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Delivery Skippers and Crew

What qualifications do you need to get a delivery job?

Many delivery skippers operate on a freelance basis but there are also delivery companies that coordinate deliveries and use a pool of regular skippers and crew. The arrangements concerning payment for deliveries to either skipper or crew will vary greatly from one company or delivery to the next so it is always best to ensure you are clear on what has been agreed prior to committing to anything.

The delivery of a private yacht by a paid or unpaid delivery skipper and crew is not of itself commercial use of the yacht. However, if there are paying passengers on board then the voyage is indeed classified as commercial in which case the vessel, skipper and crew will need to comply with any relevant commercial codes of practice and manning requirements relevant to the flag state under which the vessel is registered.

In the case of commercial passages under the UK codes of practice, the vessel will need to be coded and the skipper will also require a commercial endorsement on their Certificate of Competence. If the yacht is already coded and the only people on board are the delivery skipper and crew then it is likely that the voyage will still be treated as commercial.

The qualifications required to skipper a delivery will depend on where the delivery will take place and also the nature of the passage. However, the skipper will owe a duty of care to the owner of the yacht and, as such, even for non-commercial passages, as a minimum it is recommended that the skipper holds the RYA Yachtmaster™ Offshore Certificate of Competence and should also have a significant amount of experience on vessels of a similar style and size to that being delivered. For longer passages and transocean deliveries, it is strongly recommended that the skipper holds the RYA Yachtmaster™ Ocean Certificate of Competence. The higher your qualification and greater your experience the more appealing you will be to a potential delivery company.

Delivery skippers and companies will often require crew. This is a great way to get some extra miles and experience under your belt. First Mates are genrally paid, but for deck crew more often than not you only expect to be reimbursed for your travel costs rather than receiving payment for the delivery. The RYA provides a range of courses across many subjects that will assist in preparing you well for a role as a delivery crew member. Experience gained on a passage is invaluable and coupled with some quality training will see you grow in confidence in your boating abilities. You can find opportunities for delivery skippers and crew here on Crewseekers in our Sailing Opportunities section.

Qualifications, experience, endorsements and other aspects of this information can change on a regular basis - for the very latest information consult:

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