FAQ : Sailing Charters
Do I need a reservation? What forms of payment do you accept?
We require reservations for all of our Sailing Charters as trips often sell out. Reservations must be secured by a major credit card – Visa, MasterCard or Discover.
What if I need to cancel my reservation? What if there is bad weather?
For cancellations made 48 hours or more in advance we will issue a full refund. Cancellations made less than 48 hours in advance will be charged 50%. No-shows and cancellations made less than 3 hrs before the trip will be charged full price. We regret that we cannot make exceptions for personal emergencies as a cause for late cancellation.
Rentals will not be allowed out in hazardous weather conditions such as heavy rain, thick fog, high winds or thunder and lightning. However, we will operate as usual in overcast conditions, light fog and in intermittent sprinkles. No guarantees can be made that every day will be perfectly sunny. The final decision on weather related cancellations rests with us and reservations should be considered upheld unless you speak with us directly over the phone. If weather cancels your reservation we will make every effort to reschedule for another day. Otherwise, a full refund will be issued. If weather cuts your rental short, we will prorate the unused portion.
All refunds will be at the sole discretion of Down Cape Charters & Boat Rentals, Inc.
How early should I show up for my reservation?
To leave enough time for our check-in procedure, we recommend your party arrive at least 20 minutes before your scheduled departure time. Leave yourself some margin for traffic or parking related delays, pre-departure bathroom stops, etc. Group tours will leave at the regularly scheduled departure time – no exceptions. Private charters arriving late must still return at the regularly scheduled time. There will be no refunds for those arriving late. Trips are often scheduled multiple times per day and keeping a strict schedule ensures that all of our reservations are honored.
Will I get seasick?
In all of our years of operation, we have had zero instances of seasickness within the protected waters of Pleasant Bay. The ocean swell and chop that you might encounter on the ocean or Nantucket Sound is simply not present for any of our sailing trips. Nevertheless, concerned passengers are welcome to experiment with over-the-counter remedies containing ginger, which has been shown to calm an upset stomach. Consult your physician if you have any further questions or concerns.
Are there costs other than the rental fees?
The only other cost is sales tax (currently 6.25%). You will be responsible for returning the equipment in the same condition in which you received it, complete with all additional accessories. Normal wear and tear items will be covered by us. Additional damages and lost equipment will be paid for by the renter in full.
What should I wear? What should I bring?
The only things you need for your charter are a form of payment and your personal items (hat, sunglasses, sunscreen – preferably not the spray kind, camera). It is always a little cooler on the water so a windbreaker or sweatshirt might come in handy. Please wear boat shoes, non-scuffing white-soled sneakers or relax and sail barefoot.
May food and drinks be brought on board?
Yes, feel free to bring your own food and beverages. All of our trips include complimentary water and soft drinks. Additionally, we recommend finger foods (small sandwiches, cheese and crackers, etc) as they are easiest to eat on a boat. Foods with sauces will stain clothing and upholstery so are not recommended. For adults over 21, reasonable amounts of beer and wine are also allowed (please avoid glass containers). No hard liquor.
Any excessive use of alcohol will result in the immediate termination of the trip with no recourse.
Are there any age restrictions or physical restrictions?
Private charters have no age restrictions. On scheduled group sails, children must be at least 4 years old to participate. It is especially important that kids are able to follow all safety instructions and stay in their seats when instructed.
Those with mobility issues must be able to walk down the resort dock (which has ramps) and step up into the vessel. Very rarely is this an issue, but it should be mentioned. Our team will assist in any way they can to ensure those with mobility issues are comfortable.
Are pets allowed on your equipment?
We do not allow pets on our rental boats.
Do you provide life jackets for children?
We have life jackets for all shapes and sizes (even infants). While we recommend that everybody wear a life jacket on our boats, by law only those 12 and younger have to wear one at all times. Your boat will have enough life jackets on board for everybody in your group. Younger children are welcome to bring their own life jacket if they are more comfortable, provided it is Coast Guard approved (no arm floaties).
We have a group of 13. Can we squeeze onto a trip listed at a 12 person capacity?
Unfortunately, no. Each of our vessels is rated for a certain capacity by the United States Coast Guard. Ignoring that capacity is against the law and it endangers everybody on board. A 12 person capacity means twelve human beings – the USCG does not differentiate between children and adults.