Yacht Charter Management Guide 2024

Yacht crew on a luxury yacht. What exactly does yacht charter management mean and what is their role when booking a luxury yacht charter? The yacht charter management team are usually the liaison between the yacht, the owner, the captain and the yacht brokers.

When booking your first yacht charter, you may hear the term “yacht charter management.” What does this mean, and what role do they play in booking a luxury yacht? Yacht charter management teams act as the vital link between the yacht, the owner, the captain, and the brokers. They ensure a seamless and luxurious experience by coordinating all aspects of the charter. Discover more about the essential role of yacht charter management below.

swim platform on luxury yacht

Yacht Charter Management FAQ

What is a yacht charter manager?

A yacht charter manager is someone that will help market and manage your charter yacht.

If you don’t plan to run your yacht commercially (for charter), you will not require a yacht charter manager. However, they are incredibly useful when operating your yacht as a commercial vessel, as the yacht charter management company helps to create marketing materials and present the yacht to the yacht brokerage community while also being the point person between the owner, brokers, and the captain and crew.

What does a yacht charter management company do?

Put simply, a yacht charter management company helps to run your yacht commercially and ensures everything runs smoothly with the owner, captain, and brokers all synced up thanks to the management company’s efforts.

A yacht charter manager will help with communication, marketing, and regulatory guidelines for the locations your yacht will offer charters.

How do yacht charter brokers get paid?

Yacht charter brokers are paid by the yacht owner, typically with a percentage of each charter fee or a monthly retainer. Working with a yacht charter broker can make owning a commercial yacht much easier, it’s in your best interests to use a yacht charter broker for their wealth of knowledge and access to their wide brokerage network.

What are the benefits of a yacht charter?

One of the major benefits of a yacht charter is that it allows you the opportunity to experience owning a yacht, even if only for a short time. Many people will choose to charter a yacht on their way to ownership so they can get a feel of what is possible when traveling by yacht. 

More than that, a yacht charter allows you to completely tailor your vacation — unlike a villa or luxury cruise, the only set itinerary is the one you put together with the charter manager. Even then, if you want to leave one anchorage sooner or later than planned, this can usually be adjusted as you like. Not to mention the access to private beaches, ports, and anchorages untouched by larger ships or those stuck on land, a yacht charter puts you in the driver’s seat and up close and personal with the world around you. All of this plus your private captain, crew, and chef, means you won’t have to lift a finger for your entire yacht charter – just sit back, relax, and enjoy the views! 

Curious what else is involved on a yacht charter? Check out our 2023 Yacht Charter Guide here.

luxury yacht charter

Yacht Charter Cost

How much does it cost to manage a yacht?

Like estimating your annual maintenance or running costs, there’s a rough guideline of 10 – 20% of the purchase price of the yacht to determine how much you will spend every year on these running costs.

Of this 10 – 20%, you will spend a small percentage in your monthly retainer to the yacht management company. Again, based on the size of the yacht, the purchase price, the amount of crew, etc. your exact price will fluctuate.

Who pays for the food on a yacht charter?

The charterer, or guest, will pay for the food on a yacht charter.

Once you find a yacht with a base price in your budget range, you will need to calculate an additional 50 – 55% of the base price to work out an all-inclusive cost. Within this 55% is the Advanced Provisioning Allowance (APA), fuel, taxes, optional crew tip, etc. The APA is what encompasses your food and drinks, and your yacht charter broker will provide you with a “Preference Sheet” to tell the captain and chef exactly what you’d like – what kind of food you and your guests want, what drinks you enjoy, what snacks you’d like on hand, etc. The crew will then procure these items before you arrive so the yacht is fully stocked and ready for your arrival.  

Even if your chef likes to stop in local ports to get some fresh fruit, vegetables or even freshly caught fish, this will all come out of this APA, so you won’t need to pay for anything extra while onboard.

How much do yacht owners make from charter?

The exact amount of money a yacht owner will make from chartering will vary on a few factors: 

  • Time: How many weeks the yacht is chartering each year. 
  • Season: Allowing charters to book during the high season will almost always keep your yacht fully booked. 
  • Location: Some areas will have higher taxes, mooring fees and less demand – all of which can affect your overall profit. 
  • Costs: Any profits depend on how much their overhead costs are (size of crew, annual refits, etc.). 

If you are buying a yacht specifically to charter, you could be booking almost every week to make money; in this case, your yacht charter business could be very profitable.

A successful charter season is usually one where your yacht is booked for a minimum of 12 weeks. Ideally, these 12 weeks will be enough to offset the yacht’s running costs. If you own a $10 million yacht, your annual running costs will be around $1 million – $2 million, every year so you’d need to be making at least that to offset your outgoing costs.

However, even if you don’t achieve this, you will still be offsetting a portion of these costs which would normally go unpaid, so charter can be very beneficial for recouping some of the costs of ownership.

How much does a stewardess on a yacht get paid?

The exact salary of a yacht stewardess will depend on their years of experience and the size of the yacht.

At the smaller yacht end, in an entry-level job, most yacht stews could expect to be paid around $3,000 per month, while a chief stewardess on a superyacht could be getting up to $9,000 a month. Keep in mind this is usually tax free and you’ll have all meals and accommodation paid for.

Many young people just entering the workforce choose to spend time working on yachts for the travel and experience offered, along with the salary. However, the days can be very long and there may be long stretches at sea or away from family so it’s important to balance all of these aspects out when deciding to work onboard.

