FAQ

How do I book?
The Website is also our booking system, enabling you to book on line using a credit or debit card. Once you have chosen your trip from the schedule page, click on more info to go to the itinerary page, scroll to the bottom of the page and click book now to create a temporary booking.  If it is more than 8 weeks until your trip starts you are given the option of paying the whole amount or a 25% deposit. To confirm this booking you need to click pay now.  When you click pay now you will be asked to log in or register as a new user.  Once logged in you are able to pay for your booking using our secure card server.  If you wish to change your booking or add to it, there is a 'My Booking' link at the top right of the page,  After making a booking whenever you log in you are able to view 'My account' and see the status of your booking. 

To confirm your booking we require a 25 per cent non returnable deposit.  The balance is payable 8 weeks before your trip.  We also give you the option to pay in full if you wish.  If you have chosen the 25 per cent deposit option, the balance will automatically be deducted from your card 8 weeks before the trip starts.  We will send you a reminder that this is going to happen, and if for any reason you wish to use a different card we will be happy to take the details over the phone.  Please ensure that you have read the terms and conditions before you book

Is there a minimum number to run a trip?
Our Company policy is to run any trip where we have taken a booking.  If this means we have to run a trip with only one person on board then that is what we will do.  If we gained a reputation for cancelling trips then no one would want to be the first person to book!  Go ahead and book the first berth in the knowledge that the trip will go ahead

Are Children allowed on board?
Our minimum age is 18, unless a family wish to book the whole boat. In this situation our minimum age is 12

What is the Guest Information Form for? 
To ensure your comfort and safety on board we need to know a little bit more about you.  Please ensure each member of your party completes a form and e mails it back to us to ensure that we have the relevant information to make your holiday a success. This form also includes the Health Declaration.  If we do not receive your completed guest form within 2 weeks of you making your booking your booking will lapse and your deposit forfeit.

Click here to download your copy

What is the Health Declaration for?
It is important for your safety that we are aware of any medical problems. If you are unable to tick the health declaration box, please telephone us to explain your medical condition and we will discuss whether it is possible for you to go on the trip or not.  We recommend that your tetanus is up to date before you come.

What is included in the price?
Our prices are fully inclusive with no hidden extras for life on board the yacht. They include VAT for UK trips and are 0 rated for VAT for trips not in the UK They do not include the cost of flights and transfers, personal travel insurance, food and drinks ashore, shore trips and excursions.

What sort of Travel Insurance do I need?
It is a condition of booking that you require travel insurance. This travel insurance must cover you for medical evacuation from the boat and repatriation. Please be aware that a lot of travel policies have exclusions for hazardous sports, and sailing is often listed as one of them, this means your regular insurance provider may not be giving you suitable cover for this trip. Please check with your insurance company.
For insurance that does cover sailing try GH Insurance or Dogtag Insurance
For those of you who are not resident in UK we would suggest the Danish Company IHI
We also recommend that you carry your EHIC with you. Apply for one free on line here

Am I Financially Protected ?
In accordance with "The Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations1992" all passengers booking with  Velvet Adventure Sailing Ltd  are fully protected for the initial deposit and subsequently the balance of all monies paid to us, including repatriation if required, arising from cancellation or curtailment of your travel arrangements due to the insolvency of Velvet Adventure Sailing Ltd
There is no requirement for Financial Protection of day trips, and none is provided.

This Insurance has been arranged by International Passenger Protection Limited and underwritten by Insurers who are members of the Association of British Insurers.


What if I want to discuss my trip before booking?
Lin or Richard are happy to talk to you before you book about any aspect of your trip. We are often away but will always answer your query either by e mail or telephone as soon as we return to port. 

I am travelling alone, can I book just one berth ?
Absolutely !. We welcome individual travellers onboard. Come and join a group of like minded individuals and take part in an adventure sailing holiday. Many of our guests join us as single individuals ( may be if their partner does not enjoy sailing) and in our friendly social atmosphere everyone soon feels part of the crew.  You will be expected to share a twin berth cabin - but only with a member of the same sex.

Who else will be on board?
There will never be more than 8 people on board including the skipper and mate (6 for the long distance passage trips). All our trips are open to bookings from groups, couples or individuals of either sex, and we expect to meet a wide variety of people from a large range of backgrounds, sailors and non sailors alike.

What happens when we arrive?
Embarkation time is 1800. On arrival you will be shown your cabin, given time to unpack. Once every one has arrived there will be a welcome reception giving you the chance to introduce yourselves to the other guests.  Dinner will be served at approx. 2000.  After dinner there will be time to look at a chart and discuss the itinerary.  There will then be a safety briefing after breakfast on the first morning of the trip.

What happens if I arrive early?
No problem. Although Lin and Richard will still be preparing the boat for the guests, they will show you where you can leave your bags whilst you explore ashore

Will I have to share a cabin?
There are no single person supplements on our holidays because it is expected that you will share a twin cabin. Our policy is to ensure that when sharing a cabin you only share a cabin with a member of the same sex.  If you do not wish to share a cabin, you can ensure this by paying a supplement of an extra 50 per cent of the trip fee

How are cabins allocated?
All of our cabins are  twins.  Two of them have en suite bathrooms, and the third has an adjacent bathroom. Each cabin is slightly different and cabins will be allocated when you arrive on board.  It is not possible to book a 'specific cabin'

What about Safety?
Velvet Lady is an exceptionally well found ocean going yacht, which complies with all the MCA regulations for safety and safety equipment. There will be a full safety brief when you arrive and reminders of important points during the week. Lin is the skipper and has been sailing professionally for 27 years; Richard is the Mate and has been sailing professionally for 10 years. They are both exceptionally well qualified, as Ocean Yachtmasters, and between them have sailed over 1,000,000 miles. Lin and Richard are on board to look after your safety and comfort during the trip. They are used to sailing with groups of people of all ages, and teaching them the ropes. They allow all guests to participate in all aspects of life on board, but they also impose some rules: especially no smoking and wearing  lifejackets at all times

Who chooses the route?
We want you to enjoy your holiday and let it come up to your expectations, but we are not mind readers! We encourage all guests to tell us of their expectations on the first day and then together we work out a route that is right for your trip. Unfortunately if bad weather sets in, we might not be able to carry out our plans as exactly as we would wish, so we always have a contingency plan as well.

