With so many factors affecting the cost of yacht charter, prices can actually range drastically, meaning it’s not nearly as out-of-reach as you may think. However, the market can still be confusing for first-time charterers. The different variables that affect yacht charter cost can include (but are not limited to) the yacht you choose, length and dates of charter, destination, local taxes, insurance, food and drink consumption, fuel, dockage, crew gratuity, internet fees, delivery fees and laundry – not exactly a short list. At the end of part one we estimated how much you should expect to pay in base charter fees for a week-long West Mediterranean charter on a 30-40 metre yacht, how your charter dates and where you’re going could affect these costs, and the estimated price of insurance and crew gratuity. Now, we will explain the cost of everything covered in the yacht APA (Advance Provisioning Allowance).
Estimated base charter cost for a 30-40m yacht in the West Med: €80,000 in low season, €108,000 in high season
Running total for part one: €97,200 in low season, €131,220 in high season
What is a yacht APA (Advance Provisioning Allowance)?
The Advance Provisioning Allowance is a lump sum that the charterer pays in advance to cover most of the additional fees of a yacht charter. With a Mediterranean Yacht Brokers Association (MYBA) charter contract – the standard in the West Med – the charterer is required to pay a yacht APA to anticipate the cost of guest food and drink, dockage, fuel and other items that we will focus on in this piece. This is usually priced at around 30% of the base price, and is paid a month before your charter commences. So, if we consider our charter base price from the previous article of €80,000 for a week’s charter in low season, you would need to put aside €24,000 to cover most of these extra costs.
The captain will use this money to prepare the yacht for your arrival, stocking up on provisions such as food, wine and fuel. Should you use all the money in your Advance Provisioning Allowance before the end of the charter, the captain will request that you top it up. Similarly, any money left in your yacht APA when it’s time to go home will be returned to you.
Estimated total yacht APA cost: €24,000 in low season, €32,400 in high season
What does the Advance Provisioning Allowance cover?
The charterer is always responsible for paying local taxes, and these will typically not be included in your base charter rate. Taxes vary significantly: in France charterers face a VAT of 20%, although this decreases to 10% with an itinerary that includes time spent in international waters. In Italy, VAT is 22%, but this drops to 6.6% when the itinerary includes international waters. In Spain, there is a flat rate for VAT at 21%.
Estimated cost of taxes for a yacht charter beginning in France and passing through international waters: €8,000 in low season, €10,800 in high season
Food and drink
How much does it cost to charter a yacht when you eat and drink like a king all week long? For most people, a yacht charter is a time for celebration, and this often results in a lot of Champagne, lobster and other high-price items. When you are not the one going out and purchasing the items it is easy to feel like everything is free. However, bear in mind that you will ultimately be footing the bill for everything. The cost of your food and drink depends entirely on what you consume onboard – if Krug and caviar is your meal of choice then prepare for a heftier charge.
You would likely assume that fuel would be burnt cruising between glamourous West Mediterranean destinations. However, what you might not have considered is the fuel used when sitting at anchor, used to power the onboard generators. Alongside this, most water toys also use fuel.
You will need to pay for all the fuel that you use, and this can make up a significant chunk of your yacht APA. For a week’s charter on a 30-40m vessel, fuel can be anything from €2,000-€4,000+.
Estimated fuel cost: €3,000 – cost not affected by season
Berthing costs in the most popular areas of the West Med, such as St Tropez, Monaco, and Sardinia, can add a lot on to the cost to charter a yacht. In high season, the daily rate for a 34-38.9m yacht in the port of St Tropez is €475.90; a 34-35.9m in Monaco’s Port Hercules will set you back €355.20 a day; and for a 30m in Sardinia’s ultra-luxe Porto Cervo prices range from €358.02 to €1044.48, depending on boat width and the summer month you choose to visit it.
You will need to cover these costs as part of the Advance Provisioning Allowance. However, if these sound too expensive then fear not – prices will come down significantly if you head to lesser-known spots, with the additional benefit of escaping the crowds.
Estimated cost of docking at popular ports around the West Med for a week: €1,400 in low season, €2,800 in high season
If you’re one of those people who can’t survive without internet connection then be prepared to pay for this pleasure. You will generally be charged for the costs of TV and WiFi for the time you are on board – this shouldn’t add much to your yacht APA, but is worth bearing in mind.
Estimated internet fees: €60 – cost not affected by season
On a West Mediterranean charter you shouldn’t need to worry about delivery fees, with plenty of charter yachts based in this region. However, if you want to charter a yacht outside of its normal cruising grounds, you will have to pay a transportation fee. This is usually just to cover the fuel needed to get to your requested destination.
Estimated cost not affected
Interiors & Laundry
Interiors can include anything from the general cost of keeping the yacht immaculate to more specific details, like flowers that the crew will put out for you on request. Depending on your taste in bouquets this can rack up a fair cost, especially if you require a fresh vase every morning.
It is helpful to know that laundry from the yacht (such as linen) will always be included in the base charter price, however whether or not personal laundry services are covered varies from yacht to yacht. Whatever the case, complex cleaning and delicate items will generally need to be done ashore. The crew will take care of this, but you will need to pay for this service at the end.
Estimated interiors and laundry fees: €2,000 – cost not affected by season
What is the total estimated cost for a 30-40m week-long yacht charter in the West Med?
Incorporating all these elements of the Advance Provisioning Allowance into the base charter fee and other extra fees calculated in the previous article, we reach a total estimate for how much it would be to charter a 30-40m yacht for a week in the West Mediterranean. However, bear in mind that cost can vary greatly depending on the factors explained in this series. Contact Mediterranean-based brokers such as Monaco yacht broker Y.CO to get a better idea of pricing.
Total estimated cost: €123,660 in low season, €157,680 in high season
How can you get the most for your money on a yacht charter?
The cost of chartering a yacht can often be higher than expected. However, it really is the ultimate escape – in most cases worth every penny. As we have seen, there are ways to make it more affordable: considering which features you really need onboard, travelling out of high season, keeping your food and drink consumption cheap and docking in lesser-known marinas are all ways you can reduce your overall charter costs.
Since the charter cost is split between everyone on the yacht, you could also consider sharing with friends to bring down the price per person. However, make sure you are not compromising on the things you really care about – after all, you want to make this expense worthwhile. A yacht charter is a time to treat yourself, so work out how best you can do that within your budget and start planning the trip of a lifetime.
Read Part 1 here