Let's face it, not everyone who owns and yacht or boat are prudent sailors, or even sailors at all. This can be directly compared to the people who own cars. Not everyone is a professional driver. But, if you are a boat or yacht owner you should be doing everything you can to learn more about your vessel and how to navigate safely upon the waters that you operate on. The complexity of navigating your vessel from point A to point B is more often than not, overlooked. Professional mariners study, observe, and hands-on learn vigorously for four or more years before they become competent enough to be allowed to make logical decisions for the safety of the vessel.
There are a few things that boat and yacht owners may do to improve their skills out on the ocean, boaters safety course, US Coast Guard approved captain course, or hands on learning docking practice at various international boat shows. Time is money, and we all know that some boat and yacht owners don't have the time to take these courses. A quick and easy way to ensure that your vessel, crew and cargo are operating on the water safely from point A to point B is to hire a captain and crew. Even this process can be time consuming, so Yacht Captain Solutions provides quality captain and crew options for your vessel. We even provide private instructions!
These are some of the things that we do at Yacht Captain Solutions before a voyage gets underway. These things should be done even before you hire a captain and crew to give yourself a better understanding of the time in transit, total cost, and possible issues that could arise during your voyage.
1. Check all weather forecasts, tides, currents, notice to mariners, coast pilot and research every port you wish to visit (Marina VHF channels, Harbor Master VHF channels, mooring and docking availability and rates)
2. Plot a route on your charts and chart-plotter (Do not rely on your phone or iPad)
*If you do not have a chart-plotter or a newer chart-plotter, invest in your safety and the safety of others*
3. Calculate time in transit and fuel consumption
4. Equip your vessel with proper and up to date safety gear
5. Ensure your vessel is equipped with proper lines and fenders (check your anchor and rode)
6. Make sure that all navigation equipment is up to date (via chart-plotter SD card)
7. Check all vitals (Fuel, oil, coolant, transmission fluid, power steering fluid, and water)
8. Review all previous maintenance logs and make sure all maintenance is up to date
9. Make sure your vessel is carrying enough fresh water and provisions based on the length of your voyage and extra for emergencies
10. Provide a voyage plan to your loved ones or local US Coast Guard station
11. Create a pre-departure checklist (YCS can provide you with one, shoot us an e-mail at email@example.com)