Chartering BVI? Stay far away from Conch Chrs - Page 2 - SailNet Community

   Search Sailnet:

 forums  store  


Quick Menu
Forums           
Articles          
Galleries        
Boat Reviews  
Classifieds     
Search SailNet 
Boat Search (new)

Shop the
SailNet Store
Anchor Locker
Boatbuilding & Repair
Charts
Clothing
Electrical
Electronics
Engine
Hatches and Portlights
Interior And Galley
Maintenance
Marine Electronics
Navigation
Other Items
Plumbing and Pumps
Rigging
Safety
Sailing Hardware
Trailer & Watersports
Clearance Items

Advertise Here






Go Back   SailNet Community > Out There > Chartering
 Not a Member? 


Like Tree2Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
  #11  
Old 11-15-2010
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 13
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
familyofun is on a distinguished road
Red face Stand by my words

Hi All,
Thanks for responding to my post regarding Conch charters. It is important to have balanced commentary, especially when it involves peoples businesses, peoples vacations, reputations, etc. I have read the follow up posts and can understand fully some of the questions, etc. ie: water being our responsibility...yes, I agree with this. The occurrence was however that Peter Islands water plant was down, so we notified Conch that we were coming back with empty tanks and would need some water for that evenings cleaning, etc.

Problem was that after they saw us in to the mooring, they disappeared very quickly and without many words other than 'they are putting through our dd until they assess things'. We really did NOT have any break down of costs or even a phone call or email (not kidding!!!) discussing it! If anyone has any advice as to how we SHOULD have handled this (ie: credit card company, etc) I would love to hear it. Otherwise, I do stand by my opinion that I would not recommend Conch Charters. We are booking for this winter/spring and would be very appreciative of any recommendations. We are planning a month to month and half trip.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #12  
Old 11-16-2010
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 2
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
BTSailing is on a distinguished road
Question Contact Conch Directly.......

If you have a problem with Conch, why not call them directly? Brian Gandy, Cindy Chestnut, Pete Twist, Andrew Waters will all give you a direct answer at the email address on their website or call them 284-494-4868. Ask for a detail of what they charged you for and why. You will get a hard copy of the billing, I'm sure, and then you have something to discus.
All of these negative blogs without personally calling their attention to the problems directly and up front makes me think you have some other motivation than resolving a financial issue. Are you just trying to trash Conch or do you simply want to resolve a dispute?

What's up with that?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #13  
Old 11-16-2010
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 13
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
familyofun is on a distinguished road
Smile STILL Stand by my words.....

Again, thanks for the feedback, but yes of course we did contact them directly and they refused to send us any kind of quotations for damage, summary of damages etc. This was so shocking to me that I actually contacted the tourism board and tried to follow up as to our possible recourse. Eventually, life goes on and who has time to chase these things down? I certainly ran out of steam.

As far as your comments that I am slamming Conch, I am only offering my honest opinion as to our experience with this company in the interest of enlightening other travelers and hoping that I can prevent someone else from having a similar very sad experience on their precious vacation.

I continue to stand by my words that I would not recommend using Conch Charters for various reasons. Yes we have chartered many, many times and in fact, one of our sailing party does have his own boat here in Canada, as well my husbands family used to own a very large charter boat they kept with Moorings in BVI. We've had lots of excellent, excellent experiences though not yet in BVI (other than my husbands families boat) and this was our first BVI charter. Sadly, as it goes, people feel most compelled to comment when they had a BAD experience!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #14  
Old 12-17-2010
Naught but Humble Pirates
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 3
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
unsinkable2 is on a distinguished road
Sorry to hear someone had a bad experience with Conch. Our experience with Conch Charters was fantastic.

As a point of reference for my post: I have owned my own boat for several years and sail atleast weekly. I've chartered out of the BVI, San Diego, and the Galveston area.

Conch was recommended to me by my ASA sailing instructor several years ago. He used Conch for his annual trip to the BVI and had been using them for several years and was very happy with them.

