Terms & Conditions


1.PAYMENTS  Courses, items purchased on line must be paid for at the time of purchase.  It will be deemed that at the time of on-line payment that the purchaser agrees to Start Point Sail West Ltd terms and conditions and is bound by them.  No refunds whatsoever will be given for bookings cancelled by the student.  If the course is cancelled by Start Point Sail West Ltd, no liability shall attach itself to Start Point Sail West Ltd whatsoever, beyond a refund. By purchasing on line the student agrees to be bound by these terms, contract bound by their consideration.

2. BOOKING PROCEDURE – Telephone, email bookings must be paid for in full on line or via bank transfer. A booking form must be completed and signed at the time of payment and are considered firm bookings with our terms and conditions agreed to herein.

Bookings paid on line must be paid for in full at that time and are considered firm bookings with our terms and conditions agreed to herein.   No refunds whatsoever will be given for bookings cancelled by the student.

Charterers will be in a position to cancel and receive a refund in line with the terms and conditions of the charter agreement and signed charter booking form.  All bareboat charterers will need to complete and  sign the charter booking form and show proof of RYA qualifications, experience and sign the charter agreement.   If the charterer at this point is not accepted by Start Point Sail West Ltd due to lack of suitable experience and/or qualifications therefore is deemed not to meet the charter criteria, then a full refund will be given.  A full refund will be given if the prospective charterer is not prepared to sign the charter paperwork and complete the booking.  Paperwork will need to be completed, signed and returned within 3 days of any reservation made or your booking may be cancelled.  Once the Charterer has signed the charter booking form and Charter Agreement then the booking is binding.

3. CONFIRMATION of Courses: Start Point Sail West Ltd will confirm the booking, via letter or via email, within 5 days of receiving the Booking Forms.

4. COURSE DURATION: DS and CS/YM Shorebased courses are 40 hrs over a number of weeks/days

a) Weekend courses from approximately 0900 hrs Saturday until

approximately 1600 hrs on Sunday.

b) 5- day Certificated Courses, from approximately 0900 hrs Monday until 1400 hours the following Friday or the same times Wed – Sun, or Sat – Wed.

c) 7-Day Courses, from approximately 0900 hours Monday until 1400 hrs the following Sunday.

d) 9-Day Courses, from approximately 0900 hours Saturday until 1400 hrs the following Sunday.

e) 9-Day longhaul courses, from approximately 1700hrs Sunday until 1700 hrs Friday week.

f) The foregoing times are, of course, dependent upon the weather conditions and the Instructor’s Skipper’s decisions and the sea-worthiness of the vessel at the time.
g) One line courses are valid for 12 months from the time of registration, subject to the RYA and our partners providing this service. Students have up to one year to complete their course unless agreed with the school at the time of booking due to special circumstances. No refund whatsoever will be offered to RYA interactive course students not finishing course.  No liability will attach itself to the school if the RYA change or cancel the interactive service.


a) Skippered charters – as specified on the charter agreement

b) Bareboat charters – as specified on the charter agreement.


Students can join their yacht 1830 the day prior to their course if joining the course on the day is made difficult due to travel constraints. On the day prior to the start of the course the student can stay onboard by arrangement, provided no problem arises. The vessel setting out on courses/charter will not wait beyond 0900 hrs on the start day.

a) There will be no refund whatsoever if a student wishes to cancel their course place or cannot attend their course under any circumstance including commitments elsewhere it is requested that students take out insurance as per booking term agreement (school insurance). Students will automatically forfeit the total monies paid and no liability by doing so shall attach to Start Point  Sail West Ltd whatsoever.

7. LATE RETURN OF SAILING VESSEL: For whatever reason beyond the date of the course. The Students can stay onboard at Start Point Sail West’s victualling expense or return home if they wish at their own expense. No liability shall extend beyond this. Charterers are subject to the terms of the Yacht Charter Agreement.

8. UNDER 18’S: 12 – 16 year olds accepted when sailing with parent for guardian. Unaccompanied children accepted at 16-18 but all Booking Forms for children under 18 to be signed by parent or guardian, stating this fact after the signature. Children younger than 12 are accepted by us at our discretion.              We ensure that all instructors teaching under 18s are CRB checked.

9. SKIPPER’S/PRINCIPAL’S DECISIONS: The Principal’s decision is final at all times, on any of the Start Point Sail West’s property and the Start Point Sail West’s vessels until the Skipper takes over.

DRUGS Start Point Sail West has a zero tolerance on illegal drugs. The police will be informed at the earliest opportunity and the student disembarked under the terms of Clause 9 a b and c.

ABUSE Physical or Verbal abuse including racial or sexual harassment – In the event that the skipper or principal observes or received any complaint will act in accordance to English law and will act under the terms of Clause 9 a b and c where deemed necessary.

SMOKING Smoking is not permitted on board.

