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How Long Does it Take to Learn to Sail?

How Long Does it Take to Learn to Sail?

Are you wanting to learn a new skill and wondering, how long does it take to learn to sail? 

You can learn to sail in just a few hours and gain certified qualifications in as little as 5 days.

With dedication, confidence in your capabilities and support from experienced sailors or instructors, you’ll be setting sail on a bareboat charter in Greece, Antigua, Thailand or any of our other sailing destinations, in no time at all.

With that being said, how long it takes to learn to sail can depend on several factors, from what previous experience you have to where you’re learning to sail. 

In this blog, we’ll be looking at some of the key elements that can affect the time it takes to learn to sail.

Factors that can affect how long it takes to learn how to sail

As we’ve mentioned, multiple factors can have an impact on how long it takes to learn to sail. Many of these can also be linked to how easy it is to learn to sail too.

So, what might affect how long it takes to learn to sail?

Which qualification you want to gain

We have over 20 courses available across our sailing schools, depending on what suits your needs best. From the RYA Competent Crew course to our speciality youth sailing academy, we’ve got you covered.

How long does it take to learn to sail at one of our sailing schools? Depending on which qualification you want to gain, our courses range in length from 2 days to a week. 

It’s worth noting that different destinations may have their own requirements, so it could take longer to learn to sail depending on where you want to set sail. 

Find out more about the qualifications needed to charter a yacht at each of our destinations, from the BVI to Belize

Previous Experience

Have you been aboard a yacht before but not taken the helm yourself? Did you used to sail but stopped for a few years? Do you know some of the basics of sailing but want to become a sailing professional?

Any previous experience, no matter how little, can help you learn to sail quickly and easily as you may have already developed some of the key skills needed for sailing success. 

Even if you’ve never sailed before but have visited your chosen destination previously so are familiar with your surroundings, this may also reduce how long it takes to learn how to sail.

Are you completely new to sailing and want to get a head start on your learning? Read our basics of sailing and A-Z of sailing terms blogs to kickstart the journey of a lifetime today.

Sailing Conditions

Whether you want to learn to sail in the Caribbean, Mediterranean or anywhere else in the world, one thing that can have a significant impact on how long it takes to learn to sail is the sailing conditions.

If you want to reduce how long it takes to learn to sail, choose a destination with the following sailing conditions:

Sailing conditions will change across the year, with each destination having a peak and low sailing season. The peak season will usually have better temperatures, trade winds and weather so you may find it quicker to learn to sail than during the low season where you could experience higher levels of rainfall. 

Where you learn to sail

As we’ve mentioned, it’s very important to think carefully about where you want to book your first yacht charter because this can heavily impact how long it takes to learn to sail. Along with having brilliant sailing conditions, you may want to ensure wherever you decide to book has:

Destinations such as the BVI and Croatia are brilliant for beginner sailors. Find out more about the best time to sail in the BVI and when to visit Croatia.

Of course, there can be other factors that affect how long it takes to learn how to sail, such as who else is learning to sail alongside you (children may take longer to hone their sailing skills), but these are the main ones.

Learn to sail with Sunsail

Want to keep how long it takes to learn how to sail to a minimum? Gain the qualifications you need to be able to take the helm on a bareboat charter at one of our sailing schools in Greece, Croatia and the UK.

With beginner, intermediate and advanced sailing courses available, there’s something for everyone. Whether this is your first time on a yacht or you simply want to hone your existing skills, our experienced instructors will support you every step of the way.
Learn more about our sailing schools in Lefkas, Agana and Portsmouth. If you have any questions about how long it takes to learn to sail or about any of our sailing destinations, please contact us today.



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