1.Saturdays (or any designated hand-over day) for those sailing in Croatia are a refined form of chaos in most charter bases. Staff are frantically busy and at the same time desperately trying to be helpful.
2.Establish with your charter company what time you might expect your yacht to be ready (ie generally Sunsail Kremik would tell you between 15:00-16:00) and if you are left with free time head away from the charter base.
3.Take advantage of chart briefings if they are on offer
4.Use the time to find provisions - if you can get out of the marina to some more local shops you will get better prices.
5.If you need to get to a particular marina to do a crew change (ie Trogir or Split - so incoming or outgoing crew can use the airport) be aware that many of the charter marinas are full on the Friday night or on Saturdays during the day. Officially Trogir ACI will not accept any new arrivals (except for returning charters) on a Friday. Split ACI will also be very busy but may squeeze you in.
6.If you can persuade the crew involved in a change over on a Saturday, it is worth considering mooring on one of the offshore islands and getting the crew to the airport by public transport (ferry then bus or taxi)
7.If you are collecting your boat ensure that all of the basic maintenance has been completed on the handover day (Saturday) - as a minimum check that the water tanks are full, the holding tanks empty and that the gas bottles are full. In addition to this it is worth looking over the rigging (we once went for a reef just to find the lines were not on the sails - due to basic sail maintenance on a changeover).
8.Watch for flotillas - if you are heading out from a base that services the a flotilla and you and they are heading out in the afternoon after handover - ask the flotilla leader where they are heading then go in the other direction. While the flotilla people may be perfectly nice they will clog the mooring/anchorage and fill any available local restaurants.
Wednesday, 8 July 2009