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Old 17-11-2011, 19:59   #1
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pirate Cost-Sharing Crew ? What Should You Pay ?

So you want crew? Maybe you need help with a big boat, or maybe you enjoy the company! What is a fair contribution and should they pay the REAL cost? Including insurance, fuel, maintenance, berthing, even wear and tear or depreciation? Especially if you have lots of toys and use them plenty!

“ICE” is a $1mill. 50ft , 40 tonne, Motor sailor. Last year on my BlueTreasure expedition, I spent nearly $90,000 (on the costs listed above, Not for everyone hey!) voyaging across the Pacific. There were three paying crew onboard (five total) each contributing $16,000 for the eight month voyage. About $67 a day. When I advertised for crew on CF a year ago , it caused a bit of “chatter”, as I was not looking for $25 a day for food?

I believe that “A shared experience, is a greater experience” and I really enjoy having new people around. It inspires them and me. I support others into adventure and sailing in many ways, but when I head off on a personal adventure for myself, like Bluetreasure, I think it fair that the crew pay their way. Next question, when does it become commercial?? Well the debate will rage on this one for some time. Most Govt’s now concede, that for boats and planes, it is NOT commercial if you’re all sharing the real cost, then you are simply involved with recreation.

Next season Bluetreasure is on again. “ICE” will sail from Fiji to Tonga, diving on two untouched “Virgin” wrecks. Real boys own adventure stuff. We may/may not find something? When I find the three crew, they will each contribute $67 a day, $2000 a month or $14,000 for the seven month voyage. I know they will be passionate about wanting to be there and they feel a part of what is going on. I could sell the berths as the ultimate Dive/sail holiday at $350 a day, but not interested in passengers..I will not make a profit on $2000 a month believe me.

Now, if I was cruising on a 40ft sail boat, great adventure, but NOT the same as Bluetreasure and the costs are dramatically lower! When I spent three years cruising my 29ft yacht, 30 years ago, I caught all my own food including pigs, goats, and wild chickens with a hunting bow. $67 a day and I would make a fortune! When I had my 136ft, 600 tonne, helicopter equipped, Ice- strengthened ship (Sir Hubert Wilkins) with all the dive gear, including recompression chamber, I only needed five crew to run it. I took up to 16 crew instead and they were all volunteers! (Except the Chief engineer.) I figured why have empty bunks on the ship. We all had great fun! I paid for the food! We voyaged from Finland to Australia, then three seasons in Antarctica and one treasure hunting in the Philippines. The crew all thought it the best experience of their lives!

So what do you recon? Every situation is different I know..but I recon if the crew want to be a part of it..they should pay a share of the REAL costs!

If you want to crew on “ICE”, go check out the Commercial section of CF under “crew archive”…thanks…Don M.

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Old 18-11-2011, 02:58   #2
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Re: Cost-Sharing Crew ? What Should You Pay ?

$1 million boat? Brave man to be uninsured........especially where people are involved.
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Old 18-11-2011, 03:47   #3
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Re: Cost-Sharing Crew ? What Should You Pay ?

....I believe that “A shared experience, is a greater experience” and I really enjoy having new people around. It inspires them and me. I support others into adventure and sailing in many ways, but when I head off on a personal adventure for myself, like Bluetreasure, I think it fair that the crew pay their way. Next question, when does it become commercial?? Well the debate will rage on this one for some time. Most Govt’s now concede, that for boats and planes, it is NOT commercial if you’re all sharing the real cost, then you are simply involved with recreation.


Dude, dont want to rain on your party, but it is irrelevent what 'most Gov'ts concede' when things go pear shaped, it is what the courts decide and what the insurance companies will cover/pay that are relevant.

If I was going to be a 'contributing crew member' I would want to see written evidence that the vessel and its crew members are covered.

Just my 2c, others milage might vary.

Bloke
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Old 18-11-2011, 09:36   #4
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Re: Cost-Sharing Crew ? What Should You Pay ?

As you said, it's situational, and I think often when this topic comes up, some people have a hard time seeing that the way other people take on crew is very different than how they may take on crew. Taking on crew to physically help you sail the boat from one place to another, is very different from crew who are friends sharing a vacation experience.

Three things come to mind to me that influence how crew should either be compensated or contribute:

1. The role of crew - Where in the spectrum do they fall between hired deck hand to sharing a vacation experience?

2. Costs involved. Sharing a vacation on a luxury motor yacht will have different shared expenses than a weekend sail on a Catalina 22.

3. Rules and regs - The coast guard, insurance, customs, immigration and insurance may all have different rules regarding crew and the differences between being compensated versus cost sharing.


I remember one site had a guideline that crew contributing over $20/day must go beyond cost sharing. I think that's short-sighted. On my first 26-foot sailboat that easily covered someone's fair share of food and fuel. When fairly splitting a charter costs for a vacation, $20 wouldn't even come close. Powerboater's could easily split fuel costs far exceeding $20/person.

I know one rule that often causes confusion with this is one of the coast guard regulations which states someting about receiving any consideration as being for profit, but then later in a footnote goes on to say that by consideration they mean consideration beyond reasonble shared expenses.

My last thought is that most people seek some magic line in the sand which in reality doesn't exist. If a crew for example ever gets hurt and claims that they were in reality a paying customer, I think the agencies involved and courts would probably look at the bulk of the evidence. I don't think there would be any magic line, but the more you expect crew to "share" the more risk you take. If you start factoring storage costs, insurance, etc. and other fixed expenses, I think you are at a greater risk of getting in trouble than if you only seek crew to cover their share of variable costs such as food and fuel.
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Old 23-11-2011, 12:59   #5
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Re: Cost-Sharing Crew ? What Should You Pay ?

