Category: Sailing Tips

Sail to Your Dream Vacation with Enaviga

Whether you’re dreaming of white sand beaches, fresh seafood, or crumbling coastal fortresses, you’ve come to the right place. Chartering a boat allows you to explore tried and true favorites alongside off-the-beaten-track destinations, with a dash of adventure thrown in.

If you’ve never chartered a yacht before, don’t worry. It’s not as complicated as TV shows might have you believe. In fact, narrowing it down to one destination (Greece? Croatia? France?) might be the hardest part. Once you’ve done that, it’s on to the fun part—selecting a boat. Here’s how to get started on Enaviga:

Select crewed or bareboat:

  • If you don’t know how to sail, you’re going to want to select a crewed boat. Often, a crewed boat just means you’re hiring a skipper (sailor, captain, or nautical guru) to operate the boat and serve as a bit of a tour guide. Sometimes, the price of the skipper is included in the weekly (or daily) rental fee or as a per-day add on. Depending on the size of the boat, you may also be able to hire additional staff to aid in your dream vacation.
  • If you’re a sailor, you can rent a bareboat and sail it yourself. Just be sure you have an internationally-recognized license, such as an ICC.

Decide on a boat type:

We say “sailor,” but we offer more than sailboats. If you don’t have a preference, search through all of them. Here’s a quick cheat sheet on what each boat offers:

Motorboats are the dominant boat in traditional yachting, but they are often more expensive to operate. They tend to offer the most luxurious interiors and faster speeds.

Sailboats are increasingly popular yacht vacation options. Once thought of as the “adventurous” alternative for travelers who wanted a yacht experience at a lower price, these boats have evolved significantly. Now, the experience can range from adventurous to leisurely. There are three main types of sailboats you can rent with Enaviga:

Monohulls are the ‘traditional’ sailboat you have have seen in children’s books.

Catamarans have two hulls. They tend to be larger, which can make them more stable and comfortable, with more space on board for food, equipment and people.

Gulets are a type of monohull – they have a very unique look, steeped in Turkish history. They’re commonly found in the southeastern mediterranean.

If you’re new to boating, rest assured that all sailboats on Enaviga have motors on board, so you won’t be stranded at sea if there’s no wind.

Make your search more effective:

We recommend searching for certified boats only. Like a hotel booking site, we pull data from all available boat operators to ensure you see a wide selection at the best price. When a boat is certified, you know our team has personally verified the boat’s details, ensuring that its listing details, including pictures, are up to date and accurate. We’re not saying non-certified boats are less trustworthy, but with certified boats you know Enaviga has personally verified the information.

If you notice an error message around booking period or dates, don’t fret. In the Mediterranean, charters are typically booked from Saturday to Saturday. While you can certainly find trips starting on different days and for varying directions, some boat operators still stick to this traditional schedule. Adjusting your search may improve your results. 

As you start to decide which boat to rent, look for these details:

Are provisions included, and if so what provisions?

Not all boats come with provisions (food and drink) on board. As you decide which boat to rent and evaluate the prices, see whether provisions are included and what they entail. Sometimes, renting a crewed boat includes basic meals. 

Other boats allow you to take provisions into your own hands, so you have more say in what you eat and the overall cost. If you plan to cook your own meals, pay attention to the boat’s galley (kitchen) so you know what you’ll be able to make. Of course, you’ll likely be able to eat on land when you dock.

What equipment is provided?

If you’re already dreaming of Instagramming yourself on a stand-up paddleboard (SUP), be sure to check whether your boat lists SUPs in its equipment inventory. If you’re traveling with kids, you might want to look at whether the boat comes with snorkels and floaties. Things like coffee makers and air conditioning are common but not a given on all vessels, so be sure to check if your boat has that one thing you can’t live without.

For sailors renting a bareboat, you can use filters to to find boats that meet your preferences, like a spinnaker or a gennaker sail. The “additional equipment” may also be filled with technical details that are important to you.

Have more questions about the booking process or sailing in general? Send us an email; we’re here to help!

a Catamaran or a Monohull?

You’ve decided on where in the world you’ll next be sailing in. The question now is whether to charter a catamaran or a monohull.

