are seeing a trend for newer boats, bigger boats (48 ft. plus), three cabins, three bathrooms, easy sail management systems and a big open cockpit. The other common request is for a spare cabin for the baggage because storage space is often limited on yachts in this size range.
Sailing performance is often a factor in the decision-making process for sailors choosing a holiday yacht, but the reality is that charter yachts are generally kitted with less sail area than they really need, and sails lose their shape early because they get so much use. So, we try to select (and pay more for) newer or Premier vessels, which means the boat will be less than three years old. If you are looking at chartering an older yacht, make sure you know how old it is. Choosing an older yacht will mean you can keep more money in your pocket, but if that compromises comfort or performance, it is good to know before you go.
Ask our sailing guides Trevor and Maggie, and they’ll give you the list below to help you select the ideal charter yacht;
How many people are in your crew? You might sail with 6 people on Wednesday twilight on a 40ft. yacht but can you imagine sharing the same space (and a bathroom) for 2 weeks?
What size yacht can your crew handle? Mooring a yacht in the Mediterranean, the Baltic and Adriatic requires some skilful reversing and handling, so if you are a pro at manoeuvring a 50-footer then go for it!
Our guides also recommend:
- 48 feet overall length and less than 3 years old
- Minimum 50 HP engine
- 700 litres of water storage capacity
- 3 double cabins at least with cabin fans
- 3 toilets with shower plus deck shower
- Separate fridge and freezer
- A well-equipped galley with a stove top coffee maker
- Fully battened mainsail with single line reefing system and boom storage pack
- Roller furling non-overlapping head sail
- Power windlass with 60 meters of chain
- Drop down transom providing a swim platform and easy access to/from the water
- Navigation instrument repeater in the cockpit
- Bimini to provide shade over the cockpit and a dodger over the companionway