bosundog

Pay to play - amateur racing

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Looking for insight and feedback.  I had a recent discussion with sailing friends regarding what I'd call "pay to play" with crew for races.   The boats I play with as crew it was the norm to BYOB, and perhaps contribute snacks and lunch or such.  Labor for maintenance was desired but not demanded. Transitioning into distance and ocean races I'm hearing more about owners "requesting" contributions, sometimes significant amounts of cash to get on a boat, cash for new sails, more significant entry fees, bottom jobs, yadda yadda.    Thought being if crew forks over bucks. They're more "invested" in the event.  Is this now the new norm? 

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Fuuuuuuuuuuuccckkkkkkkkkkkk that.

It's one thing to bring a case of beer on Wednesday night, it's another thing entirely to make me write a check so you can buy a new jib.

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3 minutes ago, onepointfivethumbs said:

it's another thing entirely to make me write a check so you can buy a new jib.

indeed, that's a shareholder.

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The norm here: If you're just a guest, you don't pay. If you are regular crew in a team, you pay an annual fee and of course help on all maintenance, and deliveries. The fee is to cover a new sail or two, and diesel, entry fees, etc. Nobody expects the owner/skipper to do all work alone, or pay for everything. I pay 8000NOK, that's about....hm, 800$. I think thats a pretty normal rate. This is for Wednesday night races, a couple of distance races, one or two w/l weekends. For championships abroad, we split all costs. 

Most owners are just regular people with regular jobs, not rich guys, btw. 

 

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If I got on a boat and someone said the fee for this race is  $1, I would get right back off.

For a long time crew to get together to fund a big away regatta with everyone chipping in for food and gas is one thing, but NFW can I imagine trying to collect a fee or paying one. Besides for all the other reasons, if I was charging for a race I would now have paying passengers with all the legal implications that go with it.

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Full Disclosure: I have never owned a boat or been a shareholder.

If you're having fun, being asked to contribute some time and/or money towards food, beverages and even the cost of a sail, I say that's money well spent.

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There's a right way and a wrong way to do this.

The 'right' way is to have a crew party, at the boat, at the start of the season before the boat is in the water.  The owner brings beer, and barbecue.  The crews brings themselves and the willingness to work.  The boat gets washed, painted, waxed, rigged, cleaned out in the process.  At the end of the season, have a wrap-up party and do the same thing.  Sails all get removed and rolled, boat cleaned, bottom power-washed.

You don't fucking charge people to race.  You have them put in the sweat equity while having a good time.  Before each race you make sure they get there early enough to wash down the boat, top and sides.  If the interior is getting bad, shopvac it.  I think any regular crew and group of friends shouldn't have a problem with this.  But $800 to race?  Hell.  No.  

I grew up racing and the only time I was asked for money is when we were trailering teh boat half way across the country.  That was to help pay for gas and hotel.

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4 minutes ago, RATM said:

Full Disclosure: I have never owned a boat or been a shareholder.

If you're having fun, being asked to contribute some time and/or money towards food, beverages and even the cost of a sail, I say that's money well spent.

My boat needs a new radar. Send $$$$ and I'll take you for a sail and hope the USCG doesn't find out ;)

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2 hours ago, NORBowGirl said:

The norm here: If you're just a guest, you don't pay. If you are regular crew in a team, you pay an annual fee and of course help on all maintenance, and deliveries. The fee is to cover a new sail or two, and diesel, entry fees, etc. Nobody expects the owner/skipper to do all work alone, or pay for everything. I pay 8000NOK, that's about....hm, 800$. I think thats a pretty normal rate. This is for Wednesday night races, a couple of distance races, one or two w/l weekends. For championships abroad, we split all costs. 

Most owners are just regular people with regular jobs, not rich guys, btw. 

 

But you live in Norway. Maybe it is a different ethos there than, say, the U.S. $800 to some other private boat owner? That's just weird. You own part of the boat then...

There are clubs in the U.S. (first one was I think Manhattan YAcht Club, soon thereafter another,  Liberty Yacht Club, in Philadelphia,) which are more like tennis clubs. You pay yearly dues, you check out a boat like you'd reserve a court. You go sail or race. The amount per year is about what you are paying (or waas....haven't checked in a while....I used to coach at one of these) ...

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Pay to Play scenarios.....can become a mess and deadly.  Something that we have seen happen and I am continually not a fan of. 

I like the fact that someone puts forth an incredible option for people to get out sailing and racing but first and foremost make sure you make that distinction.  Racing involves a run through of all the systems on the boat weekly to maintain the safety of the vessel and it's crew.  Most importantly for the sailors sailing the vessel.  Not that cruising it you should overlook anything but a BC must be appointed and paid to clean, maintain, and refit anything that needs attention.

Lastly, when you are a guest on a boat and are bringing something to drink, bring what YOU are planning on drinking and sharing.  Nothing worse than a case of falstaff that sits in a heated damp dock box for 3 mths.

 

 

 

 

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14 minutes ago, fastyacht said:

But you live in Norway. Maybe it is a different ethos there than, say, the U.S. $800 to some other private boat owner? That's just weird. You own part of the boat then...

 

It's a very expensive x-yacht :D hehe. I guess the owner pays way more than any member of the team. And the team is the essence here. When you've paid for it, you don't quit. And the owner can't just get other crew, we pay for the right to participate, and make democratic decisions. We have a couple of distance races where we can choose to not go, and in that case he can get other crew. I think it's a sweet arrangement. So "own part of the boat" isn't quite correct, but "team ownership" maybe. 

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Horses for courses.

