Why a bareboat charter? It’s not always necessary to have a full crew to travel to all corners of the world and back. It’s a challenge many love to take on to sharpen their skills in unfamiliar waters. Going bareboat is for those who can captain a boat themselves with no crew or other provisions included. The one who takes on the boat charter is fully responsible for all aspects of the navigation and operation of the boat.
There are so many options to sail on a bareboat charter. Take a group out to snorkel on the coral reefs in the South Pacific or go summer sailing in the Caribbean. Gorgeous beach paradise and clear crystal waters await you! In this guide, we will help you decide whether or not bareboat chartering is right for you.
Should I be a bareboat captain?
If you’re unsure if you should charter your own boat, don’t worry! We’ve got a list of basic skills you can work on before you decide whether or not to go bareboat:
- Are you a natural leader? Not only should you know how the boat works, you should be able to give proper direction and teach this information to others. Your crew needs to be able to see exactly what you need from them in any given situation.
- Do you know the important basics? This includes starting the engines and driving the boat, troubleshooting why your dinghy isn’t working, anchoring your vessel, and using a mooring ball.
- Can you navigate? Reading charts as well as how to plot a course will help you learn how to organize a chartered itinerary for yourself and others.
- What do you know about mechanics? Electronics are all a part of running a boat charter properly, so having a basic understanding of them will go a long way.
- How do you handle emergencies? Learn what to do in any given situation, whether someone fell overboard or in case of a bad storm with little visibility.
Finally, when on the water, remember to be familiar with regular boating procedures, such as docking and piloting, as well as basic seamanship. Check out this complete list on the types of skills you may need on the water. They also offer certificates for bareboat cruising that may be helpful to you later on. If you feel comfortable with all aspects of these list, you’re ready to take on a bareboat charter!
About your boat charter:
Without a formal crew aboard, your boat rental options are going to be pretty open! For example, here are a few suggestions for the different kinds of boats you can charter:
- Bareboat catamarans: great for shallow water cruising. These tend to have much more space for you and your personal crew! These are also more stable than other boats as well.
- Bareboat monohulls: very maneuverable and quick to respond. They also have excellent “self-righting” abilities in case of an accidental capsize.
- Bareboat motor yachts: if speed is what you want, this charter is right for you. You will be able to see more sights in a much less amount of time with these.
When choosing your boat, consider the layout, systems, decks, and know what works with your abilities. You should have no problem getting a bareboat charter if you’ve had experiences with similar models. It’s always a good idea to pick something that represents top comfort and excellent performance for you.
Grow your professional knowledge:
Many take the opportunity for self-captaining as self-growth. You can learn to push your own boundaries and get better at captaining every time you take out a boat. For those who are true beginners, you can ease yourself into your first boat charter by hiring a captain the first couple of times out on the water as a guide – however long you need until you feel more comfortable with the boat.
For more seasoned captains, bareboat charters are an excellent vacation idea for teaching. Many have chosen to take on their families as their crew for the opportunity to help them manage a boat on their own. Of course, when getting this kind of boat charter, it’s always a good idea for experienced captains to have at least one other knowledgeable crew member aboard.