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Old 16-02-2012, 06:50   #1
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Ladies Afloat - How to Search ?

As a single lady I have been pretty dumb about how to inquire about boats and owners to crew for. Yes, I ended up spending $$'s getting on location, raised my eyebrows and said to myself "in for a dollar in for a dime". On arrival at the destination I was packing as we approached the harbor. Old news and I still want to crew again.

If you have had a successful experience, how did you engineer your questions/inquires to get the information that helped you feel safe. Safe on the water and safe from the fox guarding the hen house, lol?

Appreciate all the help I can get. Solo sailing is not my agenda and having a good experience is.
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Old 16-02-2012, 07:32   #2
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Re: Ladies afloat, how to search?

Oh, I forgot to add:

Please reply on this thread so more ladies can benefit. So far a PM suggested
1)Try Find-A-Crew.

www.findacrew.net

This thread was started because I do want to crew again and be a bit smarter about how to find a find a good fit with the next trip. While I learn it was suggested that others could learn too.
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Old 16-02-2012, 07:52   #3
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Re: Ladies afloat, how to search?

Yacht crew agency, yacht crew vacancy, sailing crew from Crewseekers is a great resource!

though do reccomend when applying join the vessel asking some in depth questions like;

are they a young crew who like to party all the time?

do they prefer to anchor or use marinas?

do they have an auto pilot and fridge?

are they nudists or vegitarians?

what are reasonable shared expenses?

can they provide references from previous crew?

how old is the boat,is it custom built,does it have a dingy and engine?

do they have a blog that you can look at?

some times ones expectations can paint a pretty picture far from the reality!
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Old 16-02-2012, 08:05   #4
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Re: Ladies Afloat - How to Search ?

Might I suggest that if your loooking for a more confidential ladies only perspective, you could join the Mermaids group on here and pop your question.
It might be a handy resource for you.
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Old 16-02-2012, 08:18   #5
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Re: Ladies afloat, how to search?

Great post atoll!
I crewed all through my twenties. At first I had some real uh er exciting trips ( and not in a good way). Over time I figured out a few things to help up the odds that my crew job will be fun and less life threatening.
1) Pick family boats ( wife husband and kids) they tend to be updated in safety equipment, MOB drills, and general maintenance of the vessel.
2) interview the entire crew, not just the captain. I realize you may not be able to do this until arrival day, but be up front with the captain that you consider the job still pending upon boat inspection and a crew meet.
3) don't be afraid to walk away, trust me, if you have a little 'bad feeling' ashore, you will have a big bad feeling offshore.

Hope that helps,
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Old 16-02-2012, 08:45   #6
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Re: Ladies Afloat - How to Search ?

If the Captain / Owner etc. can't email the basic info about the trip and boat and crew but will only say "Call Me" that is a big red flag for me.

BUT ....

You MUST at some point talk to the Captain.


I have just had bad results from the "Call Me" group of people. Could just be me...
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Old 16-02-2012, 09:37   #7
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Re: Ladies Afloat - How to Search ?

Attol has the right idea but you need to expand the list to meet you own need and to deal with situations where the same level of information amount the boat. skipper and crew may not be available up front. An example of that might be where some advertises on a forum including CF. There was a character around about 5 years ago that advertised for female crew and said in the advert that "old hags need not apply". Apart from that comment there were other things about the advert and captain that did not appear right. I cross posted it from rebel cruisers to SA with some comments. Several ladies that had previously crew for the captain then posted their experiences, including email exchanges. SA are a rough crowd as he found out LOL.


What you need to do is to develop a set of questions that covers all situations and ask those that are not answered in the advert. Should the captain be unwilling to answer those questions (some of them at least publicly then be warned. Personally if i was on either side of the venture i would want to know some information before i gave out contact information and the rest before setting out on a journey with them.

The nature of the trip, is it day sailing, cruising or a delivery (with an owner or delivery captain) If it is a delivery how tight are the timeframes (time constrains = risks). If its with the owner, how long have they owned the vessel because sailing a newly purchased vessel (even if it is brand new) holds its own risks. Has the captain sailed the boat on similar journeys, Why are they looking for crew, what are the expected contributions you will make to the boat/journey (financial and other) Is there a written agreement covering all relevant matters. Details about the boat specification, and then check those details against information sources to see if the vessel is suitable for the envisaged journey (include a custom search on CF). What are crew numbers and how will the watches be arranged. What communication are available on the boat (and consider taking a hand held radio with you in the bottom of you bag). The list goes on ....



