Frequently Asked Questions

These questions are asked frequently. I hope the answers help to make your ocean adventure happen! Do you have another question? Submit it and I’ll do my best to include it in the FAQ!

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Atlantic Ocean Sailing

Where to find a boat to cross the Atlantic?

Almost every day someone asks me this question. There is no straightforward way to find a boat to sail across the Atlantic. The most common three methods to find a boat are through connection via internet platforms, personal contact at the harbour, or referrals from your network. There is no fixed “best” approach. It depends on what kind of experience you want. It depends on luck. And it depends on your efforts. In Ocean Nomad, I dedicate 30 pages specifically to the topic of where to find a boat, including a review of the best crew websites to sign up for (I interviewed the seven largest crew websites), which harbours to go to when, where to search locally and other tips and tricks how you can find out about boats looking for crew.

Do you know any boats crossing the Atlantic?

Occasionally I do and owners/skippers ask me if I know any crew. At the moment I share these opportunities in the Atlantic Ocean Facebook Group and Ocean Nomad community. You’re welcome to join!

I‘d like to sail across the Atlantic but I’ve never sailed before. Should I?

If you want to get into sailing, you don’t have to cross an ocean right away. As a matter of fact, if you have never sailed before or if you want to learn how to sail, start small and near the coast. Coastal cruising is where most sailing action happens. In the beginning, I found sleeping on a boat to be a huge experience in itself. Go island hopping in Greece, Canary Islands, Cape Verde, the Caribbean or the Azores. This is the leisurely way to sail. It’s fun, relaxing, and involves lots of jumping in the sea. It brings you to harbours and bays, which the crowd doesn’t reach. You’ll be hooked. And in the unlikely event you’re not, or it doesn’t match with the captain, you can hop off on the next island. As opposed to the Atlantic, where the next island is thousands of nautical miles away. You owe it to yourself, captain, and fellow crew to be confident you’re ready for an ocean passage.

What are the best harbours to find a boat to sail across the Atlantic?

There is no ‘best’ place. You can either go to the most popular places from which boats leave for the Atlantic passage (like Las Palmas or Antigua), or choose to go to a harbour or bay where boats do initial preparations or pass ‘en route’ towards their last port of call before sailing out for the Atlantic. The smaller harbours and bays in Europe, the Canary and Caribbean Islands are worth checking out. The bigger marinas can be expensive and busy with other boat hitchhikers. Some boats prefer to prepare elsewhere ‘off the beaten path.’ There will be fewer boats but also fewer people looking for a boat. Find an extensive list of harbours and marina’s where you can try your luck in Ocean Nomad.

Can I still find a crewspot month X?

Hundreds of sailing yachts make the Atlantic Ocean crossing each year. These undertakings don’t happen all year round. Boats are dependent on the weather and seasons. Although the weather can’t be guaranteed, boats avoid risk by being in the right place at the right time.

Several different routes exist. The most popular route is the North Atlantic circle, driven by the season and trade winds: the Southern route goes from east to west and the Northern route from west to east. A small but increasing number of yachts also make a high latitude voyage like the North West passage or cross the South Atlantic from Africa to Brazil.

Some boats start searching for crew as early as one year beforehand. Some boats decide a few days before departure that it might be handy to get extra hands on board. Sometimes crew leaves vessels and replacements need to be found. Opportunities arise anytime. You can start searching, or decide to do this, anytime.

I’ll discuss the popular routes, harbours and what it’s like each month in detail in book Ocean Nomad.

What’s it like sailing the high seas?

Read a sneak peak here

Where can I learn more about sailing the Atlantic as crew?

Here are some free resources (Stories, Blogs, Tips)

Book Ocean Nomad – The Complete Atlantic Sailing Crew Guide is the book I wish was out there when I started figuring out how to sail the Atlantic Ocean as crew. From Dream to Reality it answers all your questions + more on how to make the dream happen, safe, happy, and meaningful. Available as Print in Colour, Print in Black & White, PDF, and Kindle. Learn more about the book here.

