Learn to Sail
Florida Yachts Charters is the preeminent bareboat charter company and affiliate ASA Sailing School in the Florida Keys. We offer a personal, boutique learning experience in one of the most stunning settings in America – Key West. The Keys is an advanced sailing destination of great natural beauty, with many isolated anchorages off deserted nature preserve islands, secluded beaches, fantastic snorkeling on the third largest barrier reef in the world, and fantastic Fort Jefferson at Dry Tortugas National Park.
As all of our courses are offered privately, giving more one on one time with your instructor and the flexibility of combining courses and customizing your itinerary, we do not offer a set course schedule. At Florida Yachts Charters we maintain a fleet of newer model monohulls and catamarans that allow students to choose the size vessel they want to learn aboard and pair up with an instructor of their choosing. We have a 4 day/3 night minimum for ASA Sailing courses.
Basic Keelboat Sailing
ASA 101 – 2 Day Course
You will learn to sail a boat of about 30 feet in length in light to moderate winds and sea conditions in familiar waters without supervision. This is our most basic course, and no auxiliary power or navigation skills required.
Course description – demonstrated ability to skipper a sloop-rigged keelboat of approximately 20 to 30 feet in length by day in light to moderate winds and sea conditions. Knowledge of basic sailing terminology, parts and functions, helm commands, basic sail trim, points of sail, buoyage, seamanship and safety including basic navigation rules to avoid collisions and hazards. Auxiliary power operation is not required.
ASA 103 – 2 Day Course
This intermediate level course is designed to increase your cruising confidence. Practice docking, anchoring, points of sail, sail trim, safety tips, basic navigation and use of marine electronics. You will learn to cruise safely in local and regional waters as both skipper and crew on an auxiliary powered sailboat of about 30 to 40 feet in length, in moderate winds and sea conditions.
ASA 101, Basic Keelboat Certification is a prerequisite and can be attained prior to this certification.
ASA 104 – 2 Day Course
This advanced level course will help you achieve the skills necessary to charter yachts on your own. Learn more about on-board systems, such as familiarity with GPS navigation; engine and battery systems; safety, weather and provisioning. This is an advanced cruising class for individuals with cruising experience. You will learn to act as skipper or crew of a 30 – 50 foot boat sailing by day in coastal waters.
ASA 101, Basic Keelboat Certification & ASA 103, Basic Coastal Cruising are a prerequisite and can be attained prior to this certification.
ASA 114 – 2 Day Course
This advanced cruising standard for individuals — with cruising experience – means upon certification you can act as skipper and crew of a 30 – 50 foot multihull sailboat by day in coastal waters. The standard includes instruction in the unique skills required to Captain a 30-50 foot multihull.
ASA 104, Bareboat Cruising is a prerequisite and can be attained prior to this certification.
To challenge ASA 101, 103 or 104, you must be prepared with sufficient sailing experience and knowledge to pass the written exams and successfully demonstrate, without instruction, the practical skills required by ASA for the level. You must achieve a 100% grade on practical skills in order to take the written part of the exam. You then must pass the written exam with a minimum grade of 80% to be approved for the certification in your log book. We therefore encourage those seeking to take a Challenge to carefully review the requirements and skill set for each course on the ASA web site, and study the textbooks in advance to ensure you’re able to pass the tests before your Challenge. Not everyone passes these Challenges, so please be prepared.