How much it costs to rent a yacht isn’t always a very clear cut answer. There are numerous ways to charter a yacht and different factors can increase or lower the cost of a yacht rental significantly.
Here are the main costs to consider to estimate the total yacht rental price of your next yacht charter.
What are the main kinds of yacht rental and how does it influence the price?
There are two main categories of yacht charters: all-inclusive or separated charges.
The all-inclusive yacht charter offers a price that includes fuel, food, beverages, and entertainment (diving and fishing equipment).
When you charter a yacht that is NOT all-inclusive, you’ll have a real hand-tailored experience that suits all your demands. For instance, if you are willing to have fresh flowers daily as decor and exceptional wines or meals, you may, but it will of course have an influence on how much your yacht charter price is going to be.
In most advertisements, the price of a yacht charter only refers to the base price of a boat at its lowest possible charter time.
To understand the cost of chartering a yacht when it’s not all-inclusive, it’s important to split the costs that are included in the base rate of the yacht (the price you’ll see on a website), and the costs that come on top of that base rate, which are more variable.
Yacht charter cost variables that are usually included in the base yacht rental price
These costs are the ones that are (usually) included in the base rate of a yacht charter. Of course, the base rate isn’t always fixed, and here are the main factors that can make the yacht rental cost go up or down.
The yacht you charter: the main influence on the total yacht rental cost
The single factor that has the most impact on the cost of a yacht charter is more often than not the yacht itself.
There are multiple types of boats, of all sizes and each has its benefits and its drawbacks… and its influence on total costs.
The longer the yacht, the higher the charter cost
The boat’s size affects the price considerably. It determines the number of cabins and guest capacity, the number of staff on board, along with some other costs that tend to add up the longer the yacht gets (fuel, mooring and so on).
Therefore, the features, amenities and rental costs of the vessel will vary widely based on its length. Don’t expect an extensive sundeck on which to relax on a small sailing boat.
For 40 m yachts, expect a base price of €50,000 to €140,000 for a week’s charter.
The reputation of the yacht and her demand: critical in the yacht charter price
A yacht reputation can also affect pricing. Boats are by definition limited in stock and follow supply and demand laws. When a particular yacht is in high demand, whether it’s thanks to its reputation, its features, the season or its recent appearance in a movie, the price of the charter can climb.
Among the other factors that impact the charter cost, there is the construction year, the builder’s reputation, the date of its last renovation, and its base location.
For instance, some classic yachts (built between the 1920s and 1970s) had famous builders or previous celebrity owners. Who doesn’t want to taste the glamour of being on Jackie Kennedy Onassis’ former yacht, Christina O? Christina O is available for charter from 630 000€, find out more here.
Chartering a yacht featured in a James Bond movie such as luxury yacht Regina won’t cost the same as a regular model. Find out more here about James Bond’s famous boats.
The water toys can add up to the charter cost
On a yacht, water toys don’t refer to your average backyard inflatable unicorns. Think instead of big equipment for marine activities: jet skis, kite-surf, kayaks, paddleboards, submarines, and expensive high-powered yacht tenders.
Some vessels come with sea pools or a giant slide to glide from the top of the boat straight into the ocean.
Most of these items, especially when they are in high numbers, can come at a cost that will be on the bottom line of your yacht charter invoice.
All the water toys specified in the yacht brochure when you make the reservation are generally included in the price. But it’s up to you if you want to rent others or even buy them. Make sure you ask your broker for advice about the cost of these extra if your budget is limited.
Yacht rental costs increase during the high season
Your yacht charter cost depends to some extent on your date of departure.
If you take your vacation during the busiest weeks of the year (high season) of a destination, you’ll pay a higher price than someone who charters a yacht on low season dates.
In the Mediterranean, the high season is in summer while it’s in winter for the Caribbean. The yacht charter prices will be at their highest during these months.
Sometimes just a week or two can make a big difference to the price. Months on the high season’s outer ends (shoulder months) can be slightly cheaper.
Since some destinations have very short seasons, it has increased demands and makes it more expensive.
International events will also increase the cost of a yacht charter. Expect to pay more if you want to attend the Monte-Carlo Masters (April), the Cannes Film Festival (May), or the Monaco Grand Prix (May) during your yachting vacations in the Mediterranean.
The cost of your yacht charter is proportional to its duration
Most yacht charter companies only work ‘per week,’ and yacht owners rarely accept a shorter duration. Many companies have minimum stays of ten days, however some boats accept day charter or short periods, you can always ask your broker for an appropriate selection.
You can rent a vessel for two weeks or more, but the price won’t go down for longer holidays.
The destination you pick affect the yacht rental price
Your vacation destination is an essential factor in the yacht charter charge.
As the supply and demand law dictates, the more competition there is, the less you have to spend. It is why locations with large charter fleets are less expensive.
The Bahamas, BVI and the Mediterranean are more affordable than remote islands without established yachting industries.
The Bahamas, BVI and the Mediterranean are more affordable than remote islands without established yachting industries.
Yacht rental costs that are NOT included in yacht charter base fee
The main variables of your yacht charter are quite obvious for most people, but some other costs tend to be misunderstood, while they can influence the total price of a yacht charter greatly.
Here are the ones that are NOT included in the yacht charter base fee but that you need to include in your calculations.
APA (Advance Provisioning Allowance): the main variable costs of your yacht charter
The charter fee usually covers the cost of renting the yacht and the crew’s salary. But you still need to pay for fuel, provisions, and other extras for your trip.
A fee covers all these additional costs: APA or Advanced Provisioning Allowance. Find out more about the APA here.
