Ask tons of questions, ask the neighboring vessels, ask for previous crew contact.Treat it like an interview, inspect the vessels, look at the safety equipment
yourself. But don't be too obvious about it, be respectful, and ask permission before exploring vessel .
What is make and model, year, and name
? ( you can then goggle it to see if you can obtain more info)
What kind of shape is she in? ( they usually say good but you can still pick up hints)
Where will I sleep?
How are the meals
How do you like to do the watches?
Where are we going?
What are the alternative destinations?
If you deviate from destination
, will you provide travel to destination
What kind of safety equipment
do you have aboard?
How much water
do you allow per day, per person?
Do you allow drinking while underway?
That just a quick list, you can find more if you search this forum and others.
When new it is best to crew on boats you are familiar with or know someone you trust who is familiar with. My first delivery
was with my boss, second delivery
I was refered by a friend who did varnish
work on that boat.
My bad experiences where either from crew we picked up along the way that we did not vet properly or from nightmare captains I did not vet properly.
The boat usually isn't the issue, it is usually the captain
. But scary boats usually mean scary captain- poorly maintained vessel, risky behavior, no sense of responsibility for the safety
of crew aboard.
But as crew, you must hold up your end of the bargain. Vigilant watch keeping, do your chores on time and without complaint, NO risky behavior, follow captains orders, did I mention vigilant watch keeping? This is why you must vet the captain
well, he/she is king offshore
I've said this a million times, and I'll say it again
for the inexperienced or in unfamiliar anchorages
it is good to gravitate towards the family
boat, they tend to have good maintenance, tend to be cautious with weather
windows and approaches, and tend to have good safety equipment
. Plus if you happen to be female, there is less chances of a frisky captain.
Hope that helps,