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Sail Away with Sunsail's Yacht Ownership Programme

by Sarah Heron 19 Nov 12:00 GMT
Sunsail fleet in Croatia © Sunsail

Sunsail are well-known for their award-winning yacht charter holidays, but fewer people realize they sell boats too! We caught up with Julian Adams from Sunsail's ownership programme and found out more about their unique take on yacht ownership.

Julian, many people are put off by the perceived cost of owning a yacht. Tell us more about the concept behind Sunsail ownership.

Sunsail Ownership is the natural next step for regular charterers or those seeking to sail more. In most cases, if you sail for more than 2 weeks a year, you will save money as a Sunsail Owner. If you want to explore you're not tied to one location either - Owners can use the same model of yacht across the Mediterranean, Caribbean, Indian Ocean and Pacific so you can sail year round. If you need more space, you can choose to upgrade to a larger yacht size.

What class and size are the Yachts you provide?

Sunsail offers monohulls from 34ft to 53ft and catamarans from 40ft to 58ft.

It sounds like owners get all the benefits of charter with Sunsail ownership. Do owners receive on-shore support while at sea, and are you able to handle travel arrangements to and from the marina?

Yes – you'll have all the benefits and support you get on a regular charter holiday, but with extras! owners have free access to dinghy and outboards, a dedicated booking agent and are invited to an owners only flotilla and boat show drinks party every year. Added to that, Sunsail prides itself in having the best support infrastructure in the industry. We can help with every step of your trip from flight booking and transfers, to yacht provisioning and on-water assistance.

What are the purchase options?

Sunsail Owners choose from either a 100% purchase, providing a 9% guaranteed annual income (Guaranteed Income programme) or instead a low joining payment of 45% with no ongoing income (Option to Purchase). The OTP programme ends with the choice to make a 20% title payment (+vat if applicable) or instead receive a guaranteed 20% cash buyback to simply walk away. Most importantly, Sunsail Ownership exclusively offers the security of title or lien on both programme types. This should be a major consideration when looking at yacht purchase options.

Can you rent out the boat when you're not using it? Are you limited on the number of weeks you can use the boat?

Every owner receives the same great benefits totalling up to 12 weeks sailing, half you book in advance, and half booked at short notice. High season time costs twice the points of low season, so the maximum time available will be impacted by when you choose to sail. If you have time left over, 2 weeks low season may be donated or sold to friends, extended family, anyone you like!

How far in advance do you need to book your boat, and are there shorter notice options?

For peak weeks we recommend reserving a yacht as far in advance as possible, and we can always look at amending the booking at a later stage. When booking using short notice time we give added flexibility, for instance a 41ft monohull owner can sail up to 49ft monohulls without paying any upgrade fee.

The main downside of yacht ownership for most owners is maintenance. Do Sunsail help with this?

As an owner you don't even have to think about looking after your boat and Sunsail offers the industry standard in yacht maintenance. We also pay for it! We follow a four-stage system for after charter, quarterly servicing, annual haul out and end of contract phase out maintenance. We keep a uniform fleet making it possible to hold manufacturers spares at the bases and the most intimate knowledge of the yachts possible. This high equipment standard is backed up by the "Sunsail 4hr Guarantee" which promises that we will travel and repair your yacht within 4hrs of your notifying the base. We can find you pretty quickly if there are any problems thanks to the free onboard Wi-Fi.

Are there any other costs associated with yacht ownership? Insurance, and berthing fees, for example?

Sunsail Ownership pays every penny of the running costs. That includes Insurance, Berthing and Maintenance. Owners in the Guaranteed Income programme will have to register their yacht (from £25) and all owners will pay a small cleaning and consumables fee to prepare the yacht for personal use (<49ft is £160).

Are you able to provide crew?

Yes, Sunsail offers professional skippers at all our bases and chefs can be arranged on request.

Many thank Julian, for our readers lucky enough to sail for more than two weeks of the year it sounds like a fantastic option.

Find out more at www.sunsailyachtownership.co.uk

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