What is a bareboat rental?
A bareboat rental is a type of boat rental where the “renter” or the “charterer” rents a boat or a yacht without a crew or skipper. This means that the person who rents the boat is responsible for navigating, operating, and maintaining the vessel during the rental period however, in order to rent a bareboat, the renter must usually have a valid boating license or certification and demonstrate adequate boating experience and knowledge. The alternative is to hire a Captain and Crew approved by the owner.
Here are some elements of a Bareboat Rental:
- The charterer must have the option of selecting & paying crew, although the owner may require general levels of proficiency for the crew that is retained based on federal statutes. (Owner may provide a list of available Crew)
- The master/crew are paid by the charterer. (Renter)
- The vessel may not carry more than 1 (Renter) and 12 (Guests) for a total of 13. Crew and Staff are not considered passengers.
- Vessel Owner is NOT allowed to be onboard during the charter.
- All food, fuel and stores are provided by the charterer. (Renter may have the Crew provision the yacht for them)
- Insurance is obtained by the charterer. (In Florida, FWC requires boat owners to carry certain insurance however, the renter is still liable for their guests)
- The charterer is responsible for the safe navigation of the vessel. (Renter may hire a Captain with experience in safe navigation of the vessel)
- A platform for events that does not involve consideration, even when moored at the pier.
- The vessel is surveyed upon return to the owner.
A “Bareboat Rental” is NOT a “Charter”.
A Bareboat rental is considered a “Recreational Vessel” and does not require the same Captain Licensing, Drug Testing, Safety equipment, and/or Permits of a “Charter Boat” however, at Miami Cruise Yacht Charters, our recommended Captains must maintain a minimum of 100 Ton Master Captain license, be a member of a Random Drug Testing Program and we carry all the commercial grade safety equipment and permits as are required for Commercial Charter Boat. (For your safety)
Report suspected illegal boat rental operations.
If you are renting a bareboat, it is important to ensure that the rental company is following all USCG regulations. If you notice any violations or concerns, you should report them to the USCG. As a renter, you should also be aware of your responsibilities and follow all USCG regulations to ensure your safety and the safety of others on the water. Coast Guard Sector Miami 305-535-4316
The “elements of a bareboat rental” in this blog have been modified from the USCG version in order to convey easier. If you have any questions or concerns related to this article, please feel free to contact the author at 305-323-5195.
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