Where Exactly in Europe do I pick up my Yacht?

You launch your yacht directly from the Hanse Factory on the Baltic Sea. You can cruise the non-tidal Baltic (and perhaps join a rally) before heading over to the UK and then on to the Med.

Can you tell me more about the paperwork side of buying a yacht in Europe?

Team Windcraft make the paperwork side of things easy for you. Windcraft issue you with a final bill of sale together with the paperwork you need to register your yacht in Canberra or Auckland.

You can pay your bill in Australian, New Zealand, US dollars or Euros.

When do I pay Tax on my yacht?

You do not have to pay VAT at the time of purchase in Europe when you buy a new yacht through us.

You only pay Australian tax when you bring your yacht home.

Who oversees the Quality of the Commissioning?

Windcraft ensures a seamless process through the provision of English speaking support and full after sales care.

Your yacht has the same warranty as under the Hanse Group regardless of where you pick it up.

When is the best time to pick my boat up in Europe?

You’ll want to enjoy the European sailing season so a pick up any time from April to July is ideal.

Can I Sail my yacht back to Australia?

Of course you can. Because your yacht has Australian or New Zealand registration there are no issues with bringing your boat home. We can put you in touch with a delivery skipper if you wish.

Alternatively, Team Windcraft can arrange delivery of your new yacht by a professional yacht delivery company to the destination of your choice.

Contact your local team Windcraft office to chat about your European Adventure!

European Pick Up and Summer Baltic Adventure

Onboard a New Hanse 575 – Making the Dream a Reality

Summer in Europe sailing around the Baltic on your own new Hanse 575… Sounds like a dream… But that’s just what Phil and Cheryl Coombes did this year. A dream that Cheryl says was sparked by a chance meeting with Windcraft’s John Cowpe onboard a Hanse at the Sydney Boat Show.

European pick up is easy with Windcraft. You can buy your yacht in Australia but pick it up in Germany and enjoy the extended evenings and balmy nights of the European summer.

Taking full advantage of this option Melbourne couple, Cheryl and Phil had their Hanse 575 commissioned in Germany with Aaron Fowlds from Windcraft NZ. He was there to meet the new owners when they arrived and spent the first few days helping them get to know their new yacht, “Kid’s Inheritance”.

The Handover in Germany – April 2015

After a fun test week, getting to grips with lift bridges and a trip to the Hanse factory, it was back to Melbourne and planning for the big trip in June.

When Cheryl and Phil returned to Germany on June 1st they had four extra passengers, their youngest two children, Courtney and Chris and friends Lorraine and Smithy who joined them for the first leg of the Baltic adventure.

There were plenty of adventures during the three months onboard and some real highlights. We caught up with Cheryl on their return to hear all about it…

A Chat with Cheryl about their Baltic Adventures…

First of all, what made you decide to do this?

We were at the Boat Show looking for our next cruiser. We hopped on a Hanse with John Cowpe.

We were really impressed with the boat and we were really impressed with John.

The clincher was the test sail as we were able to go on a test sail on the one at the boat show.

We got to know the owners of that boat and sailed their boat at Pittwater – that was the decider because it was so easy to sail.

We had a good strong 22-25 knots a day. We could get amongst all the moorings and everything. I was able to bring the boat in and bring it back and I said “Right this is the boat for us”.

Why Europe and why the Baltic?

Because it was somewhere we had never been before. We’ve been to Croatia and chartered yachts.

It was a one off opportunity to experience the Baltic. It’s iced over in winter so it is such a limited season anyway.

It’s such a hard place to get to. So if we thought that if we forced ourselves to go there by having the boat delivered where it is manufactured then we would have to go and experience it. So it was a bit of an adventure really.

What we experienced was just so much more than and beyond what we could have ever imagined.

It was exceptional and quite unbelievable really.

How important was it to have a Windcraft person for the handover in Germany?

We’ve been through a lot of boats, racing boats and yacht companies…

The service from Windcraft, from multiple people has been exceptional. So our experience has been far and above any other experience we have ever had. That’s with lots of different people over the years. Having someone there to meet us in a foreign country and then step us through the boat was awesome.

We asked Aaron if he would come out for a night on the boat with us and stay out at anchor because we wanted to test everything while we were there. It was the first time he said that he had ever done that… and that was hugely beneficial.

He lived on the boat with us so it made it easier to remember to do things. He actually found it was beneficial too. It was something he would recommend to do for more handovers. It’s just more memorable I think. You are actually doing it. You are not just sucking in the information or trying to retain it.

The after sales service was exceptional because we’ve had a few items replaced along the way. We found some great trades through Stockholm, we ended up going back that way. With Windcraft, everything we needed to get done, they just got straight back to us… so they’ve just been great to deal with.

Tell us about the top highlights of the trip…

Going up the Swedish archipelago and going through the Alands was absolutely unbelievable.

For us the top three places would have to be the Swedish archipelago – because it is so intricate and beautiful.

The Alands islands were amazing because they were so unique.

