How to book

So, you’ve decided what holiday type you want and you think you know where to go and where you want to fly from.  You know the sort of yacht you need and when you want to go (or you’ve got kids so the local education authority has decided that one for you)!  So all that’s left is to book.  As the advert says, “Simples”. Or is it?

Your objective is to get the holiday you want, at an agreeable price, all in an acceptable amount of time.   Of course the more elastic you are with your holiday specification, the better chance you have of finding what you want, the quicker it will be, and the better your chance of keeping the cost down.

If funds are unlimited, it should be easy, though if you leave it too late you may still need some help putting it at together.  At the other extreme, your budget may be restricted and make the choice of yacht and location very much secondary.  If like most people you’re somewhere in between, the options can be bewildering which is frustrating because lets face it, we all want to feel we got a good deal but we all have limits on how much time we can spend examining all the choices.

So should you book now or later, hoping for a discount closer to departure?  Are you best with a package or self assembly (independent travel), buying the individual elements separately?  Who should you book with, a tour operator, an agent or direct with the supplier?  What are the financial risks and how do you protect yourself against cancelled flights, suppliers going bust or exploding volcanoes?  How do you go about getting the best deal?  And how much are you going to have to pay, and when?

Most people don’t book sailing holidays that often so it pays to know your options.  Read on to find out how the industry works and you might just save yourself time, money and stress.