So when we went down last April, we chartered with Conch. The staff was great, the boat was great, service was friendly and helpful. Conch's base of operations is not exactly a 5 star resort, but it was similar to other small charter operations I've used.

As it was my first time chartering in the BVI, I talked to a lot of other sailors down there about the other charter companies they were using to see if one company was better than another: TMM, Moorings/Sunsail, Footloose, and some other Conch charterers. All had generally favorable experiences. I didn't really notice a difference in quality between the companies they were using.

My wife's impression of Conch is probably the best indicator of their quality/cleanliness - she had wanted to go on a cruise instead of bareboating. When we were done, she loved it. I'd originally promised we'd do a cruise in 2011 instead of bareboating, but after our first experience we're heading to the BVI again with Conch.

To familyofun's experience, I'm sorry to hear you didnt have a great time. I can certainly understand what its like to have a bad experience with a charter company, even when most others' experiences are good. (I had a bad experience with a Charter to Catalina one time.)

I've generally found that if I treat the boat like it was my own, then I don't have a problem with the boats owner (the charter company).

If I catch a line in my own prop, I am going to have the additional cost of inspecting/repairing the bearing and through hull fitting before the boat can be safely used again.

I also expect to return the boat as clean as I'd want my own boat to be. If the staff had gone for the day and I was out of water, I'd just fill up a few gallons of water from Conch's dock myself to finish cleaning and pay for the water at checkout if they needed to charge for it.

My experience over several charters though is that if you just treat the boat like its your own, the charter company will be more than reasonable with you because they want you back as a customer.

Here's a link to my sailing blog on our last trip to the BVI, you can read about the trip, see pics of the boat we chartered, etc.

Unsinkable 2: British Virgin Islands Bareboat Charter, BVI Day 1/10
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #15  
Old 12-18-2010
kenhoneycutt's Avatar
Lake Michigan
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Oak Lawn,IL
Posts: 32
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
kenhoneycutt is on a distinguished road
Conch was OK

When we chartered with them. The staff was friendly and knowledgeable (much more casual atmosphere then Footloose and answered all questions).
Only complaint was the boat was a little rundown. Autopilot didn't work which is not that big a deal but since I basically handle the boat myself it made things a little more interesting when raising the main. Knotmeter didn't work either. Also had to refill the radiator occasionally with antifreeze they supplied (didnt really know what it was for at first but realized after the hot water supply quit working..had to laugh at that one). Despite the problems we still enjoyed the trip and would charter from them again unless they've really gone down hill. This year we're using Sunsail mainly to have a little newer boat with everything working along with the price being competitive (double reef week).

Bottom line I would say that being a boat owner helps when chartering older boats like the ones at Conch because you know what to expect and are more apt to forgive minor problems encountered. If I were to have the problems I had with the Conch boat on a Moorings or Sunsail boat I would be highly PO'd considering the cost difference.
__________________
Hunter 36
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #16  
Old 12-22-2010
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: US
Posts: 18
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
sprtn94 is on a distinguished road
Don't stay "FAR AWAY" from Conch Charters. DO understand that they are using older vessels that WILL require extra attention during checkout. I seriously doubt that Conch pocketed your DD without explanation. More probable, your withholding the cause from your post.

The charter company is responsible for providing a safe, working vessel. They should give a detailed chart briefing and conduct a good check out process. It's your responsibility to make sure that all of the above has been accomplished prior to leaving the dock. Once the docklines are slipped it is up to the capt/crew to run a good trip. The charter company isn't responsible for water rationing or decision making. If you run out of water, ice or god forbid BEER. Its your responsibilty to obtain more.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #17  
Old 12-28-2010
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 1
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
wensel is on a distinguished road
Just got back from an 8 day bareboat charter with Conch Charters (Dec, 2010).This was our second time sailing the Virgin Islands and our first time with Conch. We were very pleased with all aspects of Conch's service....everything was done thoroughly & very professionally. Next time we are in BVI they will be our company of choice....very good value for the dollar! I cannot agree more with the comments (BTSailing) in the previous post.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #18  
Old 12-28-2010
Sea Slacker
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 1,789
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 8
brak is on a distinguished road
I chartered with Conch and posted here previously. They are ok if you are careful but indeed:
- boats are old and not in a perfect shape (though you can do worse with Footlose)
- can't take their boats to Anegada, no waver, nothing - just can't go
- their "briefing" is a joke (they steer you towards most obvious anchorages and, mainly, restaurants and bars). they also actively advised us "not to go out due to bad weather" when it was barely 15 kts outside
- they clearly try to find *something* to latch on at the end of the charter to keep some of your deposit. they also treat you as a "presumed guilty until proven otherwise".

