Are you dreaming about sailing around the world?
Thankfully, quite a few of us humans have thrown out the dated mentality that we have to grow up, get married, have kids, get a good job and then when we retire we can travel (or have fun). Who wants to wait until they’re 65 years old to sail around the world?
For those ready to seize the day, there’s an abundance of opportunities enabling dreams to come true. My family and I have been sailing around the world for over five years now.
And while doing so we’ve come across a wide variety of opportunities to sail around the world. Allow me to list them…
Review various crew-training courses and find a link between your skillset and crew jobs.
Qualifications include: Deckhands, Steward/ess, Engineering, Interior Training, Chef, all the way through to becoming a qualified Captain.
Our friend Stephanie is currently working her way up to being a Captain. To get her hours in, she’s spent time crewing on a 90’ motor yacht in the Caribbean, a 65’ sailboat in the Mediterranean and she’s now on a 120’ floating palace in the Pacific.
As her job qualifications increase so does her pay packet. AND… let’s not forget that she’s seeing the world in the process.
Gerald, another friend, works for a high-end sailboat manufacturer. He services all the sailboats currently making their way around the world in a three year organized around-the-world rally.
On each leg of the journey, he joins a different boat heading to the next destination. In-between passages he works on servicing the whole feet.
Are you in a rush to get on a sailboat? Would you prefer to skip the qualifications and head straight for the experiential side of sailing? If so, get in touch with sailors that are currently sailing around the world and offer to volunteer your time.
We took four volunteers sailing across the Atlantic Ocean with us and have had several others join us for one or many long-distance passages.
You can find sailing couples and families on YouTube (many have Youtube channels), by searching for Sailing Bloggers and by joining sailing groups (on Facebook for example).
And there are dedicated websites such as Crewseekers.net and Crewbay.com where you can create a profile listing your experience and information about where and when you’d like to sail.
When emailing or talking to a boat owner explain your desire to volunteer, any relevant skillsets and availability.
We’re always looking for an extra pair of hands but it’s great when we have guests that know about electrics, plumbing, woodwork, cooking and those that are happy to help us entertain our seven year old!
This is a great opportunity for those that want to sail around the world but don’t actually like sailing OR like the idea of sailing but get seasick.
Most boat owners making their way around the world take time out to go home. They’ll often find the safest marina they can but leaving a boat is scary for a boat owner. Some owners find boat sitters that will babysit the boat for a few weeks or even months.
There’s often no exchange of money but both parties win. The boat owner has someone keeping an eye on things and the boat sitter gets free accommodation in a variety of awesome spots.
To find these opportunities, simply search on Google, ‘boat sitter jobs’.
This might seem like a crazy objective but it happens all the time.
Boat owner boy or girl meets non-boat-owner girl or boy. They fall in love and the boat owner says, ‘let’s sail around the world’. The rest is history.
To increase your chances of success, hang out in marinas and yacht clubs.
Of course be careful, because you do end up sharing a small living space in often very remote places. But, I’ve heard many beautiful love stories.
Some sailboats continuously go around the world. You can choose the area you want to see and pay for that particular leg of the journey.
If you have the funds to go all the way around the world, bonus. If not, you can do a different leg every year until you achieve your goal.
Find some friends that have similar ambitions as you have. Pool your money together to get a boat. Once the boat is obtained, work on a plan to sail it around the world.
There are several syndicate boat owners making their way around the world doing one to two passages a year.
The owners work year-round but take vacations to sail the boat to the next destination. This makes it a great way to sail around the world while keeping your job.
This isn’t as difficult as it may seem. For US$40,000 you could get a reasonable boat to sail around the world in.
Many boaters sell their house, buy a boat and turn to a nomadic sea life. The key issue is to find a source of income while sailing around the world.
Renting out property, working online and finding work-from-home jobs are ways that many people make it work.
Or, there are those that buy a boat and sail it six months out of the year and return home to work for six months.
Before you buy a boat though, do a lot of research. Boats require more maintenance than you probably thought (it sometimes feels like the work never ends!). And, if you want to sail around the world the boat you choose needs to be up to the job.
I’d recommend reading all the blogs you can find about living on a sailboat and about sailing around the world. Watch Youtube videos from people who are currently sailing around the world to get inspired and to get an idea of what it would be like to do this yourself.
Sailing around the world is one of the most exhilarating, fulfilling, and incredible ways to see the world.
And you don’t have to wait until you win the lottery to make it happen.
Tip: if you want to get more sailing experience, or want to figure out if sailing around the world is really for you, chartering a boat is a good option. When you volunteer as crew, the owners often don’t have the time or ability to teach you real sailing. But when you charter a boat with a captain, the captain is there to, literally, show you the ropes.
Or, charter a boat without a captain if you can already sail and want to build miles and perhaps try out different boats.
I know, chartering a boat may sound expensive, but split the cost with friends (or post a message in a sailing group on Facebook to share a boat with other sailing enthusiasts) and it will all of a sudden cost you barely more than a hotel room.
Click&Boat is one of the best websites to charter a sailboat in most countries around the world.
Renting a boat in Greece is a popular option to build miles and gain experience, as I describe in this article.
Whichever way you choose to start your sailing adventure, I hope I’ll see you on the sea soon!
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