Frequently Asked Questions
(Updated April 2019)

Airport transfers

Local bus companies offer airport transfers from the Whitsunday Coast Airport (Proserpine) in to Airlie Beach and surrounding suburbs taking approx 25 minutes. Cruise Whitsundays meet all flights at Hamilton Island airport and operate ferry services to Port of Airlie in Airlie Beach taking between 30min - 55min.

Briefings

Abell Point Marina, Airlie Beach

To ensure "smooth sailing" please ensure you arrive at our base "ready to go" at 8:30am. That is; you have done all your provisioning, dropped off the hire car etc. Your Briefer will provide a trolley cart for you to load your luggage into and take to your bareboat where you will begin your induction. Your briefing is divided into three parts; the area brief, boat brief and practical assessment. The area brief covers safety, navigation and Whitsunday Marine Park regulations to ensure you are aware of the charter limits of your vessel and are informed of your responsibilities in the marine park. The boat brief covers the function of the various systems on the boat as well as the location of the safety equipment, while The practical assessment covers anchoring and sailing techniques.The combined briefings will take 3-4 hours depending on your experience level.

Hamilton Island Marina, Hamilton Island

Your briefing is divided into three parts; the area brief, boat brief and practical assessment. The area brief covers safety, navigation and Whitsunday Marine Park regulations to ensure you are aware of the charter limits of your vessel and are informed of your responsibilities in the marine park. The boat brief covers the function of the various systems on the boat as well as the location of the safety equipment, while the practical assessment covers anchoring and sailing techniques.The combined briefings will take 3-4 hours depending on your experience level.

If you are flying into Hamilton Island, Cumberland Charter Yachts can deliver your bareboat to Hamilton Island for an additional fee of $495 (one way). Your briefing at Hamilton Island commences at 11:30am on board your bareboat, unless otherwise arranged with Cumberland Charter Yachts. The fee includes the delivery of your bareboat by your Briefer, your briefing, as well as an overnight berth at Hamilton Island if you choose to stay in the marina on your first night or if your flight arrival means you aren't able to commence your briefing at 11:30am. The combined briefings will take 3-4 hours depending on your experience level. All bareboats must be at their first anchorage by 4pm.

Cancellation fees

If a booking is cancelled 90 days prior to departure date a $250.00 administration fee will apply. Cancellations between 89 - 60 days, the full $1,000 deposit will be forfeited. Cancellations 59 days prior to charter no monies will be refunded unless an alternative booking for the same charter period and vessel occurs.

Car hire

Hertz, Budget Car & Truck Rental and Avis car rental have depots at Whitsunday Coast Airport (Proserpine) and Airlie Beach, while Europcar, We Do Cars & Scooters and Gypsy Car Rentals have depots in Airlie Beach only.

Car parking

It is free to park your car in the main street of Airlie Beach, however there are time and day restrictions in place. Most shopping centres offer free parking except Woolworths in Airlie Beach of which there is a fee after 2 hours. The middle car park and the lagoon car park is paid parking as is Abell Point Marina. Prices vary from car park to car park. Abell Point Marina is $10/24 hours.

Carbon offset

Cumberland Charter Yachts are an eco-tourism accredited company and sailing in the Whitsundays is considered a minimal emissions impact holiday, however, your travel to the Whitsundays and the small amount of fuel you will use during your charter, you may like to offset with. Greenfleet and Climate Friendly are two organisations you can offset your carbon footprint with.

Cooking facilities

All vessels are fully equipped with all the cooking utensils and crockery needed to prepare and enjoy your meals. For a full list of items on board, click here.

Cruising area

All vessels are subject to operational area limits. These limits are, NORTH to George Point including Hayman Island. EAST to Harold Island including Border Island. SOUTH to Cape Conway including the North Western side of Shaw Island. Area limits may be amended based on weather conditions.

Eco-tourism

Cumberland Charter Yachts are an accredited eco-tourism company, backed by a strong, well managed commitment to sustainable practices, providing high quality nature-based tourism experiences that benefits local communites, culture and heritage, while minimisiung the impacts on the environment. is dedicated to Eco tourism promoting sustainable travel that benefits local communities, culture, and heritage and minimise impacts on the environment.

Environmental management charge (EMC)

An Environmental Management Charge (EMC) of $19.50 & Administrative Fee of $12.50 totalling $32 per person is payable prior to entering the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

Fuel

Your bareboat is given to you full of fuel. At the end of the charter, you will be charged for what fuel was used, just like hiring a rental car. Fuel can be paid for at the fuel dock.

Each vessel is supplied with tender and 6hp outboard. A flat rate of $35 per charter is applied for outboard fuel and LPG (gas) used for the stove and BBQ. 

Great Barrier Reef

Airlie Beach and the Whitsundays are at the heart of the Great Barrier Reef, extending north as far as the Torres Strait and as far south as Lady Elliot and Fraser Island. It covers an area of 344,400m2 and has over 1,600 fish species living in it.

