Destination Chartering, the BVI and Beyond
Sunday April 14th at 1:00 at Waterford Harbor’s Sundance Grill

Terry and Suzie Grover, owners of Houston Sailing, have been chartering in the British Virgin Islands and Bahamas for over 10 years. Come learn about the experience of a lifetime. We will talk about different types of charters and locations. For this presentation we will use the British Virgin Islands, the sailing mecca of North America, as an example. We will discuss how to plan, including transportation to the islands, what experience or training you might need, and what you should not miss while you are there.

Planning your charter:

  • Where do you want to go?
    • BVI
    • Bahamas
    • Other locations
  • Decide what type of charter you want
    • Bareboat, Captained, or Luxury Crewed
      • ~50 ft max for bareboat
    • By-the-cabin charters
    • Power or sail
    • Catamaran or monohull
    • Training charters
    • Flotillas
  • Who is going
    • Number of people, how big of a boat do you need, number of cabins
    • Just a couple, friends, family
    • Special needs
    • Prepare to be patient!
  • Choosing a charter company
    • Bareboat
      • The big multinationals
        • Moorings
        • Sunsail
        • Dream
        • Navigare
      • Boutique bareboat
        • The Catamaran Company Charters
        • Voyage Yacht Charters
        • Cruise Abaco
        • Virgin Island Yacht Charters
        • Horizon
        • TMM
        • BVI Yacht Charters
        • Conch Charters

Experience and Training

  • Sailing resume
    • Training you have
    • License (Med only) and certifications
    • Experience
    • Start a log with NauticEd.org
  • Training
    • Houston Sailing
    • Yachtcations
    • Catamaran Guru
    • Windward Seaventures
    • A training charter or flotilla

Getting to the BVI

  • Passport required, no Visa
  • BVI uses USD but drives on the left
  • Cash for environmental $10, departure tax $20, cash
  • Fly to St. Thomas (STT)
  • Fly to the BVI, Beef Island (EIS)
    • United through PR with Cape Air or Silver
    • American from Miami
  • Taxi to base, cash

Arrival at base

  • Check in
  • Provisioning
    • DIY
    • Have it delivered – Riteway, Robert’s, others
    • Splitting costs – Splitwise
    • Booze
  • Skipper’s briefing – At least one crew attend
  • Boat Briefing – At least one crew attend
    • Generator, switches
    • Watermaker
    • Chartplotter
    • Note things that don’t work
    • Note ANY scratches or dings
    • Inventory equipment, cushions, etc.
    • Get your snorkels and masks
  • Possible Stay-Aboard for early departure
  • Departure
  • Return, fuel

Sailing BVI

  • Mooring Balls, Boaty Ball, and Docks
    • White – First come
    • Orange – Boaty Ball
    • Yellow – Commercial use
    • Red – National Parks, 90 minute limit
    • Blue – Dinghy only
  • Anchoring – Not in a mooring field or national park
  • VISAR – The Virgin Islands version of the Coast Guard
  • Clockwise vs. counter-clockwise
  • To Angada or not to Angada
  • Scuba diving – Rendezvous diving
  • End up close to base

The Islands

  • Virgin Gorda
    • The Baths – Red balls, dinghy only
    • North Sound – Watch your approach, never Mosquito Island
      • Leverick Bay – Mooring or dock, Taxi to baths, provisioning.
      • Saba rock
      • Bitter end
    • Oil Nut Bay – Dock, restaurant, mooring balls in Deep Bay
  • Anagada – 2 nights?
    • Approach
    • Don’t make water, too much sediment
    • LOBSTER!
    • Get a scooter or truck
    • Cow Wreck Beach, Tipsy by Ann
    • Loblolly Bay, Big Bamboo Beach Bar
  • The Dogs – Snorkel, no overnight
  • Scrub Island, Marina Cay
    • Dock at Scrub – Great pool, restaurants, some provisioning
    • Mooring Ball at Marina Cay
    • Trellis Bay – Full Moon party
  • Cane Garden Bay
    • Swell if North Wind
    • Good beach and restaurants
    • Can get crowded, especially with a cruise ship
    • Rum distillery
  • Jost van Dyke
    • Long Bay – Foxy’s Taboo, Bubbly Pool
    • Great Harbor – Foxy’s, light provisioning at Rudy’s
    • White Bay – Soggy Dollar, two approaches-don’t cut across
  • Norman
    • The Indians
    • The Caves
    • Willy T’s
    • Pirates Bite Restaurant
  • Peter Island
    • Haven’t been but looks nice.
    • Great Harbor
    • Sprat Bay – Marina?
    • Deadman’s bay
  • Salt Island
    • HMS Rhone – National Park
  • Cooper Island
    • Snorkeling at Cistern Point
    • Rum Bar
    • Great restaurant
    • Kinda stuffy atmosphere, casual chic

Return to Base

  • Refuel?
  • Check out

To start planning you next charter go to https://houstonsailing.com/sailing-vacations/