Yacht Charter Check-in Procedure
Most common charter periods begin on Saturday and last for seven days. The boats are usually ready around 5 pm, while ‘early check-in’ (from 1 pm) is considered an extra and has to be pre-ordered and paid. Charter companies typically expect their clients to be back at the base on Friday around 5-6 pm.
In case you are flying to your destination, contact your agent to organize a transfer from the airport to the marina for you. When driving to the marina, ask for a parking spot, but in most of the marinas, parking spots for guests are secured. Arriving at the charter base at the agreed time is very important as charter agencies have pretty busy schedules on the day of arrival.
Once you have reached the office at the charter base, things get accelerated.
When you find yourself in the marina, there will be more paperwork to sort out, like, for example, the crew list. The crew list is a mandatory document issued by port authorities to every chartered boat. It consists of ID numbers and birth/nationality data of every crew member including the skipper with his licenses, and that list will be sent directly to the to the competent ministry.
When chartering a yacht, there is a security deposit for a sailing yacht to be paid. It is a safety measure in case of a damage on the yacht, and its amount is specified for each yacht individually (the larger the yacht is, the larger the deposit amount is). There are two types of deposit; a refundable deposit and non-refundable deposit. A refundable deposit is returned upon your arrival to a marina, once the divers and charter stuff determine there are no damages to the yacht done. The refundable deposit can be paid in cash or with a credit card, meaning the amount needed for deposit will be put on hold until you return the yacht. Refundable deposits are higher in price varying from one thousand to several thousand euros, depending on the boat size. A non-refundable deposit (deposit waiver) will, in case of damage to a yacht, cover all the damages no matter how costly they are. Non-refundable deposits are usually a couple of hundred euros.
If not ordered in advance, it is time to take all the extras you might use during the charter period. The most common types of additional equipment and gear are additional sails, safety net, one-way charter, snorkeling gear, extra towels and sheets, or water toys like stand-up paddle.
Sailing extras should be pre-ordered during the process of booking of a yacht, so the charter company can provide wanted extras to all its clients. Think about these before you decide what to do on your sailing holiday - it might be fun to explore the underwater life while you are moored somewhere in a hidden bay. Some extras can be requested on the spot at the marina, such as extra towels, sheets, outboard engine etc.
Technical Check-In and briefing
After (not always) stressful time at the office, dealing with paperwork and administration, it is time to do the check-in. If you have a skippered charter, your skipper will take care of the check-in process with the charter staff, which will explain and lead the skipper through all the systems and functions of the yacht. In case you have decided for a bareboat charter, you will be the skipper, and you will go through the process with the charter staff.
The skipper will make a technical check-in. During this time, clients are welcome to leave their luggage at the base, wander around or have refreshments at the nearby restaurant. Technical and safety briefing is the last and the most crucial part of the yacht charter check-in procedure. It lasts for about 45 minutes, and during this time all crew members are introduced to the essential technical features of the yacht, as well as onboard safety. After this, you are welcome to board the yacht and enjoy your sailing holiday.