Chartering a yacht in the Mediterranean is a dream holiday for many. It is worth taking the time, however, to find a good local operator who can iron out any problems. Being in a foreign land without the language or local knowledge of laws and procedures can quickly turn the dream into a nightmare. Choosing a reputable charter company with a solid reputation can save time trouble and money; as the following case study will illustrate.
Our Case Study: Guests Far Away from Home
We welcomed guests from America last summer, who had booked a sailing charter through us, chartering a gullet from Kotor, Montenegro to Split, Croatia for a week. Looking forward to a dream sailing holiday in the Mediterranean, little would they know about a change in the law regarding charter licensing in Croatia that led to the boat owner not getting a charter license for Croatia. The new law required a cabotage permit for the carriage of passengers from Montenegro to Croatia. A request was made to the Ministry in Croatia, but unfortunately denied. Furthermore, this was only made clear to us by the boat owner three days before the beginning of the rental. It was a logistical minefield that could have been a disaster for the guests. Undaunted by the challenge, we took on all responsibility and were active in finding the best outcome for difficult situation, at short notice.
Going the Extra Mile
With much effort the trip was adjusted so that all parties were satisfied. We were able to restructure the charter week in accordance with the guests requests and renegotiate the deal with the local operator. Three days sailing in Montenegro and four days on a luxurious gullet, as requested, found locally by us so that they could continue the journey to Split. This was organised at no extra cost to the customer, with us handling all the paperwork and communication with the boat owners and other local agents. This would have been extremely difficult for the guests to have to negotiate on their own without the language and knowledge of the change in law.
A Happy Ending
Had we not been competent enough to negotiate with the Montenegrin counterpart, the couple may have been stranded and unable to complete the trip as planned. We went the extra mile in ensuring our guests were looked after and all was well in the end.
So before you book a sailing holiday, make sure to do some research about your charter company and make sure they are able to deal with any problems that may arise.
By Merryn Wainwright