Every year, more and more private superyachts are cruising the Croatian and Montenegrin coasts but, for some reason, Adriatic takes up only 10-15% of the Mediterranean charter market, as per the unofficial information.
Some of the key reasons I see here is that there is no official national and/or regional strategy for yachting development, and also that many charter brokers are still unclear on what should they offer to the guests in the Adriatic region.
Establishing Adriatic Yachting Association (AYA) was one of the first steps made towards the solution of the legislation issue. The main goal of AYA is to promote the destination and set up quality standards for the companies that are operating in the area, liaising with national laws. Apart from its founding members, in just a few months, AYA has greeted valuable industry veterans such as Eel Kant from Damen, Captain Klaudio Marcelic and Kaan Mutlugil from East Med Yachting. This organization can help improve the industry standards of the region, but also create closer bonds among the yachting professionals working and living in the area.
Another factor that can positively affect the percentage of charter yachts in the Adriatic region is having charter brokers working closer with local superyacht agents and captains – and I am not advocating this because I am a superyacht agent myself.
The fact is – agents are dealing with port formalities, provisioning and captains’ and crews’ requests daily and we are well informed about what is happening in each port and what owners or guests can expect.
For example, I have seen so many itineraries where guests are spending the second day of the charter in Dubrovnik. It takes them four hours to reach the clearance dock, two hours to clear in and one to move to the anchorage at the Old city, at just about the worst visiting time as it is crowded with cruise ship tourists and it is too hot for exploring.
There are many ways to spin the itinerary and make it a bit more enjoyable for the guests. It seems to me that sometimes itineraries are done just to cover the biggest distance possible on the coast and respect embarkation and disembarkation points (usually Split and Dubrovnik). Yet, in the reality only Dubrovnik and Peljesac area could easily fit a 3-day itinerary for the type of guests who enjoy hiking/biking and nature.