In theory, renting a boat and chartering a yacht is the same thing: you pay someone to use their craft. However, the two phrases allude to two distinct boating experiences in practice. Here’s all you need to know.
What to Expect When Renting a Boat
Boats offered as rentals are often tiny boats or personal watercraft that may be rented for an hour to a day.
When you hire a boat, what do you get? You have the ship. You must be your captain and provide everything you require for your trip, including fishing equipment, water sports equipment, drinks, and meals. There are, of course, exceptions. Houseboats, essentially floating RVs, are normally promoted as rentals, are rather big, and are hired by the week.
What to Expect When Chartering a Boat
Charter boats come in a variety of shapes and sizes. The majority are huge boats on which you will spend a week or more. Bareboat and crewed charters are the two main forms of charters.
Bareboat charters are similar to boat rentals in that you pay for the boat and are in charge of your captain and crew. Most charter firms may ask for a “boating CV” to verify that you have the requisite expertise to pilot the boat you’ve chosen. You must also supply the boat while bareboat chartering, which means you must purchase the food, beverages, and other supplies you will require for your cruise. Crewed Charters imply that you engage a captain and crew to operate the boat, provide food, and do all cooking and cleaning.
Several charter companies offer modular programs. For example, the firm will outfit the boat to your specifications, and you may hire a captain or a cook to accompany you on your voyage. If you’re chartering a yacht in a foreign location where buying for yourself can be problematic, this “pre-provisioned” option is useful.
Another charter adventure is hiring a boat for a specific purpose, such as fishing or whale watching. These charters are normally available by the hour or day and include a captain, crew, meals, and drinks.