What is a Crewed Charter?

There’s no vacation like spending your days in a private yacht, relaxing, and living the time of your life. Whether you envision yourself gliding through azure seas aboard a sailing yacht or cruising in opulent comfort on a modern motor vessel – doing it on a crewed charter offers a refreshing escape from the ordinary. Instead of operating and serving yourself and your guests on a yacht, it’s better to have a crew for a stress-free yachting experience. Learn more about crewed charter here.

What is a Crewed Yacht Charter?

If you want the feeling of being on the water, enjoying the privacy of your own boat, and the luxury of staying in an elegant hotel with a bit of luxury and pampering – going onboard a crewed charter is the perfect experience for you.

A crewed charter refers to the rental or leasing of a vessel, such as a yacht, sailboat, or luxury cruise ship, along with a professional crew that operates and maintains the vessel during the charter period. It combined the service and friendliness of a hotel with the freedom to explore destinations by the water. It’s like a private cruise ship.

Unlike a bareboat charter where the charterer is responsible for piloting and managing the vessel themselves, a crewed charter provides the services of a dedicated crew who takes care of the navigation, safety, and overall operation of the vessel.

In a crewed charter, the crew typically includes a captain or skipper who is responsible for navigating the vessel, a chef or cook who prepares meals onboard, and additional crew members who handle various tasks like housekeeping, maintenance, and guest services. The specific crew size and composition can vary depending on the size and type of the vessel and the level of luxury or service provided.

Crews range from husband-wife teams who own the boat and charter for a living or for pleasure, to large, professionally-trained crews where each crew member has a specific task. On most large yachts, crew members need to be certified by yacht training companies.

Crewed charters are popular among those who want to enjoy sailing or yachting without the need for sailing or boating experience. The crew takes care of all the technical aspects of operating the vessel so that the charterer and their guests can simply relax and enjoy the journey. The crew can also provide local knowledge and recommendations for destinations, activities, and attractions along the charter route.

Crewed charters can be booked for various durations, ranging from a few days to several weeks or even longer. The charter fee typically includes the vessel rental, crew wages, fuel, some onboard amenities, and sometimes even meals and beverages, depending on the specific terms of the charter agreement.

What is the Difference Between Bareboat, Skippered, and Crewed Yacht Charters?

The main differences between bareboat, skippered, and crewed yachts lie in the level of responsibility and services provided to the charterer:

Bareboat Charter

In a bareboat charter, the charterer rents the yacht without a crew and takes full responsibility for operating and navigating the vessel. The charterer must have the necessary sailing or boating experience, license, and skills to handle the yacht on their own. They are responsible for provisioning, planning the itinerary, navigation, and all other aspects of safety and operation. The charterer may bring their own crew, hire a crew separately, or choose to sail with a group of friends or family members.

Skippered Charter

A skippered charter includes a professional skipper or captain who is responsible for piloting and navigating the yacht. In this type of charter, the skipper is provided by the charter company and is usually knowledgeable about the local waters and destinations. The skipper takes care of the technical aspects of sailing the yacht, while the charterer and their guests can relax and enjoy the experience. The charterer may still be involved in decision-making and can participate in sailing if they want, but the skipper assumes the primary responsibility for the yacht’s operation.

Crewed Charter

A crewed charter provides a complete crew that operates and maintains the yacht during the charter period. The crew typically includes a captain, chef, or cook, and additional crew members depending on the size and luxury level of the yacht. The crew takes care of navigation, safety, maintenance, and other tasks so that the charterer and their guests can fully relax and enjoy the journey.

In a crewed charter, the charterer can often customize the itinerary and enjoy personalized services, like chef-prepared gourmet meals and additional amenities. It is a luxurious and hassle-free option for those who want a high level of comfort and service.

Benefits of a Crewed Charter

A crewed charter allows you to enjoy a luxurious and pampered vacation while exploring beautiful destinations on your own terms. Opting for a crewed charter offers several benefits, including:


Chartering a crewed yacht provides a hassle-free vacation experience. The crew takes care of provisioning, cooking, cleaning, and other tasks, allowing you to fully unwind and enjoy your time on board. You don’t have to worry about meal preparation, cleaning up, or even planning the itinerary. The crew can assist in creating a personalized itinerary based on your preferences and can provide local insights and recommendations for the best places to visit.

Access to professional service

With a crewed charter, you have the advantage of having a professional crew who are experienced in operating and maintaining the yacht. They have the necessary skills and knowledge to navigate the waters safely and efficiently. The crew takes care of all the technical aspects of sailing, so you can relax and enjoy the experience without worrying about operating a yacht.

The presence of an onboard chef means you don’t have to worry about preparing sumptuous meals – anything you will eat there is expected to be good and pleasing because a professional will prepare and cook it. And after breakfast, you can return to your cabin to find your bed made and your room cleaned like brand new – thanks to the housekeeping crew. At the end of the day, it’s these little details that make the difference in whether or not you will have a pleasant experience on your yacht.

