Frequently asked questions
I've never been on a sailboat. How do I tell it is for me?
A sailboat is the ultimate expression of freedom. It goes wherever you want, does not waste fuel and has a tiny impact on the environment, it is true. However, we need to take into account that it is a slow vehicle for our parameters - the maximum speed is no more than 25 km/h. If you enjoy the poetry of living slowly and enjoying the wind in your face without haste, it will be a delight. Keep in mind that an adventure on a sailboat is, first of all, a great adventure. Circulating on the boat requires some balance and agility to climb stairs or board boats, but there will always be a hand to help you. And, our space is somehow restricted, even on a 47-foot sailboat, everything works in a very functional and economical way. We offer a good level of comfort for an adventure, and a crew motivated to do their best, but we are not competing against a 5 star resort. That said, if you have that adventurous spirit and willingness to live on a boat, even with its advantages and limitations, then you will have a lot of fun on board!
I'm not looking for trouble. What is the comfort level?
Saba is surprisingly comfortable for a sailboat, with equipments such as air conditioning, bathrooms with separated shower, power generator and watermaker. This allows us to live more or less with the same comforts as we have in land while onboard. However, we are on a boat, and that means that cabins and spaces are reduced when compared to a hotel. If unlimited space is not an absolute priority, then there will be no problems! Note that our high in the cabin is 1.95 and the beds are queen size. In addition, our crew is organized to provide everything necessary for your stay, and is involved at all times in the service - but we are only two people, so we count on your understanding if we are involved in any logistical task for a few moments.
Is it comfortable to sleep onboard?
We usually sail and search for anchorages in relatively sheltered environments. So, under normal conditions, the gentle rocking of the waves is usually pleasant for most people and even helps to sleep. However, keep in mind that there is some movement, even if the sea is calm. If the weather is a little messy, we will look for suitable anchorages or even ports and marinas to avoid excessive rocking. With a stirred sea, some smaller waves can make noises when hitting the hull, but from our experience we realize that it is not a problem for most people. Consider earplugs if you are a light sleeper.
How is privacy onboard? Do we have to share the space with you during all times?
We love the company of guests, but our proximity is in line with the group's desire for privacy. We will be present as necessary for the service (navigation, bar and meal services, organization of activities, etc.), but we retire ourselves at night and during shore excursions, to offer greater privacy to guests. This way, your group can enjoy the time on the boat as you prefer. And, if you enjoy our company, we love chatting and telling lies after dinner (although we can't drink with guests when on duty, for obvious reasons of readiness and security).
Do the guests need to help with the work onboard?
Your level of involvement is decided by you. No tasks are required, except to have fun! We will be happy to provide all navigation and service for you, and of course it will be a pleasure if anyone in the group wants to get involved, for example, in navigation, learn about sailing, or even prepare that secret recipe in our kitchen. Your Saturday will be as you wish.
How do we take a shower? Is water limited?
Our sailboat has a tank of 460 liters of water, in addition to being equipped with a watermaker, which extracts and desalinates sea water (about 35 liters per hour). This gives practically unlimited water autonomy. However, we need to keep in mind that we are on a boat, and the baths are usually shorter. In a normal situation, everyone can take a hot and nice shower without any problems. However, if everyone decides to take a shower at the same time or take long showers, or if someone gets excited about the sea view and forgets about the time, it may happen that the water temporaly runs out. Then we will need to wait a few hours for the tank to fill up again.
What is the difference between anchorages and marinas? What is best?
Anchorings are a unique experience. Sleeping and waking up in the middle of the sea, often without any other boat around, enjoying the sounds of sea and land, is one of the most amazing things. However, the boat can rock a little more on windy nights or rough seas. And, importantly, they are usually free of charge. The marinas are less exclusive and private, and we anchor in piers alongside other boats. There is usually some structure - changing rooms and restaurants, but less adventure. And the marinas, in addition to being paid, can be quite full and noisy in high season. We always recommend a balanced itinerary involving the two experiences, and we will be happy to arrange everything the way the guest prefers, ensuring that he has the best itinerary based on his expectations and travel preferences.
Is it usual to get sick onboard? Can it be avoided?
