Intention becomes action
Our intention, back in August of 2011, was to give ourselves 5 years to “reach cruising attitude”. At the beginning of 2012, we started taking action. This was our action list:
- Get licensed to be able to register the boat (required in Switzerland, where we live)
- Make a final decision on the boat (get to a short list of 2 boats by the end of the year)
- Decide what to do with our businesses so that we could be away
- Start to downsize our possessions so that we could sell our house
- Keep buying things for the boat to take advantage of boat show deals and seasonal sales while we still had income coming in*
- Read as much about live-aboard cruising, seamanship, and boat maintenance as possible*
- Start buying a library of pilotage books for the areas we were going to visit during our first few years on the boat. (We saved the purchase of paper charts for the last minute as they are constantly updated) *
- Follow other helpful cruisers blogs*
* I’ll publish the list of our books, equipment and favourite blogs in an upcoming post.
Our friends would laugh and say, “you don’t even have a boat, why are you doing all of this?” No, we didn’t have a boat. We didn’t even have the money to buy a boat at this point, but we were totally, 100% sure that we would have one in 5 years. There was not a doubt in minds.
It’s not enough to think “It would be so nice to have boat”. You have to be thinking “I have a sailboat (!) , it is a XX and I love it”
The most important item on our action list at this point was to find out what the requirements are to register a boat under the Swiss flag.
The first thing we needed is the Swiss offshore sailing license. The only foreign certification accepted is the RYA yacht master. Otherwise you have to do the course held by the Swiss Cruising Club). Here are the steps and requirements for the Swiss offshore license:
- Offshore and coastal navigation theory course (5 months)
- Offshore experience – 1,000 documented nautical miles done with a qualified skipper after having passed the theory exam
- Marine first aid course (1 month)
- Inshore boating license (cover canals, lakes, rivers)
- Optical and auditory exams