What are the types of boats available for charter and what does it look like on board?

What are the types of boats available for charter and what does it look like on board?

From our series on skippered boats. If you're new to boating and curious about what it's like to step aboard, this guide is for you.

In our guide, you'll discover the most common types of charter boats, their unique features, and the pros and cons of each. You'll also get a look at the layout below deck and see what to expect during your stay on board. Is it really that different from staying in a hotel? Let's find out.

Types of boats in charter

Not all boats are the same. There are several types of vessels that you can rent from us at yachting.com. Which ones are they?


The most common type of charter boat is the single-hulled sailboat, which can be powered by both wind and motor. It's also the most affordable option.

Sailboats come in various sizes, typically ranging from 33 to 50 feet (10 to 15 metres) for charters. The size of the boat determines the number of cabins and bathrooms it can accommodate and its overall passenger capacity. Sailboats can be designed for sporty cruising or for more stable, comfortable sailing.

A frequent concern is the risk of capsizing. While nothing is impossible, the likelihood of a sailboat capsizing during a charter cruise in normal weather conditions is very low. There's really nothing to worry about.

YACHTING.COM TIP: We have a comprehensive guide for all first-time sailors. From what to expect, what to pack and how to stay safe. 




Catamarans are a popular choice for summer holidays due to their stability and spaciousness, thanks to their two hulls. They offer great comfort for large groups, whether it's friends or multiple families. You can choose between catamarans with sails or motor catamarans, depending on whether you want to sail using the wind or just the engine. Most catamarans feature comfortable sun loungers at the bow and spacious seating at the stern, perfect for dining and enjoying the evening atmosphere in a beautiful bay.

YACHTING.COM TIP: Find out more on catamarans and their specifics in our article — First time on a catamaran: what you need to know

Catamaran at sea

Catamaran at sea

nets on a catamaran

The nets on the bow of the catamaran are as intended for relaxing.

Motor boats

If you love speed, motorboats are the ideal choice. They are typically the fastest type of vessel, perfect for exploring multiple destinations during your holiday. A motorboat can take you from island to island quickly and comfortably. However, keep in mind that the cost of fuel can be significant, often doubling the overall expense of the charter.

YACHTING.COM TIP: We've also prepared a guide for beginners on motorboats. Since they are a completely different type of vessel, their operation is unique.

Motorboat for sailing

Not only speed lovers will enjoy a motorboat


A unique type of boat you might encounter in a charter is a gulet. These wooden boats are built based on historical designs and plans, offering a truly authentic nautical adventure. Gulets are especially popular for charters in Turkey and Greece, providing a charming and traditional sailing experience for you and your family. 

Gulet at sea

Gulets are the most traditional boats in charter.

Gulet up close

The wooden gulet deck adds to the charm of these boats.

How many of you can fit on the boat?

The number of people who can sail on a boat depends on both the type (sailboat, catamaran, motorboat, gulet) and the length of the vessel. Our most commonly offered boats accommodate between 4 to 15 people. Generally, catamarans have the largest capacity, making them ideal for families with children or large groups of friends.

What will it look like inside the boat?


The saloon is basically a kind of living room with a kitchen.

Most of the boats we rent feature a main room below deck called the saloon. This area includes comfortable seating, a dining table, and a captain's table equipped with a radio and charts. Connected to the saloon is the galley, the boat's kitchen. The sleeping quarters, known as cabins or staterooms, are individual rooms where crew members sleep. These cabins often have an adjoining bathroom with a toilet and shower.

Sailboat layout

One of the variants of the interior layout of a sailboat with 3 cabins and 2 bathrooms

Catamaran layout

Possible layout of the catamaran interior with 4 cabins and 4 bathrooms

Outer parts of the boat

There is also a shower on the upper deck, primarily used for rinsing off salty sea water. Towards the stern of the boat, you'll find the cockpit, which houses the helm and boat controls. The cockpit also features benches for seating and an outdoor dining table. It may be covered by a canopy called a bimini. The bow of the boat is a popular spot for sunbathing, often equipped with sun loungers. On catamarans, you can relax on nets stretched over the water at the bow, offering an incredibly pleasant experience.

The cockpit of a sailing ship

Cockpit, where you can comfortably sit


What's in the galley on the boat? Essentially, it has everything you need to prepare all kinds of meals. The galley typically includes a two-burner stove, a gas oven, a sink, a refrigerator, and all necessary utensils like pots, pans, skillets, cutlery, and plates. In short, you don't need to bring anything on board and can prepare both simple and elaborate dishes. Additionally, the galley has plenty of shelves, compartments, drawers, and storage spaces for your supplies and equipment.


The galley on the boat is ample for preparing most meals.

What's the toilet like?

Each boat is equipped with a bathroom and toilet, with the number of bathrooms varying by type and size of the boat. Catamarans that are around 40 feet or longer usually have a bathroom and toilet for each cabin. Modern boats typically feature electric toilets, while older boats may have mechanical toilets that require a lever to flush.

In terms of comfort, boat toilets are similar to those on land. The main difference is that on a boat, it’s recommended to dispose of toilet paper in a waste bin rather than flushing it. For more details, you can read our article about boat toilets.

Water on board

You might be wondering: where does fresh water come from on a boat? Most boats are equipped with a water tank that can hold up to thousands of litres. You fill this tank at the port, and it provides water for washing dishes and taking showers during your cruise. When the water runs out, you'll need to find a port to refill the tank. Some boats even have a desalinator device that converts seawater into drinking water. However, we always recommend using bottled water for drinking.

And where does the waste water go? It's simple — waste water goes into the sea, both from the toilet and from washing. That's why we recommend using eco-friendly washing products on board so that you don't harm aquatic life unnecessarily.

Electricity and sockets

When the boat is in port, it connects to the electricity pole by cable, allowing all sockets and lights to work just like at home. During the voyage, the boat draws electricity from batteries recharged at the harbour or from solar panels, if equipped. Additionally, the engine recharges the batteries when the boat is under motor power.

The boats we rent have standard power sockets, so you won't need any adapters. There is usually a USB charger at the captain's table, ensuring you can easily charge all your devices.

How big will the cabin be?

Think of a cabin on a boat as a small room. Its size varies depending on the type of ship, with catamarans generally having larger cabins than sailing ships. The cabin typically features a large bed, comparable to a 1.5 to double bed, though the smallest cabins might have narrower double bunk beds. You'll also find a wardrobe for clothes, shelves, a reading lamp, and charging sockets (either conventional or USB). While it’s not a large suite, it won’t feel cramped either. When selecting a boat from our range, you can view photos of the interior and cabins in the gallery, and often find a layout plan showing their arrangement on the boat.


Cabin on the boat

Safety on the boat

People often worry unnecessarily about safety on a boat. However, did you know that a sailboat is one of the safest means of transport? The boating industry is continually evolving, and modern boat designs are essentially unsinkable. So, set aside any fears of shipwrecks inspired by Hollywood movies. If you're sailing with small children, additional safety measures like child nets can be installed. Ensuring safety is a top priority for both us and the captain.

Boats come equipped with plenty of safety features, including life jackets for all crew members, lifebelts, a life ring, fire extinguisher, and a fire extinguisher mask. The captain will familiarize you with all this equipment and how to use it.

Contact details

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Ready to set sail? Get in touch and we will choose the best boat for you.

Denisa Nguyenová

Denisa Nguyenová

Sales Consultant

+420 730 188 100denisa.nguyenova@yachting.com