Here are some questions that come up when speaking to clients:
Where do we get picked up?
We serve our clients out of Snook Bight Marina located at 4765 Estero Blvd. on Fort Myers Beach. It is a great marina and there is a Publix in the front of the property to allow for picking up things you may want; drinks, sun screen, and food. On occasions, we can make special plans to pick up other docks, restaurants, marinas, or any public or private place accessible to our vessel but these would incur additional costs for fuel and travel time.
How is the cost of our cruise set?
As with most charter companies, Sundancer Charters takes into consideration the cost of the time of the cruise, travel and fuel, and extra arrangements (food, drink, equipment, and other items). Most of the cruises will fall into the $150/hr. (with a four hour minimum).
How many people can we have on our cruise?
The Irish Wake will hold over 12 people but USCG regulations for our vessel limit our clients aboard to (6). This number includes children and adults. With the size of the Irish Wake there will be plenty of room for everyone.
What are the rules for children?
Under Florida Law, children under the age of 6 must wear a properly fitted Personal Flotation Device (life jacket) when onboard any vessel. We have various life jackets for small children, we will make sure we have PFDs for each child. Please inform us of any children's PFD needed and the size of each child when making your reservation.
Where can we go?
Where you want to go is a decision up to you. Depending on where you board the vessel, the length and time of you cruise can be set to any of your expectations. Some people want to cruise around an area for a few hours, stop in somewhere for lunch or dinner and just enjoy the time on the water. Others may want to specifically see a place or location.
What can we do on the Irish Wake?
Our vessel is yours to enjoy while on a cruise. We will board you and your items and then do a safety review of the vessel and safety equipment. After that, any questions you have can be put to Capt. Shawn or the First Mate. There is plenty of seating to enjoy in the large cockpit and on the bow a large sun pad. The sun pad can be used whenever safety allows both at slow speeds and cruising depending on water conditions. Below decks there are two staterooms and two heads for your convenience. We also have a full galley and salon, all under full air conditioning.
Can we reserve the vessel for more than one day?
If our schedule allows for the dates we can work up prices for an extended cruise or using the vessel over multiple days. One example would be if a group would want to travel down to Key West and stay over on the island. Or if a family had guests in for a weekend and wanted use of the vessel for two or more days. We will try to meet any requests presented.
How do we reserve the Irish Wake?
Reservations are arranged through Capt. Shawn or Boat Setter. Depending on the type of charter, a deposit of $250 will be taken by credit card. Any cancellations caused by Sundancer Charters will be refunded as well as any cancellations due to adverse weather conditions. (Or we will do our best to reschedule as soon as possible.) The Irish Wake is a large open water vessel. It will be comfortable in most protected waters with up to moderate chop and open water up to 3' seas but most people will want to boat during calm days which we have so many of in Southwest Florida.
How much will our costs be?
We will use the location, time on the water, and associated costs to estimate the price of your cruise. This will be agreed to before the cruise. $250.00 will be paid at the time of making the reservation (credit card) and the balance when we return back to your original boarding location (cash or credit).
What can we bring aboard?
We try to accommodate any of our client's requests. Please feel free to bring any clothes, towels, or personal items. Food and drinks are also welcomed though we request any food and drink items are in plastic or aluminum. Glass can cause safety issues aboard. Coolers with water and ice are always on board. Your First Mate will be able to provide any serving or preparation of your food or drinks. Alcohol is permitted on the vessel but the Captain reserves the final say on any issues that may arise. Under no circumstances will any drugs or their use be allowed on the vessel as well as drunken/unsafe behavior. Smoking is also prohibited on board.
What are the rules on alcohol aboard?
Florida law allows for alcohol on vessels but not by the operator. Feel free to have beer, wine, or drinks on your cruise as long as no one creates any safety issues while underway. Rules also restrict boarding a vessel while intoxicated.
Can we swim and get into the water?
Anyone is more than welcome to go swimming or snorkeling in the local waters. Out in the Gulf and off our beaches are very good locations. We have floats and lines available for those who want to swim. The Irish Wake has a large hydraulic operating diving platform that makes getting in and out of the water easy and safe. It should be noted that though the local waters are bath-like in the warmer months, the Gulf cools down in the colder months. Please ask for the current water temperatures in our areas.
How can water conditions affect our cruise?
We monitor the NOAA marine and land weather conditions throughout the day. These reports are issued every four hours. The Irish Wake is a large Sport Yacht and will be able to handle most conditions but that does not mean it would be enjoyable to our clients. We will keep in touch with any clients with reservations in the days before their appointments if any fronts or adverse conditions could affect their cruise. If a cruise has to be cancelled due to adverse weather conditions, you will have the choice of a refund or the rescheduling at another time, whatever is best for you.
What are the last minute charter specials?
From time to time we have a cancellation or a day when it is beautiful out but we have no reservations. If we have people who would like to go out and are available in their schedule, we can call them and see if they want to go out for a cruise. This is a less expensive option but you have to be ready to go usually at short notice!
Will we see dolphins?
Every boat operator in Florida seems to promise dolphins. You will see "Dolphin" cruises advertised everywhere. The truth is there are many areas we see dolphins much of the time, probably 70% of the time we are out we will have a dolphin or two in or wake jumping or just swimming along. And everyone loves a great dolphin video to take home. If we are lucky you will see one on your cruise!
Can I bring clients aboard for sight seeing?
We can fulfill business needs as well aboard the Wake. Many Realtors enjoy having the ability to comfortably take their clients out on the water to show the best of the surrounding area by water. They can provide their clients a thorough familiarization of the area and also check on depth and travel times from certain properties to open water for their boating clients. These are of upmost importance. Please note, because of the size of the Wake we stay in the direct access areas of Cape Coral, Fort Myers, and Naples.
The Irish Wake is also a great opportunity to take out your clients or to show your appreciation to your top employees!
What if we have more than (6) people to go out?
We also have occasions where people have more then the USCG limit of (6) people who want to get out on the water on their own boat not be with dozens of others on a excursion vessel. For this situation, one option is for the group to rent a boat from one of the many rental companies in the area and have Capt. Shawn be your Captain. Capt. Shawn holds a USCG Master 100 ton license. This allows him to Captain many types of vessels for more than (6) people, up to the allowable number for the vessel. Usually, for most local boating, the fee is $40/hr. Most local Captains hold a “six pack” license and are limited to (6) people no matter the size of the vessel. Please contact us for more information.
We have our own boat, can Capt. Shawn be our captain?
Capt. Shawn holds a USCG Master 100 ton license which allows him to be able to run vessels with the limit of people on board set by the safety standards for that vessel, usually, the fee is $40/hr. Most local Captains hold a “Six pack” license which limits the charter number to (6) no matter the size of the vessel. Please contact us for more information.