Frequently Asked Questions

If you have specific questions as some of our clients do, please feel free to ask and we’ll be happy to help. For example, here are some questions which we’ve been asked:

“I am a complete novice and want to go sailing with my friends, but don’t want to get in the way.  What course would help me to understand more?”
The ideal course for you is the Competent Crew course.  It is the course for the absolute beginner to learn the basics and enjoy the delights of sailing.  At the end of this course you will have become a confident and competent member of crew.

  • 1. All Questions
  • 2. Life Onboard
  • 3. Course Questions
Life onboard our yacht during your course or cruise.
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  • 1. What time does my sailing course start and finish?
     

    Practical sailing courses:

    • Start - 2030hrs on Friday and Sunday
    • Finish – 1500 Friday and 1600 Sunday
    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 2. Shorebased courses:
     
    • Start – 0900 on first morning
    • Finish – 1700 on final day
    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 3. What do I need to bring?
     

    Warm clothes including hat, scarf, sailing gloves and thermal underwear.  It is better several thin layers rather than two thick layers.  If you are just starting out sailing there is no need to spend huge amounts of money on expensive clothing.  Even a cheap set of thermal long johns and vest will keep you warm and don’t forget we supply you with waterproofs.  For those considering doing a lot of sailing it would be worth thinking about purchasing a dedicated breathable layer system.  This normally consists of a thermal base layer, a mid layer fleece with breathable waterproofs as an outer layer.  Some examples of manufacturers who supply this type of clothing are Gill and Musto.  Don’t forget sunglasses, sun cream, your wash kit and a towel (we send you a packing list when you book) soft holdalls only please.  You will also need a small amount of spending money for expenses.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 4. What footwear do I need to bring?
     

    Sailing boots are advisable along with deck shoes or non-marking trainers.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 5. Do I need to bring my passport?
     

    If you are coming on a Cross Channel trip or Holiday Cruise please don’t forget your passport. We also recommend you bring an EH1C (formerly E111) available from you local Post Office.

    Passports are not required for any other courses

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 6. Where will I go on my course?
     

    You will be sailing from Poole to the Solent on the south coast which is the ideal training ground for any yachtsman. You may visit areas such as Beaulieu, Lymington, Yarmouth, Cowes, River Hamble and Portsmouth.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 7. How many students will there be on the boat?
     

    We take a maximum of 5 students to 1 Instructor. Our boat is an 8 berth yacht and is capable of taking more people so there is plenty of room for everyone but as it is an RYA rule we take no more than 5 on any course.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 8. Is there parking available?
     

    There is a large free car park in the marina where you can leave your car for the duration of your course. Whilst there is 24 hr security and CCTV in the car park, we cannot accept responsibility for loss or damage to cars or their contents.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 9. Do I need insurance?
     

    The school carries full public liability insurance for its students, however personal travel/ cancellation/ accident insurance is strongly recommended. Bishop Skinner are specialist insurers who offer insurance for this activity.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 10. Do I sleep onboard?
     

    For all practical courses you will sleep onboard the yacht.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 11. Will I have to share a cabin?
     

    It may be necessary for you to share a cabin. Couples and friends will normally share. If you are coming on a course on your own there is a possibility you will have to share a cabin, but this would only be with someone of the same sex.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 12. Will I be able to plug in my electrical appliances such as my phone charger or hairdryer?
     

    Our Yacht has either 12 volt socket in car charger socket or standard 3 pin plug sockets. You are more than welcome to use these sockets when you are in a marina and the boat is connected to shore power.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 13. Can I bring my mobile phone?
     

    You can indeed bring your mobile phone. As many people come along sailing to get away from everyday life or as a holiday, during teaching times we would ask that phones are turned off to avoid distraction unless of course you are expecting an urgent call. Mobile phone coverage is only up to approximately 10 miles from land which will generally give you coverage on all courses except cross channel passages. In an emergency the yacht can also be contacted by radio.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 14. Are all meals provided?
     

    On all practical sailing courses we provide breakfast, lunch and 3 evening meals there is also fresh fruit, biscuits and afternoon cakes.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 15. Can you cater for my special dietary requirements?
     

    We can only cater for basic dietary requirements such as vegetarians and food allergies. When you book your course just let us know if you require any special diets.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 16. Who does the cooking onboard?
     

    Part of learning to sail is learning how to live aboard a yacht. All chores including cooking are shared equally between all students and the instructor.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 17. Will we be in a marina every night?
     

    Although you will spend the joining night and one other in a marina in order to explore some of the more beautiful locations and to get the most out of the sail cruising training you may also spend a night of two on a mooring buoy after 4 hours night sailing or a secluded anchorage. After all sailing is about adventure!

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 18. Do you take under 18’s on courses?
     

    We do allow under 18’s on courses when accompanied by a parent/guardian over the age of 18

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 19. Do your boats meet safety requirements?
     

    All our yachts fully comply with the code of practice for small commercial vessels and meet all the requirements as set down by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency. All boats are checked before and after each course and all safety equipment is serviced on a regular basis.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 20. Are there washing facilities onboard the yacht?
     

    There are heads (toilets) and showers onboard the yacht. When you are in a marina you can also use the shorebased facilities available.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 21. Do I need to do an actual course to come sailing?
     

    Whether you want more experience or just a break from everyday life, come along for a week or a weekend sail. You do not need to be doing a particular course to come out sailing with us.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 22. Can I smoke onboard?
     

    Smoking is permitted onboard, however as it is in close confines with other people we would ask that you have consideration for your fellow crew and only smoke at the back of the boat and downwind. Of course it would be polite to ask your fellow crew members first.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 23. Will I get sea sick?
     