I have been lucky to start racing in WLIS where it is not common to pay to be part of a race program.  As a new grad,  working in NYC, I was able to race 2x a week on J24's from the World Financial Center as a guest. I would look at the paying members with awe and disgust at the same time. I think it is a slippery slope and if you require $ for a personal boat, the legal ramifications could backfire and cost you said boat.

That said, when I get rich and my buddy needs a new sail cus' he is in a jam, I will most likely buy him one and ask for nothing.

Sail Safe and give when you can.

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21 minutes ago, NORBowGirl said:

It's a very expensive x-yacht :D hehe. I guess the owner pays way more than any member of the team. And the team is the essence here. When you've paid for it, you don't quit. And the owner can't just get other crew, we pay for the right to participate, and make democratic decisions. We have a couple of distance races where we can choose to not go, and in that case he can get other crew. I think it's a sweet arrangement. So "own part of the boat" isn't quite correct, but "team ownership" maybe. 

So this is all on a handshake then? No bylaws no contract? All "off the books" to avoid passenger vessel rules?

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12 minutes ago, SailRacer said:

Horses for courses.

I have been lucky to start racing in WLIS where it is not common to pay to be part of a race program.  As a new grad,  working in NYC, I was able to race 2x a week on J24's from the World Financial Center as a guest. I would look at the paying members with awe and disgust at the same time. I think it is a slippery slope and if you require $ for a personal boat, the legal ramifications could backfire and cost you said boat.

That said, when I get rich and my buddy needs a new sail cus' he is in a jam, I will most likely buy him one and ask for nothing.

Sail Safe and give when you can.

Well, it works fine in my country :)

When you give your buddy a new sail, btw, for nothing, he will feel he owes you something. It can ruin a friendship so do it carefully ;) 

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1 minute ago, fastyacht said:

So this is all on a handshake then? No bylaws no contract? All "off the books" to avoid passenger vessel rules?

Yep. It's a sports team. 

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3 minutes ago, NORBowGirl said:

Yep. It's a sports team. 

In the U.S. a "sports team" is most definitely NOT on a handshake. There is a contract. Waivers. Legal stuff. No team would be stupid enough to not do that. Even though they can still be liable and many of the waivers are unenforceable...but that's another topic.

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7 minutes ago, NORBowGirl said:

Well, it works fine in my country :)

When you give your buddy a new sail, btw, for nothing, he will feel he owes you something. It can ruin a friendship so do it carefully ;) 

ISn't that hte same as giving your buddy $8000 crowns? You think he owes you something? (He does--you are on the boat, not someone else...).

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2 minutes ago, fastyacht said:

In the U.S. a "sports team" is most definitely NOT on a handshake. There is a contract. Waivers. Legal stuff. No team would be stupid enough to not do that. Even though they can still be liable and many of the waivers are unenforceable...but that's another topic.

I guess we are less complicated ;)   

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1 minute ago, fastyacht said:

ISn't that hte same as giving your buddy $8000 crowns? You think he owes you something? (He does--you are on the boat, not someone else...).

I don't donate 8000 for nothing, so it's not the same. 

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1 minute ago, NORBowGirl said:

I guess we are less complicated ;)   

If you take your kid to the skating rink to join the "Trondheim Thunderbolts" squirt hockey team, there is no contract? No wiaver? If you yourself join the adult hocket theam, the "Trondheim Bombers" you don't have to sign a document?
??

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9 minutes ago, NORBowGirl said:

Well, it works fine in my country :)

When you give your buddy a new sail, btw, for nothing, he will feel he owes you something. It can ruin a friendship so do it carefully ;) 

I would buy him a sail because he has hosted me and bought flights multiple times not including beer ETC. because he could. 

Go Team!

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Just now, NORBowGirl said:

I don't donate 8000 for nothing, so it's not the same. 

isn't the sail for something? Why is it nothing?

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2 minutes ago, fastyacht said:

If you take your kid to the skating rink to join the "Trondheim Thunderbolts" squirt hockey team, there is no contract? No wiaver? If you yourself join the adult hocket theam, the "Trondheim Bombers" you don't have to sign a document?
??

Probably not. What for?  

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2 minutes ago, SailRacer said:

I would buy him a sail because he has hosted me and bought flights multiple times not including beer ETC. because he could. 

Go Team!

:)  

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2 minutes ago, NORBowGirl said:

Probably not. What for?  

So you don't know for sure.

I often work with people from other countries. On occasion we start out thinking it is different then eventually after more discussion we discover, "oh, it's actually the same here." So simple honest questions. Is there an actual structural difference or is it a quasi-cultural difference?
 

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1 minute ago, fastyacht said:

So you don't know for sure.

I often work with people from other countries. On occasion we start out thinking it is different then eventually after more discussion we discover, "oh, it's actually the same here." So simple honest questions. Is there an actual structural difference or is it a quasi-cultural difference?
 

So, this sailing team is not as official as, lets say a football team playing in a series. But anyway, I've played in several official sports teams (not fotball), and only had a contract when it was at an elite, national level. And the contract really just said that I had to stay with them for the season and not quit, no money was involved.  But you seem more concerned about liability? That's what I don't understand. Do you mean that he's responsible for something if I get injured? 

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12 minutes ago, fastyacht said:

In the U.S. a "sports team" is most definitely NOT on a handshake. There is a contract. Waivers. Legal stuff. No team would be stupid enough to not do that. Even though they can still be liable and many of the waivers are unenforceable...but that's another topic.

