RYA Day Skipper Sailing Course solent southampton chichester

Bring it together with RYA Day Skipper

The RYA Day Skipper sailing course runs over five days and is for aspiring skippers with some yachting experience and basic navigation and sailing skills, leaving you able to safely skipper a boat in familiar waters. You will need knowledge of navigation theory to Day Skipper theory level before taking this practical course. The course runs over five days, which can either be all together or you can split them over two weekends (two and three days). Please contact us about split weekend dates.

We also offer RYA Day Skipper as Teen sails exclusively for 16 and 17 year olds (the RYA minimum age for Day Skipper is 16) and we can arrange women only courses.

“Experienced, knowledgeable and confident instructor. Calm and collected which helped with the process of learning and taking in all the information. Also felt very free and comfortable on-board making it much more enjoyable. Jalapeno is a beautiful boat. Loved sailing her.”

“You understand people and sailing – a combination that makes for excellent instruction. It did feel like a mini community for the 5 days, I think you are doing great.”

Courses run from Itchenor Reach, near Chichester and Ocean Quay, Southampton.

Prices are £550 May-September, discounted to £495 March-April and October; all inclusive.

Assumed knowledge: Basic navigation, able to helm and sail a boat. It is recommended you have some knowledge of navigation theory. You can study online with us to get your RYA Day Skipper theory qualification.

Ability after course: To skipper a yacht you are familiar with in waters you are familiar with by day.

BOOK YOUR RYA Day Skipper theory WITH US AND GET £50 OFF A FULL-PRICE PRACTICAL COURSE

Course content

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This chartlet gives an idea of the sailing area we have to choose from during this course. The shelter afforded by the Isle of Wight keeps many options open with plenty of anchorages and marinas to choose from.

Preparation for sea
Deck work
Navigation
Pilotage
Meteorology
Rules of the road
Maintenance and repair work
Engines, victualling
Emergency situations
Yacht handling under power
Yacht handling under sail
Passage making
Night cruising

By the end of the course you will be able to skipper a yacht you are familiar with in waters you are familiar with by day.

Dates & Rates

Our rates are all inclusive, covering all food onboard, hire of sailing waterproofs and visitor mooring costs.

10% lower rates are available in March, April and October.

Courses run from Chichester marina and Ocean Quay, Southampton, please see below for details.

  • RYA Day Skipper – FULL!

    5 day RYA practical course

    June 14 @ 9:30 am - June 18 @ 5:00 pm at Chichester Harbour
  • RYA Day Skipper

    5 day RYA practical course

    July 19 @ 9:30 am - July 23 @ 5:00 pm at Southampton
  • RYA Day Skipper

    5 day RYA practical course

    August 16 @ 9:30 am - August 20 @ 5:00 pm at Chichester Harbour
  • RYA Day Skipper Teens Only

    5 day RYA practical course for 16 and 17 year olds only (16 is the RYA’s minimum age to take the Day Skipper practical course), during Summer school holidays

    August 21 @ 9:30 am - August 25 @ 5:00 pm at Chichester Harbour
  • RYA Day Skipper

    5 day RYA practical course

    September 20 @ 9:30 am - September 24 @ 5:00 pm at Chichester Harbour
  • RYA Day Skipper

    5 day RYA practical course

    October 18 @ 9:30 am - October 22 @ 5:00 pm at Chichester Harbour

A Typical Day

Morning theory chat

Morning theory chat

0730
It's always good to start the day with the shipping forecast and practise writing it down for our area.
Breakfast.
 
0830
Deciphering what the forecast meant and how the weather and tide influences our plan for the day.
Engine checks by one or more students.
0900
One student takes the boat off the pontoon, everyone has a good think about how to do that smoothly, bearing in mind tide, wind, etc.
Once we're underway another student guides us out of the harbour from a pilotage plan prepared the night before.
Set sail and underway on a short passage.  
Chance to give feedback to students on pilotage and boat handling.
We overhear a 'mayday' which we identify as far away, but it's a good chance to listen and understand how the coastguard communicates and coordinates.
 
