Just a short note to all those who are intending to take an unknown crew with them when crossing the Atlantic. Before you leave a check.

1. Sailing history. Don’t just take their word for it. Get a reference and check the details. A copy of their logbook would be a good idea, then cross ref the details.

2. Onward movement. When you get to your destination what are the crew’s intentions? If they intend to fly on, check their ticket. If they say they have friends they will stay with that is fine but you may not be able to leave the island before they do.

I say this as I have had a bad experience with the crew.

Both of the crew were very badly seasick and stayed in their bunks for 3 days.

One of the crew had a Yachtmaster certificate so I assumed (wrongly) that he was competent. On further discussions, it seems that he took a fast track course to achieve the qualification with no previous experience. The experience that he had after the course was on a 70ft boat as part of a large crew!

The other crew was Spanish and although he talked the talk when, after sailing with him, I asked for details they were sketchy and inconsistent. He then said that the offshore experience was listed by mistake!!!!!

It has taken nearly 4 weeks to get them cleared off of the boat legally. This will be the last time I take the crew that I do not know.

Ian Brayley – Yacht Calima (UK)