A beautiful sunset during a family yacht charter in Indonesia

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06.06.2024 Fabian Graf

10 Questions Families Need to Ask Their Yacht Charter Broker

... before chartering a yacht.

When it comes to chartering a yacht, one of the biggest mistakes you can make, is to assume that you’re just chartering a yacht. In fact, it’s much more!

We all know that relationships, especially with the people you love, time and health are way more important than money alone – although it undoubtedly contributes to improving the quality of your relationships, your time and health. The new wealth is when you collect and create moments and memories with your loved ones — instead of collecting things.

 

But how exactly can you make sure that you will create memories and special moments with the people you love, that you'll reconnect and bond with your kids, friends, and family when chartering a yacht?

family holiday on a yacht in Sibernik, Croatia
Take your family for a charter on our "Friend's Boat" yacht in Croatia

 

Why It’s Essential to Choose the Right Yacht Charter Company.

As previously mentioned, one of the biggest mistake one can make is to assume that you’re just chartering a yacht. Why? Simply because the main question is:

What are you going to be doing once you’re on the yacht? What memories and experiences will be created?


And not solely the yacht on which you are staying, although the type of yacht plays a vital role in supporting a marvelous experience as well.

"Friend's Boat" family motor yacht in Croatia
 

This leads us to the first point – it's more about the experience than the yacht itself. Nowadays, many yacht brokers and mass market platforms claim to offer the largest amounts of yachts at the best prices. However, we are not just seeking a yacht charter company.

We're in search of a yacht partner that can help us create the desired experiences and memories. We're looking for a specialist in luxurious yacht experiences. In other words, selecting the right yacht broker is crucial for an enjoyable yachting holiday with your family.

But, How Do You Actually Choose the Right Yacht Charter Company or Partner?

The charter market is completely flooded with an oversupply of mass market yacht booking platforms and brokers. So, the easiest way of finding a yacht provider that is a perfect match for your needs as a family or group of friends is to ask the following 10 questions

10 Questions to Ask Your Yacht Charter Provider to guarantee Lifetime Memories.

These 10 questions will help determine if the yacht charter provider is the right choice for creating memorable experiences with the people you love that last for a lifetime.

1. Do We Have Enough Water Toys with Us During Our Stay on the Yacht?

water toys for a fun family yacht charter with kayaks, stand-up paddel, water skiing, snorkel
 

You might wonder why this question is important. If you're bringing kids or teenagers aboard, every adult in the family will be grateful you asked it. Water toys are crucial for keeping kids and teens entertained, which makes it almost impossible for them to get bored on the yacht. Plus, they add an extra layer of fun for the adults, too.

Whether it's a jet ski, seabob, kayak, stand-up paddleboard, scuba diving gear, wakeboard, water golf equipment, water bicycle, or kite surfing gear – having a variety of water toys will not only keep everyone entertained, but it will also be a great way to connect with your kids by trying out new activities together.

2. Is the Yacht Safe for Everyone Onboard?

Safety is paramount, especially when you're bringing multiple generations on board a yacht. It's essential to address specific safety concerns to ensure a smooth and worry-free trip. For instance, if you're traveling with a newborn or baby, ask the yacht charter company if they can install a safety net to minimize any risk.

If your group includes older individuals, such as grandparents or longtime family friends, you'll want to ensure their safety when getting in and out of the water. Check with the yacht provider about available safety features, like ladders or steps, that offer stability and ease of use.

athens greece family yacht with water toys
Yacht with a safe hydraulic platform to get into the water
 

Some yachts even have hydraulic platforms that can lower into the water, allowing easy access with minimal effort. These considerations will help ensure everyone on board feels safe and secure throughout the journey.