1300  
Anchor for lunch and debrief on the morning's activities and events.
After lunch review how to plot a course to steer.
Instructor demonstrates how to weigh anchor under sail.
Navigation practise to reach a specific mark using course to steer, taking into account tide.
Do we reach the mark? Whether we're spot on or a bit off, we learn what worked and what didn't.
 
1700
Demonstration of how to sail onto mooring buoys and chance for all to practise.
Stay on mooring, rest and plan night entrance into river.
 
1900  
Dinner.
Review of lights.

Night entrance, Beaulieu River

Night entrance, Beaulieu River

2000
Set off into dusk, pilotage into river, identifying lights along the way.

2200
On pontoon for the evening.
Debrief of night entrance.
Quick check of tides for next day and when we need to be up and off.

FAQ

How many other people will there be onboard?
On our RYA courses we have four students per instructor, although occasionally we might also have a volunteer onboard.
For our sailing trips we have up to six people onboard plus skipper and volunteer first mate.
We can have up to ten people onboard for group activities.
 
Where do we sleep? Do we go back to the marina each night?
We all sleep onboard, with a berth allocated to you. We usually stay in a different place each night, which could be at anchor or mooring in a marina with walk ashore access to showers and toilets. A lot depends on people's needs, which we'll check with you at the start of a course or trip and as we carry on.
 
Do we eat onboard? Do you cater for special diets?
All meals and snacks are included in our rates and our vessels are well stocked for your time onboard. We provide vegetarian and vegan food by default as part of our commitment to lowering our company's carbon footprint, although please feel free to eat anything you want ashore. Thanks to our partners at Infinity Foods we have plenty of great snacks and ingredients. While we all take turns making meals, there are always some homemade pre-prepared dishes so you can make the most of your sailing and learning time. Please let us know about any other dietary needs - we are pretty familiar with various allergies and diets.
 
Is there a toilet onboard?
Each of our vessels are equipped with at least one sea toilet, called a 'heads', and by boat standards they are quite roomy, with washbasins. They have a slight knack to using them, which your skipper will show you, but they are pretty similar to a home flush toilet. We do ask you to use toilets ashore when in a marina.  
 
Do you provide waterproofs?
Yes, we provide salapette trousers and jackets which are wind and waterproof, as well as sailing boots which provide a secure grip on deck. Please feel free to bring your own gear or to ask us for advice on where to purchase affordable sailing gear. Lifejackets and safety harnesses are provided.
 
Will it be rough, what if I feel sick?
Due to where our vessels are moored, the first days' sailing you will experience will be in sheltered waters, and we'll stay in such waters for entry and beginner levels. We want you to enjoy your sailing and our skippers remain very aware of how people are feeling and do their best to avoid unnecessarily unpleasant conditions by planning ahead.
 
What if the weather is really bad, what weather don't we go out in?
Sailing is obviously very weather dependent. We reserve the right to cancel trips and courses at our discretion, due to adverse weather. If we are forced to do so, we will be in touch with you in the days beforehand to advise and we will work with you to attempt to find you a suitable replacement or if not we will refund all of your money. However, Sail Boat Project cannot be held responsible for any other loss that you may have incurred due to cancellation of your course or trip. The final decision on whether a course or trip goes ahead is always based on the capabilities of those onboard and we are not interested in forcing anyone into being forced into a position they are uncomfortable with.
 
Will I get a certificate?
All the RYA practical and theory courses we deliver lead to a nationally recognised qualification within the RYA's sail cruising scheme, if you have met the syllabus requirements. We also issue certificate sof achievement as part of the RYA Sailability scheme and we have our own certificates of achievement for groups.  
 
Do you make arrangements for people with special needs, learning or physical?
Yes, we have experience of taking people out sailing with a range of different needs. Our ethos is to make things possible and we will always work with you to allow inclusion and participation from everyone. While our vessels are not specifically adapted, for example for wheelchair users, we will always think about what changes we can make to get people out on the water. We use a variety of learning materials that engage and include people and our skippers and instructors are always learning and sharing with each other techniques to help people make the most of their time with us.
 
