Useful Information before and after your booking
Common questions and answers for everyone:
- Ok, so it is Saturday and we are in Athens what should we do? How does it work?
We do our best for our yachts to be ready around 13.30-14.00 and you are more than welcome to visit us in our base at Alimos marina at that time. If you have ordered a provisioning list then all of your provisioning will have already been placed on the yacht. Once you are onboard your skipper will welcome you and familiarise you with the yacht and accommodation. The safety briefing to follow is very important and your skipper will give you safety instructions in order for your trip to be super safe. Afterwards you discuss with him all possible routes and planning regarding your trip, according to your preferences and the weather at the time of your arrival.
That’s it! You start sailing immediately and after some hours you will be swimming to the first bay according to your desired plan.
All of our cruises return in the marina on the evening of the following Friday, our guests overnight onboard and disembarkation is set for 09.00 (in order for us to be able to prepare the yacht for our next guests according to our standards).
- How important is safety briefing?
Yachting vacation is considered adventurous vacation. The reason as you can imagine is that you are at sea (and not on land). This does not mean that it is dangerous, however our honest advice is that we have to respect the sea and the weather (I would say we have to respect nature to be more precise). The safety briefing you will have by your skipper is very important and our suggestion would be to pay a lot of attention since yachting vacation should comply with some basic rules of safety while cruising.
- Children and safety onboard a yacht
Yachting vacation is considered for us the best family vacation. Kids have the chance to experience sea, come closer to real nature and enjoy the summer like no other type of vacation can offer. It is crucial for the parents to be aware that as everywhere else you need to be responsible for children onboard meaning for example how far are they allowed to go with a water toy, how and if can they dive from the yacht into the sea, how good can they swim once the yacht is anchored etc. For us safety comes first so we always suggest to the parents to keep an extra eye on the children during their yachting vacation. For us the highest priority during your sailing cruise is your safety and this is the reason until today we only have successful cruises on this end.
- We see a lot of islands on the map and want to see all in one week is this possible?
Greece has more than 2000 islands, as you can imagine it would be impossible to see everything in one week! Our friendly advice would be not to get into this rush of seeing the more possible. This will be made eventually, however our suggestion would be to concentrate on the beauty of the location where you are, live the moment (rather than thinking where to go next) and relax! We will help you, setup an itinerary where you will get the most out of your sailing cruise and enjoy the Greek islands. Of course, each one of u is unique and our preferences differ, this is why our sailing cruises are totally customizable so to fit to the pace each one of us prefers the most.
- What is the furthest island a sailing yacht can reach during your cruise?
There is no limitation in terms of distance when it comes to our sailing cruises. You can go as far as you wish. However, you need to keep in mind that it all comes down on how many hours you would like to sail per day. I understand that when you see the distance on a map this rather looks closer than the actual effort it takes to reach. For example, for Santorini that most of you are probably interested it takes 17 hours to reach and another 17 to return. This as you can imagine is a lot of distance to be covered in a week therefore we do not suggest it. For us a daily sailing time in order to be pleasant and according to the experience of the guests would be from 2.5 to 5-6 hours per day. Of course, this covers a general idea and it would depend on the weather conditions, passengers experience and mood etc. Our advice is to concentrate on the things that you see, the inspiration that you get from the place that you are and don’t focus on the photo you might have seen on the web.
- Can we visit Santorini within a weekly cruise?
Santorini is located 140 miles away from Athens and therefore is quite far to be reached within a week. The meaning of yachting vacation in the Greek islands is to be pleasant and relaxing as well. In order to reach Santorini you would end up sailing many hours per day and we do not consider such a trip as pleasant to be completed in one week. I understand that you want to visit (and you should) this beautiful island but again I would like to mention that this is an island to be visited with a ferry and not with a yacht. In practice, it would be quite hard to enter Santorini marina (that is in the southern part of the island and always so packed and you would need a 40 min drive with a taxi to reach the city). True magic of Santorini lies on the island to our opinion. When it comes to yachting vacation there are equally beautiful islands that someone can visit and experience the real off-the-beaten-track Greek culture and beauty.
I understand that many agents would present everything easy and beautiful but at the end of the day you would face a different plan from the one you are presented initially (in order for you to book with the one who says everything is nice and beautiful). This is not the way however we try to do business. We are honest and hard-working professionals who really want you to have the most out of you sailing vacation.
