How Long is a Yacht Charter Season?

Chartering a luxury yacht offers an unparalleled vacation experience, combining impeccable service, ultimate privacy, and the beauty of the open sea in a stunning location. With increasing interest in yacht charters, especially following the high demand in 2020 and 2021, it’s important to understand the nuances of yacht charter seasons—particularly for those new to the experience.

To help you plan the perfect yacht charter, in collaboration with All Inclusive Charters we provide a detailed overview of the yacht charter seasons, the distinctions between high and low seasons, the concept of “shoulder season,” and the best destinations to visit throughout the year.

Understanding Yacht Charter Seasons

For first-time yacht charterers, understanding the different seasons can be confusing. There are two main types of seasons: winter vs. summer and high vs. low. In collaboration with we prepared a comprehensive overview how to understand the sailing seasons!

  • Winter/Summer Seasons: Each of these seasons lasts approximately six months. The summer yacht charter season runs from around April/May to October, while the winter season spans from November to April. These seasons are largely determined by weather and water conditions. The summer season is popular in Northern Europe and the Mediterranean, whereas the Caribbean, Indian Ocean, and Florida are prime destinations during the winter season.

  • High/Low Seasons: Also known as peak and off-peak seasons, these refer to the busiest and quietest times within the yachting calendar. High seasons coincide with the Christmas and New Year periods in winter, and July and August in summer. During these peak times, yacht availability is limited and prices are higher.

Costs During Peak vs. Off-Peak Seasons

As with any type of vacation, booking a yacht charter during peak season is typically more expensive. For instance, the opulent superyacht Secret, featuring a swimming pool, Jacuzzi, cinema room, and fully equipped gym, is available for €840,000 (approximately $990,000) per week during the low season. However, during peak seasons, weekly costs can start at €875,000 ($1.29m).

Local events such as the Cannes Film Festival and the Fort Lauderdale Boat Show can also affect yacht availability and charter costs during both high and low seasons. While it’s possible to charter a yacht in Northern Europe during winter, the weather may be less favorable with higher rainfall and lower temperatures. Similarly, although the Caribbean and Florida generally enjoy good weather year-round, hurricane season (June to November) can pose a risk.

Yacht Availability and Location

The availability of your preferred yacht may be restricted to certain destinations at specific times of the year. For example, the hybrid yacht Home, offered by leading yacht charter company Burgess, is available in the Mediterranean during the summer and in the Caribbean during winter. Ultimately, a yacht’s availability is often determined by its owner’s preferences.

To secure the perfect vessel and ensure a seamless cruising experience, it’s advisable to work with a yacht broker. Brokers can provide valuable advice on the best times to visit various destinations and use their industry connections to find the ideal yacht for your needs.

Shoulder Seasons

Shoulder seasons, the periods just before and after peak seasons, run from April to May and September to October. These times are often preferred for yacht charters due to lower demand for boats, berths, and anchorages, resulting in fewer crowds onshore. The weather during shoulder seasons is also typically more pleasant, with a gentle breeze mitigating the heat.

Duration of a Yacht Charter

Most yacht charter companies offer rentals in week-long blocks, with the average charter lasting about ten days. However, some clients with more flexibility opt for longer charters, potentially staying on board for an entire season. Larger yachts often come equipped with office spaces and WiFi, allowing for business activities to continue during extended charters.

When to Book a Yacht Charter

To ensure you get your first choice of yacht and berths during peak seasons, it’s recommended to contact a yacht broker at least ten months in advance. Many yachts are booked up a year ahead. For off-season charters, booking three to six months in advance is usually sufficient.

Bonus: How to Optimize Your Yacht Charter Experience

By planning ahead and working with a reputable yacht broker, you can secure the ideal yacht for your desired destination and time of year. Enjoy a luxurious and unforgettable experience on the open sea, tailored to your preferences and schedule.

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