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Old 03-12-2013, 14:08   #1
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Sunsail Flotilla Skipper Requirements

Hi,
I'm wondering if anyone knows what kind of skills test Sunsail does with charter skippers before letting them leave the dock?

I have a charter planned for the end of Jan in the British Virgin Islands.
I passed ASA 101, 103, & 104 three years back, but haven't sailed much since then. In the last few weeks I've gotten out for a bit to practice.

I've got all the basics down, but my skills are not super precise when docking and tacking. I get through it just fine, but it's not pretty.

I've read that they are pretty lax down there, but want to figure out how much I need to practice to avoid hiring a captain.

Most of my crew is brand new to sailing, though my girlfriend is coming along and she passed ASA 101 three yrs ago.

thanks
David
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Old 03-12-2013, 16:43   #2
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Originally Posted by dladowitz View Post
Hi,
I'm wondering if anyone knows what kind of skills test Sunsail does with charter skippers before letting them leave the dock?

I have a charter planned for the end of Jan in the British Virgin Islands.
I passed ASA 101, 103, & 104 three years back, but haven't sailed much since then. In the last few weeks I've gotten out for a bit to practice.

I've got all the basics down, but my skills are not super precise when docking and tacking. I get through it just fine, but it's not pretty.

I've read that they are pretty lax down there, but want to figure out how much I need to practice to avoid hiring a captain.

Most of my crew is brand new to sailing, though my girlfriend is coming along and she passed ASA 101 three yrs ago.

thanks
David
You'll be fine ,

Dave
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Old 03-12-2013, 16:46   #3
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Old 03-12-2013, 16:48   #4
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Re: Sunsail Flotilla Skipper Requirements

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Old 03-12-2013, 17:26   #5
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Re: Sunsail Flotilla Skipper Requirements

If you are attentive in the chart briefing and review of the boat systems you will be fine if you have the basic skills.
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Old 03-12-2013, 18:09   #6
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Re: Sunsail Flotilla Skipper Requirements

Hello David and welcome to the Cruisers Forum. There are two dangers you should worry about. Reefs and crew injuries. The rest should be ok. You will use mooring balls every night so you don't have to worry about anchoring. And following the leader helps with the reefs. Probably the hardest thing you will encounter is grabbing a mooring ring and getting your line through it and back to a cleat before you fall off to much. If you hit anything, especially docks, just smile and act like you meant to do it.

Two things to watch for with the crew is rope burns (or worse) and the boom. Really, really go over how to take in and release sheets and halyards. When easing a sheet under a lot of tension make sure to keep the tail low so it doesn't pop over the winch.

As far as Sunsail cares though - they will charter a boat to almost anyone regardless of experience.
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Old 03-12-2013, 18:32   #7
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As a former ops manager for TUI Marine I would say you are probably more qualified than half the people you will be on the flotilla with!

Have fun, and enjoy the trip!
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Old 03-12-2013, 18:37   #8
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Re: Sunsail Flotilla Skipper Requirements

They have never checked me for anything.
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Old 03-12-2013, 18:46   #9
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Re: Sunsail Flotilla Skipper Requirements

they check to make sure your payment went through. They use part of it to pay for their big honking insurance policy. You pay the rest with your deposit (and you can get insurance to cover that too). Sunsail will be OK even if you sink the boat.
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Old 04-12-2013, 11:18   #10
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Re: Sunsail Flotilla Skipper Requirements

On the fist sail they will likely keep the fleet together and assess everyone's skills. Those they trust may be allowed to leave the "herd" for a few days at a time.

That was my experience when I was flotilla sailing in Turkey 30 years ago.

Flotilla sailing is a great way to build confidence and competence while have help available close by. Our flotilla parties were great. Got to meet a whole of interesting folks as well.
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Old 04-12-2013, 12:01   #11
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Re: Sunsail Flotilla Skipper Requirements

They usually stick a mirror under your nose, and if it fogs up, it means your breathing, and the response is "have a good time, Skipper".
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Old 04-12-2013, 17:02   #12
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Re: Sunsail Flotilla Skipper Requirements

Great, thanks for all the answers. Sounds like I should be good.
Does anyone have any recommendation on what to brush up on as I still have 6 weeks till I go down there.

I've pretty much forgotten all my Navigation skills, but it sounds like line of site is all thats needed. Anything else that would be good to know before hand?

thanks
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Old 04-12-2013, 17:06   #13
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Re: Sunsail Flotilla Skipper Requirements

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Anything else that would be good to know before hand?

thanks
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