Monday, January 31, 2022

Why Own When You Can Charter a Yacht?

The time may be coming soon when you will want to take that next step in providing a wonderful get away experience for your family by purchasing a yacht. Perhaps you have been thinking it about it for a little while but something is holding you back. It might be that you are not familiar enough yet with what might go with yacht ownership so you want to enjoy some outings on a yacht with just you and your family before making that decision.

Another drawback for some is the overhead of taking care of a yacht, particularly off season when you really don't want to think about the boat. But you still have to have it stored and cared for and then conditioned to go on the water when you are ready. While you can hire people to do all that, it does seem like a lot of trouble, particularly if you don't know if a yacht is a good fit to your lifestyle.

So a good option is to charter a yacht for a week or so to enjoy the experience of yachting while you make the decision about ownership. You might even go this route throughout the spring and summer which gives you the chance to try out different levels of chartering and different sizes and types of yachts. By giving yourself that experience, if you do chose to buy next year, you know about whether you want a sail or powered yacht (or a combination vessel) and how large of yacht you want the yacht and what amenities will make your yachting experience complete.

One thing you may want to "test drive" on your chartered yacht is the extent of involvement in the actual operation of the vessel that you and your family and friends wish to have. For some, having all the work done while you enjoy the pleasure of cruising along the route to the next destination is the definition of luxurious relaxation. But if you have the bug for being involved with the boat and to get more "hands on", there are different options where you can have all or some of the responsibility for the operation of the yacht falls to you.

A skippered yacht is a good middle ground if you want to learn about the work needed to operate a working vessel at sea but you don't want to or don't have the skills and knowledge to take her out yourself. You charter the yacht itself and a skipper whose job it is to make sure the voyage goes well and that the vessel is operated properly and safely. But that skipper does not bring a crew on board of your yacht. So by default, the crew duties will fall to you and the other passengers on the trip.

This kind of chartered yacht trip can be fun for the entire party because you can learn a little about yachting but the responsibilities all stay with the skipper. In truth, because the skipper knows he is there to make your outing enjoyable, he will give your group as many chores as he feels you want to carry and make sure the rest gets done himself. One situation where this works well is when you have teenagers or young people who are eager to be crewmen on a ship but need the guidance of the skipper.

At the two opposing ends of the skippered charter experience are the crewed charter and the bareboat charter. If you are feeling confident and adventuresome, the bareboat charter turns the vessel completely over to you. You charter the vehicle and the necessities of the trip and you are given an orientation. But you take her out and operate the vessel depending entirely on the skills and labor of your team. It's a good option when you are preparing to buy your first yacht to make sure you and your team are ready for boat ownership.

A crewed charter is ideal for a completely luxurious experience because you bring on board the cook, the skipper and all the needed crewmen so you are free to kick back and just enjoy your time at sea. This is the ultimate in chartered luxury. And it's the kind of experience you could get so used to, you might never purchase your own yacht because the crewed charter pampers you completely.