If you start from the premis that it is extremely unlikely that anyone involved is going to sue anyone else for anything, and note that you don't need a license to go boating in Norway if you are under forty then things may start to make more sense. I don't know the details of how and when a group of friends sharing costs becomes a commercial relationship but I'm guessing that this sort of cost-sharing arrangement is quite a long way from it... hence NBG's perplexity.

 I strongly suspect it's both a significant structural difference and a cultural one, with the former being underpinned by the latter. I was somewhat taken aback to discover from comments on this site the amount of regulation and control that seems to be in place in the States, for example.

Cheers,

              W.

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4 minutes ago, WGWarburton said:

If you start from the premis that it is extremely unlikely that anyone involved is going to sue anyone else for anything, and note that you don't need a license to go boating in Norway if you are under forty then things may start to make more sense. I don't know the details of how and when a group of friends sharing costs becomes a commercial relationship but I'm guessing that this sort of cost-sharing arrangement is quite a long way from it... hence NBG's perplexity.

 I strongly suspect it's both a significant structural difference and a cultural one, with the former being underpinned by the latter. I was somewhat taken aback to discover from comments on this site the amount of regulation and control that seems to be in place in the States, for example.

Cheers,

              W.

Yep. Plus, if I get injured I'd just go to the hospital and get help, in our public healthcare system. So I wouldn't need to sue anybody to pay any medical bills. 

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2 minutes ago, WGWarburton said:

If you start from the premis that it is extremely unlikely that anyone involved is going to sue anyone else for anything, and note that you don't need a license to go boating in Norway if you are under forty then things may start to make more sense. I don't know the details of how and when a group of friends sharing costs becomes a commercial relationship but I'm guessing that this sort of cost-sharing arrangement is quite a long way from it... hence NBG's perplexity.

 I strongly suspect it's both a significant structural difference and a cultural one, with the former being underpinned by the latter. I was somewhat taken aback to discover from comments on this site the amount of regulation and control that seems to be in place in the States, for example.

Cheers,

              W.

In normal sailing practice it is doubtfully any different. But sailing on a friend's boat is not a "sports team." I have never signed a contract to sail with a friend. As a crew I've bought sandwiches, I've more often had them bought for me. I've bought sandwiches as a skipper...I've done ocean races--no contracts. I've put in effort helping a friend fix up a boat. I've sailed the boat, with no contracts. No direct expectations but surely indirectly so. But this topic became interesting because of the "quid pro quo" (popular term du jour) implied. That's where the American's spidey senses come alive and say, whoah--is this different? How?

There are a LOT of fractional ownership partners racing sailboats. They do it as many ways as there are people. Sometimes they end in spectacularly messy fashion. The "lawyerliness" in the U.S. is not all bad. Some of it is simply being well-informed, straightforward and honest so that nobody gets taken aback and surprised. The same reason we write contracts when we do business: what are expectations, what are responsibilities, how do we resolve disputes?

Organisations (as opposed to individuals) such as sports teams, have a corporate responsibility and liability and resources at stake. A team is a corporate body, even if it is rather informally structured. Every junior team in the part of the U.S. that I am in, has some corporate structure. Even applies to junior fleet activities of sailing clubs, school sailing teams etc.

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If you’re going out in the ocean and your skipper can’t afford to make the boat safe (because if hes asking for money he’s definitely not in the competitive universe) without begging for cash from his crew then I would seriously Reconsider stepping on that vessel. 

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8 minutes ago, NORBowGirl said:

Yep. Plus, if I get injured I'd just go to the hospital and get help, in our public healthcare system. So I wouldn't need to sue anybody to pay any medical bills. 

LOL.

In Canada you;d do the same but wait 2 years for the surgery.

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In the USA, if you pay me to go out on my boat, I am carrying passengers for hire. I need to have a USCG captain's license and the boat has to meet various requirements. If I do not do this, I am essentially a criminal the same way I would be if I was trying to run an airline with a private pilot's license. If you got hurt or killed, the USCG would have my ass in jail probably and fined for damn sure and the insurance company would probably not cover a blatantly illegal operation.

There are some grey areas, sharing running expenses is permitted. You can chip in for food and gas. You cannot pay a "fee" to be on the boat. Besides for all that, NO ONE WOULD DO THIS HERE. One reason racing is dying a slow death here is people cannot get crew for free. If no one will sail with you for free, who is going to PAY to do it. Why would you when the other 4 boats you walked past to go illegally pay for a ride are begging for crew and will probably give you some beer and a sandwich.

 

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I've only ever sailed dinghies, but it does strike me as odd that the owner is the only one who's expected to pay to play. Its not, after all if his "investment" in the boat is ever going to bring her/him a return. It is, after all, a money pit.

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1 minute ago, fastyacht said:

LOL.

In Canada you;d do the same but wait 2 years for the surgery.

In the USA you get the surgery right away but spend 2 years salary paying for it :rolleyes:

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3 minutes ago, JimC said:

I've only ever sailed dinghies, but it does strike me as odd that the owner is the only one who's expected to pay to play. Its not, after all if his "investment" in the boat is ever going to bring her/him a return. It is, after all, a money pit.

Yes, a voluntarily engaged for love money pit. He owns the damned thing. His crew don't. That's the thing. And what KISailor says is absolutely true. In fact it is spelled out quite clearly in the Code of Federal Regulations.

If you want your "crew" to contribute to the operation, then he is either:

a passenger or

and owner.

Pick your poison.

If you want to race, you can't have passengers. Therefore, you must have fractional ownership.

Simple really.

You want crew? Can't get anyone to pony up for ownership? Well then I guess you are stuck. Make some PB & J and get some free volunteers.

Oh wait, that's what we do...