    Even Nelson suffered from sea sickness, however it is not common in the Solent due to its sheltered location. If you know your susceptible then it is worth buying some motion sickness tables such as Stugeron from the chemist and bringing them with you.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 1. What do I need to bring?
     

    Warm clothes including hat, scarf, sailing gloves and thermal underwear.  It is better several thin layers rather than two thick layers.  If you are just starting out sailing there is no need to spend huge amounts of money on expensive clothing.  Even a cheap set of thermal long johns and vest will keep you warm and don’t forget we supply you with waterproofs.  For those considering doing a lot of sailing it would be worth thinking about purchasing a dedicated breathable layer system.  This normally consists of a thermal base layer, a mid layer fleece with breathable waterproofs as an outer layer.  Some examples of manufacturers who supply this type of clothing are Gill and Musto.  Don’t forget sunglasses, sun cream, your wash kit and a towel (we send you a packing list when you book) soft holdalls only please.  You will also need a small amount of spending money for expenses.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 2. What footwear do I need to bring?
     

    Sailing boots are advisable along with deck shoes or non-marking trainers.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 3. How many students will there be on the boat?
     

    We take a maximum of 5 students to 1 Instructor. Our boat is an 8 berth yacht and is capable of taking more people so there is plenty of room for everyone but as it is an RYA rule we take no more than 5 on any course.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 4. Do I sleep onboard?
     

    For all practical courses you will sleep onboard the yacht.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 5. Will I have to share a cabin?
     

    It may be necessary for you to share a cabin. Couples and friends will normally share. If you are coming on a course on your own there is a possibility you will have to share a cabin, but this would only be with someone of the same sex.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 6. Will I be able to plug in my electrical appliances such as my phone charger or hairdryer?
     

    Our Yacht has either 12 volt socket in car charger socket or standard 3 pin plug sockets. You are more than welcome to use these sockets when you are in a marina and the boat is connected to shore power.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 7. Can I bring my mobile phone?
     

    You can indeed bring your mobile phone. As many people come along sailing to get away from everyday life or as a holiday, during teaching times we would ask that phones are turned off to avoid distraction unless of course you are expecting an urgent call. Mobile phone coverage is only up to approximately 10 miles from land which will generally give you coverage on all courses except cross channel passages. In an emergency the yacht can also be contacted by radio.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 8. Are all meals provided?
     

    On all practical sailing courses we provide breakfast, lunch and 3 evening meals there is also fresh fruit, biscuits and afternoon cakes.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 9. Can you cater for my special dietary requirements?
     

    We can only cater for basic dietary requirements such as vegetarians and food allergies. When you book your course just let us know if you require any special diets.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 10. Who does the cooking onboard?
     

    Part of learning to sail is learning how to live aboard a yacht. All chores including cooking are shared equally between all students and the instructor.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 11. Will we be in a marina every night?
     

    Although you will spend the joining night and one other in a marina in order to explore some of the more beautiful locations and to get the most out of the sail cruising training you may also spend a night of two on a mooring buoy after 4 hours night sailing or a secluded anchorage. After all sailing is about adventure!

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 12. Are there washing facilities onboard the yacht?
     

    There are heads (toilets) and showers onboard the yacht. When you are in a marina you can also use the shorebased facilities available.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 13. Can I smoke onboard?
     

    Smoking is permitted onboard, however as it is in close confines with other people we would ask that you have consideration for your fellow crew and only smoke at the back of the boat and downwind. Of course it would be polite to ask your fellow crew members first.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 14. Will I get sea sick?
     

    Even Nelson suffered from sea sickness, however it is not common in the Solent due to its sheltered location. If you know your susceptible then it is worth buying some motion sickness tables such as Stugeron from the chemist and bringing them with you.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 1. What time does my sailing course start and finish?
     

    Practical sailing courses:

    • Start - 2030hrs on Friday and Sunday
    • Finish – 1500 Friday and 1600 Sunday
    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 2. Shorebased courses:
     
    • Start – 0900 on first morning
    • Finish – 1700 on final day
    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 3. Do I need to bring my passport?
     

    If you are coming on a Cross Channel trip or Holiday Cruise please don’t forget your passport. We also recommend you bring an EH1C (formerly E111) available from you local Post Office.

    Passports are not required for any other courses

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 4. Where will I go on my course?
     

    You will be sailing from Poole to the Solent on the south coast which is the ideal training ground for any yachtsman. You may visit areas such as Beaulieu, Lymington, Yarmouth, Cowes, River Hamble and Portsmouth.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 5. Is there parking available?
     

    There is a large free car park in the marina where you can leave your car for the duration of your course. Whilst there is 24 hr security and CCTV in the car park, we cannot accept responsibility for loss or damage to cars or their contents.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 6. Do I need insurance?
     

    The school carries full public liability insurance for its students, however personal travel/ cancellation/ accident insurance is strongly recommended. Bishop Skinner are specialist insurers who offer insurance for this activity.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 7. Are all meals provided?
     

    On all practical sailing courses we provide breakfast, lunch and 3 evening meals there is also fresh fruit, biscuits and afternoon cakes.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 8. Do you take under 18’s on courses?
     

    We do allow under 18’s on courses when accompanied by a parent/guardian over the age of 18

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 9. Do your boats meet safety requirements?
     

    All our yachts fully comply with the code of practice for small commercial vessels and meet all the requirements as set down by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency. All boats are checked before and after each course and all safety equipment is serviced on a regular basis.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No
  • 10. Do I need to do an actual course to come sailing?
     

    Whether you want more experience or just a break from everyday life, come along for a week or a weekend sail. You do not need to be doing a particular course to come out sailing with us.

    Was this answer helpful ? Yes / No