Expected Costs of Crewed Yacht Charters

Booking a crewed yacht charter involves several costs, and the final price can vary widely based on factors such as the type of yacht, size, location, duration of the charter, time of year, and additional services. 

When chartering in the Caribbean, you can choose between two cost options: inclusive or plus expenses. Generally speaking, sailing vessels mostly follow the inclusive model, while larger motorized yachts typically fall under the plus expenses category.

The most important thing to keep in mind is to express your budget to your charter broker. They will be able to guide you through the process to make sure expenses are in alignment with your expectations.

Here is an overview of the key costs associated with a crewed yacht charter:

  • Base Charter Fee: This is the core cost and covers the rental of the yacht itself, crew services, and standard amenities. The base charter fee is typically charged per week and varies depending on the size and luxury level of the yacht. Larger and more luxurious yachts will have higher base charter fees. This fee is the baseline amount for gratuities.

  • All-Inclusive: An all-inclusive rate means the quoted price includes most charter-related expenses. It is designed to be a hassle-free experience. The all-inclusive fee typically covers all your breakfasts, lunches, dinners, snacks, nonalcoholic beverages, a reasonable amount of alcohol, yacht fuel, water, onboard equipment usage, and crew services. Excluded costs are crew gratuities, airport transfers, and onshore activities such as excursions, diving, and dining.

  • Advanced Provisioning Allowance (APA): The APA is a deposit that you provide before the charter starts. It covers expenses beyond the base fee, such as fuel, food, beverages, docking fees, and other miscellaneous costs. The APA is usually around 20-30% of the base charter fee, but it can vary. The captain will be responsible for all receipts and before disembarkation, more monies will be collected or returned.

  • Crew Gratuity: It is customary to tip the crew for their exceptional service. The standard gratuity is typically around 10-20% of the base charter fee, but the exact amount is at your discretion based on your satisfaction.

  • Additional Services: If you want specific services or experiences, such as special event planning, premium wines, on-board spa treatments, or water sports instruction, these will come with extra costs.

  • Dockage and Marina Fees: While some dock fees might be covered in the APA, there could be additional fees for docking at marinas, especially in popular or exclusive destinations.

  • Taxes: Charter locations may have local taxes, cruising permits, and customs fees.

  • Delivery Fees: If you are chartering a yacht in a location different from its home port, there might be delivery fees to bring the yacht to your desired starting point.

  • Special Requests: Any specific requests you make, such as specialized menus, premium liquors, or additional water toys, can contribute to the overall cost.

  • Fuel Costs: Fuel is often included in the APA up to a certain limit, excessive fuel consumption might result in additional charges.

  • Communication and Entertainment: Using onboard communication systems or requesting specialized entertainment services might come with separate charges.

  • Travel Expenses: Keep in mind that you will need to consider travel expenses to and from the charter location, including flights, transportation, and accommodations before and after the charter.

  • Travel Insurance: Travel insurance will help protect your vacation. Please inquire about travel insurance with your broker.

Communicating your budget and preferences with your charter broker is crucial to ensure they can provide options that align with your expectations. Make sure to thoroughly review the charter agreement to understand what is included in the base fee and what falls under additional costs covered by the APA. Being transparent about your requirements and understanding the pricing structure will help you plan and enjoy your crewed yacht charter without unexpected financial surprises.

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