Do you have any contacts that may need crew / looking to be crew?

Lots! So I’m now working an Ocean Nomads platform to better connect you all. If you like to receive some personalized advice become a Very Important Pirate Patron. By becoming one you enable me to help you!

Caribbean Sailing

General Boathitchhiking Questions

How to start with sailing / boathitchhiking with no experience?

You’re at the right place! I started a couple of years ago from absolute zero in sailing. A few years of boathhitchhiking later, I’m now a qualified captain.

The best way to learn the ropes is by start doing. There are lots of boats out there who are welcoming hands on deck from zero experience people. I can relate. I had n0 experience a couple of years ago. These days I get paid to sail 😁 If you’re lucky you can get paid right away (dynamics will then also be different on board) but in most cases, you’ll share expenses (and the adventure!) and sometimes chip in. Think about what skills you have you can offer!

Where to find a boat to hitchhike on?

There is no straightforward way. A good starting place to find a boat is signing up for a few crew websites like CrewBay and FindAcrew. I listed a bunch of these websites here: https://theoceanpreneur.com/tips/find-a-boat/  Finding a boat is one thing, finding a cool boat with cool people is what makes all the difference! If you consider committing to a boat for a bit longer it has to be a ‘hell yeah’ or keep on searching! Good luck!

Should I stay or should I go to make the dream happen?

If you really want something, you have to gather courage and take action. Step by step you can move closer to make the dream happen. The journey is worthwhile.

We make excuses, procrastinate, or just react to whatever situation appears. It keeps us in our comfort zones. It keeps us warm and we know we are okay. That’s the thing. It makes us feel okay, not alive! If you react to every situation that crosses your path, then your life is lived by others instead of by you. There is always something going on that is immediately important but not helping us to realise our dreams. What’s more important in the long run? Time is much more valuable than money. We can always make more money but never more time. It requires some creativity, proactivity, adaptation, and shift in thinking, but it makes life exciting and rewarding.

Set you mind!

Drive, passion, and purpose bring us everywhere. If you’re clear why you want to make a dream happen, only take those actions that bring you closer to your dream and mission. Say no to everything and everyone that prevents you from going where you want to go. Don’t spend your time with people you don’t really like. Don’t waste time on a job you hate. Don’t lose hours scrolling down your Facebook feed and looking at how awesome other people’s lives are. Spend time with those awesome people instead! The internet makes it easier than ever before to connect with like-minded people. Find your tribe. Sign up for Meetup.com, Couchsurfing.org, or a Facebook group where you can find people passionate about the same things. Find out which globetrotters are maybe simply around the corner looking to meet a fellow adventure seeker. Spend time with people who make you happy, bring out the best in you and share the same dreams. This will give you tremendous energy and encouragement to go out there and do it. If you’re a (aspiring) salty dreamer, sustainability thinker and/or pirate looking for puspose, join the Ocean Nomads Community.

You must proactively pursue your dreams to make them happen. Set your standards and live the way you want to live. Happiness is worth more than any bank account. Choose time over money. The best investment you can make.

 “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. — Jim Rhone

The time to make your dreams happen is now. Be your authentic you and to do what excites you, at any stage in your life. Be who you would like to be. Follow your own path and don’t let anything or anyone hold you back. Be present and act in the now. Dreams are meant to be pursued, not postponed. Who knows if tomorrow will even arrive? If you are happy, you are your best you, and your surroundings will be happy as well. Happiness is contagious. Make your life a good one! Not only for yourself but for those in need and those to come.

The most difficult step is stepping out of the door! Once you’ve done that, the rest is easy.

Do I know of any boats that need crew?