3. How Can the Crew Enhance Our Family Experience Onboard?

While it's not the primary responsibility of the crew to look after children, they can certainly enhance the family experience in various ways. Experienced crew members can facilitate engaging activities for both kids and adults, such as guiding water-based fun with the yacht's toys or offering insights into local areas, restaurants, and interesting facts. Additionally, the captain might take the opportunity to teach children some basics of sailing or share their knowledge of marine life, allowing adults to unwind with a cocktail knowing that their family is in capable hands.

4. Will We Have Great Food and Catering That Everyone Enjoys?

yacht catering, yacht food, family breakfast on a yacht in croatia
 

One of the best decisions you can make is to have a chef on board. Without one, you might find there's very little relaxation or much less quality time with your family because of meal preparation and other logistics. You can't and probably don’t want always rely on stopping at a harbor or port every day of the trip.

The multi-generational aspect is important to consider. Make sure the menu includes child-friendly snacks and meals to keep the youngest family members happy and well cared for. If you or some family members are wine enthusiasts, or if you plan to celebrate a special occasion, ask for the wine list.

A good chef will provide a menu rich with the flavors and tastes of the region you are visiting, enabling you to sample scrumptious dishes which reflect your cruising region culture and produce. The gourmet experience on board will elevate your holiday.

Overall, check that the catering service can accommodate the varied culinary preferences of everyone onboard, so everyone has an enjoyable dining experience.

5. Can You Organize Special Occasions?

Living life to the fullest is about creating special moments and memories with your loved ones. However, not many yacht charter providers offer services to help you do just that. This is why it's crucial to ask: Can you organize special occasions?

A good yacht provider will have the capability to arrange unique experiences, such as a candlelight dinner on a white sand beach in the Seychelles to celebrate your wedding anniversary or honeymoon. They could also help you propose to your partner or celebrate a birthday in a stunning setting during your charter.

special occasion family yacht charter
 

Another possibility is a reservation at a Michelin-starred restaurant, for example in French Polynesia or any other destination with such restaurants, even if it's fully booked six months in advance. This might be perfect for a special occasion like your daughter's birthday, adding a magical touch to your trip.

Beyond dining experiences, a quality charter provider might also be able to organize a scuba diving instructor to join you during the trip. This way, your kids could work toward their PADI certification, adding a sense of adventure to your vacation. These are just a couple of examples demonstrating what a great charter company can offer to make your trip unforgettable.

6. How Experienced Are Crew Members and the Captain, and How Well Do They Know the Yacht?

The captain is responsible for your safety and the entire operation of the yacht, while the crew ensures that you and your family have a pleasant and enjoyable charter experience. To make sure your trip is in capable hands, it's crucial to find out about the experience of both the captain and the crew.

yacht crew
Yacht crew on board, image source: superyacht content
 

Here's what to look for:

  1. Ask for Crew Profiles: Professional yacht charter companies often provide detailed profiles of the crew members. A crew profile typically contains information such as:

    • The interests and languages spoken by each crew member
    • The number of yachts they've worked on previously

    These profiles can help you understand the level of experience you can expect from the crew.

  2. Check the Captain's Experience: The crew profiles should also include information on the captain's experience. This typically contains:

    • How many years has the captain served in the specific region where you'll be chartering?

    This can give you a sense of how familiar the captain is with local waters and conditions.

  3. Ask about Crew Consistency: A sign of high-quality yacht charter experiences – especially in the superyacht segment – is when the crew does not change frequently but stays the same throughout the season and does many seasons aboard together as a team.

    This continuity ensures that the crew knows each other well and is familiar with the yacht, reducing the risk of conflicts among crew members and improving overall service. Having an experienced crew can also be beneficial in other areas, as mentioned in Question 4, such as when organizing special occasions or providing additional services during your charter.

In contrast, mass-market yacht charter companies may cut costs by compromising on crew quality or frequently rotating crews, which can impact your experience as a guest.

silolona yacht crew, yacht charter bali
 

Now you might be wondering – With a chef, a captain, two hostesses, and other crew members, will we ever be in private and alone?