Can I talk to an instructor or skipper in advance?
Yes, if we can't put you through to one of our instructors or skippers when you call the office, we will pass on you details and have someone get back to you as soon as possible to have a chat with you.
 
Do you allow alcohol onboard?
Yes we do, in moderation! We may share a bottle of wine onboard or visit a pub during a course or trip, but please remember alcohol and getting used to the motion of the sea don't mix well.
 
Should I bring my log book?
Yes, if you have a sailing log book this is really good to bring along. For courses it will outline your syllabus, help your instructor see what experience you have and you can get it signed off at the end. For sailing trips you can record the nautical miles sailed and treat it as a mile builder towards any examinations you go for. They are also a useful record for your own interest. We always have log books available for sale onboard for £6.
 
Is it all sailing, is there time to explore places we visit?
Depending on the level of course you are on, there is usually time to explore a couple of the places we visit. The Competent Crew course includes using a dinghy, so you'll be able to explore from the water! On our sailing trips part of the idea is to have a look around sowewhere new. We usually agree as a group when to have time ashore as we always need to work around the weather and tides. If you have any particular requests make sure you let your skipper know.
 
Will I see any wildlife?
Plenty of birdlife and the odd seal - in Chichester harbour there is a whole seal colony at certain times of the year. Marine mammals are not as abundant as we'd like them to be, although porpoises in Poole Bay and dolphins off Chichester bar have been recent sightings. If we are lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time we would never move in close or cause any undue stress. We have marine wildlife spotter guides onboard to help you prepare.

What our previous crews said

Day Skipper Karen

We're recovering from a super intensive and amazing week. I feel we've learned loads! Attached some pictures, and more to come in a next email. Please feel free to use them for SBP.

The other thing I wanted to ask is if we could possibly charter Karic some time.

27th July 2016

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Over my 50 years of sailing I have taken part in many training courses, some have been poor and mostly a waste of time and money, some have been worthwhile, but this weekend's refresher tidal skipper two day course was one of the best and the training skipper, Jason, is an absolute gem. A professional of great experience and depth of knowledge, a born instructor with huge patience and little ego and also able to magic a fine pasta dinner for us all while his fledglings enjoyed the bar on the moorings. A most enjoyable weekend and am looking forward to returning.
Please pass on a big "thank you" from me to Jason for his patience and help.

Giles 21st June 2016

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Greetings from Gocek in South Turkey!
 
We thought that you would like to know that we have just finished our first 'yacht Charter' holiday!
 
We sailed a 2014 Bavaria 37 all around the Gocek islands, Karacaoren and down to Kalkan. We encountered sunshine rain, gales and thunder and lightening.

Dropping an anchor and tying up to a rock with a long line we are sure would be easy in clement weather, however we managed with a couple of attempts using the joker boat in high seas and gales, INTERESTING!

We have had a great time, learnt a lot and put our qualifications into practice
 
Thanks to you Bruno and 'Sail Boat Project'

 

 
 

21st October 2015

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The biggest thank you for an amazing week..... we really loved it and Paul has been looking for a Wayfarer!!! We were very tired.... lots of work but great great fun and completely hooked on sailing now... as if I wasn't before!

8th October 2015

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Skipper Jason Ralph was very knowledgeable, was calm and allowed crew to take some responsibility, eg: passage planning, transits etc, apart from the normal crew duties. This helps one to develop sailing skills and experience. Plenty of veggie food (including a bottle of good wine!). Although not a strict vegetarian myself, I'm quite happy with the food provided.

8th October 2015

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Skipper was knowledgeable and taught in manageable chunks and was responsive to our abilities and questions. It was useful to be told in advance what was planned for the day so we knew what to expect, and allow time at the end to review what we had done. It was good to rotate the various sea-based manoeuvres (steering, preparing for taks and jibes) that we practised and all have a turn. Good resources.