All the time. I wish I had the resources to help everyone individually. Unfortunately, I don’t. At the moment I share opportunities in the Ocean Nomad community. You’re welcome to join! If you’re looking for some personal tips and advice, here are ways I can help. Stay tuned! I’m working on an app that can help with the matching of adventure spirited and sustainability-minded crew, boats and projects.

Ocean Conservation Action & Projects

What can I do to reduce my plastic footprint when travelling?

I made a page with different tips on plastic-free travel! More to come.

Share you ocean wins on the socials with #plasticfreenomad to inspire other souls with your actions

How can I support you?

With sharing, liking, caring, encouraging, offering skills or making a donation. Thank you! Here are a few ways.

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Oceanpreneur

How can I support / contribute?

  • Go on an ocean adventure yourself! And experience what the magic is like!
  • Share your, mine and others people ocean explorations with the world to make the ocean famous! With those buttons on the left side of the page, you can share the blogs on this website via social or email.
  • Join the journey and explore, dream, discover the ocean with me. Say hi on facebooktwitterinstagrampinterestyoutube, and splash on the content with your friends.
  • Contribute your skills
  • Buy book Ocean Nomad. 400 pages of ocean adventure & conservation stories and tips.
  • Encourage Ocean Adventure and Impact videos – Ocean Nomad TV via Patreon.
  • Make a Donation

What is ‘Oceanpreneur’?

Oceanpreneur is founded by Suzanne who lives for the ocean. ”Oceanpreneur” connects people to the ocean, encourages for ocean adventure, and educates on conservation action. Methods: content creation, toolkits, sailing expeditions, and by walking the talk. Explore the About page to learn more!

What’s my story?

I started with absolute zero in sailing a few years ago. I thought it was for the rich, experienced and people that grow up sailing. After a few years of practically non-stop hitchhiking on sailboats I finally got myself a sailing certificate so I can rent boats and take people sailing.  The sailing, freediving, and kitesurfing have shown me ocean magic and ocean trouble. My mission is to help you go on ocean adventures too and to encourage for ocean action. The next big project: building a boat. You can read a little bit more about me on the about page , the blogs on this website, and much more in my book.

Freediving

How do I start with Freediving?

My number 1 tip: take an AIDA freedive course! There are numerous freedive bodies and certifications out there. AIDA is non-profit and stay on top of the latest research in order to provide the best and most safe freedive education. Here’s a resource page with I made with more tips on how to start with freediving.

Ocean Nomads Life

Crew Questions

I want to make sailing a lifestyle. Where do I start?

Start by exploring, learning, reading and connecting, which you are doing right now:) Here are different ways to dip your toes into the ocean nomad lifestyle.

Coming soon: an Ocean Nomads community platform and app! For now, join the Ocean Nomads fleet on facebook and follow the Ocean Nomads Instagram to stay in the loop.

Where is the best place to start looking for a sailing adventure in exchange for help?

Am I too old to go on a long term sailing adventure?

What signs to look out for that the person talking to you is not genuine?

Where should I look for a sailing adventure?

What is the "ideal" $ number one can live on for a year living the Ocean Nomads lifestyle?

I don‘t eat meat/ don’t drink a lot and I am quite "environmentally friendly" - could that be a problem in some cases?

I live vegan and I still have to sail on the first vegetarian boat. It takes some adaptation on boats. I always tell upfront I’m veggie and don’t make a fuzz about others eating meat. If they find that’s a problem then it’s not the right boat to sail with. Also, I’m very focused on the environment and this requires some mindfulness on other peoples boats. It does work very inspiring if you simply walk your talk. It can be challenging at times but that’s life. One reason I start with the Ocean Nomads community is to connect more environmentally minded sailors. You’re welcome to join! In my book, I dedicated a section on how to being a healthy vegan on longer passages.

What kind of work could I do as I go along (Locally & Remotely)?

I have lots of questions for you. How can I get answers?

Captain Questions

Where can I find experienced crew willing to sail for free?

How can I contribute to ocean impact projects?