How To Prepare Your Yacht For Shipping – 6 Things You Should Know


The process of shipping a yacht from one place to another can be a grueling and lengthy one if appropriate planning and preparation are not done in advance. From ship prep to insurance coverage, there are numerous things that require constant monitoring to ensure your yacht reaches the end destination safely. Don’t let faulty shipping undo the investments you have made in your yacht. Here are 6 things you must know about shipping your yacht hassle-free. 

Prepare the Inside of Your Yacht

Preparing your yacht for shipping is the first step of the process. Preparation is similar to winterization where you ready your yacht for the journey so that it is able to survive any sort of transport and weather conditions. It is important that your ship is empty and everything on the inside and outside is secured. Empty the rooms and remove all personal items from the storage units. Lock all cabinet, interior, and exterior doors. Secure the windows and hatches with tape to prevent water leaks. Make sure all valuable items and breakable goods are stored in a safe place. Although your yacht will be transported on another vessel, it will still feel the duress of traveling by water.

 Another thing to keep in mind is that your yacht must be as lightweight as possible when being transported. For that you should empty all water and fuel tanks, keeping just enough for traveling to and from the transport ship. To ensure maximum safety and minimum damage, unplug all batteries, seal power outlets and store away any cables. Keeping track of all these things will ensure the interior of your yacht stays intact throughout the journey.

Shipping Rates

Many factors influence transportation rates for shipping yachts. These include the size of the yacht, method of transport, pick-up and drop locations, transport distance, route taken, and season. With several aspects influencing the logistics of shipping, it can be hard to provide accurate estimates of shipment costs. If you are stuck with the question of how much do transport companies charge, a quick look at shipping company websites or some back and forth with a shipping agent can make things clearer. Shop around and see if there are scheduled services available since those are relatively cheaper. 

Secure the Exterior of Your Yacht

Once the interior is dealt with, move on to preparing the yacht exterior. All extensions of the yacht beyond the hull and other loose parts need to be secured. With harsh winds blowing at sea, flailing sail covers can do great damage to not only your yacht but neighboring ones too. So, it is best if those are stored inside. Remove canvas work as well as drain plugs from the hull and make sure there are no items such as anchors remaining on the deck. 

To protect your yacht from the elements of the sea such as salt, soot, and water, you should cover your yacht or at least vulnerable parts with shrink wrap. Any parts made of metal should be treated with insulator wax and parts made of wood should be coated with linseed oil. You might also want to store removable glass parts such as windbreakers somewhere else.


Report Measurements Accurately

The size of your boat determines the cost of shipping and whether your yacht needs special permits to be shipped. Based on the size of your yacht, different loading and unloading equipment is used. So, accurately reporting the dimensions and other specifications of your yacht to the shippers is extremely crucial. You wouldn’t want to find out at the last moment that your yacht doesn’t fit into the allotted space on the transport ship! 

For height, measure from the base of your vessel to the highest structural point that can’t be disassembled. Measure the widest part of the boat for width. You should also inform the shippers about any other external parts such as motors and swimming platforms that add to the yacht’s dimensions. While shipping larger yachts can be more expensive, it is the safest way to transport your yacht over long distances.   

Insurance and Damage Compensation

You should always have a backup or safety net in place in the unlikely circumstance that things don’t go as planned while your yacht is being shipped. A way to guarantee your boat is protected and adequately compensated for in case of damage is through insurance. Make sure you have boat insurance and voyage insurance being offered by the transportation company you’re working with. You should be covered by insurance at every stage of the process. You can also inspect your boat for any prior damages and document them so that you know if any new ones occur during the shipping journey. 

Research Shipping Laws and Collect Important Documents

Be familiar with all the rules and regulations regarding domestic and international transport of yachts. There are regulatory policies regarding the maximum size and number of boats that can be shipped. These laws can differ based on the location you’ll be shipping your yacht to and the hauling company through which you are doing so. Keep all original paperwork regarding your yacht such as your registry on hand. If your yacht is being dispatched to an international destination collect all necessary customs paperwork ahead of time. Research water transport tax laws and remove any items from your yacht that are not allowed into the destination country. Thoroughly go through your shipping contract to substantiate that everything is in accordance with your liking. You might also want to give a spare key to your yacht to the transporters. So, if your yacht needs to be offloaded during an emergency or if customs wants to conduct a search, there won’t be any issues accessing your yacht. 

With thorough planning and in-depth knowledge about the intricacies of shipping yachts, you can minimize the complications faced during the journey that may have arisen otherwise. Accounting for every possible scenario is difficult, but sufficient preparation can make the process go smoothly. So, keep these tips in mind the next time you ship your yacht locally or internationally.

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