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Old 09-08-2012, 18:10   #16
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Re: Day Charter in the Caribbean

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Originally Posted by Cheechako View Post
Day charters wouldnt be too bad as compared to overnighters.... been there done that... it can be a little tedious.....
This brings up another thing for OP to consider. What kind of charters do you want to run? Really. (I assume OP has never run charters or he would not be posting) I've worked off and on in the charter industry for many years. Personally, I prefer longer term charters. However, I have friends in the industry who prefer day charters.

If you don't like having guests on your boat at all then you should consider something besides running charters. Both you and your guests will probably not be happy. I know people who hate their guests, hate the owners (generally owners of the mega yacht they are skippering), and hate working in the charter industry. Not sure why they keep doing it other than the pay check. No reason to be miserable -- find something else to do.
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Old 10-08-2012, 06:12   #17
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Re: Day Charter in the Caribbean

I hope to pick the boat up in Fort Lauderdale, then to Bimini and on to Exuma for part of the winter. I'm a kitesurfer, so following the wind will be the itinerary. I love Exuma and the little harbor by Chat & Chill. In the summer, Cabarette is windy as hell. I also would like to spend some time anchored in that really protected harbor in Antigua. Around September, the wind in the Caribbean drops, so I thought I would head south, towards Barbados. Apparently, my insurance company wants me clear out of hurricane areas.
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Old 10-08-2012, 06:25   #18
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Re: Day Charter in the Caribbean

I have never chartered and that is why I am posting. The people I have scuba dived with, and the 100+ people I kitesurf with, are a respectable group. When we go out on a boat, we have one purpose in mind. No one gets greased up and lounges on the vinyl. In many cases, the only way you're going to kite, is to be on a boat, due to changing wind directions.
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Old 10-08-2012, 07:08   #19
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Re: Day Charter in the Caribbean

I started out crewing on a cattlemaran in SXM. (Maho, 1974)
I came very close to turning something I loved into something I hate.
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Old 10-08-2012, 08:19   #20
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Re: Day Charter in the Caribbean

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Originally Posted by Fearnow View Post
I have never chartered and that is why I am posting. The people I have scuba dived with, and the 100+ people I kitesurf with, are a respectable group. When we go out on a boat, we have one purpose in mind. No one gets greased up and lounges on the vinyl. In many cases, the only way you're going to kite, is to be on a boat, due to changing wind directions.
Running a day charter for a specific crowd is very different than running a day charter for the drunken masses.......
But like was said, don't turn something you love into something that makes you cry.
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Old 10-08-2012, 08:37   #21
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Re: Day Charter in the Caribbean

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Running a day charter for a specific crowd is very different than running a day charter for the drunken masses.......
...
Very true. This is one reason I don't like running day charters or really even just vacation charters. In my case, I've mostly run "instructional" charters where the guests are also taking sailing classes. This attracts a very agreeable market segment.

If the OP already has contacts in a market segment which he likes (kite surfing/SCUBA) then that would probably be the best niche for him.
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Old 10-08-2012, 08:39   #22
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Re: Day Charter in the Caribbean

Regarding turning something you love into something you hate...

I've been reading sailing and cruising forums (fora?) for a long time. Lots and lots of people talk about wanting to turn their hobby into a way to make money. You rarely see any follow-up from people who have tried this. When you do, one thing stands out very clearly--the ones who succeed are the ones who think of it as a business, and treat it like a business.

If you think it is going to continue to be a fun hobby, that you just happen to make a little money at, you are almost certain to end up disappointed.
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Old 10-08-2012, 08:47   #23
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Re: Day Charter in the Caribbean

I'm almost afraid to ask what an "OP" is.
I think for now, I'll only plan to host my friends from Maryland, DC, and Virginia. Still plan to get my 6pack and CPR, as my wife refuses to leave FL until that is done.
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Old 10-08-2012, 09:19   #24
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Re: Day Charter in the Caribbean

If you have to ask the question...you're not ready for the business
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Old 10-08-2012, 09:50   #25
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Re: Day Charter in the Caribbean

"OP" stands for original poster. The person starting the thread. It can also stand for original post, as in the topic of discussion.
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Old 10-08-2012, 20:05   #26
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Re: Day Charter in the Caribbean

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I'm almost afraid to ask what an "OP" is. ...
That be you, the "Original Poster".
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Old 10-08-2012, 20:16   #27
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Re: Day Charter in the Caribbean

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Regarding turning something you love into something you hate...

I've been reading sailing and cruising forums (fora?) for a long time. Lots and lots of people talk about wanting to turn their hobby into a way to make money. You rarely see any follow-up from people who have tried this. When you do, one thing stands out very clearly--the ones who succeed are the ones who think of it as a business, and treat it like a business.

If you think it is going to continue to be a fun hobby, that you just happen to make a little money at, you are almost certain to end up disappointed.
I avoided "going pro" for years for just the above reason -- I did not want to turn my hobby into a business and thus into something I potentially did not like.

When a friend with a sailing school/charter company finally talked me into it, I discovered I really enjoyed it....that was in 1994.

However, even when teaching sailing or working as a charter captain on a full-time basis I never took it too seriously as a business -- it was more like a hobby which produced some income to defray hobby related expenses...and gave me more excuses to go sailing.
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Old 10-08-2012, 20:37   #28
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Re: Day Charter in the Caribbean

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Originally Posted by Fearnow View Post
I hope to pick the boat up in Fort Lauderdale, then to Bimini and on to Exuma for part of the winter. I'm a kitesurfer, so following the wind will be the itinerary. I love Exuma and the little harbor by Chat & Chill. In the summer, Cabarette is windy as hell. I also would like to spend some time anchored in that really protected harbor in Antigua. Around September, the wind in the Caribbean drops, so I thought I would head south, towards Barbados. Apparently, my insurance company wants me clear out of hurricane areas.
A legal issue to consider. You can't just pop into any given country and legally start running charters. And, if you hop around to different countries then it will be very difficult to legally establish yourself, your boat, and your business. While it is not uncommon to run into folks doing illegal charters, it is tough to really make a serious business of it...sneaking around and picking up the occasional charter. Personally, I think when you are a guest in a country you should respect their rules.

Depending upon the venue, you run some risk of getting busted and/or pissing off the legal local operators/officials.

Your boat insurance will also be considerably higher for commercial use and insurance does not cover confiscation of your vessel due to illegal activity.

Not trying to piss on your parade -- just something to take in to account.
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Old 11-08-2012, 05:31   #29
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Re: Day Charter in the Caribbean

My game plan never included sneaking around from country to country, picking up charter. In my original post, I asked the question about "required permits." If I decide to go further with this, I realize now that I need to contact each territory, for their specific requirements. I don't need a permit to host friends from the US, and that's all I plan to do right now.
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Old 11-08-2012, 05:50   #30
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Originally Posted by Fearnow
A lot of you are in the Carib, and must be doing something. I can't just sit around drinking. Sorry to be so lame with the questions, but would really like some imput on day to day activity.
I agree. You have to do something. If not you could end up craving for a drink at 10:30 am every day! The line gets thin between cruiser and bumm!!!
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