Cumberland Charter Yachts vessels are not surveyed and therefore permitted to be taken to the outer reef, however there is fringing coral reef around most of islands and is still considered to be part of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park offering spectacular snorkelling. Day trips with tour operators visit the outer Great Barrier Reef and we can offer you advice on the best way to arrange this during your bareboat charter or you may decide to do it after your charter.

Hamilton Island Airport

Relating to Dent Passage off Hamilton Island airport runway and the flight path caution to vessels, charterers are advised during the brief and aknowledge by signing a charter brief that vessels transiting Dent Passage off the western end of the Hamilton Island airport runway are cautioned about frequent day and night aircraft movements.

Vessels with an overall height greater than eight (8) metres are advised to keep clear of the flight path zone during aircraft movements.

Download the flight path exclusion zone map

Hamilton Island Marina

Charterers can book a berth at Hamilton Island marina and use the resort facilities, dine in restaurants, shop at souvinere shops, and explore the island. Berths are $20 per hour up to 4 hours (minimum 2 hours) or $125 overnight. A berth over Christmas and New Year is $300 per night. To pick up the boat at Hamilton Island, or drop it off at Hamilton Island, it is $495 (one way). Please advise us if you require a berth and we will arrange it for you.

Holidays (public & school)

You can depart on, or return from your charter on any day of the year except Christmas day. The Cumberland Charter Yachts office, provisioning companies, shops, bottle shops and some restaurants is open every day of the year except Christmas day.

Click here for Australian school terms dates and here for national public holidays.

Infants

It is perfectly safe to bring an infant on a bareboating holiday. However small it may be, by law it must be included in the passenger list and therefore count towards the maximum passenger allowance on board. If you require a cot for your baby, you can hire baby equipment at affordable prices through Airlie Beach Baby Hire. Please consider the space the cot will take up on board and let our friendly Reservations team know you have a baby that will require a cot so they can ensure the most suitable vessel is offered to you.

Internet

Our bareboats are not fitted with wi-fi modems, however there is reasonable coverage by Telstra and Optus on the western side of Hook and Whitsunday islands and Hamilton Island. Vodafone also has coverage but is very limited in the Whitsundays and Airlie Beach in general. You can check each providers coverage map on their respective websites to find out exactly how much coverage there is.

We offer complimentary wi-fi in the Cumberland Charter Yachts office as do some restaurants and bars in Airlie Beach

Island resorts

There are a number of islands that have resorts on them, but not all welcome bareboat charters ashore to use the resort facilities. For the island resorts that are welcoming, there is usually a fee to use their moorings. Find out which island resorts you can visit or check with us before your charter commences.

Jellyfish

While rare, jellyfish stings have occurred in the Whitsundays from the Irukandji and Box Jellyfish. Experts prefer not to use the term 'stinger season' as it implies that they are only prevalent during this time. Stings have occurred year round, however, they are more prevalent between the months of November and May.

Cumberland Charter Yachts recommends using a snorkel suit at all times when in the water. They are a thin lycra full body suit that you wear over your swimming clothes, with just your hands, feet and face left exposed. Not only do they offer 100% UV protection, they also offer some insulation. You can bring your own, or you can hire them from the Cumberland Charter Yachts office for $25 per person for the length of the charter.

Life jackets

Marine Saftey Queensland stipulate that we must supply a one size fits all style life jacket for each member of the crew. These life jackets are stored on the boat in case of an emergency. All children under 12 years of age in open boats under 4.8 metres must wear a properly fitted life jacket. This means that children of this age in the vessel's dinghy must wear a properly fitted life jacket. Cumberland Charter Yachts will supply an appropriate at no extra cost. Please ensure you know your child's height/weight. You can enter all of your crew requirements in your charter center.

Minimum charter nights

The minimum number of nights that you can charter for is three (3) nights. We recommend 5 - 7 nights to make the charter worthwhile. There is no maximum number of nights that you can charter for.

Mobile phones

Unfortunately you aren't able to get coverage everywhere in the Whitsundays. Check your providers coverage map on their website as to how much coverage there is. To keep phones charged - all vessels have a 12 volt outlet so bring your car charger along to charge up your phone.

Moorings

Cumberland Charter Yachts have private moorings available for your use located just off the rock wall at Abell Point Marina, suitable for overnight stays if your departure time on the first day doesn't allow you to reach your first nights' anchorage by 4pm.

The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA) have installed 180 free public moorings around the islands in various locations to help minimise anchor damage to fragile environments. Colour codes on the moorings explain the class (vessel length), time limits (usually 2 hours) and maximum wind strengths applicable to the mooring. Your breifer will explain mooring use in more detail with you during your breifing.

Download the GBRMPA public mooring map (current as at November 2017) for mooring locations.

Music

All vessels are supplied with:

  • an AM/FM radio
  • a CD player
  • Ipod connectivity
  • Payment terms and conditions

    All rates are in Australian Dollars. Fleet/vessel details, conditions and prices, were correct attime of printing and are subject to change without notice. Prices include GST. A 1.5% surcharge is added to all credit card transactions.

