Although the answer to the very common question, “what documents do you need to hire a boat?” really varies from country to country and from charter to charter, we have compiled a list for you that should get you well on your way to heading on your sailing holiday. Below we listed suggestions on which documents you need to bring along.
Documents You Need to rent a Boat with the Charter Company
Once you have officially booked your sailing holiday, the charter company will be getting in touch with you very shortly to discuss what needs to happen next. Be prepared to give them the following documentation.
It is a list with all the details of all the names and passport numbers of everyone that is embarking on your sailing holiday with you (friends, family members, children, and yourself included).
Each charter company has its own rental agreement that you need carefully to read over, agree to, sign, hand it back to them and start with your sailing adventures.
Documents Once You Are on Board
Once the long-awaited day has finally arrived and you show up at the charter office, they will (and should) typically give you a checklist that accounts for everything onboard to ensure everything is in order before setting sail. The reason for this is documentation is so that when you do return, they can make sure everything is the same as when you left.
Necessary Sailing Licenses
Whenever you decide to charter a yacht, you need to acquire a valid license. However, depending on what type of vessel you head out on and the country or countries you will be visiting, the license type will also differ.
In order to hire a sailing yacht, you will need – at the bare minimum- a day skipper license. This will usually come in the form of what is known as an ICC License, or an International Certificate of Competence, which is a globally accepted sailing license required in most countries to hire a boat. It is extremely easy to obtain and should definitely be one of the first things to do on your list.
Chartering a powerboat without a skipper
If you are planning on chartering a powerboat without a skipper on board, then you will definitely need to obtain the same ICC License as mentioned above, depending on the country you are visiting. However, the charter company you book through may require a different type of documentation which is obtained through actual time spent on the water in order to confirm the experience necessary to be safe and prepared during your sailing holiday.
If you need this type of sailing license, be sure to contact your local yacht club where they will walk you through the necessary steps in order to attain one. In addition, you will need the ICC License, as previously mentioned.
*If you do not have a sailing license or, for some reason, are unable to obtain one before your trip, you may need to book with a skipper who is already licensed and will take care of all complications. This means all you need to do is sit back, relax, and have the time of your life on board.
While onboard, if you plan to do some serious fishing, you will need to obtain a fishing license. Head to your local fishing club to get one.
Visas, Passports, & Customs
One of the most important documents you need to hire a boat at all times…your passport! You will need to make sure it is valid and won’t be expiring anytime soon. It is also smart to bring a photocopy of your passport, just in case something were to happen to the original.
Also, depending on what countries you are visiting, you may need to obtain a tourist visa. You should contact the embassy for details on that.
Airport & Marina Transfers
It is essential to schedule and set up your flights and transfers to and from the marina location. Always bring a printed confirmation of each booking with you.
Although there is a slight risk of anything happening while being on your sailing vacation. It is always better to be safe rather than sorry. Make sure you are covered by travel insurance, and always carry along your policy number just in case.
Charter & Booking Confirmations
It is always a good idea to bring along proof of any additional booking you have done with your charter company. You will be more organized and it will also help you to refer back to it for all the contact information and details you may need during your sailing holiday.
Once you have all of these documents in order, you will be good to go on your way to a sailing journey you will surely never forget!