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Old 30-06-2015, 01:04   #31
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Re: Guests share expenses

If it were a road trip I would expect everyone to put in for the fuel. That is a road trip that was say organized as a fun thing to do together. If on the other hand I asked a friend to come with me if they would want to get out and have a trip and they said ok it would not feel right to ask them to contribute fuel costs. Of course I wouldn't knock back a contribution if offered be it for fuel or a meal. Then there is the friend who knows you have a great car that you like driving on trips with that calls you up and says let me know when I can go on a trip with you. If I felt generously disposed I would say how about next weekend and not bother about discussing money. On the other hand if I didn't feel so generous I would say sure but you know the trip is going to cost a bit in fuel and food so are you ok with contributing?


There is no simple answer to the question. I suppose the real answer is, it all depends. Now of the boat owner isn't flush with the green but still enjoys making trips with their friends and even acquaintances then to save embarrassment I would in this case be proactive in organizing the trip. Kind of like putting together a night out at the Opera with dinner with friends and saying from the get go how much the Opera tickets are going to cost and that we are all going Dutch on the meal. (sorry my Dutch friends for my slang).


So there is no real right and wrong. Just be honest about the situation and avoid embarrassment for yourself and your guests. And if you can't afford feeding a small army than throw your floating dinner party with everyone knowing before hand that everyone is going to throw in equally to cover the costs.


Just my simple thoughts on this.
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Old 30-06-2015, 01:21   #32
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Re: Guests share expenses

For quests unwilling to contribute serving few days porridge and water helps. Then ask if anyone likes to go shopping for provision
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Old 30-06-2015, 01:42   #33
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Re: Guests share expenses

My boat sleeps two (three more in convertible furniture which I don't count). So guests are invited for day trips. I expect nothing from landlubbers, but wine isn't refused. On the other hand, boating with fellow boaters onboard, where we alternately are guests on each others boats is different where social rules are like those on land: communal.


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Old 30-06-2015, 01:44   #34
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Re: Guests share expenses

TeddyDiver, We are also in Maya Cove (SV REGGAE) and have a very simply way of sharing the additional expenses of having guests aboard while away from our base mooring. We have one of those bank zippered pouches into which we all contribute an equal amount of money (everybody aboard) from which we pay the boat's expenses (provisioning / transient mooring balls / fuel / etc.) while away from base, reloading the pouch as necessary. I suspect that many people are not aware that a transient mooring ball down there runs $30 - $40 per night with virtually no place to anchor in the more popular anchorages due to the proliferation of commercial mooring balls. This system seems to work very well as we ensure that all guests are aware of it prior to accepting the invitation. Everyone shares equally, owners and guests. Reduces the nit noid of who paid what to zero! Give it a try. Personal expenses remain individual responsibilities. George
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Old 30-06-2015, 07:14   #35
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Re: Guests share expenses

Quote:
Originally Posted by mstrebe View Post
If you tell people that you expect them to chip in, you are creating an expectation of non-voluntary consideration and are therefore operating for-hire. There have been a number of cases, generally when something went wrong and there was a collision or fatality involved, where the receipt of consideration dramatically changed the legal case.

Here in San Diego, a supposed charity (which included just the captain, his boat, and a website) was taking folks sailing, and even though they didn't directly charge the passengers, they took donations online. When the boat overturned and two people died (from being illegally overloaded by 2X the max occupancy), the captain was imprisoned for operating illegally without a license--even though he wasn't charging the passengers directly, but because he was being paid to sail and operating without a captain's license. It's also clearly a case where a trained captain wouldn't have made the mistake that led to fatalities and the reason why licensing exists.

I would avoid making any kind of request for cash or any tally of expenses, because if there's an accident and the CG interviews your guests and asks them if they paid to sail, the wrong answer could really screw you.
I think you guys are looking way into this..

If you ask the visitors to help pay for consumables (not boat maintenance or normal slip/mooring fee, insurance, or loan payments) that is not create an non-voluntary consideration. Hey can voluntarily say no and not come. They aren't paying to sail, they are paying to eat(food/drink costs) and sleep(moorage fees) equally with all crew and owners alike.

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Originally Posted by Cylinder View Post
I think you may be somewhat off the mark.

Generally, some tangible amount of worth exchanged for carriage on a vessel such as payment, exchange of goods or a promise of performance is required. “Consideration” does not include a voluntary sharing of the actual expenses of a voyage. Additionally, employees or business clients that have not contributed for their carriage, and are carried for morale or entertainment purposes is not included as exchange of consideration."

I can reimburse you my share of the fuel, beer and slip fees. You cannot charge for transporting me. I don't think the USCG is going to nitpick voluntary to mean your reminder that fuel is expensive or preference for guests willing to chip in on things.
I agree wholely with what you said. It's about paying your share (if that's the case) not paying for charter.

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Originally Posted by monte View Post
Stu I don't see that he is carrying passengers for hire, but I guess the question is how do authorities, insurance companies and courts see it. From the example above it would seem any contribution toward fuel, food and expenses might be judged as a paying passenger by the USCG? Or perhaps I'm reading that backwards and those contributions are allowed?
I think you're reading it backwards.. Expenses are allowed, money for profit isn't.

