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post #1 of 8 Old 12-30-2003 Thread Starter
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Prep for first charter

My wife has signed us up for a week long BVI charter for the first week of March 04. I have a good deal of experience sailing NE but would like some input on some issues like provisioning etc. This is our first bareboat charter. We are chartering with the Moorings and I''m thinking I''d be better off putting my own list together as I don''t plan on standing over a grill very often.
Are there any trap$ we should be we should be aware of? I have been to the islands many times on land so I know what to lookout for. Is St Johns ok if we do the customs things? I''d appreciate any tips. Thanks and Happy New Year!
Jeff Milne
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post #2 of 8 Old 12-30-2003
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Prep for first charter

I just made my first long duration charter. 7 days in the keys approx 140nm aboard a 2003 43'' Jeanneau Sun Odessy

Only money trap I came into is I didn''t anticipate the cost of pulling into a slip on two nights ($2.50 a foot)

Provisioning.... I like my coffee, bought coffe grounds and used a standard perkulator (sp?).. anyway, what a waste of water and and time. Go with coffe singles and boiled water.

I had a GREAT refrigeration system, so didn''t run into problems of that nature. Running the engine for an hour a day with the inverter got the 110 AC ice blocks completely frozen.

DON''T over pack. I didn''t wear half the clothes I brought.

Check the actual depth of water against your depth finder before you leave. Mine was off by 3 feet. Clean your impeller wheel on your knot meter and adjust your true/app wind meters.

Well thats my two cents

jc
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post #3 of 8 Old 12-30-2003
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Prep for first charter

Flyin... I wouldn''t bother with St. John on a 7-day charter. There are many nice places to go in the BVI without bothering to clear in/out of the USVI. Cane Garden Bay, Sandy Cay, The Dogs, Monkey Point, V. Gorda (the Baths - leave from Trellis Bay at dawn & motor over), Peter Island, are all good spots.

I went with their provisioning. Less headaches.

There are a ton of places to eat out in the BVI. A nice way to go is to get about half of your meals ashore, and grill the other half. Less fuss down below.

I never get a slip. Hard to find, expensive, and a good way to ding your boat. You''ve pretty-much gotta pick up a mooring these days (vs. anchoring), because all the good anchoring spots have mooring balls all over. It''s only $20, so no biggie. Get there EARLY. I HIGHLY recommend getting to your next anchorage by lunch time, and certainly no later than 2pm. The BVI is crowded, and after 2pm you many not get a spot. Always have a back-up plan for an anchorage, in case it''s filled up.

Hope that helps!
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post #4 of 8 Old 12-31-2003
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Prep for first charter

Jeff,

All the advice here is good, but there is a website called Travel Talk Online (do a web search) where a whole section is devoted to just BVI topics. Lots of frequent BVI charterers hang out there and you can get all the answers you could want.

FWIW, we loved visiting St. John, but I wouldn''t try to squeeze it in to a 7-day trip. If you love your visit, as most people seem to, you can plan a longer trip next time and do St. John.

Cheers,

Duane
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post #5 of 8 Old 12-31-2003
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Prep for first charter

I would prefer to self provision. There is a regular Safeway (?) grocery store about 400 yds away and there is the "Moorings" provision cpmpany (Ample Hamper? ) on site at Moorings. My issue with them provisioning is the one time I let them do it, they got way too much food and something in the bottom of the fefrigerator went bad and stunk all week.
I have spent a week on a boat with no refrigeration and not had anything spoil!!!
Eggs don''t need refrigeration (amazing) and canned ham lasts real well. Burgers and Dogs can be bought fresh along the way.
But do plan on eating out every other night - part of the experience. Hamburger in paradice can be had above the Baths for one very pretty lunch.
Good luck, you''ll have a great time either way.
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post #6 of 8 Old 12-31-2003
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Prep for first charter

There are two good grocery stores within walking distance of the Moorings base, Riteway and Bobbys Market. Both accept email and fax orders and will deliver the goods right to your slip. Ample Hamper is also good but more expensive & with fewer choices although slightly more convenient.

You won''t have time to see everything in the BVI''s on a 7 day trip. Consider sailing to Anagada. It''s very special. Good snorkeling can be found every day. Our favorites are Baths and Caves locations. Mooring balls are now $25 per night. We always anchor and save $ for Lobster dinners.

Have a great trip.
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post #7 of 8 Old 01-02-2004 Thread Starter
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Prep for first charter

I really appreciate the comments. The more I read the more convinced I am to skip St Johns, as much as we loved it there. Thanks for the input; it certainly helps to hear from those who have already experienced what we are about to. Come on Feb 28!
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post #8 of 8 Old 01-31-2004
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Prep for first charter

We chartered a Moorings 505 in Tortola, in October, 2003 and also own a Moorings 494 in Tortola.

It also was our first bareboat charter. We sailed mostly the Long Island Sound for 25 years and the New England coast too.

I would not have the Moorings provision in Tortola. If you walk out of the marina there are two supermarket like stores to shop in. The prices are pretty reasonable. Don''t forget everything is shipped in for them; so don''t be too shocked on the prices.

While there we meet people who have chartered for ten years and found out that they brought in food anf food items they liked.

They actuallly used dry ice to freeze the food in a carry on bag the night before they left. ( the food was previously frozen in the fridge). They also told us that you can''t bring on board dry ice.

Don''t bring a lot of clothing. We overpacked and wore 1/10th of what we packed. Everything is really casual. You do need a shirt with a colar for some resturants.

We ate out almost every other night and used the grill on the off nights, did a lot of this.

I heard that the customs in St. Johns takes forever to gret through and isn''t worth doing on a seven day charter.
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