Last summer, my friend Misha and I spent a week exploring Croatia, Slovenia and Montenegro then met up with The Blonde Abroad and the rest of our all-girls crew for a week of sailing in Greece with The Yacht Week. As a whole, I loved the experience, but there were several things I wish I would have know prior to booking the trip that would have allowed me to enjoy it to the fullest. So here are 6 things you should know before you go…
1. It will be more expensive than you think. I budgeted around $75 a day for food and drinks for our seven day trip and quickly realized that that was not going to be enough. Upon arriving, we were told we needed to go shopping for costumes for the sailing competition and parties. Next, we had to put money in for the “Kitty Fund,” which is food and drinks for the boat for the week. We also had to pitch in money to tip our skipper and pay for gas for the boat. At the parties you usually get 1 or 2 free drinks with your wristband, but after, that you pay for your drinks. So it can get expensive, especially if you want to splurge on bottle service. It’s nice to have a heads up on all this so you can budget accordingly. Bottom line: if you plan to drink and eat out and don’t want to worry about running out of money, you should plan to spend around $130/day. Here’s a quick budget breakdown…
$525 ($75/Day Restaurants + Drinks x 7 Days)
$100 Gas/Tip for Skipper
$100 Bottle Service
2. The Yacht Week is more about partying and less about sailing. Yes, you will sail from island to island (my favorite part of the trip!), but the main focus of Yacht Week is the parties they throw. There is a big welcome party the night you arrive, and for the rest of the trip, there are day parties and night parties every single day. I didn’t fully understand this coming into the trip so I wasn’t in the right frame of mind, but once I realized the basic agenda was sailing from party to party, I was able to just go with the flow and also plan some other stuff I wanted to do, without feeling like I was going to miss out.
With that said, I highly recommend skipping one or two of the day parties and exploring instead. On the Greece Route, forget the day party at Love Bay Beach (it’s a dirt beach and not that pretty) and check out Poros! There is a lot to see and you only get one night there, so skip the day party and wander around this cute little town. Also, Hydra Island (my favorite stop on the Greece Route) is another must see! Definitely ditch the day party and spend your time exploring this magical place. There are so many gorgeous spots to take photos on both islands.
3. Unless you splurge on a bigger, nicer sailboat, you will not be able to use the toilet onboard for #2! You can go pee on all the sailboats, but you can’t flush toilet paper down the toilets, and on many of them, you cannot go #2. I am sorry. I know this is a disgusting topic, but it is even more disgusting and horrifying to find yourself on a boat, sailing for hours or docked somewhere overnight, and realize there is nowhere that you can go to the bathroom. My friend Misha and I stayed at several hotels along the way because neither of us wanted to handle not having proper use of a toilet for days on end, but many girls were not as lucky, and there are some very embarrassing stories that I will not repeat here. Had we known about the bathroom situation prior, we would have splurged on a bigger sailboat that could accommodate people using the toilet. So make sure you look into this before you book your boat!
4. Your boat will get dirty real quick! We had an all-girls crew and our cabin still got crazy dirty every day. Make a pact to all help clean. If everyone pitches in, it takes just a few minutes a day to keep your boat clean. Stay on top of dishes. Do them right after you are done eating, and try to keep all your personal stuff in your own cabin. The last thing you want is to spend a week in a tiny cramped, filthy space. This is the real Yacht Week v. your Instagram Yacht Week…
5. There is no air conditioning on the smaller sailboats. This is really not a big deal but when it’s very hot, it is hard to sleep in the cabins. I recommend bringing a yoga mat or buying one the first night you are there, so you can lay it out and sleep on the deck of the boat at night. And if you do choose to sleep on the deck, make sure someone sleeps next to you. A lot of people will be walking to and from the boats at all hours of the night, so it is safer to use the buddy system, especially for girls.
6. You will have the time of your life! Just go! If you can’t find a friend to go with you, just go on your own. Every single girl on our boat was amazing and our skipper, Gregor, was one of the kindest and most responsible guys I have ever met! I had the time of my life and I can’t wait to go on another Yacht Week trip, especially now that I know what to expect. It is nothing like the real world and it will be an amazing experience!
BOOK YOUR YACHT WEEK TRIP > THEYACHTWEEK.COM
READ MORE ON YACHT WEEK > The Beginners Guide To Yacht Week and The Best Route On Yacht Week
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Have you been on the Yacht Week? Please share your comments and questions below!