Even though our itineraries cover more sheltered places, a little swing is normal on any boat, and some people seem to have less resistance and to get sick more easily. This condition, called motion sickness, can bother you on board. If you already know that you have this sensitivity, we can adapt the itinerary to include more activities on land, in addition to adjusting the diet with lighter dishes. And if there is any discomfort on board, we have a first aid kit here. If you prefer, bring your own medication: In Brazil, there are several drugs for sale for this purpose. And don't forget: consult your doctor!
Is it safe to travel on a sailboat?
We are in the Mediterranean, a world sailing paradise. Thousands of sailboats cruise here daily without any problem. Here we have an unmatched structure for recreational boating, in addition tothe best security and rescue systems and brigades in the world. But we know that in order to guarantee the safety of guests, boats and crew, it is always essential to be prepared. Thus, we equip Saba with the best we find. We are always in communication with land (usually with two or more simultaneous systems), receiving weather reports in real time, and equipped with Radar and AIS, which makes us capable of seeing and be seen at all times. In the event of an unlikely emergency, we are equipped with a 10-person liferaft, EPIRB satellite rescue system, and advanced fire-fighting system (including smoke detectors and automatic extinguishers). In addition, we take trainings in all international standards to respond to major emergencies (see the
Captains section for our credentials), and we often carry out on-board security training to be always sharp. With the right equipment and proper training, Saba offers a high level of security for you, your family and your friends.
What are the chances for the weather to interfere in our trip?
The season in the Mediterranean, which is when we operate our charters, usually offers hot and dry days, and low rainfall. Anyways, we are exposed to climatic variations, which are only predictable in the short term. Every day we receive weather reports, and validate or adjust our itinerary daily according to the weather conditions, always aiming for maximum safety and comfort for our guests, vessel and crew. Should any weather condition interfere with our plans, we will always be pleased to offer alternatives to get around these problems (different routes and destinations, city stops for tours, etc.). However, Thor is in charge, and we always obey. But relax, there are always fun things to do, even with bad weather conditions!
What should I take in my luggage? What should I avoid taking with me?
Bring light and comfortable clothes, sport cameras, drones, snorkel / scuba equipment, boards of all kinds, hat, glasses, repellent and sunscreen (avoid oils and suntan lotions), backpacks and waterproof bags, rain coat (for trails and outings) medications and cosmetics for daily use and your favorite music and reading. Games and movies or series can be interesting for the nights. Prefer clothes that are resistant to water and wind, and beware of milder temperatures at night. On the boat, we usually walk barefoot or with water appropriated shoes. Bring comfortable walking shoes and comfortable soft-soled shoes to relax on the boat - in addition to the essential flipflops. If you are in the barefoot team, welcome! Bed linen and towels are not necessary, but bring sarongs to lay on the beach. For the luggage, prefer backpacks and flexible bags, avoiding rigid wheeled bags (they take up a lot of space and are difficult to store). Hair dryers (we have one on board at your disposal), flat iron and other electrical utilities can be used, but keep in mind that our energy on board is 220V. Illicit drugs are not allowed on board, and smoking is allowed outside the boat. Have a question about an item? Contact us! We will try our best to accommodate your needs.
What is the voltage onboard? How are the outlets?
Our electrical system works in 12v (with several USB ports for mobiles and small electronics). In the cabins we have 220v outlets, all of them following the European model (two round pins). There's no 110v system onboard. Hairdryers and other utilities that consume more power can be used, but the generator must be on.
Is it something appropriated/interesting for kids?
Anyone can travel on the sailboat with complete comfort and safety, regardless of age or size. For children, it is important to keep in mind the relaxing atmosphere of a sailboat can be a little tedious for the little ones, especially on longer routes. Children from 9 or 10 years old tend to love the adventure and enjoy all the activities! But each case is different and the parents themselves can tell better, right? Our tip is, if you decide to bring your young children, always include his favorite toys, games and drawings in your luggage to keep them occupied. Oh, and it is always important to bring a life jacket, appropriate for the child's weight and height, or if you prefer we can provide it - just let us know.
Is Saba accessible?
A sailboat is an environment of slightly restricted mobility, and has limited space, stairs and steps to access some parts of the vessel. This environment can be challenging for people with special needs, but there are many cases of them sailing around the world. If there is any specific need for accessibility, contact us, and we will be delighted to offer our impartial and sincere advice on the feasibility, potential restrictions and the quality of the experience that can be offered.
How do we board and unboard the sailboat?
