Cruisers Forum
 


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 14-08-2021, 05:53   #1
MD7
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 11
First time Caribbean.. Where to go?

Hello fellow cruisers.

We are planning to head for the Caribbean in Oktober, starting from Greece where we currently are.
As a commercial vessel under Belgian flag, we plan to do some chartering to cover costs.
However, I've never been to the Caribbean and have no idea where to go best.

Therefor I'd love to have your two cents about facilities, do's and don'ts, what islands are worth visiting and which ones are not.

Here in Greece we have a well facilitated marina at hand, many islands and restaurants to choose from for our clients and many nice people that will help you out, no matter what!

What can I expect in the Caribbean?
Any experience chartering your yacht there?
MD7 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15-08-2021, 03:45   #2
Registered User
 
Zanshin's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Caribbean
Boat: Jeanneau 57
Posts: 1,880
Re: First time Caribbean.. Where to go?

Hello MD7 and welcome!

The Caribbean chain is long and each island/country is different. I spent many years sailing up in the northern parts (USVI/BVI/St. Martin/St. Barths/Antigua/St. Kitts/Statia/Dominica/Guadeloupe) and am currently in Rodney Bay, St. Lucia.

Before going into the differences on the islands, I should warn you that you won't be able to easily offer your vessel for charter. While it might be possible in the EU-based islands (St. Martin French side, Guadeloupe, Martinique) all of the other locations will require licensing of some sort and that will be both expensive and time-consuming to get - then you have to find customers and compete against all the established companies. So unless you have a very specific business plan I would not expect an income stream from chartering.

St. Martin is the best location for getting duty-free boat parts locally or using one of the freight services to get parts directly from the USA (takes 1 day if air-freight, otherwise about 3 days). Inside the lagoon is very protected. But I've never developed a fondness for the place.

Islands like Dominica are off the beaten tourist path, offer almost no services but great nature and friendly people.

The Chris Doyle Guides are a good start, he goes through each island in detail and while some of the details might change year-to-year the general contents remain valid and will give you a feel for the destination.

The noonsite.com website is always good for information on the countries, but the COVID pandemic has invalidated a lot of the entry rules and they can change very quickly as I recently discovered during my attempts to leave the BVI.
__________________
-Zanshin (SV Zanshin)
Zanshin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15-08-2021, 06:11   #3
Registered User
 
Nicholson58's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Caribbean live aboard
Boat: Camper & Nicholson58 Ketch - ROXY Traverse City, Michigan No.668283
Posts: 5,792
Images: 84
Re: First time Caribbean.. Where to go?

Yes, what Zanshin said.

Get the guides for sure. Find the series, many books, used on Amazon.

Try the chart guide Zuluwaterways

https://www.zuluwaterways.com

There is a lot of information here like Active Captain.

We spent a lot of time in Antigua. This is a large boat (Megayacht) charter center and hosts a charter brokers show first week in December. The island has a lot to offer. Many harbors all around. Professional services available.
Nicholson58 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15-08-2021, 08:29   #4
MD7
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2020
Posts: 11
Re: First time Caribbean.. Where to go?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zanshin View Post
Hello MD7 and welcome!

The Caribbean chain is long and each island/country is different. I spent many years sailing up in the northern parts (USVI/BVI/St. Martin/St. Barths/Antigua/St. Kitts/Statia/Dominica/Guadeloupe) and am currently in Rodney Bay, St. Lucia.

Before going into the differences on the islands, I should warn you that you won't be able to easily offer your vessel for charter. While it might be possible in the EU-based islands (St. Martin French side, Guadeloupe, Martinique) all of the other locations will require licensing of some sort and that will be both expensive and time-consuming to get - then you have to find customers and compete against all the established companies. So unless you have a very specific business plan I would not expect an income stream from chartering.

St. Martin is the best location for getting duty-free boat parts locally or using one of the freight services to get parts directly from the USA (takes 1 day if air-freight, otherwise about 3 days). Inside the lagoon is very protected. But I've never developed a fondness for the place.

Islands like Dominica are off the beaten tourist path, offer almost no services but great nature and friendly people.

The Chris Doyle Guides are a good start, he goes through each island in detail and while some of the details might change year-to-year the general contents remain valid and will give you a feel for the destination.

The noonsite.com website is always good for information on the countries, but the COVID pandemic has invalidated a lot of the entry rules and they can change very quickly as I recently discovered during my attempts to leave the BVI.
Thanks a lot!
I heard from a charter company that regulations are more rare, as long as you are commercially licensed for your flag.


I think covid will the main factor to consider.
Thanks for the advice!!
MD7 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15-08-2021, 08:58   #5
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Winter Germany, Summer Med
Boat: Lagoon 380 S2
Posts: 1,739
Re: First time Caribbean.. Where to go?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MD7 View Post
Thanks a lot!
I heard from a charter company that regulations are more rare, as long as you are commercially licensed for your flag.


I think covid will the main factor to consider.
Thanks for the advice!!
Haven't been there for a while but one thing to consider:
Local charter companies have had a hard time with hurricanes and covid so don't expect a warm welcome. They are not looking for competition and they have the better connections than you.
rabbi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15-08-2021, 08:58   #6
Registered User
 
Zanshin's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Caribbean
Boat: Jeanneau 57
Posts: 1,880
Re: First time Caribbean.. Where to go?

The commercial registration under the boat's flag is just one hurdle. In addition to the boat being legal for charter, I assume that you will be doing crewed charters - which means the crew needs a work permit (e.g. for the BVI). Competition in the charter business is tough as there are the full time companies such as Moorings and Dream Yacht Charters with their fleet of new boats, then a secondary bareboat market and a crewed yacht market with people doing exactly what you plan on doing. I have met many boats and crews around the islands and haven't met any liveaboards that were also chartering who were really doing better than breaking even.

Perhaps after you've looked at the books or other sources and have narrowed down your proposed destination you could ask about a specific island or islands to get specific information.

I'm off to the Grenadines and Grenada next - and keeping an eye out on those tropical waves!
__________________
-Zanshin (SV Zanshin)
Zanshin is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
Caribbean, rib

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Long Time Lurker, First Time Poster kgreenlaw Meets & Greets 8 23-02-2014 13:16
Long Time Lurker, First Time Poster - hello to all jinbtown Meets & Greets 14 26-09-2013 21:32
Hello! Long time lurker, first time poster. Zomgie Meets & Greets 6 31-07-2013 23:30
Long-Time Listener, First-Time Caller irvus Meets & Greets 10 15-07-2011 19:37
First time poster, long time sailer. Richkd Meets & Greets 16 31-08-2008 06:18

Advertise Here


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 16:48.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.