Yacht stew on luxury yacht

How much do yacht crews make?

The salary of a yacht crew member will depend on the size of the vessel, their particular role, and their years of experience. As an example, here are some salary ranges of crew members on a 150ft yacht: 

  • Captain – $190,000+ 
  • Chief Engineer – $100,000+ 
  • Chef – $90,000+ 
  • Chief Stewardess – $70,000+ 
  • Deckhand – $60,000+ 

These are all base wages and do not include tips from yacht charter guests. 

What is the average salary of a charter yacht captain?

Yacht charter captains carry a lot of responsibility and require a lot of education and yearly training to stay up to date on all requirements. Yacht captains can make as much as $250,000 annually at the height of their career while working on large megayachts. Again, this doesn’t include tips from their charter guests and is usually tax-free

Yacht Charter Tips

Do you tip a charter captain?

While it isn’t mandatory, it is generally accepted that you will tip your yacht charter captain and the entire crew following your time onboard.

As a guideline, it’s recommended to tip around 10 – 20% of the base rate of the yacht charter to your crew following your time onboard. This would be around $6,000 – $12,000 for a $60,000 weekly yacht charter.

Do yacht owners tip their crew?

Less customary is to see yacht owners tipping their crew. The owners provide the crew wages so this will usually suffice from an owner’s perspective. However, if the owner has guests onboard, you may see them tipping the crew as a thank you for the excellent service. Yacht charters are different since the crew provides a service to multiple guests and not the direct owner, so this is usually reciprocated with a tip from the charter guests.

Do yacht crew get paid besides tips?

Yes, yacht crew are all supplied with a base salary and do not work on tips alone. The salaries are usually fairly generous, with the tips being an additional bonus for their hard work.

What is a good tip for a yacht?

Generally, a 10 – 20% tip will be very well received by your yacht crew following your charter. Most yacht management or yacht brokerage companies will offer the option to wire the tip ahead of your charter, so you don’t have to carry large sums on you during the yacht charter. At the end of your stay, they will release these funds to the crew. You’ll still have the option to adjust the total amount if you like; however most find the service onboard a luxury yacht charter second-to-none and the yacht crew to be more than deserving of their tips.

If you’re looking to charter your yacht out, working with a trusted yacht management company can help relieve a lot of the pressure and pain points for you. They are experts in their field who know how to market your yacht well and keep the lines of communication open between you as the owner, other yacht brokers, the captain and crew, as well as potential clients that will book your yacht.  

If you’re looking for a yacht charter broker for your own yacht, please start your search with YATCO’s Charter Broker Search.

luxury yacht, Yacht Charter Management Guide 2023

YATCO Yacht Charter Guides

  • Mediterranean Sea Boating & Yachting Guide: For a complete overview of the Mediterranean Sea and what makes this region so unique to yachts and boats, YATCO created a Mediterranean Sea Boating & Yachting Guide 2023.
    • Part 1: Explore 22 Mediterranean countries on your next yacht charter, spanning Europe, Africa, and Asia.
    • Part 2: Discover enchanting Mediterranean islands, from Spain to Greece’s Santorini.
  • Private Yacht Charter GuideLearn more about what’s included in a private yacht charter with YATCO’s Private Yacht Charter Guide. From costs to destinations, we have you covered. 
  • Charter Yacht Provisioning Guide: You’ll likely come across the term “provisioning” a lot when you are booking a private yacht charter. Advanced Food and Provisioning Allowance is the money you pay that goes toward your food and drinks while onboard. This is on top of the base price to rent the yacht that you might see advertised on yacht charter websites. Read more about it in YATCO’s Charter Yacht Provisioning Guide.  
  • Luxury Yacht Charter Turkey Guide: Turkey began to emerge as a luxury yacht charter destination a few years ago and it only continues to grow in popularity. Thanks to an extensive coastline, excellent superyacht marinas and facilities, and many historical gems to discover, learn more in our Luxury Yacht Charter Turkey Guide.
  • Yacht Charter Vacations Guide: With access to remote locations, a private chef, your attentive crew, and more water toys than you ever dreamed of, a yacht charter vacation is unlike any other trip you’ve taken. Learn about the ins and outs of a Yacht Charter Vacation in our Guide
  • Luxury Yacht Charter Guide: From what time of year is best to visit which destinations, to what costs are included, YATCO wants to make it easier than ever to book your private yacht charter. Explore our Luxury Yacht Charter guide for more information
  • Yacht Charter Cost Guide: One of the biggest questions asked when it comes to yacht charters is – what’s included, and can I get an all-inclusive price? You will notice that yachts will always be listed with a “base price” for charter, with additional extras charged on top of this. However, your charter broker will work with you to get an all-inclusive price based on all of those extras before you sign a contract. We’ve explained everything in our Yacht Charter Cost Guide.  
  • Yacht Tender & Toys Guide: For many, one of the big perks of booking a luxury yacht charter is the fact you get access to a number of fun water toys! Whether you are a thrill seeker looking to be towed behind the tender on waterskis, zipping around on the jetski, or prefer a quieter pastime like stand-up paddle boarding to an isolated beach, there are toys for everyone in group onboard. Learn more in YATCO’s Yacht Tender and Toys Guide.

If you have any questions, please reach out to us and a member of the Yacht Charter Division will be happy to assist you. 

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