So you’ve made the decision to do a Virgin Island bareboat charter. Congratulations! Obviously, you are comfortable with the responsibility of taking the helm and charting your own course.
Now, what should you do about your food and drink provisioning? After all, when you decide to do a bareboat charter, instead of hiring a crew, the responsibilities of cooking and cleaning are all up to you.
Here are your two basic options for provisioning:
1. PURCHASE A PROVISIONING PACKAGE
Most charter companies will offer to stock your yacht with food and beverages – for a fee. You can choose from a half-board plan, sometimes known as split provisioning, or a full-board plan. The split plan gives you two meals a day, and the full-board plan is three meals a day.
Unless you are sailing in a remote area, our charter specialists suggest the split plan. This gives you the option of going ashore for either lunch or dinner and sampling the local island cuisine.
We also recommend provisioning for no more than 3-4 days during a 7-day charter. There are just so many opportunities to dine ashore in most Caribbean locations – it’s a shame to let extra food go to waste.
In the Caribbean, the typical cost to arrange for split food provisioning is approximately $30 per person per day.
As to drinks, most charter companies will give you a list of available beverages, including waters, soda, and alcohol. These items are purchased at a slight premium above retail and are stocked onto the yacht before your arrival.
In addition to food and beverage options, most charter companies offer a “starter” package of non perishable items, such as toilet paper, matches, charcoal, and plastic utensils.
2. PROVISION THE YACHT, YOURSELF
If you have the time prior to the commencement of your sail boat charter, you can hit the local market and provision the boat, yourself. Of course, this might cut into your time on deck, enjoying the sunshine, but it can also save you a wad of cash.
If you elect to stock the boat yourself, save time by planning your basic food and drink menu from home, prior to your charter. Don’t forget to purchase non-food items such as charcoal for the grill, napkins, paper towels, etc. Again, we suggest no more than 3 to 4 days worth of fresh food onboard for a 7-night charter.
*TIME SAVER!* If you arrive a day before your charter and are staying in a hotel, ask your charter company if you can have access to the boat prior to the charter. Early access gives you time to stock the fridge and bring supplies onboard without cutting into your actual charter time.
Whether you purchase a provisioning package or you do it yourself, it is nice to have options. The choice is yours and simply depends upon your budget…and your time!
When you charter a bareboat, do you pay for provisioning, or do you provision it, yourself? Why?