Chartering a yacht for your family's first private cruise is exciting. However, if you've never spent time on a yacht, you might find some of the rules a bit odd. So, before you board the yacht for your family's first private cruise, check out these tips.


If you've rented a yacht that's on the smaller side -- 50 to 60 feet -- there might not be enough storage space for hard-shell suitcases. So, you'll want to pack the items that you're taking with you in duffle bags. If you're unsure of whether or not your yacht has storage room for suitcases, check with the charter company or the broker that you worked with to rent the yacht.


Many first-timers are surprised that they are asked to remove their shoes when they board the yacht. However, it's a common rule. You cannot wear street shoes on a yacht because the dust and debris on your shoes could scuff up the deck. So, when you board your yacht, you'll be asked to remove your street shoes. You can go barefoot, wear socks, or don house shoes while you're on board.


While children are welcome on yacht cruises, it's important to remember that the crew members aren't babysitters. The yacht's crew members all have various jobs to do, so asking one of them to watch your children isn't nice. However, if a crew member offers to watch the kids for a certain amount of time, feel free to accept the offer. Chances are, that crew member had some downtime and wanted to help.

Listen to the Rules

When you first board the ship, the crew will discuss safety measures and the ship's basics with you. It's extremely important to listen to what they say. Not only will listening help ensure your safety in the event of an emergency, but it helps to ensure you know how to do things, such as flush the toilet, while you're on board. Be sure to pay attention to what type of items can be plugged into outlets at specific times -- ships that aren't plugged into shore power use a battery backup for electricity and you don't want to drain it -- as well as how to work the faucets and toilet.


There isn't one set rule for tipping the yacht's crew members. However, it's customary to tip between five and 15 percent of the cost of the charter. This is usually given to the captain at the end of the cruise to be divided among the crew members. This way, each crew member receives a fair amount. It's important to remember that there are some crew members that often work hard, but aren't frequently seen. So, you shouldn't tip crew members individually.

While there may be some rules on the yacht that you aren't accustomed to, it won't take long for your family to adjust to a yachting lifestyle. Remember, when in doubt, all you have to do is ask. The yacht's crew members can tell you what rules you need to follow at any given time.

For more information, contact a company like Charter Bonaparte.