Choosing a skippered charter yacht

Sun Odyssey 29.2

You can take a skipper on a yacht as small as this

If you’re not familiar with the sailing scene, choosing your skippered charter yacht can seem daunting. It’s not as hard as it seems.

Start by determining the number of cabins you need. Cabins are doubles (commonly) or twins (less usual) unless otherwise stated.

So a 4 cabin yacht has 8 berths, usually 4 double cabins, sometimes 3 doubles and a twin bunk cabin. Remember the skipper must have his own cabin so if you need 4 cabins for your group, you’ll need a 5 cabin yacht.

In most medium to large yachts you can sleep one person, sometimes two, in the saloon area. Unless you’re on a budget, I’d avoid this for two reasons. Firstly, you’ll find there’s little storage for clothes in the saloon. Secondly, you’ll probably find it starts getting a bit cramped up on deck.

If you use the flotilla or bareboat price finders on this site (or any others), you’ll be faced with range of models. Don’t worry about the make – whether it’s a Bavaria, a Cylades, an Oceanis, a Sun Odyssey or anything else won’t make or break your holiday.

Take a skipper on a Jeanneau 57

…but larger skippered yachts are available

Instead focus on three numbers:

  • The first two characters of the model number will tell you the approximate size eg a Sun Odyssey 469 is about 46 feet long. Remember as yachts get longer they also get wider.
  • The number of toilets, for example a small 4 cabin yacht will have two, a large 4 cabin yacht will usually have 4. Of course you may not care.
  • The year it was built.

The age may or may not be important to you. Once the yacht is more than 2 or 3 years old, the quality tends to depend more on how well it has been looked after. And there are 10 year old yachts from some suppliers I’d take in preference to 1 year old yachts from others. Use the price finders to get an idea of prices then get in touch with me because there are lots more available.

For more information, see the pages on Skippered Yacht CharterChoosing a Skippered Charter Destination and Skippered Charter FAQ’s