How much time is there to Explore?
The answer to this is as long as you need. There are harbours where in a trip ashore of 1 hour you can see all the sights and want to be off again – there are other harbours where you might want a day to explore. We will discuss your requirements for time ashore in conjunction with the route planning to make sure we get the correct mix of sailing and exploring to satisfy your expectations.

What happens in Bad weather?
It happens to us occasionally that there may be a day where it would be considered unwise to go sailing. In this case, because safety is of paramount importance to us, we will find alternative things to do. These could range from an organised excursion ashore, navigation lessons on board or watching a DVD from our well stocked library.

Will we learn about sailing?
We do not offer official RYA courses, as they are demanding on the itinerary. However as Lin is an RYA Instructor she is more than happy to teach you as much (or as little) as you are interested in. As we go along you get a chance to haul up the sails, use winches to trim the sails, take a turn at the helm, learn new knots etc.  A lot of this learning comes by practice.  You can also practice your navigation and get 1:1 tuition on any parts of the RYA syllabus that you are interested in. Please remember to ask us lots of questions.  If you want to brush up on your theory or take a theory course before you come we suggest that you might like to try a correspondence course or interactive learning on CD ROM

What If I have never sailed before?
Our adventure cruises that start and finish in the same location and do not require an offshore passage are ideal for beginners. Our first day will always be quite short to give you time to gain your sea-legs and get to know the boat. Lin and Richard are both used to teaching novices and will still coach and encourage you even if all the others on board seem to know what they are doing. Don’t worry about the technical terminology we know how to make ourselves easily understood.

What is provided?
We provide 1 set of bed linen and towels, duvets and pillows, breathable waterproof clothing, all safety equipment, all food and soft drinks,  hairdryer.

What shall we bring?
There is a fully detailed kit list for each area in the travel information section of our website.  Some basic guidelines to consider are: Warm Clothing – whatever climate we are in, sailing in a breeze can be chilly Woolly hat and gloves, shorts and T Shirts for those warmer times, underwear, swimsuit, suitable footwear for wearing on deck, (non slip deck shoes or trainers are fine; please make sure they do not have black soles), sea boots (recommended on adventures, required on long distance passages), sunhat, suntan Lotion, toiletries, camera, passport, EHIC, travel insurance documents. Please remember to pack everything into soft bags, as there is not room on board to stow hard suitcases.

What about spending money?
Your sailing holiday is all inclusive for life on board however you may wish to spend money ashore on excursions or a visit to the local pub/restaurant. Plus don’t forget, there will always be those souvenirs

What will the food be like?
We provide breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner, snacks, hot or cold drinks and a fruit bowl throughout the day. Breakfast will be cereal, fruit, yoghurt, toast and by request something hot. Lunch will generally be buffet style or sandwiches if we are sailing. Afternoon tea will include cake or biscuits. Dinner will be a good wholesome meal, cooked using fresh local ingredients where possible. 1 large glass of complimentary red or white wine is served with dinner.

We don't like to brag about our food and service, but read what our guest have to say about us!

What about cooking and other boat chores?
Lin and Richard are responsible for all food preparation on board. They will also make sure the galley is always left neat, tidy and safe. Once on board you are responsible for looking after and tidying your own cabin. Lin and Richard will clean the heads (bathrooms) and communal areas. We often need help when sailing, anchoring or launching the dinghy and hope that it will add to your experience to muck in with these chores.

What about eating ashore?
We will often visit little ports and harbours where you might wish to eat ashore, and for the experience we would encourage you to do so. However, unlike other companies who advertise that a certain number of meals must be taken ashore we do not wish to do that. We feel that having the need to arrive in suitable harbours with suitable restaurants in sensible time for a meal would cramp our itinerary too much. There will always be enough food on board.

What about alcohol on board?
Like driving, alcohol and sailing do not mix, even if you are not in charge, and so we do not allow the consumption of alcohol while we are under way. Once we are at anchor or alongside however there is nothing like a gin and tonic to round off a good day’s sailing. We provide 1 large glass of complimentary wine with dinner. If you would like more you are welcome to bring your own duty free allowance from UK with you.

What are the embarkation and disembarkation times?
Normally we ask you to join the yacht at 18:00 on the start date and depart at 10:00 on the last date, although we may adjust these times slightly depending upon the most popular flight times. If your flight is much earlier or later you may leave your baggage aboard and explore ashore. If you plan to do this please let us know in advance so that we can make sure somebody is available to meet you.

Friends and Associates

 

Velvet Adventure Sailing Ltd.  A Company registered in England and Wales No 5882038
Registered Office: Hedge House, Hangersley Hill, Ringwood, Hampshire, BH24 3JW
VAT No 896 0095 91

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