"Consideration” does not include a voluntary sharing of the actual expenses of a voyage."

Quote:
Originally Posted by gts1544 View Post
TeddyDiver, We are also in Maya Cove (SV REGGAE) and have a very simply way of sharing the additional expenses of having guests aboard while away from our base mooring. We have one of those bank zippered pouches into which we all contribute an equal amount of money (everybody aboard) from which we pay the boat's expenses (provisioning / transient mooring balls / fuel / etc.) while away from base, reloading the pouch as necessary. I suspect that many people are not aware that a transient mooring ball down there runs $30 - $40 per night with virtually no place to anchor in the more popular anchorages due to the proliferation of commercial mooring balls. This system seems to work very well as we ensure that all guests are aware of it prior to accepting the invitation. Everyone shares equally, owners and guests. Reduces the nit noid of who paid what to zero! Give it a try. Personal expenses remain individual responsibilities. George
I agree, if I were to make visitors pay.

And you aren't "cheap" or a tightass if you ask your visitors to help chip in. Food expense isn't always a linear expense. It costs considerably more for each extra month to feed. That's pricy, not everyone has the liquid assets to do that but they still want to have their visitors come for a visit. There's nothing wrong with that if it's talked about beforehand.

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Old 30-06-2015, 07:38   #36
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Re: Guests share expenses

Quote:
Originally Posted by gts1544 View Post
TeddyDiver, We are also in Maya Cove (SV REGGAE) and have a very simply way of sharing the additional expenses of having guests aboard while away from our base mooring. We have one of those bank zippered pouches into which we all contribute an equal amount of money (everybody aboard) from which we pay the boat's expenses (provisioning / transient mooring balls / fuel / etc.) while away from base, reloading the pouch as necessary. I suspect that many people are not aware that a transient mooring ball down there runs $30 - $40 per night with virtually no place to anchor in the more popular anchorages due to the proliferation of commercial mooring balls. This system seems to work very well as we ensure that all guests are aware of it prior to accepting the invitation. Everyone shares equally, owners and guests. Reduces the nit noid of who paid what to zero! Give it a try. Personal expenses remain individual responsibilities. George
We use this approach on our guys ski trips
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Old 30-06-2015, 08:38   #37
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Re: Guests share expenses

I wouldn't get hung up on the legalities of cost sharing -- pretty sure that the USCG permits sharing of direct, out of pocket costs (not at a profit) among acquaintances. You start taking people off the street or start recovering other ownership costs you could be in trouble. The grey area is a charitably auctioned cruise.

As far as the etiquette of cost sharing, there are lots of variables. Among my friends (many of whom are also boat owners), it is quite accepted to share all direct costs of a multi-day all-guys fishing trip. Conversely, a pleasure cruise with women would not involve cost sharing, except that everyone would find a way to contribute something.
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Old 30-06-2015, 08:52   #38
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Re: Guests share expenses

For a planned trip, not on my boat, I always cover the cost of the fuel, food, booze. I realize the owner of the vessel is incurring the rest of the unseen costs of owning and operating a vessel. Usually if it 2 or more guests this expense is divided. I don't expect guests to cover those costs, but at least with the friends I have they bring all the food and drink for a trip and usually pay for the fuel. It is unspoken unless someone asks what they can bring, and for things like a day trip, I don't sweat it one way or the other, but I have never had a guest that didn't offer ahead of time to bring the goodies for a trip.
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Old 30-06-2015, 11:19   #39
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Re: Guests share expenses

Quote:
Originally Posted by mstrebe View Post
If you tell people that you expect them to chip in, you are creating an expectation of non-voluntary consideration and are therefore operating for-hire. There have been a number of cases, generally when something went wrong and there was a collision or fatality involved, where the receipt of consideration dramatically changed the legal case.

Here in San Diego, a supposed charity (which included just the captain, his boat, and a website) was taking folks sailing, and even though they didn't directly charge the passengers, they took donations online. When the boat overturned and two people died (from being illegally overloaded by 2X the max occupancy), the captain was imprisoned for operating illegally without a license--even though he wasn't charging the passengers directly, but because he was being paid to sail and operating without a captain's license. It's also clearly a case where a trained captain wouldn't have made the mistake that led to fatalities and the reason why licensing exists.

I would avoid making any kind of request for cash or any tally of expenses, because if there's an accident and the CG interviews your guests and asks them if they paid to sail, the wrong answer could really screw you.
That's exactly the point I was making earlier. This captain was essentially taking folks out on a for-hire basis.

Kenomac is partially right in that some folks can be tightasses.

But let's make a very big distinction here:

The OP asked about friends & acquaintances, NOT charity cruises.

There is a distinction to be made of the CG asking your son-in-law if he paid for dinner vs paying to go sailing in paradise with you if an accident happens.

C'mon, really?

