Other Events

Other Events

Date Price (per person) Availability  
02 Jul 2018 - 14 Oct 2018 £8990.00
Sold out
Join The Waiting List

Venue: St Lucia-Cowes

Price from: £8990 per person

Duration: 105 Days


Girls for Sail Verdict

This unique, educational, inspirational 15 week programme/course is one of the most popular ways to become a qualified skipper that enables you to enter the world of sailing professionally. The structured but flexible modules provides an inspiring mix of travel, training, teamwork and adventure. It offers a reliable route to the RYA Yachtmaster Offshore with an element of fun too.

Starts: 10am  Rodney Bay Marina, St Lucia or Shepards Wharf Marina, Cowes

Finishes: Cowes, exact date TBC


About the Event

There are 3 major sections in the development towards this qualification as laid out in our modules below. Depending on the time of year and your preferences, part of your programme can be taken at our RYA school in St. Lucia, Caribbean where you can cover extensive sea miles around the stunning islands. If so, we recommend that the final section is undertaken in a 2/3 week intensive period in the UK in tidal waters as this is one of the hardest stretches of waters and once you have completed the exam in the UK, there can be little doubt that you are capable of taking charge in all international waters.

Use this to start your water based career. Once you have your RYA Yachtmaster Offshore you can progress to become qualified to achieve your desired water based specific area of interest e.g

Flotilla Skipper in either the Med or Caribbean, RYA Cruising Instructor to teach yacht sailing, Yachtmaster Ocean to become a delivery skipper, or in the glamorous world of Superyachting- there are many exciting options. We will support you throughout the programme and offer career advice when it is needed & at the end, for some students, we offer them the opportunity to instruct with us when certified.  


 The YachtmasterPro Training programme is suitable for experienced sailors and newcomers alike  (See modules below) 


Module 1 – Zero to Day skipper: 5 weeks *. 

Either start in St Lucia  or Cowes – date dependent

While living on board you learn the practical yachting skills undertaken in the Competent Crew and Day Skipper and undertake a series of short offshore passages, where you put your navigation theory into practice. Includes Day Skipper theory.

You visit the main ports in St Lucia & the Caribbean, passage sailing down to Mustique or anchoring in some gorgeous bays in Grenada or other Islands.  In the UK visit the many ports of the Solent & quiet hideaway anchorages, as well as making trips along England's South Coast or across to France and the Channel Islands.

You will undertake Sail trimming / Spinnaker handling and race techniques / Boat handling under sail and power / Passage planning / Navigation, port entry and pilotage / Passage making and skippered passages / Watch keeping (some parts are date dependant)


Module 2 – Become a Coastal Skipper: 6-8 weeks*

 Either start in St Lucia  or Cowes – date dependent

This is the largest section of the programme where you build miles and experience and undertake numerous theoretical training sections. Practical training includes: Sail trimming / Spinnaker handling and race techniques / Boat handling under sail and power / Passage planning / Navigation, port entry and pilotage / Passage making and skippered passages / Watch keeping / Safety and emergency drills / RIB (small powerboat) driving.

The theory syllabus covers: Passage planning / Yacht and crew preparation /Pilotage navigation and chart work / GPS and electronic aids / Meteorology / Tidal heights and streams/ Aspects of oceanography / Vessel stability / Safety equipment and procedures / Collision Regulations (IRPCS) / Racing rules and tactics. There are 2 flexible areas of the Modules

1) Basic Safety Training will be taken during either Module 1 or Module 2 dependant on what time of the year you are able to attend. We include two elements of the STCW95 Training course: Elementary First Aid and Personal Survival Training.

2) Spinnaker training/Sail trimming & race techniques – takes approximately 1/2 weeks

Both basic safety training and spinnaker training are optional and can be removed/substituted from the 15 week programme. 

First aid is essential for YM




Module 3 –YachtmasterPro final section – Qualified Yachtmaster – 3 weeks.

