Can Any Vessel Join the Classic Sailing Fleet?
Classic Sailing has a strong company ethos that we developed through running our own vessel – Eve of St Mawes – for 20 years. The fleet we now promote under the Classic Sailing banner all have their own individualistic skippers and distinctive style of sailing and holidays but they share the following characteristics that match our original values and passion.
• Eye catching tall ships & traditionally rigged boats
• Hands-On Sailing – Guest crews that actually sail the ship
• Voyages that are open to a wide range of ages and abilities
• An appreciation and environmental sensitivity to wildlife and ecosystems
• Exploring ashore in locations rich in wildlife, maritime history or scenery
• They all produce freshly cooked food on board at standards that range from hearty and filling to gourmet.
Classic Sailing has managed to stay true to our company ethos and its popularity has stood the test of time. Travel experiences and adventures powered by the wind have never been more relevant, and with ever-increasing concern about climate change, we continue to promote wind-powered adventures.
Classic Sailing is happy to potentially work with new or existing businesses, charities, and skipper-owners who have traditionally rigged vessels that require guest participation, teamwork, and physical effort to sail. Your vessel will need to be commercially coded for sail training/charter.
Yes I think I fit that criteria – What do I do next?
Contact us by email telling us about your vessel, ambitions, and where you would like to operate.
What do we Offer Vessel Operators?
- Our Sales Staff are professional sailors that love what you do.
- Our office ashore is run by full-time staff that all have management roles in the company and are still active commercial skippers, RYA Instructors or tall ship sailors.
- We understand where owners and sea staff are coming from if you want to talk about operational matters and we have an empathy with potential customers too as we have spent years on boats encouraging them to get a buzz out of traditional sailing.
- We might prefer to be out sailing with blocks and tackles but we are also pretty geeky when it comes to using the latest technology and digital platforms to present your voyages to the widest possible audience
- We are pretty good at marketing too …. and we can prove it.
- Classic Sailing has been helping other vessel owners to maximize incomes since 2003. We have worked with over 31 vessels to raise their profile and increase incomes and markets. See some of our case studies and successes.
- Classic Sailing main Facebook page has over 44,000 followers and 10,000+ on Instagram.
- We convert a very high number of enquires to customers using cutting edge marketing and database software.
- We produce a weekly e-newsletter with an opening rate of over 20%
- Each member of staff has a marketing area of expertise across all our e-commerce platforms
- We use e-commerce and marketing professionals to keep us up to date with the latest global marketing trends.
- We have a marketing plan with clear campaigns to try and be fair to all vessels in terms of marketing coverage.
- We don’t use freelancers to do regular posts, adverts and tweets. All our key social media platforms and web content is written and managed in house so we can react quickly to topical news and trending news stories and genuinely interact with the traditional sailing community we have helped create.
3. Reliable and Responsive Booking Agents
Classic Sailing produces shared booking availability monitors to avoid double bookings and enable us the confidence to clinch a booking without having to ring you up in the middle of a gybe to check availability.
Staff In our office are there Monday to Friday to take and process bookings all year round and advise customers. We are very well travelled and between us we have sailed on most the fleet. We regularly try out our own holiday products and pull ropes with customers from Cornwall to Cuba.
4. The Traditional Sailing Travel Industry – We are In it together.
Youth Sail Training vessels have organisations that support them like ASTO in the UK. RYA sailing schools have the RYA speaking up for them. The traditional sailing travel industry no such lobby group but it does have Classic Sailing fighting its corner. We can’t do it on our own, but with all the vessel operators we work with there is strength in numbers to fight unfair legislation, share expertise and ideas, support each other in times of trouble. It is awfully lonely out there being responsible for a 100-year-old historic sailing ship or being an owner-skipper coping with a stroppy customer or a broken-down engine. If Classic Sailing Staff can’t offer immediate assistance we have a huge network of contacts and other vessel operators who might be able to help or advise.
The beauty of being part of a group of vessel operators is we can spot marketing trends or economic issues that might do damage to your business and make plans to buck any downward trends.
We lead by example with travel industry safeguards that customers now expect from HTTPS secure website, customer charters, privacy policies, safeguards for finance, and safety in the light of Covid-19.
Check Out Our track record & business successes
There are several websites that feature large fleets of Tall Ships, Sail training vessels, and sail cargo vessels. Some work as booking agents. Others just profile your vessel and send potential customers to your own website for further information and booking inquiries. Shipowners tell us that some of the websites that have the most impressive fleet portfolio – only send them 1 or 2 customers a year.
Classic Sailing works quite a bit differently from these websites….and our results per vessel are a lot better.
When you approach us with your vessel and business ideas:
• Yes we always want to increase the choice of voyages and vessels for our customers
• Yes we are excited when a new vessel owner contacts us that wants to offer something a bit different (sometimes we get a bit too over excited)
• Yes we do actively look for vessels that might serve a destination or type of voyage in high demand.
• Yes we do have a lot of in-house knowledge that is useful for a start-up business or an experienced operator who wants to diversify and attract new markets.
We are NOT a comparison travel website that just features as many tall ships and traditional vessels as possible. The size of the Fleet is not everything to us. It is more thoughtful than that. We work closely with each vessel operator to increase bookings and customer satisfaction.
Classic Sailing in the last 24 years has helped grow the market for adventure charter for adults. We have helped increase income and raise standards for a very large number of vessels – much more than are currently active on our new website.
We serve both vessel operators and customers.
What customers want is the security of knowing that if they book a Classic Sailing holiday, it will actually run or has good financial protection for pandemics, etc.. The skippers and crews want this too, as it secures their employment and makes running the voyage to its full potential, setting more canvas and being socially more fun for everyone.