And, IIRC, that bozo in San Diego was on a Mac24 or 26 with about 50 people. Sheez... And that was also exactly my earlier point: that guy was playing captain without getting a "captain's licesne" which is what the rule was intended to deal with. NOT with folks taking their friends & acquaintances.

friends & acquaintances

friends & acquaintances

friends & acquaintances

friends & acquaintances

NOT strangers.
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Old 30-06-2015, 11:28   #40
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Re: Guests share expenses

I've never had to ask anyone who came on my boat as a guest to help contribute. And, I would suggest that if you do, you are asking the wrong people to with you on your boat.
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Old 30-06-2015, 11:54   #41
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Re: Guests share expenses

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Originally Posted by gts1544 View Post
TeddyDiver, We are also in Maya Cove (SV REGGAE) and have a very simply way of sharing the additional expenses of having guests aboard while away from our base mooring. We have one of those bank zippered pouches into which we all contribute an equal amount of money (everybody aboard) from which we pay the boat's expenses (provisioning / transient mooring balls / fuel / etc.) while away from base, reloading the pouch as necessary. I suspect that many people are not aware that a transient mooring ball down there runs $30 - $40 per night with virtually no place to anchor in the more popular anchorages due to the proliferation of commercial mooring balls. This system seems to work very well as we ensure that all guests are aware of it prior to accepting the invitation. Everyone shares equally, owners and guests. Reduces the nit noid of who paid what to zero! Give it a try. Personal expenses remain individual responsibilities. George
Quests aren't a problem, it's friends and relatives, well, some of them..
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Old 30-06-2015, 12:21   #42
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Re: Guests share expenses

It is allowable for friends and family to chip in but once you spell things out up front, you enter a gray area, particularly if it looks like there was a requirement to chip in if they want to be invited out.

If all goes well. No one is injured, the boat isn't broken, everyone leaves the trip happy, etc... odds are no one will question it. You may or may not have been technically a charter operation but no one is going to question it.

On the other hand, if things do go bad...you could be in trouble. You mess up and run aground and someone falls and is seriously injured. Suddenly you can find yourself in an ugly situation. With hundreds of thousands in medical bills, the authorities and insurance folks start asking questions and it appears you were asking for compensation...it sure looks like you were running an illegal charter company.

I think the reason people are jumping on this is there have been other threads where people are suggesting they can invite "friends" they just met on the internet and "chipping in" is a requirement in a clear attempt to circumvent the rules for running a charter. Of course the insurance companies and authorities aren't stupid, if that is what you plan, they will see thru it.

Now if it is legitimate friends and family and you aren't hard nosed about the offer only comes with them chipping in, this isn't really relevant and you should be OK.
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Old 30-06-2015, 12:37   #43
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Re: Guests share expenses

I don't think it's a gray area when you tell friends and family about expenses up front. If you were going on a road trip in your vehicle, you tell them were stopping here and here. The hotel/campground costs this much here and here. The fuel approximation is this. We will take it all and divide it by everyone in the car. A police officer wouldn't ask you if you are running a chauffeur business would they? No.

Same goes for boats. The CG rule says "Consideration” does not include a voluntary sharing of the actual expenses of a voyage."

Granted this is all IF you are in a position where you need to ask for aid in paying for some things. Don't be a palper, but not everyone is loaded just be they have a traveling boat.

I fortunately have the means to pay for visitors visit once and a while, but if it's a voyage or they're staying for more than a week, yes I would stipulate food and drink (either shared payment or bring something) that before they come so they are aware of it. Most of my friends and family would have no problem chipping in to pay for a dock fee, or dinner or drinks but that isn't the point.

The point is, the OP can ask his "family and friends" if they wanted to split certain consumable expenses or temporary slip fees. He won't get in trouble for trying to be a charter boat unless. It's his own decision to ask for aid in those expenses, especially if he would normally not buy that much food or get dockage etc.



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Old 30-06-2015, 12:49   #44
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Re: Guests share expenses

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I don't think it's a gray area when you tell friends and family about expenses up front. If you were going on a road trip in your vehicle, you tell them were stopping here and here. The hotel/campground costs this much here and here. The fuel approximation is this. We will take it all and divide it by everyone in the car. A police officer wouldn't ask you if you are running a chauffeur business would they? No.



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The gray area comes about if going on the trip is contingent upon payment. At that point, it is no longer voluntary. If you send an email with a price list, it sure looks like the trip is contingent upon payment...hence the gray area.

Actually, if you do a road trip and require payement, you are in almost the exact same situation. I've seen it debated in regard to uber and if your personal auto insurance covers you. The arguement is they are just giving "friends" rides. The result is pretty much the same.

If its:
- A close family member or your best friend since childhood, it's probably going to fall in your favor.
- If it's a "friend", you met last week online and extent of your friendship is 3-4 emails discussing trip costs, you are probably running a charter operation and that's what the authorities will consider it.
- In between, it's various shades of gray.

Again, if the OP is legitimately talking about real friends and family, he should be fine as long as he doesn't get hard nosed about paying up if they want to go along.
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Old 30-06-2015, 17:53   #45
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Re: Guests share expenses

While it is a common practice on a fishing or dive outing for the guests to pay all expenses, it is not something I've seen out sailing.


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