The answer is yes! Experienced crew members are skilled at being unobtrusive, ensuring you and your family have plenty of space and time to yourselves, while still providing excellent service when needed.

An experienced crew can also be beneficial in other areas, as discussed in Question 4.

7. Can You Provide a Detailed and Curated Itinerary?

While the yacht is important, what you do during your charter makes the experience memorable. A well-thought-out itinerary can help you create lasting memories with family and friends. Here’s what you should expect from a good yacht charter company:

  • Custom Itineraries: They should provide a tailored itinerary that suit your specific interests and preferences. This ensures you get the most out of your yacht trip.
  • Local Knowledge: Your itinerary should include secret beaches, hidden bays, and the best local restaurants. A reputable charter company has insider knowledge to enhance your experience.
  • Harbor Reservations: A quality charter provider should handle harbor slot reservations, avoiding the risk of being turned away by local authorities. This is crucial for a smooth and stress-free journey.

croatia family yacht itinerary
 

In contrast, budget yacht charter companies often leave you to figure out the details, leading to potential problems:

  • Unclear Navigation: Without proper guidance, you might struggle to find unique spots.
  • Harbor Problems: Without reservations, you risk being turned away or facing delays.
  • Inexperienced Crews: Cheap charters might employ less experienced crews, leading to docking issues during peak seasons.

A reputable yacht charter company will also suggest alternatives to crowded harbors, such as anchoring in a secluded bay where you can stargaze and enjoy a quiet night. This kind of flexibility can transform your experience.

For those interested in unique yachting destinations, check out our article, "10 Reasons to Avoid Popular Yachting Hotspots." It offers insights into lesser-known spots that are stunning and less crowded.

8. How Can I charge My Phone and Do We Have Wi-Fi Onboard?

Although your intention behind chartering a yacht may be to disconnect from the online world and spend quality time with your loved ones offline, it can be handy to have internet access on the yacht. Kids might enjoy watching their favorite series or movies in the evening.

Good, modern yachts are equipped with Wi-Fi, USB ports, adapters, and 220-volt sockets. In fact, all yachts in our portfolio come with internet access and 220-volt sockets.

9. Is the Yacht Equipped with Stabilizers, and When Was the Last Time the Yacht Got a Refit?

family yacht holiday in greece
 

Especially if you or someone in your family tends to get seasick, you should definitely ask this question. If your yacht has been refitted, it's very likely that it will be equipped with stabilizers that cancel out most of the water movement, even at anchor.

Since older yachts weren't all built with stabilizers, asking this question is a great way to ensure everyone feels comfortable on board. If you're still concerned that seasickness could ruin your holiday, check out our article on "Top 10 Myths about Chartering a Yacht as a Family". However, as asking about the last refit does not provide a 100% guarantee that the yacht is equipped with stabilizers, you should ask specifically about this feature.

Asking about the yacht's last refit also ensures that your yacht is equipped with modern furniture and infrastructure to make your stay as comfortable and luxurious as possible.

10. How Much Space Would You Recommend?

When chartering a yacht, a key decision is on which yacht you and your kids, family and friends will be staying. Sitting on one other's toes because the yacht you selected is too small can be an experience-killer!

That's why you should ask for a yacht big enough for your group. Nothing can be more annoying not having enough space around you resulting in a claustrophobic, stuffy feeling.

family catamaran charter in greece
Catamaran "Valium 67" in Greece
 

A catamaran can give you lots of privacy since it is divided into two hulls: one Hull for the parents, one hull for the teenage kids.

A motoryacht is a great option because it offers superior speed, comfort, and luxury, allowing you to travel quickly between destinations while enjoying the comfort of a moving hotel suite. It's ideal for special occasions such as:

  • romantic getaways
  • marriage proposals
  • milestone birthdays

Good yacht charter companies will keep your needs in mind and will propose yachts to you with enough free space, while everybody has their own retreat space on the yacht.

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