Most trips you take onboard a sailboat will be different. Why? because the party you are sailing with will change with each trip. This may be party size, dynamics or age.

Who are you travelling with?

Thinking about the trip you are making plans for. Are you travelling with your immediate family or with extended family or friends?

What ages are the people you are travelling with? Will there be young children or older adults? Are they all agile? Anyone get motion sickness or doesn’t like confined spaces?

Is everyone onboard a seasoned sailor or do you have some newbies onboard?

By considering your crew, it may be immediately clear that a catamaran charter will be best.

Why Catamarans?

A 40ft Catamaran has a much larger beam than it’s monohull counterpart. Space onboard can seem vast in comparison.

They are more stable, with less heel. This makes it easier and more comfortable to cook, sleep and move around the vessel.

They have two engines. I know we choose a sailing boat because we like to sail but the auxiliary engine has its uses. We have all experienced engine failure or a fouled propeller.  If one fails you still have another to get you to a safe harbour or out of danger.

Manoeuvrability in confined areas is exceptional. With two engines and the two propellers a good distance apart, it is easy to turn on a dime (or sixpence!).

More space equals more comfort. You will find larger water tanks. There may also be a generator, air conditioning etc.

Dinghy storage on the davits is simple and easy.

You can fit more people on a 40-foot catamaran than you can a 40-foot monohull. If travelling with friends, there is a degree of separation in sleeping quarters.

Plenty of storage space. Lots of room for extra beer, dive equipment and water toys.

They sail fast and furious off the wind.

Your galley cook will not be sweating below decks. He/She will be on the same level as the outside seating, so not feeling left out.

Why not Catamarans?

They cost more for berthing. Expect to pay 1.5 x least what you would for an equal mono-hull. This will affect your pocket more in the Mediterranean than in the Caribbean where you’ll probably be on a Mooring Buoy.

They do not sail well upwind.  You will have to come further off the wind to get these beasts moving. But in my experience, a 40-foot cruising cat will go faster than a 40-foot cruising monohull. Even though it will have to put in more tacks and sail further off the wind, it will still get there quicker.

Wind effect. With two powerful engines, they are easy to dock. In a strong gust, they do not have as much grip in the water. With their high freeboard and large coach area, they do react to the wind and can slide sideways.

Chartering a Catamaran for the first time is a great way to introduce non-sailers to sailing. Whichever vessel you charter, the team at Enaviga know that you will have a fantastic time aboard.

Click here to see all of the Catamaran’s available to charter through Enaviga. If you have decided that a Monohull is the boat for you, then click here to see all the Monohull’s available

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

on your next yacht charter

You’ve booked your yacht charter and are very excited at the prospect of stepping onboard. Why not take a moment to think about whilst on your trip, how you can make a difference to the environment.

The amount of plastic in the ocean is a hot topic at the moment. It’s up to all users of the sea to try and keep the oceans clean.

At home, it’s quite simple to know which can to sort your rubbish into. Splitting cardboard, plastic, compostable, glass and other waste is no biggie. When you go to a place you aren’t familiar with, will being friendly to the environment be as simple?

Here are a few tips from Enaviga to try and keep on the right side of your environmental conscience.

Before you go

Ask Enaviga for your charter based contact details. Get in touch and ask how they recycle. This may have an impact on your provisioning choices.

If you find that they are able to recycle glass and not plastic. When provisioning request, where possible. To have glass-filled bottles of juice, soda, mixers, wine and beer.

Water is usually only available to buy in plastic containers. Buy the largest bottle you can and decant into glasses to drink rather than buying one drink bottles.

Pack a reusable bottle suitable for drinking water. Whether you top up from drinking fountains, or from one huge water bottle. It will save dozens of smaller plastic water bottles going to landfill.

Take your sturdy bags for life. Use them when you go shopping. Saving countries who aren’t quite so organised double bagging with thin carrier bags.

When choosing soap for washing dishes, shampoo or shower gel. Choose one that is biodegradable. If one is not available, take one from home.

Did you know that biodegradable suntan lotion costs no more than regular lotion? Consider buying family sized bottles rather than many small bottles.

