Are you preparing for your first yachting trip? If so, get ready for regal accommodations that rival a five-star resort
on water. There is some yacht etiquette you might want to know.
Yachting is a first-class experience, especially if you’re sailing near Los Cabos, and with it comes a set of guidelines
for well-mannered guests to follow. Whether you’re chartering the luxury vessel with your crew or you’ve been invited
aboard as a guest, get up-to-speed on the proper protocol for yachters.
Follow these 9 first-timer tips guaranteed to make your getaway the elegant excursion of a lifetime.
Know the terminology
First, familiarize yourself with some on-the-water lingo before you set sail.
Not only will you feel more confident upon your arrival with some yachting terms under your belt, but
understanding what the crew members actually mean they’re giving you updates about your agenda.
Whether you’ve already got a few key words in your memory bank or you’re starting from scratch, be prepared and
feel informed when they talk about things like the “float plan,” and know the difference between a “slip” and a
“dock,” for starters.
Respect the crew
This should be a given, but do be sure to treat each crew member with the respect they deserve. Their main
mission is to ensure everything goes accordingly during your yachting holiday, and they work diligently to do
Making a concentrated effort to be polite and gracious is not only the right thing to do, but will likely encourage them to go the extra mile to make your expedition magnificent.
Another way to show respect to the crew is by giving them the time and space to do their jobs.
They need time to perform essential housekeeping tasks, such as changing the sheets, making your bed, and tidying up in general–so give them the opportunity to do so, whether it’s while you’re off on an excursion or swimming and sunbathing on the deck.
You should also be prepared to tip the crew at the end of your trip–between 10-15% of the charter fee is considered a reasonable amount.
Hand the tip off to the captain as you depart from the yacht to ensure it is dispersed evenly amongst the crew.
Gratuity in the hospitality industry is customary to reward a job well done.
Participate in activities
The crew puts a great deal of time into planning special activities, events, or excursions to give you the
getaway of your dreams.
If they’ve planned a delectable dinner featuring your favorite foods, a themed dance party, or a snorkeling excursion at a national marine park like Cabo Pulmo, show your appreciation for their extra effort by taking part.
This is your vacation–allow yourself to let loose and soak up your surroundings.
Wear the appropriate attire
Depending on your particular yacht, there may be a “barefoot” policy in place asking for shoes to be kept outside of the cabins or not worn on the deck either.
The reason? Stiletto heels can scuff, scratch, or dent the teak decks. Shoes with dark soles can also leave marks.
If your yacht has a barefoot policy in place, there will be baskets for you to drop your shoes at the end of the gangway or outside the salon door. If you are allowed to wear shoes onboard, etiquette dictates wearing suitable, soft-soled “boat shoes.”
Sailing near Los Cabos can mean cooler nights, so be sure to bring light layers that you can add to your attire too.
Bring the right luggage
Even on an expansive superyacht, storage is always a concern. To lighten the load–literally–bring soft luggage instead of hard-sided suitcases.
Softer luggage is easier to stow because it is collapsible, in addition to being less likely to scuff or dent those teak decks. When preparing for your trip, try to pack lightly.
Pay attention to safety briefings
You may be eager to get the party started, but don’t tune out during important safety instructions.
The captain and the crew take safety very seriously, so listen intently during the briefings that cover life jackets and life raft information.
Not only is safety a top priority, but knowing what to do in the event that an emergency occurs could literally save your life–or that of another passenger.
Additionally, these safety briefings are required by both insurance companies and maritime laws.
Let the crew know your plans ahead of time.
Your crew works hard to ensure everything runs smoothly for their guests.
Help them plan accordingly and avoid any scheduling or supply snafus by giving them as much prior notice as possible if plans change.
For example, if you’re socializing during an onshore excursion to the Marina Village at Costa Palmas and want to invite additional guests back aboard the boat, give the crew a heads up.
Running out of food or drinks would be an embarrassment for you as the host as well as the chef.
Planning to bring a pet? While some yachts allow pets onboard, not all of them do–don’t forget to inquire about your yacht’s pet policy before you arrive.
Provide as much information as possible on your preference sheet
A preference sheet is a document you will receive prior to your trip.
The information you list about yourself, your likes, and dislikes is critical to the captain and crew’s ability to plan a memorable, highly-customized experience.
Here, you’ll list everything from your favorite foods and dietary restrictions to hobbies and sleeping arrangements.
The more details you provide, the better your crew will be able to plan a charter that exceeds your expectations.
Treat the yacht like you would your own home
In addition to respecting the crew, you would be wise to also treat the yacht (and its contents) with the same care you give your own domicile.
While it may not be your permanent residence, the luxury watercraft does belong to someone.
A great deal of time and money is spent to keep it in tip-top shape, so do your part to help keep it in the same condition as you found it.
That being said, everyone knows that accidents do happen.
If anything breaks or becomes damaged during your stay, alert a crewmember so they can give it the proper attention as soon as possible.
With these tips committed to memory, you’ll be ready to set sail on your first yachting trip. If you fall in love with the area, you wouldn’t be the first to explore buying property in Los Cabos. Costa Palmas has luxurious waterfrontproperty available near the Marina Village that could be the perfect fit.