When we are docked at a marina or sailboat, our access is really easy - a walkway leads directly from the boat to the pier. When we anchor or moor on a beach, our access will always be through Happy Hour, our dinghy, a 2.70 m inflatable with a rigid bottom and a 10 hp engine. It accommodates 4 people comfortably, therefore, apart from the pilot, larger groups may require two trips. The boat transports passengers from the stern of Saba to the nearest pier, on short, dry trips, or to the beaches and points of interest. A portable radio is at your disposal to call the boat back whenever necessary.
Do I need to know how to sail?
No previous sailing knowledge or experience is required. The crew is ready to operate the boat autonomously. You can relax and enjoy without worrying about anything, if you wish. But what usually happens is that people are excited to be part of the crew. If that happens, everyone is ready! We love to share the helm and explain what we know. It is a good opportunity to gain experience and maybe start your journey in the wonderful world of sailing. Be our guest and become part of the Saba honorary crew!
What are the chances of a delay in our journey causing our party to miss the flights?
Although we dedicate a lot of attention to the itinerary and its dates in order to avoid delays, unforeseen events with the weather can change our plans and, on special occasions, cause eventual delays to our planning. We advise guests that, when booking their return trips, they always choose to return at least one day after the end of the charter. Thus, we have some room for maneuver for any delays without jeopardizing your travel schedule. Therefore, if you are reserving more days to continue exploring the beautiful regions where charters take place, we recommend that you plan those days after the charter. The regions we visited have an excellent transport structure, and in several ports along the route where we find train and bus stations that easily connect to your airport, in case there are any special needs.
How internet onboard Saba works?
We have a receiver with antenna for mobile network, which makes us have 4G speed internet on most of the coasts where we sail. When the signal is available, Saba offers a wi-fi network where you can connect all your gadgets and use it as you wish. The speed is usually sufficient for social networks, e-mails and light applications, but it can be difficult for video streaming and downloads. In some locations (usually more distant islands and some sheltered anchorages) the signal may be weak or even non-existent. We are sorry for the inconvenience. Saba still has its satellite Internet system, which we reserve for meteorological information and emergency communication. If there is a need to stay connected, we can adapt the itineraries to prioritize areas with higher internet quality service (which are several, already).
What is included in the Sailing Saba service?
In the provided service is included: consultancy and personalization of the travel itinerary, the boat in exclusive use for your group, 2 cabins and a toilet at the stern (for the guests only), bed linen and towels (including beach towels), captain service, hostess, daily cleaning and tidying of the cabins and bathrooms, all activities and equipment available on board (except Scuba diving trips and courses), Internet on board (when 4G service is available), fuel, use of the generator and watermaker, unlimited transportation in the support boat, daily rates at the marina on the day of initial departure and final unboarding, and a welcome kit. Meals, snacks, bar service and drinks are offered according to the chosen food system (see the
Prices section for more details).
What is not included on the Sailing Saba service?
The costs of flights, visas, entrance fees to National Parks (when necessary), daily rates in marinas (except initial boarding and final unboarding), land transfers, diving equipment, travel insurance, expenses with restaurants and bars and tours with third party suppliers are not included. During the preparation of your trip, we will present the estimates for any of these costs, based on the chosen script, and submit it for your analysis and approval. Scuba diving activities and courses are offered on board and are not included in the service price and are charged separately. Due to logistical issues, they must be booked and planned in advance, during the preparation phase.
What is the ideal charter duration?
Our recommendation is that the itineraries are at least 3 days / 2 nights long, so that we have time to accommodate the logistics of boarding and disembarking and access the most interesting places. There is no maximum number of days, but we estimate that a period of 5 to 7 days is ideal for a well-balanced itinerary, including the main highlights of each region, and making the best of this experience. And don't forget: we offer discounts for periods over 5 days. Check the
costs section for more information.
Can technical issues disturb my plans?
We try our best to maintain everything on Saba in perfect workig condition - after all, it is our home and our comfort too! However, if there's one absolute truth about life at sea, it is: things will break! New or old, no matter how careful we are, they break. We are constantly working on improvements and preventive maintenance, but it is possible that along the charter some of our systems and activities may be temporarily unavailable. We carry the main maintenance spare parts with us and we have a network of suppliers selected to help us with any unforeseen events, however we count on your understanding in case technical difficulties arise along the way. We will always be committed to making sure that these annoyances do not disturb your ride.