When you are there

Check with the base where you’ll be able to recycle when out on the water. This will help you to divide your rubbish as needed.

Say no to plastic plates, cups and cutlery when eating out. Take Tupperware from the boat for takeaways.

At bars and restaurants, request no straw if the straws on offer are plastic.

Always use your own bags for life. Store well so they don’t go overboard.

If buying Ice, can you buy it and scoop into your own reusable bags rather than by the bag?

You may see other ways in which you can help make your trip better for the environment. Why not share tips learnt with Enaviga on your return. We’d be happy to share them with future travellers.

Whichever country you are travelling to has their own methods of recycling. As a visitor, you may feel happy or dismayed at the way they recycle. Take a moment to stop and consider why their recycling programme is different from home.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

5 Ways to Stay Healthy at Sea

If you’re planning a lengthy seahabilitation holiday this summer, staying healthy out on the water should be one of your first considerations. Needless to say, sailing the open ocean is great for your physical and mental health, whether you sail for a couple of days or an entire month – but sailing presents a few unique circumstances that every sailor should be mindful of when setting sail. Here are five ways to stay healthy out at sea.

Drink Plenty of Water

When you’re supplying your boat, don’t skimp on water – you’ll get far thirstier at sea than you do on land, due to near-constant sun, salt exposure, and physical labor. Aim for several liters a day, and whenever you feel even a little bit thirsty, reach for a bottle – even mild dehydration can impair motor and cognitive skills, which can be very dangerous on board ship.

Eat More

You’ll burn a lot of calories operating a boat, particularly a sailboat, so make sure to eat a hearty meal several times a day and snack generously. The near-constant physical activity you’ll get on board ship will give you an appetite like you’ve never had before, so don’t fret about eating extra – chances are you’ll come back leaner and more fit than you were when you left!

Cover Up

Wind and sun are ever-present elements out at sea, so protect your skin by covering up with long sleeves, windbreakers, and long pants. Covering up will help protect you from wind and sunburn – conditions that can greatly interfere not only with your ability to maneuver the boat but with getting proper rest. As well, since it’s almost always colder out at sea than on land, make sure to keep warm enough that your immune system won’t be weakened.

Create Shade

The sun will be beating down on you all day long out at sea, unless it’s a cloudy day. Create shade on board the boat using a tarp, awning, or other covering. This is especially important if you have children on board, as their skin tends to be more delicate than that of adults and may be more susceptible to damage.

Tend Your Skin

Even with covering up and staying in the shade, your skin – especially the more delicate skin around your eyes and on your lips – will be roughened by constant wind and sun. Make sure to moisturize your skin daily using a good quality product, especially those that contain shea or cocoa butter. Drinking lots of water will help maintain your skin, but also make sure to keep cocoa butter or lip balm handy to keep lips from drying and cracking too heavily.

Getting away from it all on board ship is a wonderful way to refresh and soothe mind and spirit. Following these few simple tips will help to make your boating holiday much more enjoyable and comfortable, so you come home feeling vivified, relaxed, and healthier than ever.

Start here to plan your holidays by using our super simple booking process. We have a large offering of boats for all popular sailing destinations, suitable for all budgets and levels of comfort. Happy sailing!

10 Ways To Maintain Your Sanity

Are you planning a sailing holiday, but cringe at the thought of dealing with teenagers on board? We at Enaviga are here for you. Keeping your loved ones entertained and safe while on holiday is one of your highest priorities, so we have compiled a creative list of ways to keep you and the teens in your life sane while sailing the seven seas!

1. Organize family game nights.

teens game night
Giphy

 

It is always fun to compete! Keep the teenagers entertained with a friendly game of Scrabble or Monopoly, whatever “floats their boat.”

2. Rejoice: you don’t have to watch them all the time.

Source

Think about it: no risk that your teenagers are going to run into any bad company. It’s only fishes all around! No need to lock them up in their hotel room during the night, you won’t find them rocking the dance floor at 14. Unless they swim really really well.