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Old 16-02-2012, 10:31   #8
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Re: Ladies Afloat - How to Search ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by blueskyzjonesy View Post
Appreciate all the help I can get. Solo sailing is not my agenda and having a good experience is.
Have crewed very little on the boats of strangers - and that has probably been fairly deliberate, even if not a conscious decision. Not to say that crewing on the boats of folk I know has always gone as well as hoped .....but I have never had to swim home .

IMO internet only gets you so far, really do need to meet a Skipper face to face and see the boat in person - and on both of those need to have a good idea of what you are looking at (albeit no guarantees from even that)........and be aware that you are taking a risk and be comfortable with accepting all outcomes (even if not happy to).

Having said that, knowing in advance what to expect is very useful - both for knowing what to expect and to see whether the Skipper has lied to you (and self?!), before you depart. Liars need good memories.

A Skipper who appears to have already given some thought to what a Crew wants / needs (including their likely concerns) would be a good indicator for me.

Before getting into anything which has a capacity to get me dead, I like to have thought through a Plan B and a Plan C (and also be prepared to innovate further Plans at short notice).

On the Stranger's Boat thing, Plan B is not to get onboard (and have something else to do instead already lined up as a possibility) and Plan C is being comfortable that I could singlehand the vessel if everyone else fell overboard - for whatever reason .............Obviously me being male means I (likely!) have less personal concerns where Plan C would be a useful solution, but Plan C not exclusive to that side - ideally that involves you jumping ship to shore, but other options are available.

Have fun


(oh, and tell folk ashore where you have gone, who with and on what vessel - and where!....pics of the boat and Skipper on own PC etc would also be useful. Maybe drop into the conversation that you e-mailed these to a freind of yours just for fun).
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Old 16-02-2012, 11:09   #9
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Re: Ladies Afloat - How to Search ?

I'm a huge fan of Offshore Passage Opportunities ( Offshore Passage Opportunities: Halesite, New York ). You'll find boats and skippers that are trying to move boats and not just troll for romance.

Although some of my best crew have been women, I've also been let down by women disproportionately. I've had female crew never show up at all. One women showed up and then left because she couldn't have a private cabin and a private head on delivery of a 40' boat. If other skippers have had anything like the experience I have you should not be surprised at some direct questions.
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Old 16-02-2012, 12:21   #11
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Re: Ladies Afloat - How to Search ?

my most successful opb sailing experience wax done with a man i messaged with for a year or so before we sailed together....helps to get to kno wwho the soul is and how many points the individuals do agree on and find a friendship--of course, as it is online chat, could be a liar also, as i found out first time i opb sailed......
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Old 16-02-2012, 13:14   #12
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Re: Ladies Afloat - How to Search ?

I once had to share a crew cabin with a male crew member. He hit on me the whole trip across the Atlantic, nothing too too forceful, but enough to make me always on my guard. When I got home, exhausted, I just dropped all my bags in the cockpit and fell asleep on my settee. My boyfriend woke me up with a welcome home kiss and I nearly karate chopped his head off yelling ' no no'. I hadn't realized how 'in defense mode' I was until that moment. So after that experience, I would not share a cabin with a male. This may whittle down the opportunities , but I never had any trouble whatsoever finding a good boat to crew on, there are tons of boats out there, don't think you have to make allowances for safety ( or just the feeling of safety).
Whew! I'll get off my soap box now. uh er for now
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Old 16-02-2012, 13:21   #13
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Re: Ladies Afloat - How to Search ?

How to search ladies? A strip search?
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Old 16-02-2012, 13:54   #14
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Re: Ladies Afloat - How to Search ?

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How to search ladies? A strip search?

grow up, thanks
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Old 16-02-2012, 13:55   #15
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Re: Ladies Afloat - How to Search ?

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How to search ladies? A strip search?


some people's kids....
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