SCI-Sail-Training_RYA-Courses - Sail Charter International

skipper & Sail training:
The RYA Training Scheme

The Royal Yachting Association (RYA) is a British UK institution which is widely recognised, internationally, as being one of, if not THE, best provider of sail and motor yacht training & qualifications in the world!

The RYA believes that knowledge, skills and experience rather than regulation are the foundations upon which personal safety and responsibility are built.  The RYA supports a continued ethos of self-reliance and responsibility for one’s own safety afloat amongst the recreational boating community.

Stepping into the world of sailing, whether experienced or for the first time, is exciting and exhilarating.  The RYA, following its ethos above, provides both theory (shore based or online) and practical (on-the-water) courses to build confidence, teaching you everything from basic terminology and safety tips to advanced handling sails. As a beginners, you’ll become a useful crew member,  learning how to set and trim sails and even take the helm for the first time; you can then progress all the way to Yachtmaster by following through the training spectrum.

Learn to sail in greece or croatia

As well as being an RYA Reward Parter, offering yacht charter opportunities to RYA members, we, at Sail Charter International, have teamed up with one of the UK’s leading RYA overseas training providers to offer direct practical RYA training in Lefkas, Greece and in Sibenik, Croatia. Additionally, to progress through the RYA scheme, we can further advise on obtaining your shore-based theory (classroom or online) courses, which are strongly advised in order to progress through the RYA scheme.

Competent Crew
(practical course)


This course is for beginners and those who would like to become active crew members rather than just passengers.

Experience living on board and really get to know the boat. Virtually all the course is hands on. You are the crew – without you the sails won’t go up and the boat won’t be steered.

Course Pre-requirements:

There is no pre-assumed knowledge or experience necessary for this course, though if you have done a little sailing before, that would be advantageous.

Course Content:

Knowledge of sea terms and parts of a boat, her rigging and sails, sail handling, ropework, fire precautions and fighting, personal safety equipment, man overboard, emergency equipment, meteorology, seasickness, helmsmanship, general duties, manners and customs, rules of the road, dinghies

Course Duration:

Generally 5 days. Often run over 3 weekends or 3 days plus a weekend. If you have done the Start Yachting course, this course can be completed in 3 or 4 days

Ability after completion:

By the end of the course you should be able to steer, handle sails, keep a lookout, row a dinghy and assist in all the day to day duties on board. You will also have visited some interesting places and had an enjoyable holiday.

If you are not sure that this may be for you, get in touch with us for personal advice/guidance.


(practical course)


A course for aspiring skippers with some yachting experience and basic navigation and sailing skills.

Learn to skipper a short passage with the instructor on hand to give advice and encouragement and ensure your safety. Experience being in charge, taking credit when it all goes well and being responsible when it doesn’t.

Course Pre-requirements:

Before this course, the expected level of ability includes:
– 5 days, 100 miles, 4 night hours on board a sailing yacht
– theory knowledge to the level of Day Skipper
(*DS shore based theory course is strongly advised – read below)
NOTE: properly recorded logging of experience is ESSENTIAL!

Course Content:

Preparation for sea, deck work, navigation, pilotage, meteorology, rules of the road, maintenance and repair work, engines, victualling, emergency situations, yacht handling under power, yacht handling under sail, passage making, night cruising

Course Duration:

5 days, 3 weekends or 3 days plus 2 days

Ability after completion:

Personally and safely skipper a yacht with passengers/crew yacht (not for commercial use), manage your crew efficiently for basic daytime inshore/coastal passages, safely manage your yacht.

This RYA Day Skipper is also ICC equivalent.

If you are not sure that your sailing/theory is up to speed, get in touch with us for personal advice/guidance.


Lefkas or Athens, Greece:

The sheltered waters of the Ionian is a perfect location for skipper training, as the inland sea is protected by the islands of Lefkas and Kefalonia.

The training school is located on the sheltered east side of the island, ideally situated to head either south to the islands of Kefalonia, Ithaca and beyond or north towards Paxos and Corfu. If you are taking either the Competent Crew or Day Skipper course, our tuition yachts generally head south, with protected waters and plenty of harbours and bays for mooring and pilotage. If you are looking to go beyond Day Skipper, to either Coastal Skipper or for Yachtmaster Preparation, then the waters to the north of Lefkas offer open seas, longer passages and busier waters around Corfu.