3. Allow them to sail the boat.

teens sailing
Giphy

 

Provide them with a few sailing lessons before the holiday and then entice them with the chance to man the boat. It is a good exercise in demonstrating trust, and the added responsibility will challenge them, helping them – and you – to have fun.

4. Suggest water activities for the teens.

teens water activities
Tenor

 

Be sure to bring the inflatables and fishing poles. Entire days can be consumed enjoying the water. Convince them to catch the evening’s dinner and it’s a win for everyone.

 

5. Give the teens their own space for privacy.

teens privacy
Giphy

Just like you, teenagers need their “alone time.” Designate a certain area of the boat to be their safe haven. This is where they can go to relax and unwind, away from you and the others on board.

 

6. Bring harnesses and they can swing from the halyard.

teens swimming
Panoramio

Add a bit of action to your sailing holiday. Utilize the halyard for a swing through the fresh ocean air. Make your teens feel like rock stars and video their awesome stunts, this is good Snapchat material!

 

7. Give your teens duties. 

teens cooking
Groupon

Perhaps they will need cooking lessons along with the sailing lessons previously suggested, but give them a daily “something” to be in charge of. This could be cooking, dropping the anchor, keeping the deck clean, or sorting through the fruit and vegetable containers to ensure product freshness.

 

8. Don’t forget the electronics and solar charging accessories. 

teens electronics
Giphy

Whether it be their smartphone, a tablet/iPad, or an MP3 player, be sure to pack something in the electronics category so that they can stay connected to the outside world. A solar powered charger for the devices will be convenient as well. God forbid they lose battery life!  🙂

 

 

9. Let them bring a teen friend.

Blogspot

It’s true, some teenagers definitely wouldn’t want to be cooped up all alone with their parents for a week. So why not let them bring along some company? If you have the room, let them invite a friend or two to share their experiences with.

10. Read this article for comfort

This article entitled “Yes, You Can Cruise With Teenagers” was featured in Sail Magazine and offers other tips for sailing with teens. We think you will find comfort in reading about the actual experience of others. You may also find comfort in knowing that it’s not only your teenagers that can be tough to tame.

So, are you convinced that sailing with your teens can actually be a fun experience for the whole family? Start here to plan your holidays by using our super simple booking process. We have a large offering of boats for all popular sailing destinations, suitable for all budgets and levels of comfort. Happy sailing!

5 Recipes To Minimize Your Time Below Deck

A sailing holiday is meant to be a stress-free time away from our daily routine. Who wants to spend hours slicing vegetables when we could be lying in the sun with a great book? We don’t!

Here are 5 simple recipes  that will help you to minimize your time below the deck and maximize your fun in the sun 😎

☀️ Recipe 1:  Ricotta-Stuffed Chicken Breasts With Tomato Panzanella

How do Ricotta-Stuffed Chicken Breasts with Tomato Panzanella sound?  This dynamic duo is whipped up using twelve, fresh ingredients, but guess what? You’ve already purchased 3 of them for the previous recipe. You love it! We know! 🙂

Ingredients:
  • 1 ciabatta roll
  • 1 lemon
  • Garlic, peeled
  • Fresh rosemary
  • 1/3 cup fresh ricotta
  • 2 6-ounce boneless, skin-on chicken breasts
  • 1/4 lb cherry tomatoes
  • 1 or 2 shallots
  • Fresh basil
  • 1 tbsp sherry vinegar
  • Olive oil
 Directions:
  • Heat the oven to 425F. Cut the ciabatta roll into 1-inch pieces. On a sheet pan, spread the pieces into an even layer, drizzle with oil, and season with salt. Toast in the oven while it heats until ciabatta is slightly brown, 5 to 6 minutes. Transfer to a plate to cool. Do not clean the sheet pan. While the ciabatta toasts, prepare ricotta filling.
  •  Zest and juice the lemon, keeping zest and juice separate. Set aside the juice for the panzanella. Finely chop enough garlic for 1 tsp. Strip the rosemary leaves from the stems; coarsely chop the leaves. In a small bowl, stir together the ricotta, lemon zest, garlic, and rosemary. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Pat the chicken dry with a paper towel. With your fingers, gently loosen the skin from the meat and stuff the ricotta filling between the skin and the meat. On the sheet pan used for the ciabatta, place the chicken, skin side up and season with salt and pepper. Roast until the skin is browned and the meat is cooked through, 15-18 minutes depending on thickness. Remove from oven and let rest for 5 min.
  • Cut the cherry tomatoes in half. Peel the shallots and thinly slice crosswise. Separate the slices into rings. Strip the basil leaves from the stems and coarsely chop the leaves. In a large bowl, stir together the sherry vinegar, lemon juice, and 2 tbsp. oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add the ciabatta, tomatoes, shallots, and basil. Toss and serve.