APA is the standard system to pay your expenses on a luxury yacht charter, and it is generally a percentage of the charter fee. You’ll usually end up paying between 20% and 30% more than the base cost of the yacht charter in APA.
The amount varies a lot, depending on the ship and your activities. It will increase if the yacht has a higher fuel consumption, if you plan on cruising more than 4 hours a day, if you want to have onboard particular expensive brands, etc.
What does the APA cover?
APA covers all the day-to-day operating expenses. It also includes any special requests you might have while you’re on board.
Here are the main costs of your yacht rental the APA covers:
Food and drink
On your yacht charter, the chef can prepare all the dishes you want, whether you are vegan or low carb, whether you have allergies or require kosher meals. Make sure that you explain your food preferences to your broker.
Your fuel costs will depend on your boat, your itinerary, and whether you choose to cruise or stay at anchor. A sailing yacht charter can cost 10% less than a motor yacht charter because the fuel consumption is smaller.
This amount also includes the fuel expenditure of any water toys and tenders you use during your charter.
Harbor fees and dockage
The harbor fees and dockage will be more or less high-priced depending on your destination and season. All these costs will be included in your APA.
For most people, yachting is about enjoying life outside of the daily routine. If you can’t survive without the Internet or satellite communications, you don’t have to worry. Your yacht charter will provide you all the digital connections needed. They won’t add much to the APA, but it’s still something that comes at a price.
If you board or disembark the ship outside its usual harbor, you’ll have to pay a transportation fee to cover the fuel required to get your yacht to your requested destination.
Interiors and Laundry
The APA fee includes interiors and laundry costs to keep the yacht immaculate. But if you request unique decoration, it may add an extra charge.
Personal laundry services may not be covered depending on the yacht.
Taxes: each country has different rules impacting the cost of yacht charter
Taxes do have an impact on the total cost of your yacht charter, especially in some destinations.
For example, in Europe, chartering a commercial vessel is subject to VAT. But fees vary significantly according to your destination and itinerary. Some countries have a 0-tax rate (Montenegro, New England), while in others a passage in the international waters can lower the VAT rate.
The taxes can vary from VAT, national parks entrance (la Maddalena in Sardinia for example), countries taxes etc. the VAT and taxes will be based on the charter fee, so make sure you discuss this with your advisor to anticipate the cost.
Here are some VAT rate applied on luxury yacht charter in 2022 :
– 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.
Moreover some countries such as Spain or Greece charge a licence for a yacht to be able to embark passengers for a paid charter in their waters, this explains why not every yacht can cruise in all countries.
Crew gratuity: a good practice to include in the cost of your yacht charter
The crew on a yacht work even if you don’t notice it.
Serving, cleaning, preparing, fixing, they are the key elements that make your charter a success.
Even if tipping is not strictly mandatory, it is common practice to include a tip to the team when you are satisfied by their services.
The suggested amount is around 15-20% of your base charter rate. It is therefore important to include this amount in your yacht rental price beforehand.
Yacht charter cancellation insurance: a small cost that can save you a lot
Cancelling or shortening a yacht charter can be very expensive if you don’t have cancellation insurance.
It is a small price to pay to ensure that all the money spent on your yacht charter will not go to waste if some unfortunate event leads you to miss your yacht rental.
As a charter company, we will help you select the best insurance options among several different offers.
So, how much does it cost to charter a yacht?
In a nutshell, to calculate the price of a yacht charter, you need to sum the base fee of the yacht charter, taxes, APA, crew gratuity and insurance cost.
Here is an idea of the ranges you can expect for the yacht charter base fees :
- Motor Yachts – Sailing Yachts under 50ft: €4 000 – €15 000 / week
- Motor Yacht – Sailing Yachts between 50ft and 65ft: €15 000 – €40 000 / week
- Motor Yachts – Sailing Yachts between 65ft and 80ft: €40 000 – €70 000 / week
- Motor Yachts – Sailing Yachts between 80ft and 100ft: €70 000 – €100 000 / week
- Motor Yachts – Sailing Yachts over 100ft: €100 000 – up to 1,000,000 / week
If you are unsure about how much your yacht charter is going to cost you, talk to one of our advisors.
FAQ about cost of yacht charter and APA
Small motoryachts and sailing yachts under 50 ft (15m) can be chartered from 4,000€ to 15,000€ weekly.
Chartering motoryachts and sailing yachts between 50ft and 65ft costs between 15,000€ and 40,000€ weekly.
Between 65ft (20m) and 80ft (24m), you can expect motoryachts and sailing boats charters between 40,000€ and 70,000€ weekly.
Between 80ft (24m) and 100ft (30m), the cost of chartering a yacht ranges between 70,000€ and 100,000€ weekly.
For yachts over 100ft (30m), the cost of charter ranges between 100,000€ and 1,000,000€ weekly.
APA stands for Advance Provisionning Allowance. You pay this fee in advance to cover food and drinks, fuel charges, harbors fees and dockage, communication, delivery fee various fees such as cleaning or interior design.
Advance Provisionning Allowance varies depending on your travel plans. Usually, it represents a surcharge of 30% to 45% on top of the yacht charter base price.
The APA is due one month before you set sail when dispensing your final charter payment. The captain directly receives the money and will supervise all the purchases made before and during your journey. He will be responsible for ensuring the crew stays within budget and will provide receipts upon request.
APA estimations are usually accurate. The captain will keep you updated during your trip. If you decide to go over the initial payment, you can top up the APA in cash or pay the balance during your trip.
With transparent communication, realistic budgets, and advanced provisioning, you may spend less than the APA and have the difference returned to you at the end of the cruise.