Skippered Sailing Holiday FAQ’s

How does a skippered charter work?

You choose the pace you want to set and your own itinerary with the help of the skipper’s sailing expertise and knowledge of the cruising grounds. You can get as involved as you would like with the sailing or if you would rather relax and take in the stunning surroundings – it’s completely up to you.

All you need to do is provide your skipper with their own cabin and ensure there is food and drink provisions on board for both you and your skipper. You can choose to invite your skipper to join you at mealtimes or enjoy quality time with your friends and family on board. In some locations you can also pre-pay for the skippers provisioning.

What are the skippers responsible for?

  • Navigation - Your skipper can take you almost anywhere within your cruising ground, weather permitting. In addition to navigating the yacht, your skipper will handle all related duties including charting your course, monitoring weather conditions and ensuring the safety of all guests during the voyage.

  • Dinghy Transport - On occasions when your yacht's dinghy is needed to travel ashore, your skipper can operate this small vessel to ensure a safe journey to land.

  • Safety & Maintenance - Skippers are responsible for always maintaining a safe and orderly deck. This means keeping the lines tidy and out of harm's way and stowing gear that isn't in use. Your skipper will also refill gas and water tanks, but guests are responsible for paying any fees required for these.

  • Providing a safety briefing to all customers – this is in addition to the health and safety videos that must be watched in advance of your charter
  • Briefing of the boat’s systems including, gas, toilets, water and safety equipment

What is your skipper not responsible for?

  • Cooking for the charter group

  • Cleaning for the charter group – skippers will of course tidy up after themselves if they have used the kitchen and will dispose of their litter
  • Emptying bins

  • Childcare

  • Organising land and water-based excursions including diving and taxi’s

What does the skippered charter package include?

  • The skippered charter package will include the cost of your yacht, a dedicated skipper, skipper provisions (food and drink) and Wi-Fi.
  • This package is a great start for those who are new to sailing holidays, ensuring you have the essentials, before adding water toys and extras that you desire. 
  • Each yacht has a dedicated skipper, so your skipper will already have their own designated cabin and be familiar with the yacht. 

What does a bareboat skippered charter include?

  • A bareboat skippered charter enables you to select any destination and any yacht in our fleet. You can add a skipper under the extra’s section on the website or by speaking to your vacation planner.

  • The skipper fee that is charged will cover the cost of hiring the skipper for your chosen duration. 

  • You will need to ensure that you have selected a yacht that is large enough to accommodate both your party and the skipper. If the yacht does have a forepeak cabin, this can be an acceptable accommodation for the skipper (excluding the Bahamas) however you must advise your vacation planner of this at the time of booking. Alternatively, if there is an interior cabin available the skipper will occupy this. 

Gratuity and industry expectations? 

For a skippered charter package, a gratuity of $300 or above, per week is appreciated and for excellent service please feel free to tip a percentage of the total charter cost.

For a bareboat skippered charter, a gratuity of 15-20% of the skipper fee is appreciated for excellent service however some customers feel it appropriate to tip at a percentage of the overall charter price for outstanding service. 

This is entirely at your discretion.

Your ideal destination doesn’t offer the skippered charter package, or it is unavailable?

Not to worry, you can still enjoy a skippered charter with us. You can hire a skipper through adding this on to your bareboat charter. Although you won’t receive the inclusions of the skippered charter package, you can add these on to your booking too.

What if I only want a skipper for the day?

Bareboat skippered charters are fully flexible and enable you to add a skipper for the duration of your choosing depending on your needs. You can hire them for the day or for the duration of your charter, speak to your holiday planner to ensure you have the support you need. 

Please note: If you are booking the skippered charter package, the skipper will be with you for the whole of your charter. Hiring a skipper for a shorter duration may not be possible in all destinations, please confirm this with your holiday planner.

To find out more about what to expect on a skippered charter, please read our blogs

Helpful Tips 

  • Your Skipper can be as discreet or interactive as you need them to be. Upon boarding, inform your skipper if you prefer a more private cruising experience.
  • Communicate to your dining preferences - feel free to invite your skipper if you are dining out or let them know that onboard provisions have been provided.
  • Your skipper is a great source of local knowledge and best-kept secrets! Your skipper will work with you to plan your perfect itinerary.
  • Our skippers are professional and friendly. Many of our guests become great friends with their skipper and often hire the same one when they return!

Choose Sunsail

Stunning Sailing Destinations 
Flotilla routes
Types of yachts
44 yrs
Creating holidays
4 hr
Service commitment
Consumer protection