Bonus tip 1:  Use shallots instead of onions. You will need them for the Ricotta Stuffed Chicken Recipe also. There is no sense in adding extra items to your list.

Bonus tip 2: Leave out the chicken and make it a vegetarian meal.

Source: Tasty

 

☀️ Recipe 2:  Honey Mustard Chicken Salad

Another quick meal that is light, tasty and easy to prepare is the Honey Mustard Chicken Salad.  If you are counting calories, leave out the bacon. And get another glass of pinot grigio.

Ingredients:
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 4 chicken thighs
  • 1/4 cup bacon
  • 3 tbsp water
  • 12 cherry tomatoes
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 stalk romaine lettuce
Directions:
  • In a small bowl, stir the first four ingredients together. Add salt and pepper to taste. Place the chicken thighs in a glass baking dish and coat with the honey mustard mix. You should only use about half of the mix. Set leftover mix aside. Wrap the glass cooking dish that contains the chicken in plastic film and refrigerate for 30 min.
  • Remove chicken from the refrigerator and pan fry in skillet until cooked through. Let cool and then cut into 1 inch pieces.  In a separate skillet, fry the bacon until cooked through. Drain fat.
  • Slice lettuce, tomatoes, onion and peel the avocado. Put these ingredients into a large bowl and add the chicken and bacon. Add 3 tbsp. water to the honey mustard mix that you set aside and stir. Pour this mix over ingredients in bowl, gently stir well, and serve.
Source: Tasty

 

☀️ Recipe 3: One-Pan Garlic Chicken Pesto Pasta

Our 4th recommendation is simple and clean-up will be a breeze because you will only need one pan for this One-Pan Garlic Chicken Pesto Pasta. There are ten ingredients included in this dish, but only four of them will be newbies to your grocery list.

Ingredients:
  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into slices
  • 2 tbsp chopped garlic
  • 1/2 tbsp salt
  • 1/2 tbsp pepper
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan
  • 1/4 cup pesto
  • 3 cups penne, cooked
  • 3/4 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
Directions:
  • Add olive oil to skillet and then add chicken, garlic, salt, and pepper. Cook chicken through and then add heavy cream, parmesan, and pesto. Stir and simmer for about two minutes.
  • Add cooked penne pasta and cherry tomatoes. Stir thoroughly . Garnish with parmesan and serve.
Source: Tasty

Bonus tip: Use the same style tomatoes that you use in your Ricotta-Stuffed Chicken Breasts with Tomato Panzanella recipe. Tomato. Toe-mah-toe. It’s all the same. 🙂

 

☀️ Recipe 4: Pull-Apart Stuffed Pasta

You may be bored with chicken, so we will now introduce the Pull-Apart Stuffed Pasta in all of it’s “tomatoey” glory. If you have children, let them help you stuff the shells. This is quick and easy and the shells can even be steamed in the microwave for convenience.

Ingredients:
  • 1 pint ricotta cheese
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup spinach, cooked
  • 1 cup parmesan
  • 1 tbsp oregano
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp basil
  • 1 tsp chili flakes (optional)
  • 1 lb jumbo shells, cooked
  • 1 large jar marinara sauce
Directions:
  • Preheat oven to 400 F (200 C). In a medium bowl, thoroughly stir together the first 8 ingredients (only use 1 cup of the mozzarella).
  • Fill the large pasta shells with about a tbsp of the ricotta mixture. Pour half of the jar of marinara sauce into bottom of 8-inch metal baking pan and then line the pan with the cheese stuffed shells. Use the leftover marinara to pour in between and on top of shells. Sprinkle top with the other cup of mozzarella.
  • Bake at 400 F (200 C) for 15 minutes. Allow to cool and serve.
Source: Tasty

Bonus tip: Leftovers always make for a hearty lunch the next day.