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1 minute ago, kent_island_sailor said:

In the USA you get the surgery right away but spend 2 years salary paying for it :rolleyes:

10 years actually :-/

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1 minute ago, JimC said:

I've only ever sailed dinghies, but it does strike me as odd that the owner is the only one who's expected to pay to play. Its not, after all if his "investment" in the boat is ever going to bring her/him a return. It is, after all, a money pit.

If I can't afford to own a boat, I am not going begging to get you to pay for it. If you are going to take a day off work or a week off work so come work your ass off so *I can race my boat*, you already are helping me out hugely! Bringing beer and snacks even better :D

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I have never raced on a boat where I paid for more than my expenses. I have spent a lot of time working on boats and that could be considered pay.   In the US once you go beyond that your into your a paying passenger and more complicated rules.

 

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10 minutes ago, jackolantern said:

If you’re going out in the ocean and your skipper can’t afford to make the boat safe (because if hes asking for money he’s definitely not in the competitive universe) without begging for cash from his crew then I would seriously Reconsider stepping on that vessel. 

THIS!!!!!!!!!!!!

What else got put on the deferred list that you don't know about!

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If an owner wants the crew to share expenses then it's a partnership. Expect me to share the costs? Then we share driving, trophies etc. 

If you can't afford to campaign a boat then get a cheaper one.

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5 minutes ago, d'ranger said:

If an owner wants the crew to share expenses then it's a partnership. Expect me to share the costs? Then we share driving, trophies etc. 

If you can't afford to campaign a boat then get a cheaper one.

The only exceptio nbeing of course a 505. Many of us owners prefer to be on the wire:-)

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Hi,

       See, significant cultural differences: note NBG's comments above "Nobody expects the owner/skipper to do all work alone, or pay for everything." and "For championships abroad, we split all costs."

 It's clearly very different from the way things work in the USA.... On the one hand, in KIS's world it's very clear that the boat is his, and if he want to race it then he's footing all the bills, probably paying expenses and expected to be grateful (as, clearly he is) that people choose to come and sail with him. In NBG's world, there's a group of people collaborating to enjoy their sport. The owner clearly has the heaviest investment but all of the regular crew are committed to the "programme" and there's a strong collaborative element to the "team". I suspect this is not a viable model in the USA for all the reasons cited above. Maybe there would be more people racing boats if it were?

 There's no issue with "paying crew", that's not how it works. There's no issue with liability, that's not how it works.

 It's just different, you know- like being in another country.  :-)

Cheers,

              W.

 

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1 minute ago, fastyacht said:

The only exceptio nbeing of course a 505. Many of us owners prefer to be on the wire:-)

It is a cool place to hang out.  

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Would you be willing to pay $5,000 for a crew seat on a Pac Cup TP52 one way? It is open, I declined the offer.

 

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3 minutes ago, Black Jack said:

Would you be willing to pay $5,000 for a crew seat on a Pac Cup TP52 one way? It is open, I declined the offer.

 

 are you are you saying an owner of a tp52 actually put that one out there? Because that's a paying passenger. It's crazy.

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15 minutes ago, fastyacht said:

The only exceptio nbeing of course a 505. Many of us owners prefer to be on the wire:-)

I always preferred to be on the wire for the osprey.

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Ok, what about requiring certain gear for an offshore race. Like quality PFDs, foulies, and AIS or EPIRB beacons?

Would you agree to crew on a boat that required a $500-1000+ personal gear outlay? Or only if the owner paid?

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3 minutes ago, Starboard!! said:

Ok, what about requiring certain gear for an offshore race. Like quality PFDs, foulies, and AIS or EPIRB beacons?

Would you agree to crew on a boat that required a $500-1000+ personal gear outlay? Or only if the owner paid?

Nobody ever bought me a foul weather jacket to race on his boat...and many people prefer their own PFD anyway. Personal equipment is personal. Beacons well, I guess that's negotiable. You've had that requirement? Your own personal epirb?

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Just now, Starboard!! said:

Ok, what about requiring certain gear for an offshore race. Like quality PFDs, foulies, and AIS or EPIRB beacons?

Would you agree to crew on a boat that required a $500-1000+ personal gear outlay? Or only if the owner paid?

I am not buying your PFD or foulies. Same reason I don't buy your underwear or sunglasses. Why would crew bring their own AIS or EPIRB? That is part of the boat, not part of your kit. if they want their own PLB to keep in their pocket they would be buying that.

Crew brings: Clothes, shoes, sunglasses, PFDs, and so on.

I bring: Sails, engines, radios, and so on.

 

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I don't ask crew to pay for entry fees, sails etc.  They do bring their own safety gear, including AIS MOB and we share the cost of food for ocean races.

At least one skipper I know 'charges' his crew for the privilege of racing from Annapolis to Newport or Bermuda even though he has no CG license.

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9 minutes ago, kent_island_sailor said:

Crew brings: Clothes, shoes, sunglasses, PFDs, and so on.

So what do you do when your crew shows up for the offshore race with some old-ass PFD from the 80s that may or may not deploy and doesn't meet the offshore SER requirements (leg straps etc...)? Do you provide a proper one ($350-400) or tell them to go get a Musto or Spinlock?

The challenge is that it's your boat & your liability, ultimately.

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W. T. Fuck? The sport is slowing dying and people charge their crew? Its hard enough to get a steady consistent crew without charging them. I bought my boat because I wanted to race, and I wanted to drive. The way I see it, my crew does me a favor by allowing me to do just that. We rig and de rig at the start and end of the season as a team. I pay for the maintenance, sails, etc for MY boat. If the owner sells their boat, do they split the money with the crew? On Wednesday nights, I put beer and snacks on the boat. 9 times out of ten, someone on the crew brings a bottle of rum, but I never ask. Usually someone volunteers to bring ice. For regattas, I provide beer drinks and sandwiches, if people want more, they are welcome to bring it. 

