In order to make the best of these situations, which are handled differently by everyone, we  ask that all of our travelers be understanding of the crew, the other passengers and their travel mates. Some of these are outlined below :

People will travel a certain way when overseas and need to be courteous to others as they adjust, relax and get in "vacation mode".

There are rules and safety concerns that we discuss before  sailing and while sailing. Any activity on the water involves inherent risks and it is important to understand them and how to avoid an issue.

There are special courtesies about being on boats and with a travel group while we are together.

As we will be sharing a small space for the week, there are some basic courtesies that are expected from all  to keep the environment clean, fun and safe while we are on vacation.

Finally, there may be special intense moments when the crew are performing maneuvers on the boats with different systems and we ask that you be understanding and lend a hand if one is needed.

We all work together and pay attention to the safety rules and concerns, and have a marvelous time without incidents and accidents.

Safety and Guidelines on the Boat and on the Docks

Boats and docks are always in motion. Keep one hand free to steady yourself or to hold on to something. The standing rule on a boat is to keep "one hand for you and one hand on the boat". That means always hold on to something while moving around and leave a hand free for catching or balancing.

Always watch where you are walking on a dock. They are narrow, they are split into pieces to allow for the movement of the water and boats and have wooden or metal cleats placed on the edges that are used to tie up the boats. All of these things can cause you to trip or fall or hurt yourself if you kick them accidentally.

Always wear shoes that are made for wet environments when you are on docks on or the deck of a boat. These include shoes with soles that are soft-soled and white, preferably (as they will not scratch or scuff the decks), and that do not have a heel.

On a boat or on the dock, never step on a rope or line, as ropes on a sailboat are called. As they are round, they will roll under your foot very easily and can knock you off balance.

Before leaving for your trip, become familiar with common names or boat terms as they may be used while we are on the boat. There is list at the back of this packet to help you get ready.

Before leaving for your trip, you may want to learn some simple sailing knots that we will use while on board. There is a link to a knot instruction website here (

Pack correctly for being on a boat, use soft-sided luggage with or without wheels. The hard suitcases or the wheels will scratch and scuff a boat's fiberglass very quickly. Also, space on a boat is extremely limited so having a duffle bag or collapsible suitcase can really maximize your cabin as it can be stuffed into a small space or it can be folded up when not in use.

One should always ask permission to a skipper to "come aboard" his/her boat if you are boarding for the first time or you are visiting their boat.

As soon as possible, ask the captain or mate to give you a tour of the boat and to show you your cabin, the public areas, the safety features and the areas that are off-limits. With engines and boats parts, there are places that are just not safe unless you know what to touch and what to avoid.

Never leave open drinks or packages out in the cockpit or on deck as they have a tendency to spill easily with the motion.

Do not leave anything that is not able to get wet or to be blown on deck. Water will always find something that it can ruin on a boat and wind has a way of blowing things that are not weighted down overboard quickly.

Crew Guidelines for Safety at Sea

Remember that "Safety First" always rules.

It is important to understand the Captain is in charge of the boat. They have everyone’s safety and enjoyment first in their minds and will always have the last say about safety and crew concerns.

Pay attention to pre-sailing safety briefings. You never know when you may be asked to step up to a task and you will need to know where things are and how to operate the equipment. This includes the VHF radio, the navigation instruments and lights, bilge pump and the engine.

The boat will move in strange ways while under sail or motion. ALWAYS keep one hand for you and one hand for the boat.

There are no dumb questions when you are sailing or at sea. Ask if you don’t know or if you want to learn. We are here to have a good time and to teach if people want to learn.

There are many places on a sailboat where someone can get hurt if they do not know the safest manner to handle a task so please ask and please pay attention to a crew member who may be trying to advise you of the safest manner or place to be during an activity.

The Captains are receptive to volunteers for specific duties (Raising and lowering main sail, furling or unfurling the jib, anchor duty, radio operation, etc.). When volunteers don’t appear, Captains may assign tasks to balance work load.

Communication during all maneuvering is critical (leaving the dock, coming up to a mooring ball, lowering the anchor, raising the anchor, etc.). Personal conversations should be paused or stopped if you are assisting in the task or, if not involved in the task, kept very quiet as we need to be able to communicate.

In a maneuver, listen for the Captain and be ready to act as requested in case additional help is needed.

