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Should You Tip Your Boat Captain? 6 Reasons Why You Should

a boat day captain on funship

Are you planning on booking a private boat charter or have an upcoming reservation and wondering if you should tip your boat captain?

Tipping your captain on a private charter can be a great way to show appreciation for their service and while it is not required it is a standard practice. Below you’ll learn 6 of the main reasons why you should consider tipping your boat captain.

You’ll also gain perspective on how your boat captain’s professionalism (or lack thereof) will directly impact your overall boat charter experience.

It can’t be denied that the role of a boat captain is clearly super important so let’s get into everything they are doing behind the scenes. Just know that if you decide to tip it’s going into the pockets of a hard-working individual!

6 Reasons You Should Consider Tipping Your Boat Captain

boat captain steering speed boat

1. Safety and Expertise

Boat captains undergo extensive training and certification to ensure the safety of passengers. Tipping your boat captain is a way to recognize their expertise and the peace of mind they provide throughout the trip.

2. Captains clean the boat before and after the trip

boat cleaning supplies

Something you may not think about is how the boat stays clean. Oftentimes this is a task that the captain is responsible for. This means that in addition to the time of your cruise, the captain has to spend some additional time after each cruise tidying up the boat.

3. Being a boat captain is a seasonal job

Even in destinations like Clearwater where boating is technically year-round, there is a much higher demand in boating season which peaks from March to November. During this time of the year, boat captains are constantly working long hours so they really have to make a conscious effort to provide top-class service over and over again!

4. Captains are responsible for satisfying your requests

If you book a customized boating excursion your boat captain will tailor the charter experience to your preferences. Whether it’s adjusting the itinerary, providing special amenities, or accommodating dietary restrictions. Tipping your boat captain acknowledges their effort to make the trip more enjoyable for you.

5. Boat Captains Have Local Knowledge

dolphin jumping through wake on a boat day cruise ibis sitting on dock post next to a boat day avalon funship

A mark of a great captain is if they go above and beyond to make your charter exceptional, such as spotting wildlife like dolphins and native birds, offering interesting facts about the area, or creating a memorable atmosphere. Tipping your boat captain is a way to express your gratitude for their exceptional service.

6. Extra Services

two girls on bach boats cruise with bachlorette themed hats cups and straws bachlorette group lined up on shoreline next to a boat day funship


Some captains offer additional services like setting up special occasions (e.g. bachelorettes, proposals), arranging snorkeling, shelling, or diving excursions, or preparing freshly caught seafood on board.

At A Boat Day and our sister company Bach Boats, we want our clients to dream big. Our captains will try and bring your vision to life so make sure to give them as many details as possible during the booking process.

How much should you tip your boat captain?

a boat day avalon fun ship boat

The standard practice for tipping your boat captain ranges from 15 -20%. Remember that tipping practices can vary by region and country, so it’s a good idea to research local customs and guidelines to determine an appropriate tip amount for your specific charter experience.

Ultimately, tipping your boat charter captain is a way to express appreciation for their efforts in making your private charter memorable and enjoyable.

Anchors aweigh!

Thanks for reading and wondering if you should be tipping your boat captain. We love our crew of captains so we wanted to write this informative post about the responsibility that is required of them.

We believe they will do their best to make your private charter experience with A Boat Day a special experience! If you have any questions please let us know in the comments!

We’ve listed more content related to the Clearwater area below if you’re planning on visiting soon.

Things to do in Clearwater for families

Things to see on an eco boat tour