☀️ Recipe 5: Grilled Portobello Mushrooms with Goat Cheese

5 Recipes That Will Help You Minimize Your Time Below Deck

This Grilled Mushrooms with Goat Cheese takes less than 20 minutes to prepare and features only 8 convenient ingredients.

Ingredients:
  • 8 large portobello mushrooms
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 150g mild goat’s cheese
  • 4 slices ham, halved
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 50g pine nuts, lightly toasted
  • Small handful parsley, roughly chopped
  • Toasted ciabatta and salad, to serve
 Directions:
  • Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Wipe the mushrooms with kitchen paper and place on a baking tray, gills facing up. Season, then scatter with garlic, dot with goat’s cheese and top each with a piece of ham.
  •  Drizzle over olive oil, cover with foil, then cook in the oven for 10 minutes. After 5 mins, remove the foil and return to the oven.
  • When the mushrooms are tender and the cheese melted and bubbling, scatter over the pine nuts and parsley. Serve with toasted ciabatta and a dressed winter leaf salad.

Bonus Tip 2: The BBC website has printable recipes and the option to upload the specific ingredients to a shopping list. VOILA! Genius!

Bonus Tip 1: Buy extra ham and ciabatta for a quick and easy lunchtime meal.

Source: BBC Good Food

☀️We hope that these recipes keep your bellies full and allow you more time to enjoy your time in the sun. Booking your next holidays should be as easy as those simple recipes, don’t you think? Start here to plan your holidays by using our super simple booking process. We have a large offering of boats for all popular sailing destinations, suitable for all budgets and levels of comfort.

Happy sailing!

Boating destinations in southern Europe

Lakes, seas, rivers, mountains, valleys – southern Europe has it all, from the Mediterranean basin to the coastal waters of Portugal and Spain. The warmer climes make southern Europe an ideal destination for winter holidays, especially for those whose arthritis may complain when the snows come calling. But all year round, southern Europe boasts sail-worthy waters, rich cultures, and a wide range of boating and water pursuits. Here are four boating destinations in southern Europe.

The Balearic Islands

This Mediterranean archipelago is part of the kingdom of Spain, and is home to the famous vacation destination Ibiza. With the classic Mediterranean climate, the Balearic Islands offer spectacular ocean views, bays, harbors and – naturally – world-famous seafood that even Monarchs have showed up to sample. For those keen on wildlife watching, the Balearics offer viewings of the shearwater bird, basking sharks, bluefin tunas, angel sharks, and otters.

The Gulf of Venice

This broad gulf is bordered not only by Italy, but by Croatia and Slovenia as well. At an average depth of thirty-four meters, the gulf offers excellent fishing in the gentle waters of the Adriatic sea, as well as beautiful views of its shoreline cities and flood plains. Along your way, visit the ports not only of Venice but of Trieste, Chioggia and Pula, and take a bite out of the local culture (not to mention the huge variety of cuisine represented by the three bordering nations).

The Greek Islands

Made famous by both history and literature, the Greek islands represent one of the most popular boating destinations on earth. Like the Balearics, these islands offer the classic Mediterranean climate along with fantastic fishing, calm waters for cruising and relaxation, and for those inclined to competition, intense and renowned boat races. If you’ve never been to Greece, make time for it this sailing season – Greece boasts incredible beauty, culture, and history that is well worth experiencing.

Malta

If you think Mediterranean archipelagos might get boring after awhile, think again – Malta, another of the basin’s archipelagos, is a prime boating destination and has been described as having the world’s most perfect climate. With clear cerulean waters, gorgeous beaches, seabound caves and protected harbors, Malta might just be the world’s best island getaway. Take a sail around Malta and experience its wonders – and don’t miss its towering white cliffs, either.

Warm climates, great fishing, and a variety of land and water features make southern Europe a fantastic destination for all boating enthusiasts. Whether you visit one of these inviting destinations or all of them, the memories you’ll make with your boating trip this summer will last a lifetime.

