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Old 10-02-2016, 23:08   #1
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Bahamas Chartering - $6K liability for dinghy?

Hi All. Quick question. We want to charter a Cat in the Exumas to get a feel for what it's like to sail a Cat. There is only one company I could find there is out of Quebec and called Navtours. Their online reputation is small and seems pretty favorable.

My question arose when the Rep told me that in addition to the $500 nonrefundable damage waiver, and for being responsible for for 20% of the boats deductible (potentially another 1200$) that I would also be held responsible for damage or loss to the new dinghy at 100% of repair or replacement costs.

Anyone familiar with this practice which leaves 100% of dinghy on charter? I called Moorings and they don't do that.

Anyone familiar w Navtours?

Shack Attack
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Old 11-02-2016, 04:17   #2
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Re: Bahamas Chartering - $6K liability for dinghy?

Dinghys and outboards are expensive and easy to steal.
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Old 11-02-2016, 05:06   #3
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Re: Bahamas Chartering - $6K liability for dinghy?

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Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
Dinghys and outboards are expensive and easy to steal.
Exactly. My partner said it sounds like a business model for a local robbery ring. Steal a Navtours dinghy a month and turn it in later for some cash. Win-win for both Navtours (who got $6K from me) and the thief. It's also easy for someone to accidentally take the wrong dinghy or to loosen your lines at a dinghy dock while getting their dinghy on/off. I think the charter company should absorb those risks like Moorings does.
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Old 11-02-2016, 05:15   #4
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Re: Bahamas Chartering - $6K liability for dinghy?

I've chartered from Sunsail for the past 25 years - most recent 2 years ago. A dinghy is always covered in the main hull insurance policy. The fee is for insurance so it is not refundable. My experience is that I'm typically offered two levels of deductibles: say $0 and maybe $1,000. Naturally this affects a weekly insurance premium paid by the charterer.

FYI - Insurance premiums are used as a profit center by charter companies, who have bulk purchasing policy and don't adjust coverage per weekly charter agreement. Premiums have little to do with actual expense but instead what the boat renter market will bear.

These insurance practices typically are a harbinger of what you can expect from the vendor in other areas of concern (e.g. condition of boat, having boat ready when you arrive, no delays as a result of poor maintenance). All or anyone of these issues if occurs is likely to significantly impact the quality of your vacation and charter.

IMHO deals that are too good to be true, are just that.

SharkAttack has some great points and this could easily explain the unusual policy. Unsecured dinghies and outboard motors are easy targets and like cash in the Caribbean, fungible.

If you still want to take the risk, you can purchase a steel locking bar from West Marine for $125 that locks the two attachment screw flukes preventing the outboard from being removed from the dinghy. A good locking chain and padlock goes a long ways also. Typically, a charter company provides one or both of these items.

And finally, if you are really risk averse (not likely as you are considering a little known vendor) you can always lift a dinghy and secure on the deck, locking the engine to a stainless steel rail. On a nightly basis that can put a big crimp in your holiday plans, assuming you are consuming a sailor's prerequisite alcohol volume.
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Old 11-02-2016, 09:09   #5
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Re: Bahamas Chartering - $6K liability for dinghy?

Hi Sharkattack,
This does sound wrong. We do charters in the Exumas and other parts of the Bahamas and our charter insurance covers the dinghy with little deductible.
We can offer a Exuma charter, with captain, for about the same as most companies charge for a bareboat cat charter. Ours is a Belize 43 newly refitted.
We know the islands very well and can offer an instructional catamaran experience without these liabilities.
Dave
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Old 11-02-2016, 09:31   #6
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Re: Bahamas Chartering - $6K liability for dinghy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ShackAttack View Post
Exactly. My partner said it sounds like a business model for a local robbery ring. Steal a Navtours dinghy a month and turn it in later for some cash. Win-win for both Navtours (who got $6K from me) and the thief. It's also easy for someone to accidentally take the wrong dinghy or to loosen your lines at a dinghy dock while getting their dinghy on/off. I think the charter company should absorb those risks like Moorings does.
Dinghies are not only easy to steal, but easy to damage; and charterers lose them on a regular basis. If it's a small company, unlike the Moorings, they may find dinghy insurance hard to find and it's a big hit for them to cover. I remember one six week period in Tortola when Moorings/Sunsail lost twenty dinghies! We were doing a survey for the Tourist Board, which is how I knew the statistic.

Since the charter company seems to have a good reputation, why not check to see if any guests have had problems with having had a dinghy stolen. And why not ask them directly how often this happens and if there is some way to pay for insurance? I am guessing that part of the problem is simply losing and damaging dinghies, in addition to theft. Much of this can be avoided by lifting the dinghy every night, which is what I do.

Unlike the Moorings, which, in Tortola, has literally hundreds of dinghies, which are assigned to an individual charter depending upon number of guests, rather than permanently assigned to a particular boat, this company probably has a dinghy assigned to each charter boat. Dinghies are not that easy to replace. In the BVI, for example, you may have to wait for weeks to get the right size, design, etc, so it's much more than a financial hassle. For the Moorings, with their huge dinghy fleet, it's not the same problem. I bet the Moorings charter costs more, too, as it usually does, but the OP has not mentioned if this is the case. There are lots of things that go into the charter price with the Moorings, such as their extensive marketing, and they have probably simply factored in the cost of issues with dinghies, but that's a guess.

