The check-in to a boat is different from the check-in into an hotel
Today we will try to explain in detail, how the check-in procedure is done on the day your holiday on a houseboat starts. If you’ve only had experiences with hotels and you are getting ready for your first houseboat-holiday, read this article carefully.
One could mistakenly think that it is enough to go to the reception, get registered, take the keys and that’s it. In reality, there are several things to do and to learn before you are ready to leave the berth.
First of all, you need to remember that the check-in on the boarding day is from 15 to 18 o’clock and that several crews will present themselves at the desk at same time, to fulfil the same procedures. First, you will be asked to get registered and to fill out some paperwork at the reception. If the boat is ready (cleaned, serviced, checked and sanitized), you can start to unload your car, take your personal belongings on board, get familiar with the spaces and choose a cabin. Meanwhile, the captain and his first officer will take part at a briefing, in the room with same name, which is held multilingually by a staff member. The maximum number of people who can attend the briefing is 6; hence 3 boats and 2 people per crew. To organize the briefing in the best possible way, the staff tries to involve crews that speak the same language and have the same itinerary. Each session lasts 30-45 minutes.
At the end of the session, the entire crew is required to meet on board, where they will be joined by a member of our multilingual staff as soon as possible. He then will hold a course or training session. He will show you the boat, the installations on board, the best practices of behaviour and all the useful and necessary information, to operate your river yacht. Everybody will listen to these instructions in order to learn how to live on board. A technical handbook will be at your disposal during your holiday, which will support and help you in case you forgot any essential information. During the driving lesson, your skills will be assessed and the roles aboard assigned. A houseboat-holiday is always active and dynamic. The operation of a houseboat requires everybody’s help; unlike a car trip, where the pilot drives and the others just sleep until they reach their destination. The mooring, the navigating and to control a vessel, requires help and cooperation. At the end of the briefing, everybody will have a well-defined role: the captain, the rope staff, the galley staff :-)
When the training is over, you are good to go. Typically, not much navigating is done the first day and it is not unusual for a crew to start navigating the following day, after a good night of sleep and a nice breakfast on deck.
By way of conclusion, here is one tip. If you want to avoid the crowd on the day of the check-in, you can opt for our early-departure-service, which will allow you to get on board at 11 in the morning and to have finished the paperwork by 13 o’clock.
When most of the crews will be huddling in front of the reception, in the briefing room and on deck, you’ll have already been navigating for hours, like real VIPs