I understand that they may be trying to protect themselves from all-to-common bad charterers, but I am a very careful skipper (so we didn't have any issues, of course and got our deposit back just fine). Still, this left an unpleasant feeling - I prefer to be treated with at least some respect.

Bottom line - Conch is not terrible, and if I were to really want to charter in BVI and nothing else (other than Footlose) was available, I'd suck it up and go again. Otherwise - I'll try someone else.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #19  
Old 12-30-2010
Any Day Now . . .
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Florida
Posts: 2
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
Irenic is on a distinguished road
Two-time Conch charterer

We chartered with Conch in November 2007 on a Beneteau 463 and again in November 2009 on Bavaria 50. We are bargain hunters, so both times, they offered the size boat we needed at the rock-bottom price, and they provide 10 days for others' 7 or 8 day cost. We have had no complications with them, service was more than adequate and friendly. The boats are older, so there tends to be something--not a deal breaker--that doesn't work or needs limping along. We've never been charged, but then, we usually leave the boat in better condition than we found it. It helps to be handy and proactive during your short stay aboard. Consider it training for owning your own boat.

We will charter from them again, but likely from a little higher up in their fleet.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
  #20  
Old 01-02-2011
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 13
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
familyofun is on a distinguished road
Quote:
Originally Posted by brak View Post
- they clearly try to find *something* to latch on at the end of the charter to keep some of your deposit. they also treat you as a "presumed guilty until proven otherwise".

I understand that they may be trying to protect themselves from all-to-common bad charterers, but I am a very careful skipper (so we didn't have any issues, of course and got our deposit back just fine). Still, this left an unpleasant feeling - I prefer to be treated with at least some respect.
This is well put Sea Slacker and what a relief for me to see an honest addition to my post. I feel so ticked when I see some of the reply's that I would bet my right arm have vested interest.

I did not 'make up' any of my post. We were completely floored that they could do that - put though our D.D. And they have never sent us an invoice for what the damage was. We had left one candle on the outdoor table and some wax melted on to the table-their rant to us about the dirty dishes included a paragraph about the candle wax. We have a cabin that we rent out on the BC coast and I can not imagine ever treating our guests like they've treated us.

So, long story short...even when you try to do the right thing and warn others, you seem to have to take a lot of hits back and it isn't easy to read. Thanks for adding your two bits.

Last edited by familyofun; 01-02-2011 at 07:31 PM.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message Share with Facebook
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

By choosing to post the reply above you agree to the rules you agreed to when joining Sailnet.
Click Here to view those rules.

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the SailNet Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
Please note: After entering 3 characters a list of Usernames already in use will appear and the list will disappear once a valid Username is entered.
User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

 
Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may post attachments
You may edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Conch Charters BVI pmills42255 Chartering 2 05-03-2014 12:03 PM
Conch Charters, BVI Barbara D Chartering 33 05-03-2014 09:18 AM
BVI Conch Charter thorJ30 Chartering 13 03-14-2010 10:07 AM
Conch Charter BVI Wega24 Chartering 1 10-04-2003 10:10 PM
Conch Charters BVI cwafred Cruising & Liveaboard Forum 4 09-19-2002 11:52 AM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 05:09 AM.

Add to My Yahoo!         
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.1
(c) Marine.com LLC 2000-2012

The SailNet.com store is owned and operated by a company independent of the SailNet.com forum. You are now leaving the SailNet forum. Click OK to continue or Cancel to return to the SailNet forum.