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Old 05-11-2012, 17:55   #1
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Questions for living in the Caribbean

Ok, I have a few questions for living aboard in the Caribbean, island hopping etc. This is for the future, (time for a cringe worthy sap story) right now I'm in highschool, but I live in Florida right on the beach, and my life since I was a little baby has been revolving around the ocean, I must have sailed the Caribbean on cruise ships at least 50 times (my mom works for RCCL so I go with her on buisness trips). But every time I go, all I think is, "dang I wish instead of just relaxing looking at the water doing nothing, I was contributing and actually sailing". So basically I crave that sailors life, on a sail boat, sailing the ocean (Caribbean sea? whatever) for the better part of my life, but here we run into a problem, MONEY everything costs money, so I'm going to be on an extreme budget if I'm going to do this.
btw I'm probably going to be with 2 other people.

1.A boat, what kind of sail boat would you recommend for me? I can't buy a $120,000 vessel, but I don't want a crappy cheap one, it needs to hold 3 people,
have storage for food etc. I was thinking a Cape Dory 33 since the older vessels are cheaper.

2.Food, I'm going to try to catch fish, however as we all know, there isn't a 100% of me catching a fish every time I cast out, so I'm wondering how much basic foods, (beans, rice, and assorted veggies etc.) are going to cost from local markets.

I'm going to try and be as frugal as possible, anchoring offshore, making my own power etc. but money doesn't last forever.
Also how am I not going to get sick of my friends after being out at sea for years with them?

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Old 05-11-2012, 19:56   #2
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Re: Questions for living in the Caribbean

You don't need money to sail. You don't need to buy a boat. In fact, I used to do a lot more sailing before I started buying boats (and thus having to spend time, and money -- lots of money, maintaining them). You can in fact get paid to sail other people's boats.

Get involved in your local sailing community, take classes, volunteer to crew, build your skills and experience, rack up certifications and licenses, and the sailing opportunities, both paid and unpaid, will come your way so thick you will find yourself having to turn many down.

From someone who has been there and done that.

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Old 05-11-2012, 21:28   #3
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Location: Saskatoon, Canada & Eastern Caribbean
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Re: Questions for living in the Caribbean

Belize has some good advice here Connor. You get to sail AND save up some cash for when you are ready to buy your own boat.

Here's a story of sailing on an extreme budget - Solo Around the America's Under Sail | An audacious attempt at sailing the Northwest Passage and circumnavigating entirety of both continents, to benefit Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating

BTW, welcome to CF and keep up your dream!
Wherever we want to go, we go. That's what a ship is you know - it's not just a keel and a hull and a deck and sails, that's what a ship needs. But what a ship is...really is, is freedom. ~Johnny Depp as Capt. Jack Sparrow
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Old 06-11-2012, 06:58   #4
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Re: Questions for living in the Caribbean

Oh right on, thanks guys
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Old 06-11-2012, 12:08   #5
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You could always be like these guys.
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Old 06-11-2012, 13:19   #6
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Re: Questions for living in the Caribbean

A Cape Dory 33 might be a little overkill. It tends to be a little more blue water and the area you're talking about is more coastal-ish. I guess it depends on what part of the Caribbean you're talking about.

But you might look at something like a Catalina 30 and aim for a Bahamas trip. Nice ones are in the 12-15k range, shoal draft, more beam, roomier. You have a nice rear and forward berth layout. You could fit a couple in the v-berth, a couple in the rear berth and a single person in the middle.

And eventually if the 3 people narrows down to 1 person wanting to continue(likely), the C30 wouldn't be too much boat for 1 person.

Later on if your cruising needs expands beyond the Bahamas and easy Caribbean area you should be able to sell it pretty easily to trade up since it's not a high price boat.

There are a lot of boats in this class. Catalina, Hunter, Morgan, Pearson, Endeavor, O'Day, etc etc. Decent little production boats that are all over Florida for cheap prices. Just take your time, research each model and find one in a good solid base condition that'll keep you safe and cozy while you harbor hop in good weather windows.

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