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The cost to charter a luxury yacht is not always clear, especially if you are renting a vessel for the first time.
Freedom, privacy, intimacy, service, comfort, exclusive experiences… No doubt, holidays during a cruise sounds like THE ultimate luxury vacation.
So, how much does it really cost to charter a luxury yacht?
What is included in a luxury yacht rental price?
The base price of a yacht charter given is usually the weekly rate. It accounts for 60% to 80% of the final price and refers to the cost of the yacht itself, its insurance, all its equipment and toys, the crew salary and services during the whole charter duration.
Most often, the more spacious, luxurious, prestigious the yacht is, the higher the price. Yet, several other factors can significantly impact yacht charter costs.
Here is an overview for an in-depth look at yacht rental costs.
Factors influencing the cost of a yacht charter
Size and type of yachts influences (a lot) charter costs
The size of a yacht is the key factor impacting the price:
- Between 65ft (20m) and 80ft (24m), expect a weekly charter rate of $20,000 to $80,000.
- Between 80ft (24m) and 100ft (30m), expect a weekly charter rate of $80,000 and $120,000.
- For a superyacht over 100ft (30m), expect a weekly charter rate of $100,000 and above.
- To rent a mega yacht over 200ft (60m), weekly charter rate goes from $300,000 to $1,000,000 and more.
For example, with her 136 meters length, Megayacht Flying Fox charter weekly rate is from €3,500,000, and she can host up to 36 guests with 54 crew members.
Other factors influencing the charter rate are the type of yacht: is it a motor yacht, a sailing multihull, a power catamaran ?
The year of build, the shipyard (for instance Lurssen, Sunreef or Vitters that have quite a reputation), the water toys available onboard, or the number of crew included can have a big impact on the luxury yacht charter final cost.
The season factor influences the luxury yacht charter cost
As in many other touristic services, yacht rental prices also vary with seasonality. They generally increase in the high season months – summer season in the Mediterranean (July and August) or winter in the Caribbean (Christmas, New Year, February) – and decrease during the low season months.
The yacht charter rates may also increase when popular events are taking place (carnival, shows, festivals, etc.)
Are destinations affecting yacht charter fees?
A yacht charter price depends as well on the destination and is subject to the law of supply and demand.
The Galapagos Archipelago is one of the most explicit examples. The yacht charters fleet is very limited there; therefore, prices are higher than more popular destinations.
On the other hand, in regions offering large crewed yacht charter fleet like the Mediterranean, luxury yacht charter costs are more attractive due to higher competition.
What is NOT included in a Crewed yacht charter price ?
The APA amount needs to be added on top of the yacht charter cost
The yacht charter base price just generally covers the rental of the vessel with her crew. This is where the APA comes in.
The role of the APA
The Advance Provisioning Allowance is here to to pay for provisions on board, special customers’ requests, fuel and other variable costs. The APA is a standard system, like an onboard box, managed on your behalf by the Captain. Your crew uses this money to buy any product of your choice, or pay for taxis, port fees, communication fees and other expenses that are hard to plan for.
How does the APA work?
All the APA expenses are charged at cost. This is a transparent budget management, and all the receipts are available upon request. The Captain can present a detailed breakdown of all the expenses during the crew or after. On the last day of your charter, the remaining unused funds of the APA are reimbursed in full to the clients.
APA is an important part of the total cost of your charter. It usually represents between 20% to 30% of the yacht charter base price. Since APA is payable in advance, at the time of booking, it is just an estimation. One basic rule: If you’re uncertain, estimate your APA on the high side. Better be safe than sorry!
Taxes and VAT also need to be applied on yacht charter cost
In Europe, chartering a commercial vessel is an economic activity and is subject to VAT. In general, the boat must be imported under commercial registration into the EU.
The VAT rate will be added on top of the charter fee. It is due in the EU country where the charter starts. There are some exceptions to the rule, so make sure to discuss this with your consultant while making your choice to make sure you can anticipate the true cost of VAT.
Taxes and VAT also need to be applied on yacht charter cost
Here are some VAT rates in 2022 for a crewed yacht charter in Mediterranean:
– Charter in France will be at 20 % VAT based on charter fee
– Charter in Italy will charge 22 % VAT based on charter fee
– Charter in Spain will charge 21 % VAT based on charter fee
– Charter in Croatia will charge 13 % VAT based on charter fee
– Charter in Greece will charge 24 % VAT based on charter fee with a discount of 60% on charter of more than 48h ending usually at 12% VAT, this is subject to change in 2022.
Charters beginning in non-european countries but cruising or ending in a EU country will apply a VAT on the prorata of days spent in its territorial waters. The owning company of the yacht must be registered in each EU-country he intends to do a charter.
Moreover, some countries charge charter licences to authorize Yachts to embark and disembark passengers during a cruise, which might add up to the total cost.
A few examples to illustrate the yacht charter VAT costs complexity
- A yacht doing charter in Greece must have a charter licence. Nevertheless, a yacht without Greek licence can cruise in Greek waters as long as the charter does not begin and end in a Greek port.
