This summer at GetMyBoat has been a magical one. We’ve seen countless celebrations on the water, first-time renters enjoying access to a boat, and priceless memories being made.

Here’s a firsthand account from Peony of Adventures of Peony, a lovely travel blogger who shared her GetMyBoat story with us!

First time chartering a boat

I have always loved sailing, having grown up with summers on friend’s boats in Hong Kong and in the Mediterranean, but I had never chartered a boat before in the US – so I had no idea what to expect. I was so happy that I found GetMyBoat, it seemed like an Uber or Airbnb of boats. The website showed comprehensive listings, to help meet all of my sailing needs and reviews for each captain. Reading the reviews gave me the confidence to proceed with booking a private sail in Newport, Rhode Island.

I really liked that a lot of the postings showed pictures of the vessel as well as posts shared by passengers, or previous charters which made it feel more authentic. We ended up booking with Tony as he was responsive, polite, and answered our questions on itinerary and do/don’ts on the boat.

Do – bring your own food, don’t wear black soled shoes!

Tony helped us craft a short itinerary of all the places we wanted to visit and identify what was doable within the time frame that we had. Overall, the process was seamless, and we loved meeting Tony and Nancy. They were such a friendly and personable crew and were very accommodating of me taking photos! We loved getting to see more of Newport and some of the coves around the area that are only reachable by boat.

The private charter made a wonderful trip especially memorable. I don’t think anything can beat the feeling of flying through the sea on a sail-powered yacht, with the smell of the sea and the wind in your hair. It was great to do it all with a fabulous company that made planning and booking the trip so much easier.

Tips for booking for your first sail with GetMyBoat:

  1. Look up some places that you would like to visit on your charter to give the captain an idea of what you want. It’s up to you to communicate with your captain what you want from your trip and come to an agreed itinerary. Make sure you ask them for suggestions, as they know the area well and will have great local recommendations!
  2. Be flexible on your itinerary, as a lot of sailing depends on the weather conditions. You may cover more or less of the itinerary than expected.
  3. Try to book your charter near the beginning of your travels, so that if the weather does take a turn, you may be able to negotiate with your captain to switch to another day. If your captain is flexible, they will usually be able to help you switch the day. Be sure to clear it with GetMyBoat's customer service team, so that the new booking day shows correctly!
  4. Make sure you are clear about what you want to bring onboard/do onboard e.g. bringing alcohol, food, etc. with your captain. Some captains will ask you to not bring glass bottles or barware e.g. champagne glasses because it can be dangerous if it smashes, or to only bring things onboard in soft duffel bags to avoid marking the boat. They are letting you into their space, so be respectful of their requests.

I hope that this helps for anybody thinking of chartering a private sail for the first time!