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Home Caribbean 7 Reasons to Ship Your Yacht Between the Caribbean & Europe/USA Safely...

7 Reasons to Ship Your Yacht Between the Caribbean & Europe/USA Safely and Efficiently

Sevenstar ship loaded and ready!
Sevenstar loaded and ready!

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The demand for yacht transport between the Caribbean and the U.S.A. and Europe is on the rise. This is especially true for a broad range of racing, cruising, charter, and private yachts of all sizes. International shipping companies, such as Sevenstar Yacht Transport, are leading the way in providing fast, efficient, and safe delivery options. Notable is that the Amsterdam-headquartered shipping company is the first to receive certification for its transport cradles from Lloyd’s Register.

“Over the years, we’ve seen more people interested in this transportation solution,” says Sanne van den Heuvel, trade manager for the U.S. and Caribbean. “Time is one of the most valuable commodities for owners and crew. Time savings, as well as saving the wear and tear a vessel on its own hull might receive in potentially choppy Atlantic Ocean waters, are the top reasons we see increased interest in yacht transport.”

In the spring months of March, April, and May, when many yachts leave the Caribbean, Sevenstar offers several sailings in two options of routes. These are from the Caribbean to Northern Europe or the Mediterranean, and from the Caribbean to the U.S. East Coast. Sevenstar loads vessels from ports in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands; Le Marin, Martinique; and St. John’s, Antigua. 

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Sevenstar has divisions within its company, including ded-icated teams for racing and sport fishing yachts, that cater to these client-centric needs of different types of yachts.

“One trend we see and are offering is more specialized sailings in terms of timing. In the past, there was quite a wide window. Today, while we do have a fixed schedule, we can also adjust our schedules based on feedback when talking with our clients. For example, we might have a big group of racing yachts that want to leave the Caribbean to get to Europe in time for a specific regatta or regattas, and we can adjust to fit these needs. That’s the benefit of the company having 120 vessels worldwide,” says Sander Speet, who handles racing yacht logistics for Sevenstar and hands-on attends Caribbean regattas such as the RORC Caribbean 600.

Sevenstar has opened a new office in Palma de Mallorca, the destination of many race yachts coming from the Caribbean.

New in 2024, Sevenstar is the Official Yacht Transport Partner of the Viking Explorers Rally. The event departs in January from the Canary Islands en route to Grenada. More cruising yachts are now seeing the advantages of shipping their vessels back across the Atlantic in the late spring.

5 Top Pre-Loading Tips to Ship Your Yacht

Like hauling a yacht for yard work or storage, or winterizing in colder climates, there are points owners and crews can do to prepare their yacht for transport. Companies like Sevenstar send complete checklists to their clients once a sailing is scheduled as a preparation guide. Here is an example of five tips for pre-loading at the marina:

  1. Lighten your Load: Ensure there is a minimum of fuel on board and that water tanks are empty.
  2. Battan Down Below Decks: Make sure every-thing is stowed away. Lock cabinet doors and consider taping them shut to prevent items from falling out on the passage.
  3. Remove Your Backstay. Monohull sailing yachts need their backstays removed upon loading, otherwise, the spreader of the crane can get to the boat’s center of gravity, which is behind the mast. After loading, re-install the backstay.
  4. Tie Down the Dinghy. Secure the dinghy tightly upside-down on the deck, or better yet deflate it, fold it, and stow it down below with the outboard engine.
  5. Protect Deck Hardware. Cover winches and furling systems, for example, and tape them off or protect them with wax or Vaseline against salt spray and dust.

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