Welcome Aboard Power Boat Obsession!
Before you go ...
.... Some tips from the Virgin Islands Captains
to help make your Adventure in Paradise one you want
to last forever.
Anyone about to embark on a crewed charter motor boat
in the Virgin Islands will soon see why this is such
a great way to get away from it all. Here is possibly
the only vacation where you can get away from the crowds
and still be in touch with the in-crowd! Below
are some suggestions from "seasoned salts"
Captains who can guide you to a smoother adventure. Please
share this information with everyone in your mtoor boat
|Life in the Virgin Islands is laid back -- and
that's part of the pleasure! The idea is to
relax and not let inconveniences upset you. For
example, if you fly to St. Thomas or Tortola via
San Jan, Puerto Rico, your luggage may not arrive
on the same shuttle flight because of weight considerations
on the aircraft. Carry valuables, toiletries, medication,
and a swimsuit in your carry-on luggage. Your
checked bags will arrive eventually.
We mention this because it may happen, but this is
an unusual situation, I always expect my language to
arrive with me and it has always done so.
As to where the yacht will await you, be sure you know
before leaving home. On St. Thomas, it's likely
to be at Yacht Haven Marina in Charlotte Amalie, or
Red Hook. On Tortola, yachts normally board guests
at Village Cay (pronounced "Key") Marina in
Road Town. But Barrington-Hall like the captains
to meet you at the airport when you arrive. On
both islands, taxi drivers are familiar with locations
-- and rates are posted at the airports ($6-$7 per person.)
Boarding time is no earlier than "noon"
of the day your charter starts unless you have made other
arrangements. Quite often the yacht has guests on board until
noon the previous day and needs every moment to have everything
"ship-shape" for your charter.
A passport, voter's registration card w/picture I.D., or
birth certificate w/picture I.D. is required for travel in
the British Virgin Islands. Without proper identification,
your captain will have trouble clearing you into foreign ports
and perhaps even more trouble getting you back to the U.S. A
passport is the best way to go.
Motor boat charters with Obsession
Space is limited on a boat, so bring soft-sided luggage or
duffel bags, which can stow easily. T-shirts and shorts
are the usual uniform of the day when you're not in swimwear. Shoes
are not allowed on board but comfortable soft-soled sandals
or sneakers may be appropriate for the vessels, you do need
flip-flops, or sneakers for the shore. If you plan on
trying the Resort SCUBA Course, you may want water shoes (such
as Tevas). Evening dress is about as casual as daytime
dress, but if you go to an elegant dining spot, long pants
with a collared shirt are required for men, and dresses for
the ladies. Bring more than one bathing suit, as you're likely
to spend more time in them than anything else.
The tropical sun can be very damaging to skin, so don't forget
sunscreen. A few brands such as Pre-Sun and Bain de Soleil
are very damaging to the yachts finishes (decks) and are not
allowed on board as well as any Sun Tan Oil. Despite
precautions, you may develop a painful burn, so bring something
light and comfortable to wear as a cover-up, plus a wide-brimmed
hat or visor. A light sweatshirt may come in handy for
evenings that seem cool after a long day in the sun. You needn't
pack bulky towels or hair dryers, as these will be available
on the caribbean power
boat. Two towels are provided to each person and
these are change for new ones halfway through your week, so
is the linen. Bring your camera and plenty of film, and an
extra pair of glasses or contacts if your wear them. We
find that the throwaway weekend cameras for underwater use
are excellent all round. Also, any medications you require,
plus antihistamines for any allergic reaction you may develop
from unexpected encounters with sea urchins, fire coral, or
jellyfish. (If you watch where you're swimming and snorkeling,
this isn't likely to be a problem, but remember: Don't
put your hands or your feet where you can't see them.) It
is most unlikely that this would occur, but it is covered
none the less.
You may also want to bring your favorite CD's and DVD's,
a good book or two, and anything else that adds to the pleasure
of taking life easy. Do not, however, bring illicit drugs. Your
Motor boat Captain has too much to lose to permit their use
on the yacht and can terminate the charter without refund
if you bring them aboard.
Keeping in touch....
If you need to keep in touch with "the real world",
the yacht can be reached on VHF Radio via the Marine Operator
at (340) 774-0444 and giving the name of the yacht. If
the call is missed, a message can be left with the operator. A
list of yachts with messages is read every hour on the hour.
A message can also be left with our major agent Barrington-Hall
Corporation at 800-478-2029 and 954-720-0475.
You can also set up your own cellular phone account using
the on board cellular phone or bringing your own from home. You
can pre-register for an account and receive your own incoming
number by contacting CCT Boat phone at www.bvicellular.com
or calling (284) 494-3825.
You will have received a 5-page food preference sheet to
be filled in completely with regard to all members of your
party and sent back in advance of your charter. The chef
will plan meals based on the information you provide, including
any strong dislikes or allergies you indicate. Please
note everyone eats the same entree when possible. The
yacht stocks a selection of House International Wines and
standard bar included in the charter fee. Champagne,
requested wines, and premium liquors can be put aboard at
cost upon request (please specify brand and quantities).
Getting to know you....
When you first come aboard, the captain will explain some
dos and don'ts and ask about your special interests for the
cruise. This is when you itinerary is worked out, but
you can change your itinerary at anytime as well. Remember,
though, the Captain is responsible for the yacht and those
aboard and everyone's safety, so he has the final word in
Your captain will be happy to arrange for activities on shore,
including recreational sports and dining out. Such excursions
are, of course, at your own expense and will not be deducted
from your charter fee. If you invite your crew to join
you for dinner ashore as your guests, they will be delighted
to do so. But if you prefer to dine out without them,
they will not be slighted in the least.
Your captain and mate may be a married couple or working
partners. They may own the yacht or operate it for someone
else. In any case, you are guests in their "home". You'll
savor your own "quiet time" staring up at the starry
night sky or reading a good book. The crew will appreciate
being allowed such times, too -- after all, they will probably
be the first ones up in the morning and the last ones to bed
at night, working hard to please you.
If you come to think of the crew as friends (and you probably
will), tipping may seem awkward at the charter's end. But
tips may constitute a major part of their working capital.
So if you've enjoyed their efforts, they'll appreciate your
letting them know in this way. Most guests are comfortable
with a tip of 10 to 15 percent of the charter fee, but the
decision, of course, is up to you. Putting your gratuity
in an envelope with a note of thanks is a nice way to avoid
Check it out.... Here's a list to check
off your preparations to help ensure a carefree cruise:
- Food and beverage preference sheet filled in and
returned ahead of time
- Passport or required I.D. for each member of party
- Soft luggage or duffel bags
- adequate sun protection (lotion, hat or visor, sunglasses),
no suntan oil
- Extra pair of sun glasses or contact lenses for those
who wear them
- Regular medications, antihistamines
- Camera, plenty of film
- Travelers checks or cash for shopping, dining ashore,
dockage at your request, other shore expenses, and crew
gratuity. Most gift shops and restaurants accept credit
- Eager anticipation of a memorable "Adventure in Paradise"