I am also guessing that the company in question goes to great lengths to NOT lose a dinghy, whether by carelessness or mischief, and probably finds the best way to ensure that the charterers pay attention to everything is to make them responsible. It's probably worth further discussion with them. And if my choice were to be responsible for locking the dinghy everywhere I went, and lifting it every night, or risk $6000, I would consider it a pretty easy decision.

As a matter of reference, I have an insurance policy specifically designed for crewed charter boats and offered only to that group. My dinghy is covered but only if I keep it locked.

I don't know why every business practice that is not what one is used to, at home in a completely different environment, or one that is a part of a business the operation of which the commentator is completely unfamiliar with, so regularly excites suspicion and paranoia, rather than a simple curiosity for why it is so.
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Old 11-02-2016, 10:33   #7
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Re: Bahamas Chartering - $6K liability for dinghy?

I charter my boat and dinghy in New England. We had a guy that lost one of the dinghy's and engines off of Nantucket -- he said it got lose and drifted away in heavy seas, and he couldn't get it -- they charged him the full replacement cost - $4,700.
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Old 08-12-2017, 15:35   #8
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Re: Bahamas Chartering - $6K liability for dinghy?

I saw your post regarding chartering with NavTours and the dinghy not being covered. Did you go ahead with the charter? If so, did you insure the dinghy another way or take your chances?

We have paid a deposit for a 45ft catamaran and are looking for either insurance for the dinghy or just take extra precautions to protect the dinghy.

Any information would greatly be appreciated.
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Old 08-12-2017, 19:37   #9
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Re: Bahamas Chartering - $6K liability for dinghy?

We chartered with Navtours in November. Itís really a non issue as long as you donít ground / damage the boat or destroy the dingy.

Most of their dinghies were not new and had seen some seasons. Theft was never a problem or concern.

They are nice but be prepared to spend the 1st day sorting things out. They arenít the most organized and staffed. They do make you do a complete inventory of the boat and sign for items. The checkout can take time as they only had 1 guy doing all the checkouts. We didnít get done until after 9pm. You can read about our experience on our blog www.sailwithmoxie.com.
Let me know if you have any specific questions. Which boat were you looking to charter?
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Old 09-12-2017, 05:16   #10
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Re: Bahamas Chartering - $6K liability for dinghy?

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, MinnieD.
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Old 10-12-2017, 04:30   #11
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Re: Bahamas Chartering - $6K liability for dinghy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ShackAttack View Post
Hi All. Quick question. We want to charter a Cat in the Exumas to get a feel for what it's like to sail a Cat. There is only one company I could find there is out of Quebec and called Navtours. Their online reputation is small and seems pretty favorable.

My question arose when the Rep told me that in addition to the $500 nonrefundable damage waiver, and for being responsible for for 20% of the boats deductible (potentially another 1200$) that I would also be held responsible for damage or loss to the new dinghy at 100% of repair or replacement costs.

Anyone familiar with this practice which leaves 100% of dinghy on charter? I called Moorings and they don't do that.

Anyone familiar w Navtours?

Shack Attack
Call Dream Yacht Charters. They are based out of the Abacos, but send boats to the Exumas for charters. Our boat (2018 Helia Owners Version) will be in the fleet starting March 2018.

Send me a PM if you want to chat more - as I can find out if there are any discounts, etc.
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Old 10-12-2017, 06:20   #12
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Re: Bahamas Chartering - $6K liability for dinghy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ShackAttack View Post
My question arose when the Rep told me that in addition to the $500 nonrefundable damage waiver, and for being responsible for for 20% of the boats deductible (potentially another 1200$) that I would also be held responsible for damage or loss to the new dinghy at 100% of repair or replacement costs.

Anyone familiar with this practice which leaves 100% of dinghy on charter? I called Moorings and they don't do that.

Anyone familiar w Navtours?

Shack Attack

If you don't damage or lose the dink you'll be fine. You'd be surprised how many times the first thing you hear on the vhf in the morning is " my dinghy's been stolen" or "my dink's gone walkabout." By the way, Bahamians don't like rubber dinks and they don't get stolen. Now a twenty-five foot center console with two 300 hp outboards, that's another matter altogether.
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Old 10-12-2017, 07:25   #13
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Re: Bahamas Chartering - $6K liability for dinghy?

A few years back, yachtsman passing thru Bermuda, going North in Apr/May, recognised their dinghy's, which had been stolen from down South in the winter.
iirc, guy had 6.
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Old 10-12-2017, 16:34   #14
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Re: Bahamas Chartering - $6K liability for dinghy?

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Originally Posted by Spear06 View Post
We chartered with Navtours in November. Itís really a non issue as long as you donít ground / damage the boat or destroy the dingy.

Most of their dinghies were not new and had seen some seasons. Theft was never a problem or concern.

They are nice but be prepared to spend the 1st day sorting things out. They arenít the most organized and staffed. They do make you do a complete inventory of the boat and sign for items. The checkout can take time as they only had 1 guy doing all the checkouts. We didnít get done until after 9pm. You can read about our experience on our blog www.sailwithmoxie.com.
Let me know if you have any specific questions. Which boat were you looking to charter?
We chartered Papillon, a 45ft Lagoon (2012). I hope it is not too beat up. I do have several specific questions. Should I send you a PM?
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Old 10-12-2017, 16:59   #15
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Re: Bahamas Chartering - $6K liability for dinghy?

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Originally Posted by MinnieD View Post
We chartered Papillon, a 45ft Lagoon (2012). I hope it is not too beat up. I do have several specific questions. Should I send you a PM?


Sure. Shoot me a PM, or if you want to keep the info open to the forum you can post it.
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