Either start in St Lucia  or Cowes – date dependent*

This is where we undertake your final assessment before Yachtmaster – train on sea survival techniques, diesel engine maintenance, mooring masterclass, Powerboat Level 2 and the Yachtmaster prep section. The final part of your course is Yachtmaster Prep and Exam: two weeks of intensive practice and revision in preparation for your practical exam for the Yachtmaster Offshore Certificate of Competence.

A separate date should be booked for this live-aboard course, which is included in the training programme price (please note the exam fee is not included and is payable directly to the examiner - current fees are here) 

 *There is a minimum requirement for tidal miles for yachtmaster 


 About St Lucia

You will be based in the beautiful setting of Reduit beach in the famous IGY marina at Rodney bay with the large superyacht dock and the chilled baywalk shops and restaurants  a great place to relax and enjoy some Caribbean charm and culture.

St Lucia is a stunning lush tropical Island where you can undertake numerous sports and activities – scuba diving, kite boarding, even zip lining! You will not be bored yet there is such a calm about the environment people never want to leave.

We have been sailing here since 1990 and have the only RYA accredited school in St Lucia. It is fantastic to have the professionlism of our a regulated school on this lush tropical island. Sailing at its coolest and best!


About Cowes 

Cowes is widely credited as being the birthplace of UK yachting, seeing hundreds of 'yachties' descend every year on the seaside town and swelling its resident population multifold!

With a wealth of activities on and off the water and a year-round mild, sunny climate the island attracts loyal visitors and second home owners alike all year round but especially during the spring and summer months when the world class sailing conditions attract professional sailors from around the world to take part in famous regattas and races - as well as thousands of spectators who gather shoreside to watch the dramas unfold.


What's included?

  • RYA Competent Crew
  • RYA Day Skipper Shore based (can be online if preferred)
  • RYA Day Skipper Practical
  • RYA VHF Radio Short Range Certificate
  • Basic Safety Training
  • RYA Diesel Engine certificate
  • Yacht maintenance 
  • RYA qualifying passages
  • Spinnaker handling training
  • RYA Yachtmaster Shore based
  • RYA Coastal Skipper
  • Watch keeping experience
  • 2,500 sea miles logged
  • RYA Yachtmaster Offshore (Sail)

What's excluded?

  • Transport to and from meeting points
  • Any transport between accommodation & Yacht
  • Flights
  • Alcoholic drinks and evening meals
  • Mooring fees
  • Departure taxes/customs entries per person
  • Any clothing
  • Accommodation ashore
  • Accommodation on the yacht when not on a course
  • Exam entry paid direct to Instructor for YM/YMC

Additional elements such as Radar, STCW95 and Diesel engine courses can be supplied date dependent.


The boat

We mostly coach on yachts of between 37 and 41ft. Our yachts have been specifically chosen as they are easy to handle, great for learning! There is no denying us girls sometimes don't have the physical strength of the boys but with our technical ability and a well-chosen yacht we can do just as well.

You will usually find yourself aboard an Élan 37, Jeanneau 37 or a Beneteau 40.7. All of your time will be spent living as crew-mates on your yacht.  Most of the yachts have 9/10 berths with 3 cabins and a saloon so the boats will normally have 2 persons in each cabin i.e. 6.

6 is always the number for an RYA course 1 instructor to 5 student on-board. On some events e.g. races we use the saloon which can sleep an additional 2-4 person. 



Things you should know before you start:

If you start the course as a beginner you can expect to log all the miles and passages needed to pass your Yachtmaster Offshore assessment i.e. 2500 miles. We may recommend you take a break before your final exam to gain experience and grow in confidence.

All water based jobs that require certification as Yachtmaster and Deck Officers need full colour vision. If you are colour blind, affecting your ability to distinguish lights, you should consider having an eye test before booking your course.

If you are already a confident Day Skipper, see our Yachtmaster Fast-track.

If you intend to work as a commercial YM Offshore you need a medical exam and to pass the RYA online test Professional Practices and Responsibilities. You will then be approved by the MCA to take charge of a sailing vessel up to 24m or 200gt. on passages up to 150 miles from a safe haven.

