Unfortunately, the days of chartering without a sailing certificate are numbered and in short supply. While there are a number of worldwide destinations where a resume will suffice, almost all short hop Mediterranean destinations now require a certificate.
People often ask how 30 years of experience and owning one’s own yacht can be ignored! While we at LateSail agree that experience is unrivalled and of vital importance for ensuring a safe and an enjoyable charter, we sadly don’t make the rules.
Sailing like driving a car has become far more common and popular, resulting in the need for more and better regulation. This very regulation which frustrates us at times, is attempting to make the waters safer for all. We often share the waters with relatively inexperienced sailors and our hope is that they are in-fact experienced enough! Certification certainly makes for easier control, but what is needed for one is needed for all.
Putting oneself through a week long beginner type sailing course is not everyone’s cup of tea, and we understand how frustrating and somewhat demeaning this can be. Lucky for you, the regulators have identified the need to certify people, like yourself, with as little inconvenience as possible.
Their solution is the ICC (International Certificate if Competence) conversion course /assessment and it‘s aimed specifically at experienced sailors who have never got around to doing an official course. Most of the good sailing schools now offer it and it can usually can be completed in an afternoon. It involves a couple of hours out on the water, assessing basic manoeuvres, navigation and safety. Once you have satisfied the instructor you’ll be the proud owner of a new ICC certificate, which will open many doors by putting your choice back into chartering…
AND while you’re in the certification frame of mind, why not also complete your VHF radio licence! It is quick and easy to do and currently a requirement for chartering in Croatia.