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I already have the 101 and 103 certs from both ASA and US Sail, plus a few summers of skippering J/24s and auxiliary powered cruisers up to 30' in the waters up to 12 miles off Boston. Most of the 104 programs I come across are a full week and geared to new sailors (instant cruiser etc). Would anyone like to go in on a standalone 2-3 day Bareboat Cruising course in Florida or the Caribbean this December? I have some vacation time to use and would like to take the money saved on not taking a full week course and put it into a few chartering days. Open for suggestions, want to build skills and keep this sailing season going...
 

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Learning the HARD way...
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You could also attend a 3 day course at Narragansett Sailing School. They offer a 3 day 104 certification, and are located in RI... You'll have to wait 'till spring though.
 

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My advice is to consider taking a full week 104 in the Virgin Islands with Black Rock Sailing School ASA Certified
You'll get the best instruction available...BRSS has been an "ASA Outstanding School" five years running.
I'm really interested in this for 4 people as an alternative to a vacation/cruise. Does anybody do these courses for a cheaper price?

At $2500 per week x4 people +gratuity +flights it is getting a little "excessive" for a learning vacation.

There must be someone willing to do this for half that price.
 

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Learning the HARD way...
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I'm really interested in this for 4 people as an alternative to a vacation/cruise. Does anybody do these courses for a cheaper price?

At $2500 per week x4 people +gratuity +flights it is getting a little "excessive" for a learning vacation.

There must be someone willing to do this for half that price.
Here is an alternative;
FIRST: figure out where you want to go to learn to sail
SECOND: decide when you want to go
THIRD: pick a boat that will comfortably hold you, your crew mates, and an instructor (this should range from ~$3K-~$8K [here are CYOA's rates http://www.cyoacharters.com/rates.asp] depending on the boat and time)
FOURTH: hire an ASA / US Sailing instructor directly for that week (here is a resource; American Sailing Association - Instructors Seeking Jobs)

You might save 15%. You will also be responsible for anything and everything that does not go according to plan.

Note that you will NOT get ASA / US Sailing certified, but you will get a sailing resume attested to by a certified instructor, and a reference.

By attending a school that offers lessons where you want to go, you avoid any of the potential headaches, you have "one throat to choke," and you will get the certification.
 
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I appreciate that you consider your time/skills/boat to be worth that much...I personally don't think it is worth $12-5k for one week of training to get 4 people to bareboat cruising level.

If there was someone doing this for half that cost I could guess they would be constantly busy, I wonder how busy these schools are that are charging $2500 pp per week...if they are fully booked, more power to them...if so I guess it isn't for me.

No wonder so many cruisers don't bother with training.
 

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I'm not offering you anything more than free advice. I am only trying to point you in the right direction.

Figure it this way; what do you make per week? The instructor's time and skill is certainly worth the same. In addition, realize that the instructor is with you and the boat for 24 hours of the time that you are with him/her, so the point could be made that on an hourly basis the instructor would be making 1/3 of your hourly rate. Now, add to that the cost of a bareboat charter for you, your party and the instructor.

Whether it is, or is not, worth it to you is up for you to decide. I suspect, however, that you may have trouble finding a charter, or have to buy additional insurance, without the certification or a sailing resume and reference.
 

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I guess the market price is what it is and apparently a sailing course is worth $2500 a week pp + gratuity. Too me that seems excessive.

Anyway, I've hijacked this thread badly and for that I apologise to the OP.
 

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J Reid,
One thing you may be overlooking is the cost of maintaining boats in the water, in addition to the people, logistics and transportation costs. Also, do you really need a certificate or do you just want to learn how to sail? You can learn to sail competently through experience and by demonstrating your ability charter a sailboat.
I would love to take some ASA classes, but in final analysis would rather put that money into my own boat and time on it.
My wife just purchased a ticket to fly to Madrid Spain and back. When she groused about the expense I told her I certainly would not carry her all the way to Spain for that amount of money. The value you receive from the money you spend is all in your head.
You make your choices and pay your monies.
John
 
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