Dear Charter Guest,
The below are industry guidelines compiled by the Virgin Islands Professional Charter Association in support of pertinent sanitary protocol for the purpose of implementation onboard your charter yacht by the designated Crew. Many yachts have added to the below recommendations through additional protocol and policies determined in conjunction with the Owners and Management companies.
We will always endeavor to recommend Charter Yachts that have shown a sensitivity to health and safety for all guests onboard.
If you do have any questions or concerns prior to booking, please do let us know and we are happy to answer any queries you may have.
Charter Cleanliness Best Practices
The following practices are recommended by VIPCA in compliance with suggestions released by the Center of Disease Control, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration, the American Cleaning Institution, and the World Health Organization. By creating a standard of expected cleanliness, the charter industry can give guests peace of mind regarding preventive measures taken to protect the health of themselves and their crew. VIPCA encourages all of it’s members to follow government standards and laws regarding COVID-19.
Sanitary Recommendations advised for Crew (Before Charter)
A. Utilize provisioning services or grocery store order-ahead options to avoid leaving the boat to shop when available. Remember, the items you bring into your boat may have coronavirus on its surface. Once provisions are delivered, do the following:
- Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water before and after handling provisions, packages and mail.
- Break down and discard excess cardboard and plastic packaging.
- Wash fruits and vegetables in one part vinegar to two parts water for 30-60 seconds.
- Wash all reusable grocery bags before reusing them.
- Disinfect all surfaces where provisions were placed prior to being stowed in the boat.
B. If provisioning services or grocery store order-ahead options are not available to you, do the following:
- Go shopping at a time less likely to be crowded.
- Maintain a six-foot distance from other shoppers and store employees when possible.
- If possible, visit a store that limits the number of customers allowed inside at one time and making sure that people stay a safe distance apart while waiting in line outside.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face covering
- Sanitize the handles of shopping trolleys or baskets before shopping.
- Once back on the boat, wash your hands thoroughly and also after handling and storing your purchased products.
A. All vessels should be meticulously cleaned to the standards listed prior to welcoming guests onboard.
B. Continue with normal routine cleaning, this will decrease the possibility of anything living on surfaces and objects, which reduces the risk of exposure.
C. Frequent disinfection of surfaces and objects touched by multiple people is important before and throughout the charter:
- Clean all interior surfaces thoroughly with a disinfectant solution, including walls, countertops, tables, light switches, handrails, and doorknobs.
- Exterior surfaces should also be washed down thoroughly and special attention should go to disinfecting dining areas, coolers, trash bins, and any common guest use items touched frequently like an icebox, sunscreen bottles, and sliding door handles.
D. All guest linens and towels should be freshly laundered including mattress protectors, pillow protectors, and throw pillow covers.
E. Spray throw pillows and salon cushions with disinfectant (test first!) and leave in the sun to dry.
Communication and Education
A. Communicating Health Safety With Guests: It’s important that both crew and guests engage in conduct that ensures the health safety of all onboard. Here are some recommendations to share with your guests before they arrive:
- Guests should contact their healthcare provider if they have concerns about COVID-19 before traveling.
- While traveling to their destination, guests should wipe down all surfaces around their airplane seats and taxi seats with disinfecting wipes.
- Wash hands frequently while traveling and avoid touching mouth, face, eyes, and nose.
- When greeting the crew, please use verbal greetings rather than handshakes or hugs.
- Once onboard, guests are encouraged to change their clothes in their bathrooms, isolate those clothes in a plastic bag, then wash their hands with soap and water.
- Guests are expected to wash their hands before all meals.
- High-risk guests may need to take extra precautions or seek medical advice before traveling.
B. Communicating Personal Health Safety: It’s important that the yacht crew are comfortable and transparent in their willingness to accommodate guests.
- Communicate the precautionary steps you are taking with your guests and broker prior to the charter.
Sanitary Recommendations for Crew (During Charter)
Sanitation and Cleanliness
A. Ensure proper cleaning of living spaces, beds, and heads:
- Dining table, galley countertops, and high-traffic areas should be sanitized multiple times per day.
- Guest cabins and heads should be cleaned daily with disinfectants for toilets, counters, knobs, handles, etc. while wearing gloves.
- Charter yachts offering mid-week sheet changes, daily turn-ups, and turn-downs may consider doing this on a needed basis going forward to limit contact and reduce the storage of laundry.
- Have guests hang their own towels and wet clothes to reduce contact.
B. Remain diligent in the frequent cleaning of galley & dining areas:
- All dishes should be washed in hot water with dish soap, or in a dishwasher if available.
- Dish towels and sponges should be changed out frequently.
- The crew will wash hands prior to any food service, food prep, or cooking.
C. Additional Considerations
- Carry hand sanitizer in the dinghy.
- Explain in safety briefing the steps everyone will need to take to maintain a clean vessel while living in close proximity.
- Virgin Islands Professional Charter Association