And the Fjords in Denmark.

In general we found the more out the way places were more interesting than the main cities.

In Sweden there’s lots of hiking so pretty much everywhere we anchored we could get ashore and go on a walk of some sort.

It’s also littered with saunas and everybody had a sauna and everybody would just invite you over to sauna and you pretty much turn up and cut some more wood for the next people that come along and use the wood fired sauna.

In one place we found you could book a floating sauna. They anchor it out and you go off and sauna for a few hours. Then jump in the cold water after the sauna.

We found the Baltic beautiful, absolutely stunning and there are just boats everywhere. It’s such a short season. There were lots of smaller boats with less draft. Everyone just gets out there in whatever they can making the most of summer.

Why was the Baltic so good?

I think the culture is environmentally conscious. The Northern European culture is that you look after your environment and you look after each other. It’s enjoyable, refreshing and nice to go back to basics.

We would arrive in remote locations and there would be one tiny shop. If they had supplies they did and if you wanted to get fresh food there would be one dish available or would be whatever they’d baked for sale that day…

Our children had an unbelievable time. They met other children everywhere they went.

That’s the beauty of Facebook, we’ve been able to keep in touch with everyone. It’s been a real winner for us having the Facebook page.

We’ve got lots and lots of people that we’ve stayed in contact with and other people that we’re going to the Med with next year. It’s exciting because the community really builds and it’s a beautiful community.

Any tips for other people who want to do a similar trip with a new Hanse?

Definitely have a washing machine onboard. We put ours in the galley so we didn’t have to give up a room. The clothes are done as you are going along. That’s a big thing.

I don’t think you need a lot of the other bits. We will probably use our air con flat out in the Med at times…We did use our heating in April, it was really cold and really handy to have that.

Just having the alternator set up as it is on the boat alone makes it so simple. It means you can plug things in and use it. We can plug our microwave in and use it if we need to when we are sailing along.

The boat itself is just unbelievably equipped. So having a pump for the dinghy in the dinghy garage is just a godsend. So you just pop it in there and that enabled us to upgrade the size of our family because we are a family of 5. So we can deflate the front and pop it away when we are not using it. Things like that are fabulous.

I think the boat itself speaks for itself in a lot of ways. It just has so many wonderful bits to it. So for us as owners having our own separate toilet and shower it’s fantastic. It’s just awesome. You can live on it so easily. That’s the whole point I guess.

If people are intending to do it, you need to budget enough time. Where things go wrong is where people don’t allow time to deal with weather.

So that is the key reason why we decided to stay another whole month in the Baltic rather than a month moving the boat from the Baltic to the Med ourselves.

People need to work out what they can do within what time and not set their targets too high, like the distance.

Any dramas on the trip?

We had a dramatic night one night in Sweden. We thought the boat was going to pull the bridge off the pier… So we got a heap of ropes off all the boats and literally tied the pier back to the land to stop it from coming adrift. It was very exciting there at 2am in the morning!

We all worked together to get that resolved. It was partly to do with our boat and the size and weight of it but also the wind direction and the strength of it. So it wasn’t conditions that you wanted to be out in anyway.

As the pier engineer said the next day, we’ve had boats that are twice the size of yours on here but it has been different wind conditions and different directions. It just highlighted a weakness in their pier as well. It’s all fine now!

So tell us about the future plans for the “Kids Inheritance”?

Our boat arrived in Turkey in October 2015. We are just feeling our way, trying to use people that are recommended so we are using a delivery company that Hanse use. The delivery company out of UK have been great. The boat will stay in Marmaris, Turkey for 12 months.

So the loose plan at this stage is 2 to 3 winters in the Med from 2015 to 2017 or 2018. In 2016 we will spend 3 months in Turkey and Greece. In 2017 it will be Italy and Croatia. The third year, we are not sure at this stage. Then, the ARC Rally across the Atlantic to go to the Caribbean and spend the time we can there. Then go through Panama and we want to do the Western Pacific islands and then come down to New Zealand for a summer. After that go to the Eastern Pacific islands before we come back to Australia.

We are looking at timeframe of 5 or 6 years because we can’t do it all in one hit. Of course it is subject to change. It is exciting and it’s a bit adventurous but I think our overall feelings are that the Baltic was just the most incredible experience. It was one that had a lot more than what we had ever envisaged, which is cool. It’s nice to come home and say that.

You can read more about Cheryl and Phil’s adventures on their Facebook page.

Dreaming of your own Baltic summer cruise?

Contact Windcraft today and make that dream a reality.

June 2015 Dehler 46 Handover in Slovenia

The Kleyer family head to Slovenia to meet Team Windcraft’s Aaron Fowlds who will complete the commissioning and hand over their new Dehler 46 just in time for the European summer sailing season.

“Thanks so much, purchasing our Dehler has been such a fabulous experience for us, can’t thank you enough or hesitate to recommend your service, its been exceptional. We’re very excited to be heading off tomorrow, we’ll stay in contact.”

Deborah Kleyer