Blows my mind that this actually happens.

 

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12 minutes ago, Starboard!! said:

So what do you do when your crew shows up for the offshore race with some old-ass PFD from the 80s that may or may not deploy and doesn't meet the offshore SER requirements (leg straps etc...)? Do you provide a proper one ($350-400) or tell them to go get a Musto or Spinlock?

The challenge is that it's your boat & your liability, ultimately.

I would have made sure the crew had the correct gear long before the start. They need the right gear to go.

* made sure as in telling them, not BUYING it :rolleyes:

** I am sure if we had some eager poor kid we would all chip in

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15 minutes ago, jsaronson said:

I don't ask crew to pay for entry fees, sails etc.  They do bring their own safety gear, including AIS MOB and we share the cost of food for ocean races.

At least one skipper I know 'charges' his crew for the privilege of racing from Annapolis to Newport or Bermuda even though he has no CG license.

Well that guy is a stupid ass dud.

Reminds me of the guy I sailed with -- once --in a C Bay regatta. We go to a famous mafia restaurant for dinner in Fells Point (the old days), He says, "order anything on the menu." Then at the end of dinner he says, "I said order--I didn't say I was paying for it," What a shlub. Needless to say, it was a never to be repeated crew "opportunity." Heck, I gave up a nice day on my dinghy for that.

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As an owner, I would never ask a crew to pay to do a race.  For everything else, though, it depends.

I do ask that they help with boat work over the winter and that everyone commits to at least one delivery per season.  I am fortunate to have a crew that loves to do those things and we enjoy doing them together.

Food and lodging for away regattas are a bit different.  I typically cover most of the cost and accept donations though I don't buy dinner every night.  It also depends on the number of away regattas.  Last year we were in Chicago 4 times and that got expensive.  For one of the races, one of my guys got us hotel rooms with points.  It was a great contribution that I gladly and without guilt accepted.

Most of my crew are middle-aged and experienced so they have some resources, work flexibility, and time.  Those guys have their own kit because they have been able to spend the cash.  For younger crew who have less resources, I will help in any way I can to get and keep them involved.  I have extra kit for the youngsters who might not have been able to spend the $1-2K for a proper PFD, foulies, boots, etc.

I buy the sails, equipment, electronic upgrades, maintenance supplies, yard fees, slip fees, storage fees, crew gear entry fees, rating certificates, yacht club memberships, etc...  Any owner knows those things add up quickly so I happily accept sweat equity, beer, and food when it is offered.

Cheers.

Hrothgar

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Certainly over the years (and there have been a lot of them) I have sailed in several programs. Payment for local races was never required. Doing maintenance on the boat was a given. Hawaii races and Van Isles were always shared expenses and boat prep. After all we were a team. 

Even back in the 90s I know of people who were paying $3000 to do Hawaii races. There are people paying to do return trips! No doubt if there is a problem you could probably get sued. The way of the world. If that was my main focus I probably would never have raced my boat. 

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If they can’t afford the boat they need to sell it.That is total bull shit.Fucking cheap skates

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seems to me that the is a wide breath of opinions and options, and it looks like it boils down to the cultural concept of 'ownership', the cost/type of boat and the type of sailing involved. Everyone from the US is expressing a highly developed sense of ownership and liability, with the opposite in Norway,  and Canada someplace in between. Seems to be along the lines of availability of public services and healthcare (sign waivers, etc), and the structure of super-expensive YCs that are more common in the US than elsewhere. The cheaper the YC, the more 'regular' folk can join, the more 'equal' the people who own vs crew are, while the more expensive a YC is, the larger the gap in wealth there is between the boat owner and crew. I've seen $5K boats being sailed very cooperatively where it's owned by one person, but everyone works and pools money together to fix/repair it for their common enjoyment, and $500K boats where crew only crews and the (rich) owner makes sure it's all maintained - it all depends, I guess.

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Besides for all that, I do NOT need someone telling me what to do with MY boat like they are a part owner or something.

Would you fly on this airplane?

"Hey the battery is dead and the nose tire is flat. Get a battery and a tire and meet me at the airport" :o

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3 minutes ago, mihnea said:

seems to me that the is a wide breath of opinions and options, and it looks like it boils down to the cultural concept of 'ownership', the cost/type of boat and the type of sailing involved. Everyone from the US is expressing a highly developed sense of ownership and liability, with the opposite in Norway,  and Canada someplace in between. Seems to be along the lines of availability of public services and healthcare (sign waivers, etc), and the structure of super-expensive YCs that are more common in the US than elsewhere. The cheaper the YC, the more 'regular' folk can join, the more 'equal' the people who own vs crew are, while the more expensive a YC is, the larger the gap in wealth there is between the boat owner and crew. I've seen $5K boats being sailed very cooperatively where it's owned by one person, but everyone works and pools money together to fix/repair it for their common enjoyment, and $500K boats where crew only crews and the (rich) owner makes sure it's all maintained - it all depends, I guess.

I never ever for a second viewed my boat as community property. If the shit hits the fan the government and lawyers sure as shit know who to come after and it isn't the whole yacht club nor the crew.

For cheap sailing right up the river there is a club where they race dinghies and have loaner boats you can race for FREE. Do that if you can't afford to race a big boat.

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8 minutes ago, kent_island_sailor said:

Besides for all that, I do NOT need someone telling me what to do with MY boat like they are a part owner or something.

