Bareboat charters are yachts that you can rent and operate by yourself. If you are not experienced in handling a yacht, you can hire a captain to take over this job for you. The idea behind a bareboat charter is that you do not get any extras - just the bare boat. You have to supply your own food and entertainment and if you want toys for watersports you either have to bring your own or rent them.
Most of the bareboat yachts are between 30 and 50 feet in length and you can choose bareboat charters using power, sailing or catamaran boats. In order to book bareboat charters without hiring a captain, the yacht charter company will need to see proof that you can handle the yacht on your own. You will either have to show the bareboat yacht charter company proof of your experience in handling smaller or similar sized yachts or present a certificate from a boating course. For most yacht charters in the Caribbean, companies do not require certification, but it is a requirement in some parts of the world, such as Greece. If you do need to hire a captain, this is not included in the price of the charter and you have to pay the captain yourself.
There are bareboat charters that will allow you to book a one-way charter. This allows you to sail to a destination and leave the yacht there. This will cost you more because unless someone books a one-way bareboat yacht charter back from that destination the company has to find a way of getting the yacht back to home base. It is quite likely that it will be cheaper on you to charter the yacht for a few extra days and return it yourself.
You can make your booking for a bareboat yacht charter online. However, you will need to make at least a 25% deposit on the total cost of the charter and there are bareboat charters that require 50% of the total as a deposit. You will also receive a contract to sign and a sailing resume to complete from the yacht charter company. Most of the charter companies do accept credit cards, but there are some smaller companies that only accept check, cash or money order payments. When you book bareboat charters you usually get just the yacht itself.
Although some of the charter companies do include a dinghy in the cost, most of the Florida companies require that you rent the dinghy. Since this is a necessity, you have to allow for the extra cost. You won't have any of the amenities that you are used to at home, such as a television or microwave. You will also have to supply your own linens, dishes, food and water.
If you want to book one of the bareboat charters that will take you to another country, you do need to make sure you have your passport with you or you won't be allowed to dock in the ports.
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