Certification versus qualification

Recently we have seen an increase in yachts registered under Belgian flag. Especially for commercial yachts the lenient coding process seems to be the selling point for flying the beautiful (not) black, yellow and red colours of my home country. The issue however lies with the safe manning rules. Irrelevant of the yacht’s size, the captain must be a holder of an MCA Master 200 license, accepted under the STCW-95_II 2 convention. This is different from the Yachtmaster 200 Ton license which falls under the STCW-95_IV 4 convention. The exams for the MCA license seem to be considerably more challenging than the RYA or IYT Yachtmaster exams. It’s safe to say that it’s a higher, more serious certificate. Once again, none of this is relevant to Pocket Superyachts, in fact, this safe manning rule has an adverse effect. The captains who have have studied for the MCA 200 (and it’s actually more common to find Master 500’s) usually aspire to command +100ft yacht. So when we have a client with a 60ft Belgian flagged commercial yacht we have to refuse perfectly qualified captains because they don’t hold the correct license. They usually hold the more popular Yachtmaster license. Additionally the […]

Interview with a worry-free Pocket Superyacht owner.

In the spring of 2015 we were contacted by the owner of the 21m catamaran Imagine Heaven. He was referred to us by our long standing clients of the Lagoon 620 Crocodile Daddy. Initially he only wanted to sign up for our Crew Management service. He told us his 7 year old yacht was in need of a respray among other jobs. A superyacht consultancy company had refused to help him as they didn’t bother with yachts below 44m. So he automatically turned to the Pocket Superyacht Experts of Invisible Crew. More than 2 years into our cooperation we asked him some questions. We were very proud of the answers and Mr. Bouwen encouraged us to make them public so we can help more owners that were in his position! I.C: How did you come across Invisible Crew and what kind of services were you looking for exactly? Mr B: A business relation of mine who also has a 20 meter catamaran recommended Invisible Crew to me. I told him that I had owned Imagine Heaven for 7 years already but now I was lacking the time and energy to follow up on the many aspects involved; maintenance, crew, exploitation,… […]