    A deposit of $1,000 is payable to confirm bookings. The balance of the charter fee is payable 60 days prior to charter start date.

    Power

    All vessels have 12 volt power onboard - the same as a car. Selected vessels have either small or large inverters, with some having "generator's (genset) to produce 240v power."
    Genset
    This is diesel engine dedicated to the producing 240 volt power. It is suitable for running microwave ovens, air conditioners, etc. Additionally it has plenty of power for charterer accessories including mobile phone chargers, notebook computer and even hairdryers.
    Small Inverter
    This is a device that converts 12volt battery power to 240 volt power. These are suitable for low power 240 volt appliances including mobile phone chargers, notebook computers. They WILL NOT run hair dryers.
    Large Inverter
    this is a device that converts 12 volt battery power to 240 volt power. It is suitable for most 240 volt appliances, including some of the more power hungry. Phone chargers, and notebooks are no problem. Small hair dryers may work, but at the expense of battery storage.

    Responsible Reef Practices

    Cumberland Charter Yachts are an accredited eco-tourism operator dedicated to promoting sustainable travel that benefits local communities, culture, and heritage and minimise impacts on the environment. We encourage our guests to adopt the same responsibility on your holiday. Guide to Responsible Reef Practices

    Sharks

    It is important to be aware that sharks inhabit the Great Barrier Reef and Queensland Coast, including the Whitsunday islands, freshwater estuaries, canals and streams. Shark attacks are very rare, but a reminder that exploring the spectacular beauty of the ocean does pose risks. To reduce the risk of negative interactions with sharks, CCY strongly suggest all charterers adhere to and be aware of the the following reccommendations:
  • Sharks are more actively hunting at dawn and dusk - do not go swimming or participate in any in water activities during this time or at dark
  • Always swim , snorkel or dive with a buddy
  • Be mindful of water conditions. Don't swim in murky or unclear water as this can increase the potential of mistaken interactions with sharks
  • Never clean fish or discard food scraps over the side of your boat at anchorages
  • Don't forget to use on-board holding tanks while in anchorages. Even black water waste can attract fish which in turn attracts predators
  • Do not swim near or interfere with shark control equipment

  • We do not currently use the electronic shark deterrent devices. Our management team are investigating options and undertaking risk assessments on all available products however most of which have not yet been tested or approved in QLD waters or in combination with charter vessel usage. Whilst the state government and fisheries dept. undertake scientific research, we continue to educate and advise clients on safe practices when enjoying the marine park. Independent research has shown the use of electronic devices could provide a false sense of security and put our guests at greater risk (for example ignoring the basic safety advice given) and are also not proven to be 100% effective.

    For more information on shark deterrents, read the review conducted by Choice, Australia's leading independent consumer advocacy group .

    Be Shark Smart - Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority Flyer

    Snorkel suits

    Cumberland Charter Yachts recommends wearing snorkel suits at all times when in the water as they offer protection from not only the sun, but from harmful stings from jellyfish. Snorkel suits are thin lycra full length suits that cover 90% of your body and can be hired from us during check in for $25 per person for the length of your charter.

    Stand up paddle boards

    Paddling around the inlets and bays is a great way to explore the Whitsundays, without the engine noise. Quietly meandering and exploring out of the way beaches and deserted inlets is not only rewarding but great exercise too. We offer stand up and kayaks, which are great for the children! All our paddle boards are singles we recommend taking 2 boards, more than 2 can crowd the front deck. You can order your boards or Kayaks online via the charter centre. Boards are delivered to your vessel ready for charter departure. Prices from $25.00 per day. More info on watersports

    Supermarkets

    There is a Woolworths supermarket in Airlie Beach and Cannonvale, a Coles supermarket in Cannonvale and an IGA in Jubilee Pocket and on Hamilton Island. Find out more about provisioning here.

    Tenders

    All vessels have a tender that can carry all the crew comfortably to and from the beach. They are equipped with a 6hp outboard motor and oars.

    Each day, Cumberland Charter Yachts will radio you on the vessels VHF radio at 9:30am and 2:30pm to give you a weather updated for that day and the next two days. We will also ask what your plans are for the day and anchorage for the night and suggest alternatives if they are not suitable for the prevailing weather conditions. At any time, you can radio us if you have forgetten something about the boat as simple os forgetting where an important switch is.

    Water use

    Your vessel's water tanks are full prior to departure. Water should be used VERY SPARINGLY during your charter and be water wise.
    Hamilton Island and Abell Point Marina are the only place where you can refill your tanks. All vessels have hot water for showering and a cockpit shower. All grey water is held in holding tanks on board the vessel. Tanks must not be dispensed in specific sensitive areas, your briefer will inform you where you can dispense during the vessel briefing .

    Whale Watching

    Betwene July - September, Humpback whales migrate from the Antarctic to the Whitsundays to give birth to their young in the calm warm waters around the Whitsunday islands. You can expect to see them on your charter as you sail and cruise around the islands.
    There are strict guidelines around whale sightings and what to do if you encounter them. Please familirise yourself with these rules from the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority.