Learn more by browsing our frequently asked questions.
If you have a question that is not answered here please don’t hesitate to contact us. We are here to help and want to ensure your dream escape comes to life!
Bareboat Charter FAQ
You do not need any formal qualifications to charter we us. Just some previous boating experience and if intending to sail, some previous sailing experience is all it takes. We brief you on the vessels operations, charter area and safety procedures before you head off to enjoy a safe charter.
Yes, we have a 3 night minimum in regular season and a 5 night minimum during peak season. Please see more details on our rates page here.
Our charter area encompasses the smooth and partially smooth water of the Great Sandy Strait and Platypus Bay. Sailing outside this area is prohibited. For more information about the charter area, including popular anchorages, please click here.
The sailing conditions on the Fraser Coast are easy, with short sailing distances and
protected waters. The trade winds are south-easterly most of the year, with averages of 10- 15 knots. In Spring, the winds tend from northerly to westerly.
You can find the Hervey Bay waters Forecast on the Bureau of Meteorology website.
Kingfisher Bay resort is the only place on the Island to buy some more supplies. Options are limited as there is only a small convenience store and various restaurants. Please note that filling the water tanks is not an option here and there is a small walk to the convenience store.
We have the one all-inclusive fee called the operational service fee which is invoice after your charter and is based on engine hours used whilst on charter. The fee includes the consumables used whilst on charter such as fuel, gas, tender fuel, and linen. This is charged at $13 per hour, per engine.
All rates are in Australian Dollars (AUD) and include GST. Fleet/vessel details, conditions and prices are subject to change without notice. Please check our website for current package deals and special offers.
A deposit of 20% is payable to confirm bookings. The balance of the charter fee is payable sixty (60) days prior to charter start date.
If a booking is cancelled 60 days outside of commencement a $250 admin fee will apply for bareboat charters only. If you cancel your charter less than 60 days prior to charter then the full deposit of 20% will be forfeit. If your charter is cancelled inside 60 days prior to your charter commencing, no refund will be given unless a substitute booking is obtained on that vessel over that same period. In the case of a substitute booking being found, the payment will be refunded less 20%. All cancellations must be received in writing.
If you are unable to travel due to travel restrictions enforced by an Australian Government, we will offer a 12 month deferral (Excludes quarantine, self isolation and flight cancellations).
Operational Service Fee
Operational Services Fee: $26 per average engine hour per hour ($13 per engine per hour)
Your boat is fully insured for loss or damage, however we require a security bond of $2500 to be authorised on your credit card prior to the commencement of our charter. This is a requirement of the boat owners insurance. The Security Bond will cover against loss or damage to the vessel but not charter negligence.
The bond will be released upon completion of your charter if no damage is reported by the de-briefer.
If some damage or loss occurs, the costs for the damage up to the Security Bond is deducted, and the balance refunded or returned.
Please note that the security bond is a condition of your charter and is not a type of travel insurance.
In the unlikely event that you need to cancel your booking, your charter fee is non-refundable so it is recommended that you consider Travel Insurance. When looking for Travel Insurance make sure that you a covered for events such as cancellation due to illness, injury, adverse weather, domestic flights, and security bond claims in case you damage the boat.
Our operational area limits for our bareboat charters include the smooth and partially smooth waters of the Great Sandy Strait and Platypus Bay. See our charter area here.
Briefings commence between 8.00- 9:00am at the on board the vessel at the Great Sandy Strait Marina. If having a ‘sleepover’ a 30min induction is done upon arrival (3.30-4.30pm) the afternoon prior to your charter commencing with the full briefing done the following morning. The briefing forms part of the departure procedure, so all guests must by on board and ready to depart before briefing commences. Your briefer will drive the vessel out of the marina and set you up on the leads before being retrieved by other staff member. Allow 3+ hours for the briefing.
Return procedure and disembarkation time
Your briefer will bring you back into the marina and berth the vessel. Return time is before 10am with complete disembarkation no later than 11am, unless organised earlier with base. The vessel is expected to be brought back clean and tidy.