5 Tips for Boating With Children

Boat trips are always exciting for children – sometimes even more so than for their parents, guardians, and elders. But while many people love the idea of taking their children boating, some worry that it may not be safe for them. However, the safety and well-being of children – even babies and toddlers – can very easily be maintained with a few basic principles out on the water. Here are five tips for boating with children.

Life Jackets

safe kids

Before you even get to the dock, put life jackets on any infants accompanying you. It is advisable to have life jackets on all children regardless of age, especially if you’re sailing at high tide or through particularly lively waters. For older kids, don’t fret too much about it as long as they can swim capably – older kids generally only need life jackets if you hit choppy waters, are very distant from land, or you run into inclement weather.

Naptime

safe kids

For infants and toddlers, take a Pack N’ Play or something similar on board with you if you need to put your infant down either for a nap or if you need your hands free to tend to on-board tasks. Secure the play area so it doesn’t slide around or fall over out on the water, supply it with some toys, a blanket, and a pillow, and you’ll be home free. Older children can help you attend to the tasks of the boat, and also keep an eye on any of the younger children out on the water.

Regular Schedules

safe kids

Portrait of young woman and her daughters sitting by dinner table and having meals

Even on holiday, it’s important to keep kids on a regular schedule. If you typically let your kids stay up a bit later on vacations or weekends, by all means, continue to do so – but keep bedtimes and mealtimes regular so children can maintain some sense of routine and family equilibrium. If they usually do chores on a daily basis, assign them easy tasks on board the boat that they can handle in lieu of their typical chores, including keeping the cabin neat and the dishes washed.

Create Shade

safe kids

The skin of young children is much more delicate than that of adults’, and very young children will be more prone to heat sickness and nausea than adults as well. Create shade on the boat for children to play under so they don’t get sick by spending the entire day under the hot sun, which can easily done by a Bimini or similar attachment to keep sunlight off. Make sure your children are equipped with sunhats and other protective wear, and have them wear plenty of sunscreen, particularly if they have very fair skin.

Pack Supplies Carefully

safe kids

You don’t want to overpack on any boat trip, but make sure you pack carefully to make sure your children have everything they need – waterproof diapers and a waterproof diaper bag, baby food and formula, plenty of food and water, pacifiers, and toys. Make sure you have a well-equipped first aid kit as well, with not only the requisite items for wound and sprain treatment but fever reducer in case they should fall ill and sunburn gel in case of a burn.

Taking your children out on the water will be a thrilling experience for them and for you. As they become acclimated to travel by boat, you’ll find ready shipmates, lots of laughter, and memories that will last your family a lifetime.

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

5 Tips For Sailing Safely On Your Holiday

Traveling by land can be hazardous; traveling by sea can be even more so. Before entrusting yourself, your family and friends, and your possessions to the mysteries of the open waters, make sure that you go well-prepared. Just like taking driver’s ed before getting your license, learning how to boat safely is an absolute essential. Here are five boating safety tips to follow – whether you’re on a long-distance trek out on the open ocean or cruising for an afternoon on a lake, you’ll be sailing safely!

Check the Forecast

safesail

Before you head out on the water, make sure you know what kind of weather to expect, especially out at sea. The chances of a boating accident increase with inclement weather, particularly storms. Being well-prepared won’t just ensure that you enjoy beautiful weather during your boating excursion. It will also help you to anticipate rain, lightning, or storms and sail around them.

If you do see storm clouds incoming while you’re out on the water, get ashore as soon as possible. If you are too far from land, try to sail around.

Use Proper Equipment

safe sail

Make sure everything aboard your boat is functioning properly, from the rigging and sails to the satellite and compass. Ensure safety gear, like life jackets, are aboard and that there are enough for everyone (and in the proper size!). If anything on board seems out of sorts or missing, make sure to see these to rights before you set sail.

Should something malfunction while you’re out on the water, though, don’t panic. Use your best common sense, and report any malfunctions or damages to the boat owner when you return your boat rental or charter.

