with the Skippers
many people who are on their first charter or only have minor
experience with chartering a yacht that is skippered by someone
else, it can be hard to figure out what exactly the skipper's
role is and how to work with him.
had a number of clients who have returned from charters who
ran into situations where the skipper made decisions that the
client was a little disappointed with. Upon talking about it
when they returned, they were able to see the point of view
of the skipper and because they weren't sure of how to approach
the skipper, we were unable to ascertain the reason the skipper
took the action himself.
example.... when a client returned from a trip they were disappointed
because they did not sail as much as they wished they had. They
felt that the skipper motored too much and did not sail enough.
When I asked about wind direction and speed and mentioned possibilities
about why the skipper may have chosen to sail they were in agreement
that those reasons could very well have been the reason the
motor was used.
able to speculate with hindsight, but that shouldn't be necessary.
As a Charter client you have every right to know exactly why
decisions are made and unless there is a question of safety,
your wishes should be respected.
of the misunderstanding, as with many relationships are due
to miscommunication(or no communication). The skipper is there
to help to make your charter the best charter of your life.
Granted not all skippers will have the effusive abilty(or desire)
to look after you and "baby" you just as that is not
what all charterers want. Therefore, it's important to let them
know what you are looking to do, the types of things you like,
the places you'd like to visit.
the example of the skipper not using the sails enough when you
would rather sail, then you should tell him that you really
like to sail and were hoping to sail more and motor less. He
may tell you that the wind is in the wrong direction and it
will take longer and then you can decide, would you rather sail
are get there quicker. He may say he wants to get to the next
port because the harbor is full and it's hard to get a good
mooring. He may say that the wind is not strong enough to move
the yacht at a fast enough speed and if you don't use the motor
then you will just float on the water making no forward progress.
skipper may not know that you are primarily interested in sailing
and think that you just want to get to land quickly so that
you can explore.
communicate with the skipper then he'll know what you want and
you'll know why he's doing what he's doing. Don't be afraid
to ask him questions or let him know what you want to do. The
reality is that you have chartered the yacht and he is just
running it for you and helping you to make decisions. Think
of it as a rental car and you hire someone to drive. If you
want to go to Boston the long way, as long as you it's safe
and possible then he will take that route. If you want to stop
for lunch somewhere, as long as it's possible, then you stop-
it's not up to the driver to force decisions, unless there is
a reason for it.
you are the "Guest of Honor" and it is your holiday.
The skipper wants you to be happy, wants you to have a great
holiday and wants to know that if you come to Greece to charter
again or if you recommend some friends to sail in Greece that
you will be asking for him. It is in his best interest to be
sure that you are happy.... and he knows that.
are problems that come up in the charter, just be sure that
you have communicated with the skipper. You don't want to come
back and discuss and have to use hindsight to try to understand
what was on the skipper's mind. And if you do communicate, the
chances are pretty good that we won't even have to talk about
any disappointment when you return.
Communicate.... and have a great Saililng Holiday!!!!!