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30th October 2020

Helping Yacht Captains and Crews cruise through Covid-19 compliance

Like businesses in all sectors, WYM Group has spent much of 2020 adapting to new challenges brought to our day to day work by Covid-19.

This has seen our team spend a great deal of time over the past seven months assisting yacht owners, captains and crews to ensure they have been able to navigate through complicated compliance issues, which of course can change from country to country – and even week to week at times.

“These have been strange times, but also times when our experience of yacht management, crew management, regulatory issues and logistics have come to the fore for yacht owners and captains,” said Managing Director Allan Wilson.

“Yacht owners have faced repeated difficulties in ensuring they have been fully crewed, due to either illness or restrictions on crews travelling to and from yachts, which of course can have serious repercussions with regards to operation and safety.

“We have been proud to provide support through what have been challenging times, and we quickly adapted to help yacht owners and captains ensure they had appropriate measures in place to plan ahead, safeguard crew and respond appropriately should anyone display any symptoms.

“It has become paramount for all vessels to have clear policies and procedures to prevent any spread of Covid-19 and ensure suitable isolation practices.

Two negative Covid-19 tests required for crew of luxury yacht to proceed

Just last week, the captain and crew of the 162ft luxury yacht ‘Te Manu’, which has been managed by the Yacht Management team at WYM Group for 15 years, having arrived in St Vincent, a volcanic island in the Caribbean, had to quarantine until the crew had two Covid-19 tests, five days apart, which both had to be negative prior to the yacht being allowed to cruise in the area.

Oscar Wollheim, captain on Te Manu, has posted on LinkedIN to discuss the challenges faced.

“We all know a captain has to wear many hats, and lately I have been wearing the ‘covid cruising planner’ hat, as every country and every island has different requirements,” he wrote.

“It can get a bit overwhelming and complicated at times, but it has become the new reality, and it can be done, it just means a bit more time doing research and keeping up with the constant evolving of the virus and the regulations, working together with local agents who are up to date with the situation.

“We have been making sure that both crew and guests follow protocol and all tests are done on a regular basis. We may lose a few hours’ sleep, but at least we are doing our jobs and trying to lead as normal a life as we can.”

Looking ahead, Mr Wilson sees more choppy waters ahead for owners and captains, but is keen to stress the support is available – support now based on experience of steering vessels safely through the unknown waters of a global pandemic over the past seven months.

“The reality is that the situation is constantly changing but we have learned so much from helping the yacht owners we support through unprecedented times, and from working with excellent captains like Oscar” said Mr Wilson.

Whatever is ahead for the rest of this year and 2021, the team at WYM Group, and the yachts and ships we support, will be fully prepared.”

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