Which is why I have never asked for money from crew.

It cuts both ways. I worked on somebody else's boat for 2 years. Maintenance, which went well beyond slapping on anti-fouling. Organised the crew list (which was very time-consuming). Paid them some money (my choice but hinted at). The plan was to compete in a specific major event. A biannual major event, what could that possibly have been? Anyway, with a couple of weeks to go, they pulled out, for what I didn't consider a good reason. They seemed surprised when I was seriously unhappy. If you accept free labour and cash, you have a certain moral obligation to those from whom you have accepted it. I never sailed with them again.

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I'm also up in Scandinavia where I know many yachts do this pay to play scheme. Have been crew on one or two for some seasons in the past as well where I coined up.

But if I ever where to do it on my current boat (which is probably among the most expensive/well kept boats in the fleet), I don't think all of the regular crew/friends I want to sail with would have sailed on that boat with me. Some of them have their own boats which I guest as well, same deal. Some, depending on their economy, I even pay for travel/beers/food if I get the feeling they are cash strapped. I have even coined up for top foulies that I let people borrow, so I don't have to look at some of them being cold, wet & miserable onboard. But sure, I admit my economy allows it and understand that it doesn't for everyone.

I just want to mess around sailing with the people I like, having fun. Collecting money and running things closer to what a business looks like is not part of that, I can do that on my day job instead.

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as an owner, I cannot imagine asking for $$ from my crew for a sail, or maintenance.  That just doesnt sound appropriate to me.

people that offer to bring beer and sandwiches get the crew call first.

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Just now, Code 2 said:

as an owner, I cannot imagine asking for $$ from my crew for a sail, or maintenance.  That just doesnt sound appropriate to me.

 

In general, I agree, especially for local races. But for something like Bermuda, you're looking at 10-20k in prep, fees, etc... Everyone bitches about how no one is racing, but a big part of that is the exorbitant costs to be competitive.  I don't think paying for sails is appropriate, but what about sharing food, lodging, & entry fees? (Which really is just  drop in the bucket.)

 

 

 

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25 minutes ago, kent_island_sailor said:

Besides for all that, I do NOT need someone telling me what to do with MY boat like they are a part owner or something.

Would you fly on this airplane?

"Hey the battery is dead and the nose tire is flat. Get a battery and a tire and meet me at the airport" :o

I don’t think that’s a real issue for us. We don’t consider ourselves as part owners. However, if the owner decided to quit racing in the middle of the season, we’d probably ask to get our money back, since the fee is meant to cover the running costs of that season. 

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15 minutes ago, dogwatch said:

Which is why I have never asked for money from crew.

It cuts both ways. I worked on somebody else's boat for 2 years. Maintenance, which went well beyond slapping on anti-fouling. Organised the crew list (which was very time-consuming). Paid them some money (my choice but hinted at). The plan was to compete in a specific major event. A biannual major event, what could that possibly have been? Anyway, with a couple of weeks to go, they pulled out, for what I didn't consider a good reason. They seemed surprised when I was seriously unhappy. If you accept free labour and cash, you have a certain moral obligation to those from whom you have accepted it. I never sailed with them again.

That is a problem that cuts both ways. What if I think the keel bolts look a little dodgy or maybe the SSB insulator looks bad enough to bring the whole rig down and I have a dock full of people that paid and worked all year on my boat. Do I say "never mind, not doing this famous biannual event" and piss them all off or take my chances?

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1 minute ago, NORBowGirl said:

I don’t think that’s a real issue for us. We don’t consider ourselves as part owners. However, if the owner decided to quit racing in the middle of the season, we’d probably ask to get our money back, since the fee is meant to cover the running costs of that season. 

Yet another reason no way no how would I deal with (illegal) paying passengers.

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3 minutes ago, Starboard!! said:

In general, I agree, especially for local races. But for something like Bermuda, you're looking at 10-20k in prep, fees, etc... Everyone bitches about how no one is racing, but a big part of that is the exorbitant costs to be competitive.  I don't think paying for sails is appropriate, but what about sharing food, lodging, & entry fees? (Which really is just  drop in the bucket.)

 

 

 

For Bermuda we always expected crew to feed themselves on the island and pay their own way home if not sailing. The boat was free lodging, anything else was your dime. Back in the day the entrance fee was about what a movie and dinner for 2 cost, so that hardly mattered. I would never ask someone to buy me a SSB or a storm jib or similar.

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4 minutes ago, kent_island_sailor said:

For Bermuda...

Back in the day the entrance fee was about what a movie and dinner for 2 cost, so that hardly mattered.

Now it's 1100 just to enter...and that's the cheapest part.

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12 minutes ago, kent_island_sailor said:

That is a problem that cuts both ways. What if I think the keel bolts look a little dodgy or maybe the SSB insulator looks bad enough to bring the whole rig down and I have a dock full of people that paid and worked all year on my boat. Do I say "never mind, not doing this famous biannual event" and piss them all off or take my chances?

Wasn't anything like that. As I said, they pulled out for what I didn't consider a good reason. I'm an owner/skipper too and have a view on what's a good reason for pulling out of an event. Beyond that, I'm not going into details.

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I think some of the American posters on this thread are struggling with the Nordic concept of chipping in towards the cost of a racing program.   I actually get it.  Nobody contributes to the cost of my sailing because my costs are low and I can afford them...but I get the concept.

Have you never been on a vacation with friends where everyone contributes their share of the costs?

