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6 Tips for a Smooth Yachting Vacation with Kids

Even going on vacation can get boring sometimes. The usual hotel stay or road trip can quickly get old when you do them year in and year out. To get away from the crowds at airports and resorts, the open sea is a great alternative. There are lots of companies that rent out fully-furnished yachts and there are many destinations that become accessible to you. Read on as we give you tips on how you can enjoy a smooth yachting vacation with the entire family.

Prepare your equipment.

Breaking down on the highway is a mere inconvenience, breaking down in open waters can be life-threatening. When help can be days away, you need to be able to trust your equipment. And should something go wrong, you should be able to fend for yourself until help arrives. Ownership of a yacht entails lots of costs devoted to maintenance. Check all vital systems like the engine, generator, and also the communication and navigation equipment. It also pays to get the structure of the craft itself checked on a regular basis.

The elements, combined with seawater can do a real number on steel and other materials. Make sure that your craft is seaworthy. Included in the list of essential equipment is enough food and water. Make sure that you pack enough food for everybody for the planned duration of your trip. Water is also essential in such journeys, make sure you bring enough. Don't forget to bring a well-stocked first aid kit along with prescription medication for anybody who may need them. Another essential is a fire extinguisher. Ironically, fire is an even bigger threat when you are surrounded by water.

Prepare yourself.

Take swimming lessons with your entire family. Attend first-aid courses together. If you are renting a yacht for the trip, familiarize yourself with everything before you set off. Teach even the smallest kid how to call for help. Out in the open using a radio is a little bit more complicated than dialing 911.

Make safety a priority.

Be sensible. You may just want to make the most out of a well-deserved vacation, but do practice constraint. It's only common sense not to act like a carefree college student out on spring break when you are clearly not. Avoid alcohol. There are studies concluding that sun and wind exposure can worsen the effects of alcohol to one's coordination and cognitive abilities. Think safe, clean fun that's appropriate for all ages. The safety and wellbeing of your children are entirely dependent on whether you are capable of functioning at your best. Wear your life jackets even if they are uncomfortable or they make you look goofy. In 2010 alone, the U.S. Coast Guard reported that almost 75% of all fatal boating accidents drowned. Of those, 88% were not wearing their life jackets at the time of the accident.

This statistic wouldn't be so grim if only those people had been more aware of the benefits of a life jacket.
Make your plans known. After all that planning, it's only prudent to stick to it. You will probably get an itch to try something new and unpredictable while already underway, but you shouldn't – not this time at least. You see, an essential part of going out to sea is informing the people you trust and the authorities about your plans in detail. This is so that in case of an accident, the Coast Guard can narrow down their search based on your last known location and where you should be. This allows for a faster rescue and lessen the chance of anybody's condition getting worse.

Educate along the way

If you expect your kids to share your passion for the water, instill the necessary values early on. Bigger vessels tend to have all the luxuries of home and that includes an HDTV and Internet connection. Refrain from using them. A yachting vacation away from electronic distractions is the perfect time for some educational fun. Take this time to teach your kinds navigational and survival skills. Even just learning simple nautical terms are great fun for smaller children.

Be ready for contingencies

Hope for the best, but plan for the worse. Bring excess food. Have some way of desalinating seawater. Redundancy in these situations is a good thing. Have backups for your radios and other vital electronics. A travel credit card can be a lifesaver if ever you need to dock somewhere and make emergency repairs and replenish your provisions.

When you return safe and rejuvenated from your trip, you'll be glad you took the necessary precautions. Pardon the pun, but yachting can be boatloads of fun. Just use common sense and be mindful of your surroundings and you and your kids should be alright.

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