Booking your charter cruise


Booking | Documentation | Issues To Look At | Things To Check

After making up your mind about the area, the boat and your vacation dates, you are now ready to book your cruise.

If you have decided to use a charter broker, you have to call him/her and explain your choices and wishes, in details. He/she might suggest some minor changes and then he/she will take care of your booking and get back to you after he/she has contacted the charter company. After that, the process becomes the same as with a direct booking.

The Booking

If you are booking directly with the charter company, call their toll-free number and you will talk to a booking agent. Even if the company you have selected is equipped with online bookings, we recommend you call anyway, since booking a charter cruise is never a clean-cut affair! If everything goes well, the exact booking you want is available. If not, two things may happen: either the exact dates you want are not available, or the boat you want is not available. Therefore, before you call, be prepared to have a little bit of flexibility, as you would for any kind of leisure trip anyway. Now, the larger the charter company, the better chance you have to get exactly what you need, for the simple reason that they have lots of boats in their fleet.

TIP: At this point, you want to inquire about all current promotions. A few examples: Sail 10 days, pay for 7 (summer in Caribbean, May and October in the Med.) Group discounts. Kids discounts. Remember: Charter companies typically give nice discounts during boat shows, if you book right there and then.

Also, you may quote your air travel reservation with the charter company. Most companies, have privileged agreements with airlines and often will get you unpublished rates that may save you significant $$.

Note: If you make your booking within 2 to 3 weeks from departure, expect to pay for the entire charter at the time of the booking.

The Documentation

Once you have agreed on the dates, the base and the boat, the charter company is going to send you a package with all the travel and contractual information. Read everything and especially the fine print. Here are the main documents you will find in this package.

Issues to Look At Closely

Avoid surprises: check what is included in your charter price