I would like to like to do some long distance crewing. My experience is minimal (three courses and time in the Channel Islands), but between my desire to learn, availability, and overall love and respect for the water, I would like to find a job crewing. I have no restrictions with regard to location. Can you help me?
Dan Dickison responds:
Thanks for your question. It's really not that difficult to find the kind of crewing position you're seeking. As in most everything else, it's a matter of whom you know and what your timing is.
Start by broadening the scope of people you know in the sport. The more the word gets out that you're available for long-distance crewing, the more opportunities you'll have to find the right situation. One way to do that is to post your intentions on sailing message boards. Here at SailNet, we support a broad spectrum of ways for you to communicate your desires, beginning with our Message Boards, our E-Mail Discussion Lists, and Personal Pages. The other thing that you can do is to take out classified ads in sailing publications. All of those approaches amount to a shot in the dark, but you never know who will see your information and respond.
I also recommend that you converse with delivery skippers and other professionals involved in the transport of boats. Charter brokers can also be a good source of information regarding opportunities for crewing jobs.
As the winter approaches, many boats are moved from the northern latitudes south. In Europe, a lot of private yachts make the trip south to the Med from the waters around England, France, and Scandinavia. In the US, there's a similar migration toward the Caribbean. Many of these vessels sign on temporary crew for these deliveries south. If you can get on board one of those boats, it will likely deliver you to a port in the south where you'll find other opportunities.
Here's hoping that this information gives you a start. By the way, drop us a line after you've secured yourself a job; we'd like to know how it works out.