How much does a boat holiday cost?

How much does a boat holiday cost?

Text from a series of skippered boats. What are the costs associated with a boat holiday and what kind of budget do you need to budget for? Read the article below.

An overview of the expenses of a boat holiday:

For easy orientation, here is a clear list of the expenses that you can expect during your cruise holiday. We describe and justify each one below

  • Boat charter price
  • Tourist tax
  • Transit log
  • (Deposit refundable)
  • Insurance
  • Diesel
  • Captain's (hostess) services
  • Transportation to the site
  • Meals
  • Accompanying activities
  • Souvenirs and other purchases

How much does it cost to rent a boat?

Boat rentals are always offered from Saturday to Saturday or for the corresponding number of weeks during the season. Only in the low season can a shortened charter be negotiated with the charter company, i.e. for less than a week.


In the high season, i.e. roughly from June to September, the cost of renting a classic charter sailboat alone ranges from 1500 to 6500 EUR. The price depends on many factors such as the size of the boat, age, equipment...

Acatamaran can be hired at a price range of between 1800 and 15,000 EUR, again depending on the size, level of luxury, age of the vessel and so on.

Generally speaking, renting a sailboat is therefore cheaper than renting a catamaran. However, the capacity of a catamaran is often up to 12 people, so when you budget the cost per person, the price difference is offset. In the low season (October to May) the charter price is significantly lower, by up to half.

Exotic destinations

When the weather in Europe is cold and inclement, it's a good idea to go somewhere warm. For cruising in exotic destinations, the following destinations are the most popular:

Prices for chartering a boat in Exotica are comparable to prices elsewhere in the world. However, yachtsmen must prepare for increased expenses in the form of airfare and visa costs. For more on the specifics of an exotic holiday, see our A to Z Guide to Exotics or our article on Winter Exotic Boat Holidays.

What are the other fees

In addition to the boat rental itself, you should be prepared to pay seemingly small, but quite significant fees. When you arrive at the port before checking in on the boat, the office will ask you to pay a sojourn tax/tourist tax. This is approximately €2 per person per day.

Another fee is the so-called transit log, which is paid directly to the charter company at the port of departure or to, depending on the specific situation. It includes charges related to cleaning the boat, gas consumption, provision of linen, towels, sometimes it also includes the rental of an outboard motor. Its price is roughly between 150 and 700 EUR, for higher amounts you always have something extra included, such as bail insurance.

If you're going to be standing by the paid piers and in the marinas, be prepared to pay around 50 to 120 EUR for overnight parking of the boat. The charter price also doesn't include the diesel consumed, this needs to be topped up during the cruise. In case you don't refuel, the charter company will charge you a pro-rata amount.

If you decide to take out bail insurance, which we highly recommend, expect to pay around 100 to 200 EUR. The amount of the insurance depends on the cruise area, the price of the boat or the amount of the insurance claim. It is also up to you whether you choose to cover your holiday with trip cancellation insurance, which is 5.5% of the charter price, or travel insurance. We will be happy to provide you with a full insurance service.

(refundable deposit)

The refundable deposit is deliberately put in brackets, as it is not the actual cargo, but a deposit you have to pay to the charter company when you rent the boat. Similar to car rental companies, this is a security deposit for the charterer in case you damage the boat. So most often the charter company will block the amount in your account for the duration of the boat rental. They will refund it to you at the end of your holiday when you return their boat to them in good order. The amount of the deposit depends on the value of the boat, usually in the order of 1500 to 3000 euros for the boats we rent.

Just in case, we recommend taking out bail insurance to protect your deposit in case your boat is returned damaged. You, as the person who rented the boat, are responsible for any damage to the boat. Even if the damage is caused by one of your crew or a hired skipper, the damage to the boat is your responsibility. Therefore, do not take any unnecessary risks and take out bailment insurance when renting a boat.

How to save money on boat charter

There are several ways to save money and not pay unnecessary extra for boat rental. The most commonly used are:

  • Take advantage of First Minute offers, usually launched in the autumn of the previous year and lasting until early spring.
  • offers different pricing packages. With the Economy plan we guarantee the lowest price on the market.
  • Fill the whole boat and budget the cost per person. You will see that a boat holiday often works out cheaper than a hotel.
  • Choose unpaid piers and bays where parking is free. The captain sailing with you will know the area and can recommend such places. And romancing at anchor in a deserted cove is still better than an expensive layover in a busy harbour.
  • Take a boat out of the high season, which runs roughly from June to September.
  • You can bet on last-minute deals that may, or may not, pop up. We recommend not leaving everything to the last minute so you're not stressed. First Minute offers more peace of mind.
bay boats

Most of the time it is even better to stand free with a boat in the bay than in a crowded paid harbour.

How much does a captain cost

If no one on your crew has a captain's license, you must hire a captain for the boat. The fee for a professional skipper ranges from EUR 100 to EUR 200 per day. Prices can of course vary slightly according to the economic situation (inflation) and the market.

It is assumed that the skipper eats with the other crew members, so expect a slightly increased cost per person for meals. Most of the time this is not even noticeable, because lunch for 6 people is cooked similarly to lunch for 7 people. However, it can be arranged that the captain eats separately, it is all about agreement.

If the crew is satisfied with the captain's work, they can deposit an additional gratuity which can be given to the captain in cash at the end of the cruise.

Journey to the place as a charter broker does not provide transportation to the location, air tickets, visas or highway fees. Our sales staff will of course be happy to advise and recommend the best transport links to the charter location, but you are responsible for your own travel costs over and above the charter price.

Tips on how to watch your spending

If you are planning a vacation with multiple people, you need to make a system in how you will pay for each item in your budget. Don't leave a situation where everyone pays for something without keeping track. It will be very hard to track back.

We have found the Debtor app, Settle up or a similar system where every time someone pays something you enter the amount, purpose of the payment and who made the payment. At the end of your vacation, you do a simple accounting with others because the app itself tells you exactly who owes how much to whom.

Contact details

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Would you like to get on a boat? Get in touch and we will choose the most suitable one for you.

Denisa Nguyenová

Denisa Nguyenová

Sales Consultant

+420 730 188