Have you never been on a road trip in a friends car or camper van, when everyone contributes to the cost of gas and tolls and then maybe chipped in to buy a new set of tires for the car owner as a way of saying thank you for putting 12,000 miles on the car?

Have you ever organized a soccer tournament for 33 kids where the parents split the cost of balls and uniforms and hiring a coach and referee but one generous parent hired the playing fields for the weekend?

In my case, because its America :(, I got asked to design a very simple waiver form which I did for free.....but apart from the waiver its not so different.

 

If a friend owned a 50' cruiser racer and was pondering the cost of doing the Bermuda race with friends......hey I would be up for forming a committed syndicate ..... where we shared the costs and all made the commitment to train together, prepare and provision the boat together, do some preliminary races together  and have a first class, well organized race with some good sails to Bermuda with good friends , sharing a common objective and sharing the helm. It would be damn good fun. We need some Norwegian thinking over here to re-inject enthusiasm into our sport!

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You're required to "pay" to get a ride on a racing sailboat?    Hmmmmmmmm…...

It might theoretically constitute "carriage of passengers for hire", which the Coast Guard can bust boatowner for doing without a COI (if more than 6 crew) or a captain's license (for one or more pax for hire)

I recall they've carved an exception for "sharing expenses", but you might want to withhold that bit of info at first, especially if you don't have the scratch to buy your way on board...

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3 hours ago, NORBowGirl said:

Yep. Plus, if I get injured I'd just go to the hospital and get help, in our public healthcare system. So I wouldn't need to sue anybody to pay any medical bills. 

You gotta love North Sea oil!

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4 minutes ago, nolatom said:

You're required to "pay" to get a ride on a racing sailboat?    Hmmmmmmmm…...

It might theoretically constitute "carriage of passengers for hire", which the Coast Guard can bust boatowner for doing without a COI (if more than 6 crew) or a captain's license (for one or more pax for hire)

I recall they've carved an exception for "sharing expenses", but you might want to withhold that bit of info at first, especially if you don't have the scratch to buy your way on board...

A lot more than theoretical  - you ARE carrying passengers for hire and you WILL get busted if the CG finds out about it. You most certainly can share expenses like gas, entrance fees, and food. Once you get past that into boat repairs and improvements you either have paying passengers or co-owners and only one of those two is legal.

Half the ground school for getting my commercial pilot's license was the same deal - finding out exactly what made an operation commercial. There have been endless end runs around that and about 99% of them have failed too :rolleyes:

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6 minutes ago, kent_island_sailor said:

A lot more than theoretical  - you ARE carrying passengers for hire and you WILL get busted if the CG finds out about it. You most certainly can share expenses like gas, entrance fees, and food. Once you get past that into boat repairs and improvements you either have paying passengers or co-owners and only one of those two is legal.

Half the ground school for getting my commercial pilot's license was the same deal - finding out exactly what made an operation commercial. There have been endless end runs around that and about 99% of them have failed too :rolleyes:

Lemmee drive, I've got my 100T license.  But I can't take more than  6 paying passengers, including the "owner", unless there's a COI (which there won't be)  ;-)

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As an owner (40+ foot boat we sailed offshore and in weekend regattas) I never asked for a financial contribution.  For those who offered to help, I asked them to do something that saved me time -- bring lunches, drinks, beer, etc., pick up something from the marine hardware store, assist with boat prep or deliveries - but never money.  I expected experienced sailors to arrive with their own kit - foulies, pfds, harnesses, etc.  - but I kept boat gear to help out less experienced crew and to keep them safe.  I never asked for help financing sail or gear repairs, even when things were damaged due to crew negligence.

As crew particularly on a distance race or a multi-day regatta, I looked for an item of gear or tool that the owner could use and tried to buy that as a gift.  The feedback I got was the gift was unnecessary but very much appreciated.

While now blissfully boatless, with much more disposable income, I don't regret a cent spent on the boat or racing program -- we had great times and the memories are not clouded by any ill feelings about money. 

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From your link:

If you as a passenger are required to provide any money, fuel, or supplies before or after the operator allows you to get underway on the vessel, the vessel is operating as a passenger vessel and must be operated by an individual who holds a valid Coast Guard issued Merchant Mariner’s License.

If a vessel carries just one individual passenger, or “hop on,” who provides anything more than a voluntary sharing of the actual cost of the trip, the vessel is operating as a passenger vessel and requires a Coast Guard licensed operator

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1 hour ago, kent_island_sailor said:

Yet another reason no way no how would I deal with (illegal) paying passengers.

We are not passengers. We’re part of a racing team.

edited: added racing

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I've never asked any one who crews for me for any money but..... there are some races I'd really like to do like PAC cup/ Transpac/ Vic-Maui. I'm not a great sailor but would love to experience those races. Finding a ride on a boat for one of those seems to be tough ( I've put my name in crewbanks etc) I would consider  pay-to-play for one of those, as I'd love to have the experience and it's my ideal type vacation! 

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i have never in my life heard of crew paying a private owner to race. Usually its the other way around. If you charged your crew here, you wouldnt have any crew and you'd be treated like a pariah.

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14 minutes ago, NORBowGirl said:

We are not passengers. We’re part of a racing team.

edited: added racing

 under U.S. law you ar passengers.Wwhat you are under Norwegian law remains to be seen.