I mostly agree with Mr. ICE. I cruise on my boat between the Caribbean and Maine. I don't need crew. I can solo easier than I can teach new crew. If I take on people on my boat, they are gaining an experience, my knowledge and my expenses for maintaining this boat which isn't cheap. Not to mention the cost of the boat. So if people are coming along on a boat that doesn't need them, it's a privilege and to share expenses, I charge $500 per week per person. For a real adventurous sail I think that they have gotten a bargain. And I can afford to keep sailing for awhile longer. If there are people that are willing to pay for the experience and there are people that need the money and to share the experience, who cares. It's a free country. Screw the insurance companies, coast guard and lawyers.
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Old 23-11-2011, 13:15   #6
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It appears, Don, that many of the forum members don't know who you are, nor what you have done, nor who you have assisted.
Quite modest of you!
Maybe they should join a forum for insurance lawyers.....?
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Old 10-02-2012, 09:49   #7
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Re: Cost-Sharing Crew ? What Should You Pay ?

I have crewed both on a shared basis and a costs paid by owner basis. In both cases, I was instrumental in helping the owner sail his yacht from point A to point B, as his insurance required.

In the first case, I was looking for experience and didn't mind the expense.

In the second case, with several thousand ocean miles of experience under my belt, I felt that helping an owner prepare a boat for passage and helping him sail across thousands of miles of ocean was way too much work for me to be paying him.
So I accepted the position only on a an expenses paid basis. I still paid for my travel expenses.

Now I will only accept positions where expenses are paid by the owner. I feel as a competent, experienced crew, I have much to bring to the table. There are lots of days where sailing is out-of-this world beautiful. But there are other days when it is plain hard work and/or miserable conditions. I take the good with the bad, but I'm not paying someone who needs my help.

Tom Smith
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Old 27-02-2012, 22:41   #8
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Re: Cost-Sharing Crew ? What Should You Pay ?

The last post

Just another free loader, even if you are competent, I would of thought it common decency to at least pay for food fuel,
Chris
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Old 28-02-2012, 00:24   #9
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Re: Cost-Sharing Crew ? What Should You Pay ?

We're a couple around 60 years old dreaming of sailing Okinawa, Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia on a comfortable boat sharing costs & tasks with another more experienced couple snorkeling & shopping the local markets. We can share costs around 100 usd /day?
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Old 28-02-2012, 05:56   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suebe36d
We're a couple around 60 years old dreaming of sailing Okinawa, Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia on a comfortable boat sharing costs & tasks with another more experienced couple snorkeling & shopping the local markets. We can share costs around 100 usd /day?
Just my opinion but even for inexperienced. Rew that is expensive for you. At $3,000 a month you could buy your own boat!

You should be targeting actual expenses split including fuel and dock fees. Especially if you are expending labor to help sail the boat.
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Old 28-02-2012, 12:49   #11
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Re: Cost-Sharing Crew ? What Should You Pay ?

I don't think the guy that only crews for expenses paid is a free loader. A competent sailor on a passage is worth money. If you don't have any friends that can get away for awhile and you need someone, then you need someone. At the same time there are lots of people that aren't competent sailors, they need the experience and you can off them experience and they should pay. There aren't any steadfast rules.
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Old 07-03-2012, 01:25   #12
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Re: Cost-Sharing Crew ? What Should You Pay ?

iv done many deliveries and most are a bit different.some crew help with expencers(15to30 a day,some i pay there fare back home and pay there food and shore bill,some i throw overboard(joke)and others will pay up to $1500 a week to live aboard and learn the full in and outs of offshore sailing.my one rule is if the owner (or close relative)wants to come i charge 50% more,there can only be one skipper on board.i all-ways do a nite or two coastel first(its a bugger having to turn back after a day or two because of seasickness or the fright of not seeing land)
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Old 07-03-2012, 08:03   #13
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Re: Cost-Sharing Crew ? What Should You Pay ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by David_Old_Jersey View Post
$1 million boat? Brave man to be uninsured........especially where people are involved.
David -
Where in his post does he say he's uninsured? Or am I missing something?
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Old 07-03-2012, 09:44   #14
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Re: Cost-Sharing Crew ? What Should You Pay ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by FSMike View Post
David -
Where in his post does he say he's uninsured? Or am I missing something?
My read is that it is a "below the radar" Charter operation. Nothing wrong with that .......unless "crew" start suing or boat has an accident and insurance company discovers the reality and therefore refuses payment.

Certainly if I was paying out on a claim Mr Google would be my first port of call - and Mr Google is rather unforgiving on what it throws up. Insurance co does not need enough to "prove" - just enough to make it worth arguing over.

One thing to do on a cheap boat / if you have no great assets - another if you have a $1million plus.

But each to their own .
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Old 08-03-2012, 06:28   #15
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Re: Cost-Sharing Crew ? What Should You Pay ?

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Most Govt’s now concede, that for boats and planes, it is NOT commercial if you’re all sharing the real cost, then you are simply involved with recreation.
Don't know about "most governments" but do know that in the United States it doesn't really matter whether you are sharing "real cost," or whether you are making money off of the venture (or even charging LESS than real cost, for that matter). If the deal is "you have to pay or you cannot come" then that is a commercial operation, and must be licensed and operated as one.

Speaking only for myself, if I was required to pay $67 a day to be on your boat, I would consider myself to be a passenger and would expect to be treated like one. If you want me to think of myself as a working crew-member then you're going to have to at least pay my expenses, if not a bit more.
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