- To do a charter in Spain, a vessel must be EU-flagged and hold a Spanish charter licence. Non EU-flagged yachts can only cruise in Balearic islands and Barcelona, then the VAT cost on the charter rate will be 24%.
Some countries also charge taxes that will influence your charter rate.
– 18% taxes based on charter fee for cruise in Turkey
– 4% taxes for charter taking place in the Bahamas
– 10% taxes for charter taking place in Australia
The work of your broker includes working with fiscal representatives to give you the correct cost of the VAT of your luxury yacht charter.
Delivery/redelivery fees may be added to your charter cost
Asking to embark and disembark in different ports during a crewed yacht charter is possible and subject to confirmation. In this case, delivery and/or re-delivery fees will be charged to bring the yacht back to its original berth. These fees will be confirmed once all the ports are chosen, and fuel consumption to move the vessel is calculated.
Crew gratuity to consider in your yacht charter expenses
Remember that during a boat rental your crew is almost 24/7 at your service to deliver the best possible experience. To thank them for their service, it is customary to leave them a tip at the end of your charter.
Tipping rules on a yacht charter depend on the destination. In the Mediterranean you can tip 10-15% of your weekly charter fee excluding expenses and taxes, while in the Caribbean a 15-20% tip is more common.
You can hand your tip in cash to your captain in an envelope the last day of your charter. It will be up to the captain to split the tip to the different crew members. In fact, while you may want to give a more generous tip to whom you have seen the most, remember the crew works as a team and it’s important to reward them as such.
The engine engineer stuck in the engine room, the deckhands who prepare the water toys for you, the stewardesses refreshing your cocktails etc. are all the little hands that will make your vacation the best ever.
Yacht Charter Price – The “ALL-INCLUSIVE” option
A crewed yacht rental price can be “charter fee plus expenses” or “charter fee, all inclusive”.
Indeed, certain types of charters in the Caribbean offer an “all-inclusive” rate, which basically gives clients a fixed price charter with all expenses established prior to departure.
What is an ALL-INCLUSIVE yacht charter ? The charter cost includes the rental of the boat itself with her insurance, equipment, water toys and crew as well as food, waters and soft drinks, snacks, fuel for engine and tender for cruising up to 4 hours/day.
What are the extra costs in an “all inclusive yacht charter rate” ? On top of your charter fee, you may have small expenses to enhance your time onboard your boat such as taxi transfers, cruising and local taxes for entering national parks, premium food and beverages, licence and fishing permit, agency and ship agent if any.
Yacht charter costs comparison: the “ALL INCLUSIVE” Versus the “PLUS EXPENSES” options
WI chart gives you an overview of what costs are included in an “all inclusive” vs a “plus expense” luxury yacht charter.
From about $50,000 for 65 feet to a few million a week for a megayacht.
Renting a luxury yacht for a party can be as cheap as a few thousand for a small boat up to about $80,000 a day for a megayacht like Christina O to host from 24 to 34 guests.
Caribbean yacht charter prices vary according to the size, style, and age of the yacht you rent. Our luxury yacht charters are between $30,000 to over 1,000,000 per week.
It will cost you between $25,000 to $1,000,000 per week to charter a luxury yacht in France depending on its size, its range, and its fame.
A luxury yacht charter in Monaco from $35,000 to over $1,000,000 per week.
For yachts over 100ft (30m), the cost of charter ranges from $100,000 and above weekly.
For a megayacht over 200ft (60m), a weekly charter costs from $300,000 to $1,000,000 and above.
Most advertised prices only include the charter base rate (boat rental and the crew salaries). On top of that, add the APA, insurances (travel, cancellation), VAT and local taxes, crew gratuity, and delivery fees.
The destination plays a significant role in the cost of the rental. For example, prices are higher when the region does not have large charter fleets like the Galapagos. Other regions are more competitive such as the Virgin Islands or the Mediterranean.
Flying Fox, with her 136 meters length, can host 36 guests and 54 crew. Chartering price starts from €4,270,000 per week.
The majority cost around $150,000 per week, but some are even more expensive. Their selling prices are from around $10 million and above.
Wellington is showcased in the 5th season of Below Deck and her weekly charter price starts from $250,000 per week. She comes fully staffed and can accommodate up to 12 guests.
Count about $160,500 per week to charter Valor, showcased in Below Deck seasons 4,5, and 7.
The regular charter rate of My Seanna, which was showcased in the 6th and 8th seasons of Below Deck, is around $300,000.
Nothing mandatory, but it is usually recommended to tip from 15 to 20% of your base charter rate.
Black Pearl, with her 103,35ft length, can accommodate up to 10 guests and 5 crews. Her weekly charter starts from $69,000.
The weekly charter rate of Christina O starts from $683,000 a week. You can also rent the emblematic ship for a day to party. It will cost $54,900 per day for up to 12 guests, $67,000 for 13-23 guests and $79,000 per day for 24-34 guests.