ALCOHOL Mild consumption of alcohol is permitted whilst in Port at the discretion of the skipper.  Drinking of alcohol is not permitted whilst underway.  Alcohol must not be consumed less than 12 hours prior to leaving port.  If a student is considered to be intoxicated when the yacht is required to go to sea, or still mildly under the influence then delay in departure may occur.  If repeated intoxication on board is affecting the running of the course then the student will be required to disembark under the terms of 8 points a, b and c).

a) Skipper’s Decisions: From the moment the Skipper steps on board the instruction vessel in accordance with marine practice, the Skipper’s decisions are final always.

b) All crew/students will accept all orders and decisions given to them by the Skipper at all times whilst on board Start Point Sail West’s vessel or ashore, for the duration of the course/charter until the course/charter is complete and the Skipper is no longer onboard the vessel. The Skipper’s authority is total day and night in accordance with Marine Law.

c) If for any reason whatsoever a Student/Charterer does not accept an order from the Skipper or his designated substitute, whether the Student/Charterer considers it to be reasonable or not, the Student/Charterer shall be considered to be in breach of his Articles of sailing. The Skipper shall take any action or decision he considers fit for the well being of the vessel and crew. If The Student/charterer is placed ashore at the nearest port no liability whatsoever shall attach itself to Start Point Sail West and neither shall the Student/Charterer have redress for any expenses or unused portion of the fee. Neither any redress against the Skipper or Start PointSail West as a result of action’s taken by the Skipper. In the event of non-compliance of a student under the age of 18 the the student’s parent or guardian will also be disembarked and the same rules within 9 a b and c. Also apply to that person.

Every attempt will be made to give pupils maximum sea time. However, if in the Skipper’s opinion weather conditions, safety or any other consideration renders it imprudent, the Skipper’s decision is final.

10. VESSEL CHANGE: If Start Point Sail West changes vessels, due to any vessel becoming unsuitable, for any reason whatsoever, or delay in this in no way affects the validity of the booking of the Terms and Conditions stated herein they remain good.

11. SCHOOL CANCELLATION: If, for any reason, Start Point Sail West is unable to fulfil a booking or a vessel becomes unseaworthy for any reason whatsoever, Start Point Sail West will inform the Student immediately the knowledge is available. No liability shall attach itself to the Start Point Sail West beyond the refund of the full fee paid by the student(s)/charterer or unused portions thereof.

12. SCHOOL INSURANCE: Start Point Sail West Ltd is insured for Instruction however Student’s needs vary. Start Point Sail West Ltd strongly advises that the Student obtain their own insurance for cancellation or curtailment by the student, loss of personal items, Start Point Sail West’s fees, sickness, illness, accident, injury, bereavement, or any other reason the Student considers prudent for his personal life style or well being.

13. DISCLAIMER: No liability is accepted for any Student’s vehicles parked in the Marina grounds, public or marine carpark, on road parking, or Student’s/Charters Possessions in the vehicles, on the pontoons or in Start Point Sail West’s vessels or accommodation.

  1. a) No liability is accepted for Students whilst on School Grounds, in any of the School/Company properties, hired venues, on ladders, pontoons or vessels and all Students/Charterers participate in any aspect of any course at their own risk.
  2. BREAKAGES OR DAMAGES: Howsoever caused must be immediately notified to the Skipper or Principal for safety. Students shall be liable for any loss or damage to Start Point Sail West’s equipment, vessel’s equipment, up to and including the first £1000 per item.  Lifejacket gas cylinders accidently deployed by the student will be charged for at £14.00 each.
  3. Start Point Sail West’s standards of instruction are high and certificates will only be issued at the end of a course if, in the opinion of the School’s  Instructors and Principal, the Student has reached the necessary standard.  The School’s Principal and Instructor’s decision shall be final and accepted by all Students.
  4. DUTIES ONBOARD: All Students will be expected to participate in cooking, cleaning vessel and routine maintenance as required by the instructor. At the end of the Course all Students/Charterers will be expected to clean the vessel from stem to stern.
  5. DISPUTE: In the event of a dispute not being settled by mutual agreement, it is agreed that the President of the British Law Society shall elect an Arbitrator whose decision shall be final. It is further agreed all agreements between customers, clients, Students, Charterers and staff of Start Point Sail West Ltd shall be governed by British Law, even when the dispute occurs outside British territorial waters.
  6. By purchasing this product the purchaser/student/charterer confirms to have read Start Point Sail West Ltd’s terms and conditions and fully understand and accept them. If the course/charter is unavailable or is cancelled by Start Point Sail West Ltd then I accept that my course fee will be returned to me and that no liability shall attach itself to Start Point Sail West Ltd whatsoever, beyond a refund. By purchasing on line, telephone or email the student agrees to be bound by these terms, contract bound by their consideration.  If the purchaser does not give permission for the company to send me emails relating to my booking/and the regular newsletter/special offers/use my image in promotional material please email enquiries@sail-west.co.uk to unsubscribe.