Our suggestion would be: once you have finished your sailing cruise you could consider visiting Santorini either with a plane (30 min flight, prices around 45-65 Euros/person if you book early) OR take the ferry (4-5 hours cruising prices 25-45 Euros/person). You can spend a couple of days in this wonderful island and this would be a way to see the most of true Greece within 9 days’ time.
- Are the times listed on your recommended itinerary calculated using the sails or the engine?
We have calculated the sailing times according to an average pace either using the sails or the engine. This practically means that if the wind is on our side you can perform a little faster while if the wind is not so strong (or there is no wind) you would eventually motor. Of course, there is the chance to do both simultaneously in case the wind is not so strong to speed up the yacht to pleasant performance. The times you see in our sample itineraries are realistic and cannot be altered to a great extend to our opinion.
- Do I need a sailing license to charter a bareboat sailing yacht in Greece?
To charter a sailing yacht in Greece it is necessary for one crewmember (skipper) to have sailing certificates proving his competence. In any case, one certificate/license or competence resume should be available. This certificate can be any kind of "diploma" issued by a "yachting" authority such as sailing clubs, sailing schools, yachting/sailing associations, established charter companies, etc.
Due to the reason that in many countries no certificates are compulsory, the license of the skipper can be exceptionally replaced by a self-declaration form, where the skipper declares he has sailing experience and will undertake responsibility of yacht and crew. In such a case your sailing resume will enable the charter company to assess your ability to sail in safety. Charter companies/owners reserve the right to insist that charterers hire a professional skipper if their sailing skills are not judged sufficient during the hand-over procedure at the base of departure.
- Should I hire a professional skipper?
Yachtsailing.gr member companies can select, recommend and hire on your behalf a professional skipper for as many days as you wish. Even if you are an experienced sailor, you may still require the services of a professional local skipper to make your cruise more relaxing and benefit from the skippers' local knowledge.
There is a daily fee set at 150 Euro per day for the professional skipper regardless of the number of people on board. Please remember that the professional skipper needs in most cases to be provided with his own cabin, as he is obliged to sleep on board and take care of the safety of the yacht, regardless of charterer's presence.
- Should I hire a hostess, cook or deckhand for my sailing holiday in Greece?
It’s up to you. All skippers are capable of sailing most yachts with just a little help while anchoring. If you like you can hire a hostess who can assist the skipper in general with the boat and prepare breakfast and an easy/light lunch, plus do basic tidying up around the boat.
Your charter company/yacht owner you will recommend and hire on your behalf a local English speaking hostess or deck-hand for the full duration of your charter. The hostess is not preparing complicated recipes onboard because of the limited space and storage of a charter sailing yacht.
The daily fee for a hostess is 140 Euro per day.
The simple and casual nature of sailing and the cooking facilities of the sailboats define the style of the holidays. Therefore the level of services provided by a hostess onboard a sailing yacht should not be compared to services of the permanent crew found on fully crewed yachts.
- Which days of the week can I begin and end my cruise? Is it only Saturdays?
- What is the charters' schedule?
All charters typically begin at 17:00 on the day of departure and end at 09:00 on the day of arrival. However you will be required to return to base on the last evening of your charter since this time is necessary between charters to ensure that yachts are always delivered to the next charter in perfect working order. Depending on the circumstances and/or if the yacht has an immediate charter before or after your charter it is sometimes possible to arrange an earlier departure or later return. This can be discussed and arranged on the spot when we have finalized our charters
- What IS included in the charter fee?
The charter fee includes the rental cost of the yacht, linens/bath towels for all passengers, dock fees of the departure and return location of charter, insurance (except the refundable deposit that you leave as security for damages)and VAT (all taxes). There is a standard inventory included in most of the yachts we offer, you can see all available equipment in the yacht details page. Yacht prices are in quoted in Euro per yacht, per week, depending on time of the year, regardless of the number of people aboard (subject to the max # of berths allowed).
- What IS NOT included in the charter fee (additional charges)?
The following additional charges apply:
Deposit - Refundable Security Deposit
Fuel - The yacht should be delivered topped up with fuel as received.
Port or Marina fees - This is a daily-base fee, which applies to some ports in Greece with varied costs (typically minimal except for private marinas).
Options- Any optional extras that you might have specifically requested such as spinnaker, windsurf, skipper, provisions etc.
- Should I have a travel insurance?
In your own interest, you are advised to buy suitable travel insurance before leaving home, including cancellation insurance -where available- to protect your booking deposit.
- What is the security deposit for the yacht?
