SCI-FAQ - Sail Charter International

your questions answered


We hope that we will have answered the main FAQs below (frequently asked questions), though if you do have any specific queries which remain unanswered, please do CONTACT US or email directly to “” and we will reply within 24 hours.

  • Bareboat:      you only charter/hire the yacht (as a “bare boat”) and need a skipper licence to do this.
  • Skippered:    you charter/hire the yacht AND a skipper to drive/sail it for you.
  • Flotilla:          you join a group of yachts to sail around and have fun together; you can join a pre-organised flotilla or (as a club or group of friends) arrange your own and we will assist to organise/run it for you.
  • Regatta:        you join a group of yachts to enter an organised competitive sail race; you can join a pre-organised regatta or (as a club) arrange your own and we will assist to organise/run it for you.
  • Training:        you do not have a sail/motor licence and want one, or just need additional training matched to your needs
  • Inclusive:       you require a skipper and host/ess to sail and look after your needs during your charter, including arranging your provisioning needs (food/nutrition as required full/half board etc.); can also include special focus charters such as “Sail | Sun | Climb”, “Sail | Sun | Dive”, “Sail | Sun | Surf”, “Sail | Sun | Chef”, etc. – ask for further details…

The Charter Deposit or Bond is a fixed sum of money retained by the charter operator to cover their insurance excess/loss against any losses or damages to the boat or its equipment, or any third-party damage caused during the charter while the charter skipper has full responsibility for the yacht.

This is a refundable security deposit is required by all operators. It is normally payable during the “check-in” and will be refunded in full (providing there is no claim against it) during the “check-out” after the return of the yacht. The amount of the security deposit is shown separately in the offer for our charters and will also be detailed in your charter contract with the operator. You can insure against losing this (see above).

Firstly – don’t worry – as long as you and all crew are OK – that is the most important point during your charter…!

If you do have an accident and damage the yacht, your charter operator will have provided an emergency phone number to call, you also have your VHF communication devices (see below). You must contact the charter operator as soon as possible and inform them of any incident or damage. On return to base, the charter operator will assess the damage (and any repair costs) and will charge you by taking a proportionate part of (or all) your security deposit to cover their insurance excess or repair costs. Damages above their excess (your security deposit) will be covered by the operator’s insurance. You can arrange your own deposit insurance – see below.

While NOT compulsory, buying insurance can mitigate against unexpected costs during your charter. Unexpected costs may include: (i) accidental yacht damage (ii) personal medical or repatriation needs (iii) cancellation of your holiday or travel plans (iv) third party liability. A variety of insurances are available to cover these – please see our insurance web page.

If you do need assistance or have difficulty during your charter, the charter operator will have provided an emergency phone number to call using your mobile/cellular phone, you also have your VHF communication radio. 

This will vary between country and operator around the world. Generally, the charter price includes only the yacht charter for the duration of your charter holiday. You will need to make your own arrangements for travel to/from the charter marina base (transfers can be arranged in advance, on request), additionally allow for your provisioning (food and living requirements) and any fuel used during your charter, additionally marina/mooring costs of the places you choose to visit during your charter. Depending on the local/national tourism regulations a small “tourist tax” may be applied at the charter base (you will be advised of this in your offer and booking confirmation). Local advice and support will be provided by your charter operator, we at SCI, will also advise/support as needed.

The “transit log” or “starter pack” is a standard fee that covers the taxes and license fees payable at the marina during “Check-in” directly to the charter operator. It may or may not include end-cleaning and other “pay-in-base” costs. These fees, to be paid at base, will be outlined in your offer and charter contract. This fee varies depending on the boat, the charter company as well as the country, and must be paid no matter which charter agency you choose.

Yes. An ICC (international certificate of competence) or national equivalent skipper licence is required, additional, possibly, a VHF user licence. You will need to send a scan/photo copy of your licences to us (for the charter operator), also take it with you during your charter. Check with us on the exact requirements for the country to which you intend chartering.

Many charter agents will offer discounts for early bookings, last minute bookings, longer charter bookings for more than one week, and many other seasonal offers. Often these agent discounts can even beat the prices of the operators themselves, due to the advantages of bulk ordering and client demand via agents.

When you are thinking of chartering a boat, it is therefore always best to use a reputable charter broker/agent to find the best deals and prices to suite your requirement, because they will have an agreement with the operators to sell their boats for them and offer advice to clients about the boats and locations.

Agency services are usually free of charge and free from any necessity for registration by clients, though not all. Sail Charter International has agreements with charter boat operators worldwide and offers its booking service and advice totally free of any charges and free from any data registration process.

When you wish to charter a boat, you should send us a request by Email or via our “Quick Quote”, or “YachtSearch” functions and we will reply with a list of charter boat OFFERS to meet your request. You just need let us know which boat you want to charter (from the offers we provide) and SCI will send you an “OPTION” with a “ProForma Invoice” with all the details you need to book the boat and details of the payments needed to confirm your OPTION as a BOOKING. Your OPTION is a reservation, which will hold the yacht for approximately 5 days (dependant on the charter operator).

You will need to pay your deposit / first payment to confirm the BOOKING and then your final payment will be due between 1 to 2 months before the date of charter. If you book a “last minute” charter, then the FULL cost must be paid in one sum.

On arrival at the charter base you may need to pay for the transit log and for any extra services you have ordered and leave the charter boat security deposit (a deposit waiver may be offered to replace the security deposit).

All the payments and costs will be clearly listed in the charter offer you receive when confirming your OPTION and BOOKING the boat.

All booking and agreements are reviewed by SCI before they are sent to our clients, so no surprise charges will appear, but if you are unsure about any information, we are here to help and guarantee a safe and enjoyable charter holiday.

You can pay SCI either by direct bank transfer or by credit card (using Paypal). Payment details and options can be found HERE.

YES please – we genuinely welcome constructive feedback – it helps us improve and tailor our services, it also enables us to advise and grade the charter providers with whom we work. 

At the end of your charter we send out an email request for your feedback. Please do take some time to reply; you can also send us photos of your charter holiday.

Book with SAIL CHARTER INTERNATIONAL and receive additional special offers and discounted products from our sailing partners – ask for details when you register for your QuickQuote or request any charter option from us.

Let US help YOU navigate your way through the minefield of charter agents, operators, discounts, quotes, offers, options and booking procedures… to secure, for you, the best possible yacht charter holiday for your needs and expectations.