I agree with Montanan on the points he brings up....however, another thing you need to consider is that you will need certifications and licenses to run a charter
I can only speak about the U.S. process, but I am sure it will be similar for a Canadian-flagged vessel-- you will need a commercial Captain license
to have fare-paying people aboard (which takes a fair amount of experience to attain). And obviously you'll need a business license
for such a venture... and they will likely want your Bona Fides before they give you insurance
to carry people on a vessel. We had to provide extensive sailing resumes and documented experience, etc for our personal sailboat policy in order to take our boat outside of U.S waters and the Bahamas
. I can only assume it would be to this level, or even higher when running a charter business.
And for what it's worth.... there are so many small charter companies out there... I'd not rely on it as your income
stream. If you had extensive sailing experience to offer potential "fares" (such as https://www.59-north.com
) then, you could likely ensure a steady income stream. In addition, anyone hiring you is going to want know they're in good hands... they will want your Bona Fides as well.
But, if you're just starting out, and do not know how to sail, then go get a boat and enjoy sailing. Even if you get a smaller boat, so you get to keep more of your money
in the kitty.
P.S. Because I've been there... you might consider getting an older, cheaper boat for you and your husband to *just go sailing* on for 1-2 years to try it out, before you sell your house and sink 300-400K in a boat (because it will not be worth that if you decide it's not for you and you try to sell it... even 3 months later). Not to mention, if you are new to sailing, handling a 47-52 Cat will be too much boat for you. MAKE SURE this is something you can do. Boat Shows and YouTube videos will not tell you how you (and more importantly, your marriage) will hold up in foul weather
, the day-in-day-out of living on a boat, and the constant maintenance
issues (i.e. having one head
on a boat, and after drinking all day at the Miami Boat Show
with friends and broker-friends, then dinghying back to your boat after midnight... and having to tear apart the toilet...for the record
, we had replaced everything new: toilet, sewage and salt water flushing
hold and treat system; all 6 months prior...sailboat living is a CONSTANT maintenance
I am not saying all of this to be a "Debbie Downer" -- but I've been there. This lifestyle is NOT idyllic; it's a LOT OF WORK
I plan on returning to sailing in a few years, but I learned a lot from our first bluewater
boat and full-time liveaboard
experience. My husband and I had extensive sailing and maritime experience before living aboard
and sailing full-time; and it was still tough.
Also... I am offering this as sincere advice, and would welcome any questions you might have. Feel free to comment, or PM me. I will do my best to answer any questions.
Good luck. Follow your dreams, but do so with a healthy dose of reality.