8th October 2015

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Great, I really loved Bruno's attitude to sailing and he is a great teach too. I will carry his attitude with me when sailing. I also appreciated how he dealt psychologically with all of us. I was surprised how much I learned during the Day Skipper course which went beyond sailing. Learning how to better deal and communicate with a team in challenging situations, was very rewarding for me. These skills are very useful to learn.

8th October 2015

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Dhara was a great instructor, teasing stuff out by asking questions. He was good at judging our skill levels and trusting us when he thought we were capable. Also very good at tailoring the course to our existing skills (i.e. good dinghy sailors) rather than just sticking to the syllabus.

8th October 2015

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The skipper seemed very knowledgeable, with a great teaching technique. I felt free to ask him questions throughout the training and he was very encouraging with all of us. Giving us all equal opportunities to helm etc. I liked the teaching technique, with a safety briefing at the beginning, then an overview of tides, weather systems, sailing techniques in the warmth of the saloon before we got out on deck and learnt it all as we went. He encouraged others to share their knowledge too, on knots etc.

8th October 2015

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Good instructor, got the best out of us by not prompting us until absolutely necessary. Great on Navigation techniques, really covered in depth and lots of practical corroboration of position through use of tides and contours.

8th October 2015

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Dhara was very good; he explained things well and was very patient with our lack of knowledge and ability! We are going on a flotilla sailing holiday and wherever possible Dhara referred to our holiday and showed us things that he thought would be most relevant for sailing in Greece.

8th October 2015

What To Bring
  • Clothing layers - even if it's sunny or warm on land it can get quite chilly when sailing
  • Hat, sun cream, lip salve, sunglasses, gloves
  • If you're staying overnight or longer you'll need to bring a sleeping bag, pillow, towel, toiletries
  • Any medication you would normally require
  • Pack your belongings in a soft bag that can be easily stowed
  • Do bring any of your favourite snacks or soft drinks as we may not be near any shops
    (If you have your own foul weather gear you are welcome to bring it)
  • If you haven't been sailing before and don't know if you might get seasick, some good advice is to have a sensible breakfast and don't drink lots of alcohol the night before!
  • Bring seasickness pills if you might need them.
What We Provide
  • Lifejackets
  • All meals & snacks while on board (vegetarian/vegan)
  • Sleeping berth
  • Course books in advance (if applicable)
  • Access to our onboard sailing library, including RYA course books (copies available to buy)
  • Quality XM foul weather trousers, jackets and waterproof deck boots
    (If you have your own foul weather gear you are welcome to bring it)
  • Please feel free to discuss equipment concerns with us prior to your sailing trip or course, we will happily advise on purchases if you would like to buy your own gear.

If you want to make a booking

Book now

If you want to talk to one of our instructors or have a more general enquiry either call (+44) 07576 248 348 or fill in the form below.
We will do our best to get back to you as soon as possible.

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Our Boats

DSC01252

Jalapeno is a Dutch built Standfast, a solid roomy boat that handles the sea well. We can take bookings for up to 10 people on Jalapeno and there is room for everyone to eat and plan together around the central saloon table. There is an unusually large amount of flat deck, a great spot for a picnic at anchor!

Our RYA courses and sailing trips from Chichester marina are run on Jalapeno.

Facilities include heads (toilet/washroom), galley with gas oven and heating.

cassie

Cascadeur is a French built Jeanneau. She has up to ten berths in four cabins, with room for everyone to sit and eat round the circular table in the main cabin, or use the cockpit table to eat or work together outside. We can take bookings for up to 10 people on Cascadeur.

Our RYA courses and sailing trips from Southampton are run on Cascadeur.

Facilities include two heads (toilet/washroom), gas cooker with oven, heating.

20141002_114723

Karic is a British built Westerly Renown ketch - a ketch means there are two masts, so three sets of sails for people to learn how to use. She has berths for six people to sleep in three cabins, with room for everyone to sit and eat round the table in the main cabin. Designed for family cruising, Karic is a safe, sturdy boat. There is a centre cockpit with room for a crew of six to sit in comfort.

Facilities include a roomy heads (toilet/washroom) and meths 2 hob cooker