Create a Trip Itinerary

sail safely

Map out an itinerary as precisely as possible and leave it with family or friends. Detail where you’ll be setting sail from, which destinations you will sail to, how long you will be gone, and when they can expect you to check in. Doing this helps to ensure that someone ashore knows when they may want to contact the Coast Guard or other water authority should they suspect something has happened to you. If you somehow lose contact while out at sea, make contact with your family and friends at home as soon as is possible.

Don’t Get Drunk

sail safely

The likelihood of a boating accident or a man-overboard increases dramatically with consumption of alcohol. Those aboard should avoid alcohol consumption, particularly if entering rough or choppy waters is a possibility. If you are hosting a party aboard your boat, consume alcohol sparingly and only if you are moored – and then, only if you have a designated person to guard against any accidents, especially drowning.

Become a Competent Swimmer

sail safely

Being a good swimmer is an extremely important skill that can save your life in the event you fall overboard, particularly on the open ocean. Remember that it only takes two minutes for a human being to drown. It may take longer than that for others aboard the boat to pull it around to get you back aboard.

In addition to becoming a competent swimmer, be as physically fit as you can. Contending with the sea demands a lot of strength. Even a calm cruise aboard a boat on a sunny day has its own rigors!

Sailing safely doesn’t have to be complicated. The risks involved – as with any other adventurous undertaking, from driving to hiking – need not be panic-inducing. Following these tips will help you minimize the risks of the open waters, and feeling prepared will help you enjoy your boating trip that much more.

Tags: , , , , ,

5 things to consider when renting a boat

If you’re renting a boat for the first time this sailing season, the prospect of getting out on the water is bound to be an exciting one. But before you see to your booking, there are a few other practical details you might need to attend to before you book your boat rental and take to the seas. Different nations, provinces, counties, and states might have certain requirements you must meet before you can legally operate a boat, even if you’re just renting one. Some rentals might come with insurance, or you may need to purchase some insurances separately. Here are five things to consider when renting a boat.

Do I Need a Permit?

While there’s not always an actual licensing process to go through for boat operation, some countries or states require the completion of a boating safety course – similar to driver’s education courses – before you’ll be allowed to operate a boat yourself. You may also be required to complete an international licensing process if you plan to sail in international waters – even if you don’t sail to another country.

There is usually a hefty fine for operating a boat without having completed said course or any permit or licensing procedure for your state or province, so make sure you look into fulfilling any national, county, or local boat operation requirements if you’re planning on sailing bareboat.

Do I Need Insurance?

Most, if not all, boat rentals will come with the insurance necessary to operate the craft legally. However, if you are planning to range into international waters – more than twelve nautical miles from shore, generally speaking – you may want to inquire if additional insurance is necessary to cover the craft, and you’ll want to have travel insurance for yourself depending on your health care insurance coverage.

Am I of Age to Rent a Boat?

Like renting a car, some countries, provinces, and states have age requirements for boat rental. While many municipalities allow anyone over 18 to rent a boat, make sure to look up the specifics or you may be refused the rental – even if you paid in advance. Additionally, be sure of the age requirements for operating a boat if you’re taking children or teens on board, as you can incur heavy fines if you allow anyone below the minimum age for boat operation to do so.

What Experience Do I Have?

Generally speaking, your boat rental should be for a boat that you know how to operate, but if you’ve never gone boating before, it’s worth it to take a few boating lessons at your local marina or harbor to learn how to operate the boat you’d like to rent. If you’d rather not do that, book your boat rental with a captain rather than going bareboat, and learn as you go.

Do I Know the Maritime and Local Boating Laws?

These can be a little tricky to learn if you don’t spend a lot of time reading local ordinance, but it’s worth it to investigate. For example, in the Great Lakes of the United States, boats are required to operate in a counterclockwise direction, and boaters violating this rule can be fined or even face charges. Read the ordinances regarding boating rules and laws for your area, and when you go to pick up your rental, ask for a rundown of rules of the watery road if you’re sailing bareboat.

Your first boat rental will lead the way to amazing memories this sailing season – and covering all your bases beforehand will result in smoother sailing and less stress knowing you’re equipped for your first open-sea journey.