Learn how to operate the VHF radio, navigation instruments, marine heads and galley items in case you are needed to operate them when assisting or in case of an emergency.

Never leave anything that is not able to get wet or to be blown on deck. Water will be splashing at some times and wind will always be present while underway.

Dinghy Rules

The captain and first mate will be in charge of the dinghy throughout the trip but may appoint a person as the "Dinghy Captain" to assist them with securing the dinghy to the boat, the assist in shuttling people to other boats or ashore and to assist with engine or maintenance issues. Please let the captain know if you are interested in assisting throughout the week.

Here are some basic dinghy rules and safety points:

  1. The dinghy is a blow up boat and will move more drastically than the sailboat does. Always use extreme caution when entering or leaving the dinghy or shifting within the dinghy.
  2. No more than one person standing in the Dinghy at anytime.
  3. The first person to enter the dinghy will assist the people getting on board.
  4. Always use assistance when entering the dinghy. Use "hand to forearm" grip between the Dinghy and the boat.e. Stow packages and other gear along the floor of the craft as to avoid damage or getting wet.
  5. Start the motor before releasing the line from the boat. To those sitting near the dinghy captain, be careful to avoid the arm that will start the motor. It will be pulling back quickly.
  6. Verify that you have sufficient fuel in the can and that the oars are on board in case of motor failure.
  7. Please tell the dinghy captain if you want your ride slow and semi-dry or fast and wet as it can be a wild or fun experience.
  8. While riding, be aware of swells and other boat wakes as they will cause the dinghy to shift and may cause a splash.
  9. Never leave the boat on the dinghy at night without a flash light. Shine the light off the bow of the dinghy while underway so other boats can identify that you are in motion.
  10. If leaving the dinghy at a dock, please make sure that you tie it up securely and that you do not leave any personal items in the dinghy as it is not safe.
  11. If beaching the dinghy, please make sure that the boat is far enough up the shore that it will not wash out to sea and that the motor is tilted into the upright position to avoid damage to the prop.

Courtesy Guidelines while On Board

Keep at good attitude. A great attitude is infectious and promotes a good atmosphere for fun and learning.

​A sail boat crew is like a team. Be a team player and offer to help where and when needed.

A tidy boat is a happy boat. On boats, everything has its place and things need to be put away or "stowed" before sailing. As the boat will certainly move, items will shift and may fall, break or spread apart which may end up in others way or be stepped on which is not only messy but a safety hazard.

Be considerate and pick up after yourself.

​ Keep track of your personal items on deck as well as down below. Organize and stow your belongings neatly in the main area or in your cabin.

Help keep the galley clean.

  • Dirty dishes always go in the sink and should be washed as soon as possible.
  • Clean dishes need to be dried and placed in their cupboards to avoid breakage.
  • Uneaten or leftover food need to be put away before sailing.
  • Smoking is discouraged and should only be done on the back of the boat so ashes blow behind the boat and not on other people. Smokers should always advise the Captain and crew before smoking while sailing so someone can keep an eye on them.
  • Close hatches before leaving the harbor or when you leave the boat to go ashore. Spray and unexpected rain showers are likely when sailing or on most islands.
  • Be considerate of others when choosing music for the boat. Everyone on the boat can veto the music that is playing. Your choice of music might not be enjoyed by everyone.
  • Let the crew members responsible for provisioning know if anything runs low or must be replaced    while in port.
  • Your cabins are your private space and that will be guarded as much as possible. If a crew member needs to enter them or asks another guest to enter them on their behalf, please understand.
  • All bathrooms or "heads" should be kept so that people may use them in an emergency. We will do our best to keep to our own but there are times that we will need to share.
  • Always ask before borrowing or using others' personal items.

Crew Courtesy Guidelines when on Another Boat or While in Port

  • Dress respectfully while ashore. Many cultures will find bathing attire or other small outfits inappropriate on the city streets.
  • Always let your Captain/crew know your tentative plans for the time you are ashore. If we need to find you or if there is a problem, it helps us know how to find you.
  • Walkie-talkies are terrific for keeping in touch while we are in port or exploring the islands. These will also be very handy for organizing dinghy rides from shore back to the boat. Please try to bring one or a set per family. We monitor channel 7 while traveling.
  • Expect service at restaurants and stores to be slower than our standards here at home. Take this time and enjoy the ambiance

Crew Orientation Forms

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