- A 20% deposit is required to confirm your charter if paying 60 days or more prior to your charter
- Full fees are required to confirm your charter if paying within 60 days of your charter
- The balance of the charter fee is due 60 days prior to your charter commencement
- A security bond is payable on arrival
No formal boating qualifications or licences are required to charter with Sweet Escape Yacht Charters. To ensure a safe and happy holiday you should have it is beneficial to have basic navigation knowledge, boat handling skills and if you are planning to sail, basic sailing experience.
The briefing is part of the departure procedure and your briefer will take you out of the marina and on return, bring you back into the marina and berth the vessel.
Boarding-Time is 9.00 am on your first day of charter (unless you have taken up the BOARD EARLY Option)
Fishing Charter FAQ
You will need to bring:
- BYO drinks
- weather appropriate clothing
- fishing rod
If you’re not staying out on the water on one of our yachts, there is a range of great accommodation options in Hervey Bay. A few of our favourites are;
- Coconut Palms on the Bay
- Kondari Hotel
- Fraser Coast Beachfront Tourist Parks
- Ingenia Holidays Hervey Bay
- Harbour View Caravan Park
- Ramada Hervey Bay
- Oaks Resort and Spa Hervey Bay
- Mantra Hervey Bay
- The Bay Apartments
If you would like some help deciding, don’t hesitate to contact us.
Guided Charter FAQ
Yes! You are the skipper and your sail guide is there to assist in a way that suits you. Depending on your level of sailing experience you can do as little, or as much as you like.
If you have minimal boating experience or if it’s been a while since you have been sailing, we highly recommended adding a sail guide for either the first day, or first night. A sailing guide can also benefit you if just want a little help and support with some of the more physical aspects of keeping a yacht moving under sail.
**Please note that sail guides are not cooks, cleaners, babysitters or maids and are not responsible for the vessel or your crew.
Providing food for the sail guide is expected, so when provisioning for food, be sure to include the sail guide in all meals. If eating out at a restaurant, it is up to you whether you invite the guide along or not. If there is enough food on the boat, the guide may wish to stay on board, or receive some money from you to buy their own meal ashore.
The sail guide must be allocated a cabin to themselves for the duration of their time on board. If the vessel has private ensuite options, the guide will be allocated this cabin. Variations to this normal arrangement can be discussed and agreed upon with discretion between you and your sail guide upon arrival.
While our sail guides are always friendly, professional and comfortable with mingling with the crew, every group is different and people have different needs. You may wish to invite your guide to be part of the fun, or just spend some quality time together.
Most certainly! Whilst it is not compulsory to tip, we encourage offering a gratuity when receiving good service and to thank your sail guide.
An experienced, qualified sailor with a wealth of local knowledge to share with you is very valuable. From showing you the best anchorages, fishing and snorkel spots, to providing tips and tricks on sailing and vessel operations, our sail guides make sure that your time with us exploring paradise is the best it can be. The information our sail guides provide, also help reduce the risk of accidents.
When you go to a new place for the first time, seeking out people that can share their knowledge and experience can provide you a deeper appreciation and understanding of the local area or activity. Also, when doing something for the first time, it is handy to have a teacher!
Charter Area FAQ
Hervey bay is part of the Fraser Coast region which is North of the Sunshine Coast and Queensland’s capital city, Brisbane. The Fraser Coast airport (HVB) has direct flights from Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne and there are plenty of public transport options including buses and trains. If driving, Hervey Bay is approximately 3.5 hours north from Brisbane.
The Fraser Coast is blessed with sub-tropical climate providing spectacular conditions suited to everyone’s unique preferences. Summer offers hot, humid breezy days with warm waters perfect for swimming with an average temperature of 30 degrees celsius. Winter provides drier weather with sunny days and balmy nights at an average temperature of 20 degrees. The best time to visit the Fraser Coast is between April to August.