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Old 03-03-2008, 02:42 PM   #1
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Join Date: Mar 2008
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Good day,

I would like to ask some advice and hope that this is the place to do it. If I'm the 50[sup]th[/sup] person to post the same question then please don't crucify me..

After obtaining a degree in mechanical engineering I worked for a while in the field and realised that it just isn't the place for me. I am seriously considering a career change and wanting to sail for a living. When I left school that's what I wanted to do originally but my folks convinced me otherwise.

How do I go about getting into the whole sailing scene? Naturally some sort of course/courses need to be done but which ones? I don't want to spend an arm and a leg and I'd say my budget would be around 2500 US Dollars. At the moment, the idea of delivering yachts appeals to me. A mate of mine has done this and it seems like a good place to start to gain experience and what not.

Any advice from someone with experience with my sort of 'problem' would be greatly appreciated or perhaps to point me in the right direction. I am almost 26 years old, male and will be based in Cape Town, South Africa, if that's any help.



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Old 03-03-2008, 08:58 PM   #2
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Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 437


Take your knowledge, your favorite tools and your M. E. degree and get yourself to either Antigua or St Martin (they're both in the Caribbean - in case you didn't study Geography) and talk to the owners / captains of the finest looking boats in the finest marinas.

Get a nice pair of deck shoes, maybe a haircut and make yourself presentable. Then offer your mechanical skills to get invited aboard. Next thing you know, you'll be bound for the Med aboard a multi-million dollar yacht with a crew of professional chefs, and pretty stewardesses. Stay at it, work hard, be honest and you may eventually take the helm.

You're already closer to reaching your sailing goal than you may think.

The trick to making the most money (presuming that's what you want) is to be in the finest yachting destinations at the right time. December thu April in the Caribbean - June thru October in the Med.

The world is truely your oyster.

Happy hunting and have fun.


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Old 03-05-2008, 03:41 PM   #3
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 2

Thanks Kirk, but perhaps not exactly the way I want to go about it. Making a packet of money is actually not that high on my list of objectives, at the moment. I would prefer to work on smaller, sail powered vessels actually. I guess I'd have to try it out first to see if I like it. Thank you for the response and the advice though. Much appreciated it.

Any advice on the correct courses to start on? It seems that doing a day skippers course seems to be the bare minimum, and the STCW ' 95. And then gain experience and miles before doing the Yachtmaster course as this is far cheaper, correct? Thanks..

[My head is always shaved super short and I do a self-haircut, no problem there... ]
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