Luxury charter yacht vacations have become viewed as the ideal way to travel and spend a deserved getaway.
Perhaps it’s the luxury—a dedicated crew to make gourmet meals and pamper you while enjoying a luxurious setting.
Perhaps it’s the privacy—a way to escape the crowded resorts and have the onboard pool, view, and service all to yourself.
Or, perhaps, it’s the unrivaled experience—island hopping through gorgeous destinations and visiting pristine locations inaccessible by land.
If you’re curious about chartering a luxury yacht but have questions, this post will help you get the info you need to turn your daydreams into a once-in-a-lifetime escape.
What does a luxury yacht charter include?
The charter fee includes the hire of the yacht and crew. Additional expenses are covered by the charterer with an Advanced Provision Allowance (APA). The APA is a deposit that covers personal and operation expenses, which include items such as meals, beverages, fuel, and berthing costs. The balance of the tallied costs is settled at the end of the cruise. And a refund or balance is due.
The APA arrangement, as you’ll find at OCEDA, best accommodates a range of tastes in dining, entertainment, and berthing choices for guests.
How can I manage and learn about the overall budget of cruising with a luxury yacht?
When planning your charter vacation on a luxury yacht, the primary budgeting factors include the cost of the yacht and crew, the APA, the VAT, and gratuity. Let’s look closer at these…
You can expect an APA of 30-40% of the charter cost. However, the final expenses strictly depend on you (and your guests) preferences. Furthermore, gratuity for the professional crew is customary, while at your discretion, a 10-20% of the charter fee is common.
But working with a knowledgeable charter agency familiar with the yachts offered and your chosen cruising destination will help you know what to expect before your cruise so you can feel confident about the entire process. OCEDA prides itself on its transparent processes.
Charter seasons and their importance in booking
The season is one of the biggest variables when booking a charter yacht for your vacation.
Most locations, like the Mediterranean or Caribbean, have peak seasons. When booking during the cruising season, you’ll have the preferred weather, and all the shops and restaurants will be open ashore. You’ll likely need to book your yacht much earlier, and the prices are higher during peak season.
Greece’s peak season is between June to September, with charters starting in May and dropping in October.
OCEDA recommends that clients book six months in advance for high-season charters and three months in advance for off-peak season charters.
But don’t discount the off seasons; there are many benefits. Charters are more affordable (so you can charter that extra stunning yacht!) Other advantages include smaller crowds and being able to explore locations in peace.
Choosing the Right Luxury Yacht Based on your expectations
When planning a charter yacht vacation, start by considering what you want from the experience, your budget, and the number of people in your group.
There is a wide range of options available depending on your preferences. To give you a ballpark idea of what’s possible:
For about the cost of a week-long cruise-ship cruise you can charter a super or mega yacht for your family or with another couple in the Caribbean.
Intriguingly, for six figures, you can charter a luxury, 50-meter motor yacht complete with a swimming pool, multiple private decks, and designer furnishings in Greek islands for a week.
And, of course, there are unlimited options between these two examples!
For a better idea, peruse actual yachts available for charter and immediately compare amenities and pricing.
From booking to logistics—selecting the right chartering company matters
Once you have a general idea of what you want your charter yacht experience to look like, it’s time to start working out the details.
Working with a reputable charter company is the most important decision in the entire process.
For example, at OCEDA, our experts work with you to find the yacht that fits your needs exactly, whether family-friendly or super modern. We also help you find the perfect-fit crew, whether that means one that specializes in elevated dining experiences or keeping everyone entertained with the water toys.
Planning your itinerary and adventures is one of the most fun parts of the booking process. You’ll want to work with someone who knows the cruising area intimately and can design a custom experience that will leave you with a lifetime of cherished memories.
Once the major decisions are made, OCEDA will walk you through understanding the legal and financial aspects of the contract.
You’ll have a charter expert guide you through the other details you’ll need to arrange, like travel to your destination and personal documents and what to bring with you.
With the right charter company, you’ll find planning and booking your charter straightforward and even a fun part of the entire charter experience.
How many people can I book on a luxury yacht charter?
Most luxury yachts will comfortably accommodate up to 8-12 charter guests, allowing each couple to have fully private cabins and bathrooms.
Smaller sailing and motor yachts tend to accommodate parties of 2-8 guests.
What is the ideal duration for an unforgettable experience?
Most yacht charters are a minimum of one week long.
However, you’ll find charters that are shorter or longer. Because it is often possible to only experience a small part of the most desired cruising destinations in a week, cruises can be booked for several weeks—or even a cruising season to allow for leisurely cruising and exploring of each island or island chain.
Selected Crew and Services
The professional crew is one of the most luxurious parts of cruising on a yacht.
Besides the captain taking care of all the navigation and yacht operations, you’ll also have a private chef and steward(ess).
They will attend to your daily needs onboard, prepare any watersports equipment you’d like, and arrange for personalized activities ashore. For example, making reservations at restaurants and arranging personalized tours.
In addition to the yacht’s crew, you’ll likely have the option to include a private masseuse, nanny, or tour guide onboard.
Destinations and Customized Itineraries
While there are cruising destinations worldwide, at OCEDA, we haven’t found a more beautiful place than the islands of Greece. You could charter here every season and never run out of sand beaches, rocky coves, award-winning restaurants, cultural experiences, and unbeatable views.
Check out a few of our favorite itineraries, like the Ionian Islands, Saronic Islands, or the Cycladic Islands.
We know and love the cruising grounds of Greece, which means we know what makes each region so special and where to find the secret spots inaccessible except by boat.
Why a luxury yacht charter with OCEDA is the ultimate experience
A charter vacation is much more than selecting a yacht and destination.
If it’s your first time chartering, OCEDA will help you navigate the options and tailor an experience perfect for you, whether that looks like stepping off your yacht and into some of the chicest designer shops or diving into the pristine waters in a secluded cove lined with golden beaches and ancient olive groves.