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6 minutes ago, impetuous_donkey said:

I've never asked any one who crews for me for any money but..... there are some races I'd really like to do like PAC cup/ Transpac/ Vic-Maui. I'm not a great sailor but would love to experience those races. Finding a ride on a boat for one of those seems to be tough ( I've put my name in crewbanks etc) I would consider  pay-to-play for one of those, as I'd love to have the experience and it's my ideal type vacation! 

 find a find a friend or another person who really wants to do it too who's a good Helmsman or a good tactician make a team that person pays part of it but you guys have teamwork he's he she is a navigator tactician share responsibilities and credit but very carefully how the Coast Guard rules are applied to that situation or just make that person partner in Your boat.a buy-in

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1 hour ago, IPLore said:

I think some of the American posters on this thread are struggling with the Nordic concept of chipping in towards the cost of a racing program.   I actually get it.  Nobody contributes to the cost of my sailing because my costs are low and I can afford them...but I get the concept.

Have you never been on a vacation with friends where everyone contributes their share of the costs?

Have you never been on a road trip in a friends car or camper van, when everyone contributes to the cost of gas and tolls and then maybe chipped in to buy a new set of tires for the car owner as a way of saying thank you for putting 12,000 miles on the car?

Have you ever organized a soccer tournament for 33 kids where the parents split the cost of balls and uniforms and hiring a coach and referee but one generous parent hired the playing fields for the weekend?

In my case, because its America :(, I got asked to design a very simple waiver form which I did for free.....but apart from the waiver its not so different.

 

If a friend owned a 50' cruiser racer and was pondering the cost of doing the Bermuda race with friends......hey I would be up for forming a committed syndicate ..... where we shared the costs and all made the commitment to train together, prepare and provision the boat together, do some preliminary races together  and have a first class, well organized race with some good sails to Bermuda with good friends , sharing a common objective and sharing the helm. It would be damn good fun. We need some Norwegian thinking over here to re-inject enthusiasm into our sport!

Cruising: cover your costs and then some, bring food and drink, relax and enjoy the day.

Racing: bring my own foulies, drink from the ship’s beer supply, follow the skipper’s instructions and use cash only for generously tipping the club bartender.

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1 minute ago, fastyacht said:

 under U.S. law you ar passengers.Wwhat you are under Norwegian law remains to be seen.

Nope, not necessarily & only if they pay you. Otherwise courts may  look at crew of a racing boat as coadventurers, undertaking joint liability. (If you pay crew, though, then Jones Act applies)

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3 minutes ago, Starboard!! said:

Nope, not necessarily & only if they pay you. Otherwise courts may  look at crew of a racing boat as coadventurers, undertaking joint liability. (If you pay crew, though, then Jones Act applies)

That is the whole point of the thread. They pay the boat owner to race on the boat.

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1 hour ago, nolatom said:

 

From USCG flier:

CHARTER OPERATIONS  Guidance for Masters and Passengers

Q: I am thinking about going on a chartered fishing trip. What should I check for and why? A: If you as a passenger are required to provide any money, fuel, or supplies before or after the operator allows you to get underway on the vessel, the vessel is operating as a passenger vessel and must be operated by an individual who holds a valid Coast Guard issued Merchant Mariner’s License. The operator must have this license onboard. This is critical since only licensed operators have received comprehensive training on safe vessel maintenance, prudent operating techniques, and emergency procedures. Checking the operator’s license is necessary to protect the safety of you and your family.  Also, if the boat carries more than six passengers, including at least one for hire, it must meet all Coast Guard safety requirements for an inspected passenger vessel. You should ask to see a valid Certificate of Inspection.

Q: Sometimes I take passengers on charter fishing trips on my vessel. Do I need a license? A: You need a Coast Guard license if you carry even one passenger for hire on your vessel. “Passenger for hire” means a passenger for whom consideration is contributed as a condition of carriage, whether directly or indirectly flowing to the owner, charterer, operator, agent, or any other person having interest in the vessel. Consideration” means an economic benefit or profit including payment of money or donation of fuel, food, beverage, or supplies. If a vessel carries just one individual passenger, or “hop on,” who provides anything more than a voluntary sharing of the actual cost of the trip, the vessel is operating as a passenger vessel and requires a Coast Guard licensed operator. Q: I am a charter boat master/operator. I only require passengers to chip in for gas or food, or to help me cover expenses. Do I still need a license? A: If your passengers are not allowed onboard without chipping in, then they are considered “passengers for hire”, the vessel is considered a “passenger vessel”, and you must be the holder of a valid Coast Guard license. Therefore, even requiring passengers to share expenses constitutes a passenger for hire operation.

Q: I am a charter boat master/operator. What are the consequences if I am found to be operating in violation of the regulations? A: Consequences are numerous and severe: • Maximum civil penalties up to $1,100 for failure to have a valid Coast Guard license in possession and available when vessel is carrying passenger(s) for hire will be sought in cases involving unlicensed operators • Licensed operators identified as operating in violation of applicable regulations will face suspension and/or revocation of their credentials. • The Cost Guard will submit leads to the IRS for unreported income that could result in civil fines and criminal prosecution by the IRS. • The Coast Guard may notify operators’ banks and insurance companies which may change rates and coverage.

Our goal at CG Sector New York is to educate charter boat operators and prospective passengers for several reasons: 1. The Coast Guard’s number one priority is safety of life at sea. 2. It is the Coast Guard’s responsibility to uphold Federal law. 3. The Coast Guard must uniformly apply and enforce regulations to ensure fairness to all operators.

If you suspect illegal charter vessel activity, you can assist the Coast Guard by providing the following: • A detailed description of the activity. • Photographs of the activity. • Your contact information. • In addition, if you go on a chartered fishing trip, be sure to request a receipt signed by the operator in exchange for your payment.

If in doubt whether a vessel is operating legally, or if you have any other questions, contact the United States Coast Guard with your concerns: USCG Sector New York Investigations Division 718.354.4319