Zaton/Sibenik, Croatia:

The increased popularity of the Dalmatian coast of Croatia as a sailing destination made a new RYA training centre in the area an obvious choice for us.

The training centre is located in the protected waters close to Sibenik, on the Dalmatian coast, ideally situated between the airports of Split and Zadar. If you are taking either the Competent Crew or Day Skipper course, our tuition yachts head either north or south, outside of the Sibenik channel. If you are looking to go beyond Day Skipper, either Coastal Skipper or for Yachtmaster Preparation, then their are longer passages to consider, south to the islands of Hvar, Viz and beyond or north to the Kornati national park.

The partner RYA sailing schools we recommend are fully recognised by the Royal Yachting Association. Tuition yachts are regularly inspected and comply with RYA / MCA guidelines and Codes of Practice for Sail Training Yachts. All instructors for the courses advertised are RYA qualified commercially endorsed yachtmasters and cruising instructors as a minimum.

You can be reassured that safety procedures and equipment are regularly monitored and inspected to comply with both the British RYA and local maritime authority regulations.

Our partner providers ensure that all recommended courses are both safe and enjoyable offering a high standard of tuition and comfort.

It is ensured that:

– You are under the supervision of an RYA qualified instructor whilst at sea.

– All RYA instructors hold the requisite first aid certificates and are fluent in English (all courses delivered in English, as per RYA regulations).

– Safety equipment on our tuition yachts complies with both local and British regulations.

– All yachts have DSC VHF radios, handheld VHF radios and mobile phones.

– Slimline inflatable life jackets, harnesses and crotch straps are provided for each person aboard, with extra spares carried.

– For your comfort, all yachts are equipped with Bimini sun tops (sun shade), hot water with deck shower, electric fridge, fully equipped galley and radio / CD player.

– Accommodation on board is in double / twin / single cabins or saloon berth. Sheets, pillow cases, pillows, blankets / duvets and towels are all provided.

– Instructor / student ratio is maintained at a maximum of 5 students per instructor, in line with RYA codes of practice.



To attend (and pass) the RYA Day Skipper Practical Assessment, it is EXPECTED that you are fully conversant with the theory knowledge required to the level of Day Skipper. It is therefore strongly recommended you complete the Day Skipper shorebased course beforehand. This can be completed in a single full-time week long course or an online “open ended” internet based course with an RYA registered training centre.

Likewise, if you wish to progress through the RYA scheme, from Day Skipper to Coastal Skipper to Yachtmaster Coastal, Offshore and Ocean, you should also, as prerequisites, complete the matching theory courses.

We, at Sail Charter International, can advise you of a number of RYA Training Centres which can provide your shore based/theory requirements, whether in a single week course or online – just ask for information.

Additionally, it cannot be stressed enough that LOGGING of your experience (courses and miles sailed in all/any capacity) is absolutely necessary, as your logbook will be required to be presented for inspection prior to any qualification assessment, from Day Skipper upward to Yachtmaster Ocean.


A comprehensive introduction to cruising for inexperienced skippers.

This course equips you with enough knowledge to navigate around familiar waters by day. A basic knowledge of lights is also included to introduce you to night cruising.

We are continually updating our courses to take into account developments in technology and the electronic navigation aids now available on most cruising boats.

In conjunction with the UK Hydrographic Office we have developed a chart plotter specifically for use on training courses, giving you a realistic insight into electronic navigation. Use of this plotter is an integral part of our Day Skipper shorebased course.

We have northern and southern hemisphere versions of our training materials. So, no matter where you are in the world, our course can be tailored to you.

The course is taught over 40 hours with two exam papers. It can be covered as a series of short sessions, as an intensive week-long course, or by distance learning online.

Course topics include:

  • the basics of seamanship
  • the essentials of coastal navigation and pilotage
  • chartwork
  • electronic charts
  • position fixing
  • plotting a course to steer
  • weather forecasting and meteorology
  • tides
  • collision regulations
  • construction, parts and equipment of a cruising boat
  • emergency and safety procedures including distress calls,use of flares, safety harnesses, lifejackets and liferafts

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.