Some of our clients can be bit intimidated at first about chartering a Luxury Yacht or Super Yacht - lots of terms and customs that they don't understand. But there is no need to be! Chartering a Super Yacht through us is really no different than booking a luxury hotel, in fact it's easier because we'll do the work for you! Here are some tips about chartering a Super Yacht:
Plan your holiday or event. The most important thing you can do for us is to give us as much firm detail for what you want. The "W"s come to mind:
Who will be going (how many cabins required, children, etc.),
Where do you want to charter (where will you be flying into, sites you want to see),
What type of yacht do you want - Motor, Sail, Classic, Modern also
What is your general budget;
When will you be wanting to charter (the more specific the dates the better)
Why are you chartering - Holiday, Event, Family Gathering, Business Meeting.
The more of the above questions you can answer, the better we will be able to find you the perfect boat.
Book Early. The best yachts are generally booked 6 months or more in advance. If you want a yacth during July or August in the French Riviera, you should start thinking about it in November and try to book by the end of January. If you're looking for a yacht in the Caribbean for the Christmas, New Years or Easter time frames, it's best to plan it during the summer. Don't set yourself up for disappointment by waiting too long!
Look at Several Alternatives and ask Questions. This is the fun part! We will normally provide you with online brochures of 4-5 yachts that meet your criteria. This is the time to see what is available, let your imagination run wild, and of course to ask as many questions as possible so as to ensure you are matched to the yacht of your dreams. We can, in many cases, personally visit the yacht, speak with the captain and/or crew, help with all aspects of itinerary planning, and be certain that the crew understand your specific requirements. No question is too small - if you want specific exercise equipment on board, or don't know what a Sea Doo is - just ask! This is a substantial investment - and we will work closely with you to make sure you understand everything before you get on board - and to make your super yacht charter is a resounding success!
Charter costs. The general charter fee rents you the boat and the services of the crew, for your stated charter period, e.g. the base vessel charter fee per week. Unless stated otherwise, food, drink, and fuel will be extra "expenses". There will normally be mooring fees and possibly fees for scuba, water toys and certain communications.
To facilitate the management of these expenses, and build trust, the industry has developed the Advance Provisioning Allowance (APA) system. The Charter Operator/Central Agent estimates the expenses that will be incurred, depending on your itinerary (usually 20% to 30% of the charter fee) and adds that on up front. This provides a bank account for the Skipper, who makes expenditures on your behalf and keeps accurate records. Please note that these expenses are not marked up. At the end of the charter, you will be refunded the difference, or the Captain will ask you to pay more during the cruise if further running costs are incurred.
Normally, you will be asked to pay 1/2 of the charter fee upon signing the contract, and the remaining 1/2 approximately 30 days before the charter commences. For obvious reasons, the charter will not begin until all payments are made. Tipping is not obligatory but is at the discretion of the charterer. Common practice on Super Yachts is normally between 5% - 20% of the total charter price, on a sliding scale depending on how satisfied you are with the crew's performance (regional differences exist - yachts working with Americans tend to expect higher tips than yachts working with Europeans or those from other parts of the world.)
Other Useful Information. One you've booked, you will normally be asked to fill out a passenger list (with people's likes and dislikes, allergies, and any special needs), desired itinerary form and provisioning requests. Please fill these out and return as soon as you can - they're critical to your overall satisfaction.
Super Yachts normally use a MYBA The Worldwide Yachting Association contract that is designed to standardise charter terms and protect the Charterer, the Owner, and the Agent/Broker. It has standard protections and escalation clauses in case any problems arise. We are happy to discuss with you the standard MYBA contract terms in detail.