As some crew get ready to take some well-deserved time to relax after a busy Med season, others are readying themselves for a packed charter schedule on the other side of the Atlantic. The idyllic islands of the Caribbean beckon.

A Caribbean beach with boats in the water

On the Bridge

Every crew member from each department will have their own extensive job list in mind, but a safe crossing will be one at the forefront of all members of the bridge team.

Navigating a superyacht to the Caribbean takes planning, preparation, and expertise. The moderately calm waters and the weather conditions of the Mediterranean can often be stark contrast to the unpredictable climate often experienced in the Atlantic.

In the two weeks (on average) that it takes to cross the Atlantic, the bridge team will be responsible for the safety and security of the entire crew and any guests on board, and therefore they must pay attention to the details of charting, ensuring their equipment is in order, and be prepared for any potential weather hazards.

Pre-crossing Checklist

  1. Plan your passage – Compass has an integrated Planning system that is easy to use and returns everything you need to make safe passage to any of your chosen destinations. Your route can even be saved and exported in the correct format to use on your ECDIS, and when it’s time to head back to the Med, you can reverse it so you’re near ready to return.
  1. Prepare your paperwork – As one of the only navigation companies to still offer paper chart correction, our skilled in-house correctors get booked up quickly, so don’t delay in getting your folios booked in for your return crossing. Any other publications, physical or digital, can be purchased through Compass via Compass eBooks or by contacting your Yacht Manager.
  1. Equipment checks – From flags to tender cards, to binoculars – having a navigation equipment check list can be useful to ensure any replacement items are supplied prior to setting off.
  1. Eyes on the Skies – Compass offers weather forecasting that can be overlayed onto your planned passage, so you can amend your route to avoid those big swells and frisky weather conditions.
  1. Personal admin checklist – After a super busy chart season, things can go missing, be overlooked or expire, so ensure you have all your personal paperwork in order too. This means passports and visas need to be up to date to cruise the waters, which are largely considered to be US waters.

No matter how frequently you make the journey, preparation is key, and having our Compass software on board your vessel just might make the journey that little bit smoother.

Explore on the Way

If time is on your side, there are a few locations that can be enjoyed as you make your way across, and you can make the most out of them using the Explore with Imray cruising guides that are included in all Compass subscriptions.

Explore with Imray markers on map in Compass superyacht navigation software

The islands of the Azores await exploration as you make your way away from mainland Europe. Or if you prefer, the Canary Islands off the north-west coast of Africa make for another great sightseeing opportunity. The picturesque island of Bermuda might be of interest to you as you near the Caribbean, with its range of beautiful marinas & bays on crystal clear waters.

A small town on a hill in the Azores

Whatever the plan is for those of you heading west for Winter, we wish you all a safe voyage.

Find out more on Compass

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