10 Point plan for an extended boat trip

Planning for an extended boat trip is very different to taking what you need for just a day out on the water.

  1. Be realistic and assess carefully which destinations are within your cruising capability.
  2. Chart your route and research it using any available guides and references. Make sure you have the appropriate navigation charts.
  3. Check for any documentation required for you, your crew and your boat e.g. visas, cards, proof of insurance etc. and advise your insurers of your plans.
  4. Quantify fuel and provisions required and availability en route together with stop over berths where you can re-supply.
  5. Brush up your navigation skills and check equipment. Maybe take a refresher course to hone your skills.
  6. Ensure that your vessel is mechanically and electronically sound an capable of making the trip.
  7. Check all safety equipment, including first aid, spare parts and equipment and that you have adequate water and fuel supplies. Provide for emergency back-up.
  8. Ensure you have an engine spare key and keep it separate and securely stored.
  9. If single handed, please inform your insurer as there may be restrictions that apply.
  10. Monitor weather forecasts well in advance and be prepared to change plans if bad weather threatens.