First time chartering
Never book a yacht without first reading this!
There are several ways you can charter a yacht, book direct with a yacht charter operator, book with an events planner or book with a yacht charter broker. Whatever your choice may be, bear in mind that a successful charter comes in 3 parts: Yacht Rental, Catering and everything else (service & safety etc.). There are many variables that affect the success of a yacht charter that cannot be evaluated until you have been through it. If done right, you will have immense pleasure and fun. So, make sure you get help from the right people and make your charter a success.
1) Book through a reputable yacht charter broker.
Booking through a broker may be the best option till date. Brokers work every day to put people on yachts. Their livelihood depends on this. They understand all the yachts well so as to put people on the right yachts. They have the widest range of yachts for your selection and have no obligation to put you on a certain yacht.
Being a broker, they get to work with many partners. Take catering for example. If a caterer would have to choose between working with a broker or with an individual yacht owner, they would definitely work with a broker because a broker closes more charters and that means more business for the caterer. This also means that a broker gets better rates for the price which will be transferred to you.
Also, a broker gets a pre-determined commission for closing every charter. This is paid by the yacht charter operators and not you. Simply because whether you book through the yacht charter operators or yacht charter broker, you pay the same. You can verify this anytime.
What’s more you get to save on catering and additional services. If anything goes wrong, you have someone by your side. The biggest advantage of using and paying through a yacht charter broker is that if anything goes wrong and the yacht charter operator cannot fulfill your charter, a broker would be able to put you on another yacht in the shortest possible time. Before you make payment to anyone, make sure you know who you are paying and make sure you can reach them by phone or by mail anytime. From time to time a representative from the broker will ensure go down to ensure that everything goes well on your charter. That being said, next time when you book a yacht, make sure you use a broker and make sure it’s a reputable one.
2) Get an events team or wedding planner to book the yacht
Booking a yacht might be cheap compared to owning one, but it still cost over a thousand dollars for a few hours. So you had better make sure you enjoy yourself and get your money’s worth. You are definitely right to get help with booking a yacht and making sure everything goes well on that day, but make sure you get help from the right people.
Many event planners claim that they specialize in events on a yacht or wedding on a yacht. However, planning an event on a yacht is very different from other events and many event organizers have little or no experience in doing so. Thus, you got to make sure that you choose the right event planner and there are so many out there, making it as difficult as if you were to choose your own yacht charter operator.
Furthermore, an events planner may not be able to offer you the lowest rates. This is because they usually don’t deal with yachts and they have to give themselves a higher margin for risks they undertake in holding an event on a yacht. They also do not get a commission on the rental of the yacht, and would be bound to mark up on their packages. They can’t be working for free. So make sure you understand how they work before engaging an events planner for a yacht event.
3) Book direct with a yacht charter operator.
When you contact a yacht charter operator, you are either contacting the owner or someone in the yacht owners’ other business that was tasked to manage the owner’s yacht. We shall call this group, yacht charter operators. Yacht charter operators most of the time do not have the passion of offering yacht chartering, simply because they were never interested in yachting (in the case of the person tasked to manage the owner’s yacht) or that they no longer have interest in the yacht but could not get rid of it.
If you are reading this article, it means you are smarter than many yacht owners. You have decided to have the pleasures of going out to sea in luxury style without having to bare the long-term cost and troubles related to yacht ownership. So, you are definitely right to charter a yacht.
Yacht owners can never make money chartering a yacht, of course with exception. In fact, many yachts available for charter are also on the listings to be sold. Do the maths!
Yacht operators usually have no more than 2 yachts for your selection. If you were to contact them directly, they would sell you whatever yacht they have on that day even if there are better choices out there. If you think that you will be better off booking a yacht directly with yacht operators, you might have to contact all yacht operators to find the best deal. Why go through so much hassle when there is an easier way to book a yacht?
Now that you understand the roles of each player in the yacht chartering industry, it is up to you to make a decision on whom to book a yacht from.