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No Slow-down in Sight for Exclusive Yacht Charter Vacations

No Slow-down in Sight for Exclusive Yacht Charter Vacations

By HMY Contributor   August 3, 2021

The popularity of yacht charter vacations took off during the pandemic as yacht inventory fell and more and more people discovered the many benefits of being on the water during an unprecedented time of isolation.

Even now, as things open back up, there’s no slowdown in sight. People are incredibly eager to make up for lost vacation time and to decompress from a stressful 18 months with travels to some of the world’s most beautiful and enchanting places.

Which means, at least for the foreseeable future, the days of booking last-minute charters are slim. Demand is incredibly high for luxury yacht charters right now. In pre-COVID times, clients could usually book a charter 4-8 weeks out. Now, booking three months out is tough and, in some cases, it’s longer, especially as travel rules and requirements of different states and countries are easing and people are more ready than ever to travel, explore, and get away from home.

So, if a luxury yacht charter dream vacation is on your radar, plan ahead, be patient, and be ready to consider alternative destinations.

High Demand

Charter inventory is low right now. Industry professionals, like HMY’s Yacht Charter Director, Susan Harris, have never seen anything like it. It’s a perfect storm of factors. 

  • While more countries are opening to travelers, some still have very strict vaccine and quarantine requirements, limiting the number of usual Fall and Winter options.
  • Retail boat sales are doing great, further reducing inventory. Some popular charter yachts, like Lady Carmen, are for sale and the owner doesn’t want to charter with offers on the table. 
  • Owners typically prefer a 7-night minimum commitment. While owners of some smaller boats will entertain a 2-, 3-, or 4- night trip, many owners in HMY’s focus area of 80’-150’ yachts aren’t interested in booking those shorter trips and are holding out for 5 nights or more. 
  • September and May are when yachts go into the shipyard for maintenance, further reducing on-water availability.
  • The most popular charter yachts are already booked. TAIL LIGHTS, one of the most sought-after charter yachts, is booked solid through April of 2022!

In some cases, it takes extra time to find a suitable yacht. But, with preparation, patience, and flexibility, booking a luxury yacht charter for Fall 2021 or Winter 2022 is still within reach. We recommend planning your next charter now for Fall, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year 2022, and even out to spring break 2022.

The HMY Charter Vacations Division lives to turn these dreams into reality and is ready for the challenge of booking your dream vacation.

Where To Go

Some of the usual hot spots such as the Bahamas and the Caribbean are still the big draws (and you can’t go wrong with any of these beautiful islands) but based on availability, also consider booking in other charter regions.

Here’s a look at some of the more popular charter destinations plus several alternatives that can easily satiate your desires.

New England 

If you’re in the mood for a New England charter to catch the dramatic leaf change or explore quaint Northeastern coastal towns, don’t delay a minute longer. The fall window is short, and the popular vessels are booking fast. 

The Bahamas

These magical islands are a perennial charter favorite, and for good reasons. While New Providence Island and Grand Bahama offer plenty to do at tropical resorts, shops, and restaurants; those seeking more seclusion will head to the outer island clusters such as Abacos and Exumas. Across its 700 islands and 2,000 small cays, the Bahamas boast white sandy beaches, stunning blue waters, coral reefs teeming with marine life, and world-class sportfishing.  

Turks and Caicos

Another fan favorite, the Turks and Caicos offer everything from pristine beaches to luxury resorts to a massive 14-mile barrier reef to more secluded spots like Pine Cay, with stunning wildlife and miles of secluded beaches. 

Puerto Rico 

Here you’ll find excellent fishing, hundreds of cays and islets, and the Spanish Virgin Islands, a term used for the four small islands between Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. One of them, Vieques, boasts the brightest bioluminescent bay in the world.

British Virgin Islands

A popular yachting destination, the four major islands (Tortola, Virgin Gorda, Anegada, and Jost Van Dyke) and 50 smaller islands and cays are best known for reef-lined beaches, world-class diving, and excellent sailing.

Lesser Antilles & Leeward Islands

These groups of Caribbean islands, including St Lucia, St. Martin, St Vincent, and the Grenadines, and St. Barths, offer the chance to easily island hop and experience a great diversity of tropical environments. From swimming with dolphins, sharks, and turtles, to exploring tropical rainforests, natural hot springs, and spectacular waterfalls, to simply soaking up the sun and gazing out on miles of beautiful beaches and shimmering water. 

In addition to these gems, there are plenty of other exotic destinations to consider that will expand your charter possibilities.

Tahiti (French Polynesia) is open to US tourists and ready to blow your mind with its otherworldly beauty spread over a thousand miles of ocean.

Seychelles was minimally impacted by the pandemic. Its steep forested islands, spectacular white sand beaches, and clear turquoise waters are ready to wow.  

Belize has so many deserted islands and atolls that you can plan a charter where you rarely run into anyone.

Panama’s San Blas Islands offer seclusion, endless hiking trails, and stunning waters to enjoy nearly by yourself. 

Patagonia, in the southern end of South America, is a wondrous land of jaw-dropping natural beauty — glacial fjords, balmy rainforests, mountaintop glaciers, abundant wildlife — one that needs to be seen to be truly believed. 


The vacation of your dreams is only a phone call away, but to turn these dreams into reality, you’ll need to move quickly. Contact Susan Harris today to start planning your ultimate getaway: 561-870-4142 | sharris@hmy.com


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