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Old 30-10-2006, 16:44   #1
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Two week bare boat charters?

I am planning a two-week vacation in February that would involve sailing, warm weather, beaches and a great time. I’m new to chartering, but have sailed my Hunter 23 for five years, and taken ASA coastal navigation and keelboat cruising.
Any suggestions on a modest cost destination? I’m leaning towards the Sea of Cortez.

Thanks for your help.
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Old 30-10-2006, 20:04   #2
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What tends to bump up cost is flying to the destination so it rather depends on where you are flying from.

Having said that, have you considered the Caribbean? If so, the Virgin Islands is probably the best place to start. Moorings/Sunsail group are there plus many other smaller (and imho, more personable - and most certainly cheaper) operators. A great place to look in and there you will also find owners of chart yachts selling their own useage time at up to 40% discount. Hope this helps, Tony
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Old 30-10-2006, 20:23   #3
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I've done to very nice bareboat charters in Florida. Once in The Florida Keys the other in Punta Gorda. The kids 8 and 10 refer to the Keys as the REal Florida. After looking at the airfares and costs for the boat Florida turned out to be the least expensive. We got two weeks in FL for the price of one week in Mexico. I now have my own boat but if I did not I would not hesitate to got to the Keys again. Good Diving Good fishing and generally nice people. BTW both times I went in the off season.
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Old 07-01-2007, 17:22   #4
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Was in the Sea of Cortez, La Paz last spring, was great. We are Mooring Boat Owners and had a wonderful relaxing time. It's like sailing in the Grand Canyon filled up with water. Try the Moorings best base around or try the Yacht Charters | Discount sailboat charters | Charter yacht ownership | for owners who may be selling some owners time. Mexico City airport is a nightmare; make sure you are on the right lines and tell the agents exactly where you want to go. If you have to cut in front of the lines do so and explain it to the people on line. They probably already missed their flights.
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Old 13-02-2007, 11:15   #5
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As someone has already said, the flying is what kills you....#8-)

I have chartered in Antigua (Benateau 52 ), Belieze (Freedom 40), and Greece (Mirage 28). Cant say as the cost was much different after taking out the airfare and correcting for the size of the boat. All were bareboat with full provisions.

You can save money by provisioning yourself, but the time wasted, 1 to 2 days, is not worth it. Figure out what that boat is costing you for the two days you are wasting getting your provisions and add that to the cost of your provisions and you will see that having it pre provisioned is a savings.

Only warning I will offer is that you should NOT get a boat with "in mast" roller furling main. What a disaster that was!!! The darned thing jambed half in and half out (foil broke inside the mast) in a small gale. But Moorings sent out a boat from another island (we were island hopping from Antigua to St Thomas) to repair it while we were in town shopping. We never saw the repairmen! Thats the benefit of good radio equipment and a reliable company.
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Old 14-02-2007, 10:41   #6
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Another good way to lower the costs is to go in the "off" season. Many areas, especially the Caribbean, are still very nice and you don't have to contend with as many crowds. The BVIs are probably one of the best for someone new to chartering. Warm water, nice people, good trade wind sailing and well placed beach bars.
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Old 15-06-2007, 15:19   #7
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I live in Florida and I have found it less expensive to spend 2 weeks on a charter in British Virgin Islands than one week out of Miami or most of the other charter point in Florida... that includes the airfare as long as you book at least 21 days in advance.

At first I though it was a mistake but boy what a difference it is in both sailing and sightseeing! BVI wins hands down, water clarity, weather, charm of the people, even food cost less ashore or most provision shops. I'm sure you probably don't have any interest but the Rum is about half price and often with out any tax.

I have not really considered the Florida Keys after being "bitten" by the Carib bug. I'm about to make an offer on a boat out of Tortola very soon and hope to do several months each trip for the next few years.

I do agree that several of the smaller companies offer more personal services and are typically cheaper than the "big 2" which is really the big one including Moorings/Sunsail/ Footloose... they are the same company.
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Old 15-06-2007, 16:08   #8
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There are some tricks to the Madness

BN: Like many here = been there & done that some lessons learned may help You.
I now start with Airfare & flight schedules.........I used to start with the boat.
My most recent trip to Antigua worked out great from a planning standpoint & airfare cost. I narrowed down my airfare/flights way before 21 days (usually drop dead for better fares), then I put the boat on hold with the charter co (friday hold gave me the whole weekend) .....then booked the airfare/flights I wanted with crew.......once confirmed on line, I reserved the boat Monday am.
Since You are looking for next Feb, you will have plenty of time to narrow down the airline(s) & flight times you want to fly........then sign up for that airline's e-mail updates/FF plan so You get notified of special fares which are often discounted before the next season to get the ball rolling.
Flight routes are key; can you avoid Mexico city?, or other places that seem to irritate people or are known for delays ie; SJU, MIA.
Location - I've never been to Sea of Cortez but have been to BVI 2x & agree it is a very good cruising ground
Sailing Magazine did a 4-6 page article on Cortez Sailing - 4/07
Cruising World article - Cruising World - A Landscape Between Mars and Midnight

Boat Cost - I just looked at a Moorings price list - very close between the two.....Compared 36'/40' monohulls ..Exclusive(newest) / Club (3-5yrs old)
for Feb..........these prices are per day were published in 1/07.
Cortez - $635/$705................$575/$650
BVI - $565/$745..................$540/$675
You can also stick close to charter co web site or sign up for e-mails, etc just in case they offer any deals or discounts.
Speaking of discounts, a 2 week charter should help you negotiate one since the company does not have to "turn the boat around" after the normal week long charter.
BVI does has a wide array of charter companies to choose from.

Sailonline is a great resource & chance to buy owner's time.

Provisioning - I disagree with JB when it comes to small does not take me 1-2 days to provision my boat....more like 1-2 hrs. Larger crews make it tougher & often buying provision plan from charter co makes sense...........just depends on your cruising style ie; dinners ashore vs cooking on board everynight..........or cost of meals in a location.....local (not tourist) restaurants are supposed to be inexpensive

In Mast Furling - could not agree more with JB on this one - run don't walk away from them

Good Luck on your 1st voyage
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Old 15-06-2007, 21:01   #9
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As above with regards to airfare costs, but check out the Whitsundays in QLD Australia. I did it back in the olden days. If you are wanting the party life, it may not be for you but for a trully magnificant set of islands, that still has a sense of remoteness to them its worth a look. Please dont tell anyone else, I will now have to wear a wig and hide from my friends who have their boats there !!
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