Skip to primary navigation Skip to content Skip to footer
Back to Discover Go Sail Virgin Islands Posts

Pros and Cons of Hiring a Captain vs. Chartering Your Own Bareboat in the Virgin Islands

Bareboat charter Go Sail VI

Stuck between the choice of hiring a captain vs. chartering your own bareboat in the Virgin Islands? Let us help you make an informed decision. Read on to find out which option is best for you.

What Does It Mean to Charter Your Own Bareboat?

To put it simply, bareboating means sailing without a crew. That means you (and whoever is on board with you) becomes the skipper and crew. Bareboating can either be done on a boat you or someone you know owns or by renting a boat through a company like Go Sail Virgin Islands.

Why Would You Want To Charter A Bareboat?

Chartering your own bareboat gives a sailor ultimate freedom. You can sail alone or hand pick the people upon your boat. You are free to go wherever you like, when you like, for as long as you like. Bareboat chartering gives you the ultimate sense of being in control of your own destiny while out on the water. 

The Downsides of Chartering Your Own Bareboat

The main downsides of chartering are connected to a lack of experience with sailing. In order to charter your own bareboat from Go Sail Virgin Islands, you must first be ASA certified. However, for some, bareboating, after certification can still feel overwhelming even with certifications. It’s important to feel confident in your own abilities before setting sail without a crew. An additional downside to chartering vs. hiring a captain is that without any crew aboard, you will have to prepare your own meals and navigation plans instead of having someone do those tasks for you. 

Why Would You Want to Hire a Captain?

Hiring a captain is ideal for anyone without ASA sailing certifications or even for certified sailors who want a more relaxing experience. After all, chartering your own bareboat, and being completely in charge of your own sailing destiny, can be stressful and overwhelming at times. One of the main advantages of hiring a captain vs. chartering is that you can actively sail when you want to but hand over the reins to someone else when you’d rather sit back and relax.  

The Downsides to Hiring a Captain vs. Chartering

A few downsides to hiring a captain do exist. For one, hiring a captain is usually more expensive than chartering your own bareboat. Additionally, you won’t be able to fit as many friends aboard, as your captain will require one of the rooms on the boat. 

Deciding Between Hiring a Captain vs. Chartering

Hiring a captain vs. chartering your own bareboat in the Virgin Islands is largely a personal choice. If you would rather have someone do the navigational planning, and at least some of the sailing for you, hire a captain. Additionally, if you aren’t ASA certified, you can take a Go Sail VI course with a captain so you choose to bareboat sail in the future. However, if you are already ASA certified and are looking for more freedom in your sailing experience— charter your own bareboat!  


Regardless of whether you choose to hire and captain or charter your own bareboat, Go Sail VI can make your sailing dreams a reality. Contact us to find out more about our sailing options.