Looking for a new and fun way to visit and enjoy a place?
A sailing vacation might be just what you’re looking for.

There’s something about seeing a place from the waterfront and coming by sailboat that really gives any place a whole new perspective. So even if you’ve already cruised the Greek islands, Turkey, the Croatian coast or Montenegro, being on a boat will give you a whole new experience.

Whether you want to rent a boat for the day, rent a boat for the night, or even live on a sailboat for a couple of days during your refreshing vacation, today we’ll share with you the details on what you need to rent a boat and get the most out of your time on it.

Boat rentals and sailing experiences in Europe

Renting a boat is a great and affordable way to travel around the Mediterranean, enjoying some of Europe’s most beautiful water sights from a breathtaking vantage point. In fact, with the pandemic creating ever-changing restrictions on air and land travel, boating and sailing has become a more resourceful and reliable way to travel.

Boat rentals and yacht charters

What do I need to rent a boat in Europe?

Because Europe has many islands and places connected by water, travel by water is more common and restrictions on the use of boats are less strict than in America. Renting a boat is not difficult, and it is becoming more common in many areas of Europe. In fact, to start looking for a boat to rent, in general, you just need to know where you are renting a boat, have your ID and a way to pay. The cost of a boat ride depends on many factors, including where you want to go, the number of passengers, hours or dates, and the type of experience.

How old do you have to be to sail a boat and how old do you have to be to rent a boat?

There are places in Europe where the legal driving age is 16, and in Italy you can drive a mini-car as young as 14. The age for boating is not as low, but unlike in America, where you have to be 21 to ride a boat on your own, in Europe the age is 18. This means that 18-year-olds can legally rent and operate a boat if they have the proper training and license. Hence the next question often asked: Do you need a license to rent a boat?

Do you need a license to rent a boat?

The short answer is no, but this question deserves a more detailed explanation.

Renting a boat without a crew and renting a boat with a captain

Technically, a boat rental license is not necessary. In the case of a bareboat charter or demise charter (when you’re renting just the boat itself, without a crew or anything else), you need someone with a license to operate the boat, whether it’s yourself or a captain you’ve hired. So, to operate the boat yourself, you need a license to operate the boat, but can you rent a boat without one? Yes.

Sailing
Where is the best place to rent a boat in Europe? Top 5 questions.

Many boat rental companies offer the ability to rent any type of boat along with a crew and/or captain. What’s more, most companies offer options where the boat owner runs the boat himself, gives a tour and shares all the tricks and tips for running the boat that he knows so well. The best part is that since they own the boat and they are experienced sailors, they are also happy to share their favorite secret spots on the water and point out the best sights along the way, freeing up your time to enjoy the scenery and company. Rest assured that when you rent a boat and captain you are in good hands, they will explain all safety precautions, issue life jackets and point out other precautions.

Safety and yachting associations

If you want to learn how to sail or get a license to operate a boat, then by all means go ahead, but keep in mind that each country has its own differences, so be sure to check with your local boating association. If you live in the United States and want to learn more about boating and safety, the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators is a national nonprofit organization that develops public policy on recreational boating safety. The National Association of State Boating Law Administrators offers many boating education resources as well as approved boating education and boating safety courses by state in the United States.

Where can I rent a boat in Europe?

In Europe, if you find yourself near water, which you probably will, there is no shortage of places to rent a boat. Spain, Turkey, Croatia and Greece are some of the best places to get an affordable price and an awesome experience.

All Yacht Marinas in the Mediterranean

The best places to rent a boat for an unforgettable experience

Balearic Islands: Boat rentals in Mallorca

The Balearic Islands are Spanish islands consisting of four main islands and several smaller islands. The four main islands that make up the Balearic Islands include: Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera. Palma de Mallorca is the capital of the Balearic Islands, and you can rent a boat to live in Mallorca while you cruise the ocean, or rent a boat in Barcelona and go to the islands. If you’re looking for a more active and partying destination, renting a boat in the Balearic Islands and sailing to Ibiza can be a good option, as Ibiza is known for its nightclubs as an “international party spot.”

Истрия (Северная Хорватия)
Where is the best place to rent a boat in Europe? Top 5 questions.

Croatian coast: Rent a boat Croatia

Renting a boat in Croatia can be a real adventure. You can visit the beautiful Croatian coast and take advantage of the distance to visit nearby areas in Italy. Keep in mind that in order to operate a boat in the territorial waters of the Republic of Croatia you must have a valid navigation license, which must include a VHF radio license: an international license.

Where is the best place to rent a boat in Europe? Top 5 questions.
Where is the best place to rent a boat in Europe? Top 5 questions.

The Greek Islands: Boat rentals Greece

Renting a boat in Greece can enhance your experience of the beautiful sights and charming Greek islands. Many boat owners offer breathtaking sunsets in Greece, as well as a romantic trip where you can also rent a boat for the night. What’s more, you can find local boat owners who can match you up and work with you to create a truly spectacular and beautiful sunset or family vacation.

Do You Need a Licence to Sail a Boat in Europe?

An ICC is required for all the inland waterways of Europe and for both inland and offshore coastal waters of the Mediterranean countries. Failure to have the document may lead to your boat being impounded whilst you seek an ICC skipper to release the vessel.

How old do you have to be to sail a boat in Europe?

The age for boating is not as low, but unlike in America, where you have to be 21 to ride a boat on your own, in Europe the age is 18.
This means that 18-year-olds can legally rent and operate a boat if they have the proper training and license.

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