Why not follow your Yachtmaster Offshore by completing your RYA Cruising Instructor and begin work as a Sailing Instructor!


Why choose Girls for Sail?

In 2016 we had a 100% pass rate with our YM Pro candidates, demostrating that here at GFS we dedicate ourselves to putting in 100% time, commitment and energy into your programme.

  • We tailor a Bespoke package to fit into your timetable, meaning you are not constrained by fixed start dates. 
  • Personal mentor
  • The opportunity to fine tune your skills racing in a regatta/ offshore.
  • The opportunity to sail with Spinnakers!
  • Depending on the time of year, it can be part taken in the Caribbean.
  • Being part of an All Female Team – you won’t be held back here! You get to master all positions on the boat!
  • Possibilty for Future work with us either in the UK or Caribbean!
  • We pride ourselves on our levels of tuition.  There's no such thing as a 'silly' question!  There's no shouting onboard and as it's also your programme, we want you to have fun and go home relaxed and satisfied with your time here! Not to mention you get to meet new lifelong friends!

2016 Candidates;

Thalita - previous job, Paramedic

Wanting to completely change her life, having little sailing experience she took the bold step and signed up for 6 months YM training and has never looked back! Thalita joined us for the ARC TransAtlantic Crossing, then spent 3 months in the Caribbean progressing thro the modules as well as taking part in Grenada regatta and the High Profile RORC 600! Thalita finished her programme in the UKs Tidal waters and passed her YM exam first time. Now the Sailing World is her oyster, this time she did the ARC with us as a First Mate- Great for her CV! And is currently working in her favourite place- the Caribbean. Thalita loved the racing so much she is taking part in another season of regattas, she says sailing got her fit, active and loving life again!

Annette - previous job, Marketing London 

Annette had some previous sailing experience having sailed in Germany, however she wanted to start right from the beginning. Annette spent her YM pro in the UK covering her modules over the summer months and finishing the end of October just as the cool breezes set in. During this time Annette learnt to fly spinnakers during the spectacular Cowes week and took part in Dartmouth Regatta, in the West Country, as well as covering all the Yachtmaster syllabus. Once qualified Annette went straight out to the Caribbean and landed herself a job on superyachts before the ink was dry on her certificates!

Our values are simple: Encourage, Support, Challenge and Respect!

How to book?

Click on the link above to view available dates - or if you have any questions please feel free to get in touch with us!

Summary - Yachtmaster Pro Traineeship - 15 weeks

So – are you ready for the challenge – let's go change your life shall we!?

The price includes meals on yachts, all safety equipment, publications, and tuition. One night a week we go down the pub for dinner if we are in the UK  and we do often find that in the Caribbean most people want to eat ashore in the evenings because it is so hot – but we provide dinner if you are able to cook it  on the RYA course element. Otherwise a food starter pack is always provided.

We can assist with travel arrangements if necessary through Traveleads our recommended airline company and we can also help you find accommodation.

Passage Making

While passage making you explore the varied and beautiful islands in the Caribbean – visit Martinique which is French but in tropical sunshine but still providing an enormous mouth-watering cheese and wine selection! Tropical paradise is not far from any passage and one of the most stunning is a visit the Grenadines with Mustique in the middle with the super-rich and famous (Kate and Wills were there the other year!) Mick Jagger is a regular and Princess Margaret had a beach named after her in Bequia so fond was UK’s royalty about the area.  

Weather conditions vary from warm easterly breezes to strong warm SE breezes – just wonderful for practising your skills – rarely is there a day where you cannot sail because there is always great weather.

Expect magnificent scenery, dolphins, whales, flying fish and beaches galore! Throw in some coral reefs and night squalls and we think this is offshore sailing at its best – night sailing in a bikini with a lightweight jacket – brilliant!

Call us on:
+44(0)1983 28 28 67

Email us on:

Skype us on: