Frequently Asked Questions
The following questions are frequently asked by our travellers.
If you have an unanswered questions or if you need more details, do not hesitate to contact us firstname.lastname@example.org
From March to November. Shoulder months, as anywhere, are always the best time, June, September are very good months. July and August are peak months. International flights, inter islands flights as well as our boats are booked well in advance.
WHAT IS THE « IDEAL » LENGTH OF A CRUISE?
At least 11 days / 10 nights, better if 15 days / 14 nights. You will then have sufficient time to linger and visit the 4 Leeward Islands : Raiatea – Taha’a – Huahine – Bora Bora and possibly Maupiti, according to swell and wind conditions.
HOW MUCH WOULD COST A CRUISE, PER DAY?
Each request is the subject of a personalized, tailor-made quote.
The price depends on several parameters: season, duration of the cruise, model of catamaran chosen, option (s) chosen (with or without crew).
Here is a rate example:
For an 8-day / 7-night cruise to the Leeward Islands on a Lagoon 400 (12 meters, 4 double cabins, 2 equipped points, 4 toilets / showers, 1 convertible square table):
- If you are 8 people on board, without a crew (skipper / guide and hostess / cook): count from 3 600 euros / 4 140 usd per week, or 450 euros / 517,5 usd per person.
- If you are 6 people on board, with skipper / guide: count from 5 120 euros / 5 940 usd per week, or 853 euros / 990 usd per person (3 guest cabins, 1 cabin for the skipper).
The prices indicated do not include the redemption of franchise, cleaning, fuel / petrol, municipal taxes, meals, flights and are low season prices (January, February, March, October, November, December).
We rent a minimum of 3 nights / 4 days.
WHY A CATAMARAN?
For its comfort, space… And its low draft. You will spend more time in our lagoons than sailing (only 3 to 4 hours sail between islands). A catamaran is comparable to our famous « over-water bungalows » proposed by hotels in Polynesia, except that it is ON WATER…
WHAT IS THE SIZE OF THE TENDER? THE OUTBOARD ENGINE?
The size of our semi-rigid dinghy varies from 3,10 to 3,40 meters (10 to 11 feet). It is stored on davits while sailing. The outboard engine has between 4 to 6 HP (15 HP on our « grande croisiere » catamaran, with our skipper aboard). Water skiing is not possible with this type of material.
WHY A DAMAGE WAIVER?
All our boats are covered by insurance. But the deductible threshold, before the insurance covers the damage, is quite high, more than 6 500 euros / 7 500 usd. If you cause damage or if you lose equipment, you will be responsible for up to 6 500 euros / 7 500 usd.
A deposit of this amount, refundable on your return, is therefore requested before departure (operation possible with a credit card).
A “deductible buy-back” insurance of 70 euros per night is available and allows you to lower the franchise.
The refundable deposit to be given is then:
- 900 euros / 1 200 usd for classic models
- 2 500 euros / 2 900 usd for the “Grande croisière” models
In all cases, the deposit is refundable depending on the condition of the boat.
CAN YOU TAKE CARE OF OUR FLIGHTS? WHAT IF WE WISH TO CONTINUE ON LAND, IN HOTELS?
We have negotiated prices with the major hotels and « pensions » (bed and breakfast). We have the best possible airfares on Air Tahiti Nui, from Paris, Los Angeles and also from New-Zealand and Japan. We have all the connections to book your inter-islands flights.
WHEN SHOULD WE BOOK?
There are very few boats to charter in Polynesia. You probably will be able to charter a boat at the last minute, but may be not the right model nor at your exact dates. Book at least 6 months, if not 9 months ahead of time. Same thing for your international flights, inter-islands flights, hotels. This lead time is even insufficient for an August holiday.
WHY IS YOUR BASE LOCATED IN RAIATEA?
Raiatea is one of the Leeward islands and is conveniently located amongst Taha’a, Huahine, Bora-Bora, and Maupiti. Sailing time is from 3 to 4 hours between islands. Raiatea has several daily flights from Tahiti and Moorea (40 minutes), from Bora-Bora and Huahine (15 minutes). Tahiti Yacht Charter’s base is at Marina Apooiti, 5 minutes from the Raiatea airport, 7 minutes from the small town of Uturoa.
WHY A TAHITI YACHT CHARTER PROFESSIONAL SKIPPER ABOARD?
Your sailing experience, that we will review, might allow you to skipper the boat. However, our local skipper is also your guide, he will bring you to the right lively and colourful coral, will show you the nice white beach, accessible only by dinghy, will take you on the river… Of course, he is in charge of the boat and your security. You can have a good night sleep, without having to check if the anchor is correctly moored, if the wind is getting h3…
WHY A HOSTESS/COOK?
Your hostess/cook will take care of the provisioning if you chose the “full board” option, will cook your 3 meals, according to your preferences and will propose local specialties. Lazing days guaranteed ! Please note that our hostess is not a baby-sitter (we can provide one on request, for the total length of your cruise).
WHEN WE HAVE NO HOSTESS AND ONLY A SKIPPER, DO WE HAVE TO COOK FOR HIM?
Our Skipper can take care of himself, but his provisioning should be taken care of. Our crew will join you at meals time if and when formally invited.
WHAT IS THE PROFILE OF YOUR CREW?
Most of our skippers and hostesses are French born, Polynesian by heart. They often came on their own sailing boat from France. They speak French and English. Few of them speak Spanish, Italian and all of them practice smiling!
SHOULD WE TIP THE CREW?
Tipping is not usual in French Polynesia… except during cruises ! If you have liked the service of your crew, please feel free to show how much you have appreciated it. They, in turn, will certainly appreciate your generosity !
WHAT SHOULD WE BRING?
A light raincoat, a sweater (nights can get cooler, specially in July/august), films and batteries for your cameras, sunscreen, sunglasses, swimming suit and water shoes, so that you can walk on beaches.
SHOULD I BRING BED SHEETS AND TOWELS?
Our boats are like hotel rooms. Your berths are made up. We provide towels.
WHAT ABOUT PROVISIONING?
We can provide a provisioning list from which you will chose your groceries and beverages. It will be delivered on board, upon your arrival, Payment can be made at the base, by CC. Please provision everything, cleaning supplies, paper products etc. The boat is delivered with nothing on board (unless you have a hostess and have chosen the full board option) for hygienic and cleanliness reasons.
IS THERE A BARBECUE GRILL ON BOARD?
Our boats have either a charcoal or a gaz barbecue. Please state your preference upon booking.
ARE THERE ELECTRIC PLUGS FOR MY WEBCAM, LAPTOP? IS THERE A CD PLAYER? WHAT ABOUT MY SMARTPHONE? IS THERE A DVD PLAYER?
All our boats have a 12v plug, similar to the cigar lighter in the cars. Just bring your 12v cable corresponding to your camera, laptop, smartphone, etc.
For your comfort, we rent converters from 12v to 110v and 220v. Our deluxe « Grande Croisiere » boats have a 220V generator.
All of our boats are equipped with a CD player (note that you will need to bring your own CDs).
If you want to have your smartphonemusic thru the boat speakers, just bring a transmitter and tune it according to the radio tuner on the boat.
There is no DVD player on board, as there are different zones for the films’ coding, depending if your DVD are from France, UK, USA, Australia etc. If you want to watch your DVD on board, we suggest that you do it on your laptop.
WHAT ABOUT CELL PHONES?
Telephone communications are very expensive in Polynesia. As you would probably need to call the restaurants and excursions companies during your cruise, we suggest that you buy a local chip « vini » (sold at the base or at any post office along the way) to be inserted in your own cell phone. We rent cell phones at the base. If you wish to leave a contact to your family, we can pre book a telephone number before your arrival.
WHAT ABOUT INTERNET ON BOARD?
To have an Internet connection on board, we suggest you 2 solutions, at your disposal at the base:
1. The Vini Travel Card kit, with a trio usim card, 2 GB (3G data), and 30 min in local calls in bonus. With this SIM card integrated into your smartphone, you can call and be reachable in Polynesia and internationally, and browse the web with the 3G mobile network of your operator VINI. You can refill your SIM at any time with additionnal refill card we sell at the base, or online at www.vini.pf.
2. The Tahiti Wi-Fi box, a pocket router giving you access to an unlimited Internet connection, and that can be shared up to 5 devices simultaneously (smartphone, tablet, computer…).
WHAT ABOUT FISHING?
Fishing lines are sold at the base.
Fishing license is not requested
WHAT ABOUT SCUBA DIVING?
Our boats are not equipped with scuba diving gear and we cannot take the responsibility for such practice. On each island, there is at least 1 diving club. We will be happy to give you their contact.
Private diving option available, with monitor and compressor/tanks on board
WHAT ABOUT SURFING AND KITE SURFING ?
There are few surfing spots. You will have to bring your own surf board. Your skipper will show you the nice spots for surfing or for kite surfing. Local surfers, however, rarely appreciate newcomers. Diplomacy will be a must…