Every licensed Greek charter yacht is insured, including third Party cover, beyond a deductible "excess" figure. This amount is provided to you by us as "Refundable Security Deposit" figure. The Refundable Security Deposit is held against the yacht's insurance excess and, if there is no damage or loss to the yacht or her equipment, this figure is returned to you at the end of the charter. However, if any damage and/or loss has occurred, the deposit or appropriate proportion will be retained in order to rectify such damage or loss.
- The Refundable Security Deposit covers:
Loss of or damage to the yacht or it's tender or to third parties.
Loss of or damage to the equipment listed in the inventory and given to the charterer at check-in.
Costs incurred if the yacht is returned in an extremely dirty condition.
Cost of returning the yacht to the prearranged harbor if the charterer fails to do so by the scheduled date and time.
Cost of refueling if the boat is returned without refilled tanks.
The payment of the Refundable Security Deposit is designed to cover only one incident of a substantial nature at any one time, i.e. in case of loss or damage to equipment of significant value such as outboard engine or dinghy, the charterer will have the right to a replacement whilst on charter, provided that the charterer pays a new Refundable Security Deposit immediately upon receipt of replacement or repair.
The Refundable Security Deposit is payable at the yacht's base before embarkation typically on a credit card Visa or MasterCard, but sometimes only as cash.
- What should I bring with me?
Every charter yacht is fully equipped for charter. Apart from provisioning, you only need to bring your personal possessions/medications and some recommended items.
Yacht charter is generally an informal and relaxed kind of holiday and dressing in Greece is casual. For clothing bring bathing suits, cotton shorts, T-shirts, an extra sweater and long cotton pants for cool nights and a light foul-weather gear for the occasional rainy days. Of course, you might also like to have the option for more formal attire for elegant dining and eveningwear. Rubber-sole shoes for a firm grip on slippery decks, to prevent foot injury and to protect the boat's surface is always recommended. Soft luggage instead of bulky space-consuming suitcases is a must since on board storage may be limited. Do bring your own sun block, sunglasses with an anti-ultraviolet coating,a good sun hat, your own beach towels, a beach umbrella and perhaps a 12v mobile phone charger.
- What if I need to cancel my charter?
You can check under out cancelation rules in our legal notices
- What happens during check in (boat briefings) & checkout?
Upon embarkation the charterer and his or her party will be given general briefing covering the local cruising grounds. Questions about navigation, anchorages, prevailing conditions, or any part of the desired itinerary can be answered. A more specific boat briefing aboard the yacht will then be given, covering all the operating systems, including rigging, electrical system, water system, windlass, stove, dinghy, outboard and emergency systems. The same detailed list of the entire inventory of the yacht will be the basis of delivery and redelivery of the boat. Charterers should pay special attention to this procedure and make sure they have examined and possess all parts of the yacht and handling manner of the entire equipment. Signing of the "acceptance statement" or hand-over form justifies the formal, actual and absolute acceptance of the vessel by the charterer.
Upon return of the boat the owner we will inspect the yacht and all of it's systems/hardware to determine if any damage has occurred and that all equipment is present. As part of this procedure it is typical to have a diver inspect the boat underwater. This is also the time when refueling is done. If all is ok the charterer will be returned their refundable security deposit.
- What food is possible on a sailing yacht. What dishes can a hostess prepare?
For breakfast the hostess typically serves fresh bread and sometimes croissants, butter, jam, honey, tea, filter coffee, yogurt, yogurt with fruits, cereals, fresh fruits, juice, bacon, ham, sausages, eggs.
The light lunch is usually traditional Greek food such as Pasta with sauce & salad; Roasted chicken & potatoes & salad; "Briam" ( zucchini, eggplants, potatoes, onion, peppers, carrots, parsley altogether baked) & salad; Greek stuffed tomatoes/peppers; Pork, veal or lamb with fresh onion and spices (usually in red sauce or with mashed potatoes) & salad; Risoto (rice) with seafood & salad & olives; Cretan rusk-bread, tzatziki dip & extra virgin olive-oil possibly assorted with a variety of other appetizers / local salami,variety of spinach pie, mushrooms a la cr?me, or fried eggs, french fries, fried Greek cheese Choriatiki salad - easy to prepare onboard sailing yachts while on charter in Greece
Having dinner out in a local restaurant / "taverna" with 1 appetizer, 1 main course, proportion of a "shared" salad and bottled wine of moderate quality, will cost you 15-20 Euro per person. (Service & Tax included).