Luxurious amenities and services

Luxury crewed yacht charters are always a fabulous way to spend a vacation. It doesn’t get more luxurious than relaxing on your own private boat with a dedicated crew at your service.

Crewed charters often come with luxurious amenities and services. Depending on the yacht and charter package, you can enjoy features such as spacious cabins, well-appointed common areas, water toys, entertainment systems, and more. The crew can provide personalized services, including gourmet meals prepared by an onboard chef, attentive guest services, and even organizing special events or celebrations.

Local knowledge and expertise

The crew members are usually familiar with the local waters and destinations. They can provide valuable insights into the best anchorages, scenic spots, hidden gems, and activities in the area. Their knowledge and expertise can enhance your charter experience by ensuring you make the most of your time and discover the highlights of the region. No other vacation option lets you and your loved ones go wherever you want, whenever you want, with the benefit of a knowledgeable captain leading the way.

Privacy and exclusivity

A crewed charter offers privacy and exclusivity since you have the yacht all to yourself and your invited guests. Unlike a traditional cruise ship or a resort, where you share facilities and amenities with other passengers, a crewed charter provides a private and intimate setting for you and your companions. This means that the crew also caters to your group alone.


The crew in a crewed charter is trained in safety procedures and protocols. They have local knowledge to navigate the waters safely, and they can also assist the charterer and their guests in case of emergencies.

Customization and flexibility

Another benefit of a crewed boat charter is the ability to customize your itinerary to your preferences, deciding on the destinations you want to visit, the activities you want to engage in, and the pace of your journey. The crew can accommodate special requests and adapt to your preferences, so you can get a personalized experience. Whether you want to visit historic sites, explore secluded beaches, or enjoy water sports, the crew can help cater to your wants.

Personalized menu

It’s not every day that you get to dine al fresco under the stars while floating on water. In a crewed charter, you can enjoy gourmet meals specifically created to please your palate and satisfy any requests. Or, you can get your chef to enhance your experience by offering a menu that features local cuisine. If you have someone in your group who is a picky eater or has diet restrictions, your professional chef will accommodate the needs and preferences of all guests on board.

Besides preparing delicious dishes for all your meals, your chef can also serve up refreshing happy hour cocktails using your favorite spirits.

Extra activities

A crewed yacht charter can have the space for all sorts of extras, depending on its size. Some charters can assist you with water sports – from snorkeling to water skiing to jet skiing – and they can serve as your insider to give you tips on how to better navigate and play in the local area. Most charter crews are experts in the area you’ll be visiting and exploring, so expect lots of helpful insider knowledge about activities that will be unknown or inaccessible to most tourists.

Types of Crewed Charters

There are several types of crewed charters available, catering to different preferences and requirements. Some common types include:

Motor yacht charters

Motor yacht charters involve crewed yachts that are powered by engines. These yachts are ideal for those who want to prioritize speed and comfort and prefer smooth cruising and luxurious amenities. Motor yacht charters are popular for their spacious interiors, multiple decks, and a wide range of onboard facilities such as jacuzzis, entertainment systems, and water toys.

Sailing yacht charters

Sailing yacht charters feature crewed yachts that rely on wind power and sails for propulsion. These charters are perfect for those who want a more traditional sailing experience so they can appreciate the art of sailing and the thrill of harnessing the wind. Sailing yachts often provide a closer connection to the natural surroundings and a quieter, serene cruising experience. These yachts are more eco-friendly as they do not rely completely on fuel-powered engines, and they are also great for those who want to disconnect from the hustle and bustle of the modern world.

Catamaran charters

Catamaran charters involve crewed yachts that have two hulls connected by a central living area. These boats offer more space and stability, making them more popular for families or large groups of friends. They often provide multiple cabins, large deck areas, and a variety of amenities such as trampolines, spacious lounges, and water sports equipment.

Luxury crewed charters

Luxury crewed charters focus on providing the highest level of comfort, service, and amenities. These charters feature high-end yachts with luxurious interiors, upscale furnishings, gourmet dining options, professional crews, and personalized services. Luxury crewed charters are perfect for those who prefer a premium, indulgent yachting experience.

Expedition or adventure charters

Expedition or adventure charters are designed for those seeking more adventurous and off-the-beaten-path experiences. These charters often feature specialized expedition yachts with enhanced capabilities to navigate remote or challenging destinations. The crew is experienced in expedition cruising and can guide guests through unique landscapes, wildlife encounters, and thrilling activities such as diving, fishing, or exploring rugged coastlines.

Theme or event charters

Some crewed charters specialize in specific themes or events. For example, there are charters focused on wellness and relaxation, culinary experiences, corporate retreats, special celebrations like weddings or anniversaries, and even specific water-based sports such as diving or surfing. These charters offer tailored experiences centered around the chosen theme or event, providing specialized services, amenities, and activities.


From the moment you stepped aboard a crewed yacht charter, entering your small world of opulence and attentive service, you’ll sure to experience unparalleled luxury. It’s great to spoil yourself once in a while on a yacht where every desire is effortlessly fulfilled and every horizon offers a new adventure.