Sail for Free!

OPO is the Premier Crew Network Service Since 1993

We are also the most user-friendly and efficient crew networking system. We do not make members go to our web site every day so you do not miss an opportunity. We stress quality over quantity so you do not have to sift through countless bad passage opportunities to find the gems. We pre-qualify the majority of "crew requests" we send to you. The one exception to the free passages is our Swan Program where we offer an excellent, affordable option for those who wish to sail offshore on a Swan. This is a great way to kick-start your offshore sailing goals and move forward your offshore plans and dreams, gain confidence and experience and add to your sailing resume to help sign aboard the free passages we offer. You can see our past "crew requests" on the message board on our site. Keep the dream alive for the price of a good winch handle.

Once you become a member, all you have to do is create a sailing resume and have it ready to cut and paste when you reply to a "crew request" we send to you. We know many people are busy and can't take advantage of many of the postings but keep the dream alive for when they have more time and look for more meaning and options in life. Whether you plan to buy a boat or wish to meet others who have boats, OPO is the best way to meet new people who know how to sail and to increase your sailing skills and build confidence. If you want to become a better tennis player or skier, you play tennis and ski with people better than you. Same happens with sailing. If you never sail with other people and only sail your own boat, it takes a lot longer to learn.

OPO proverb: "It is easier to make new friends who already know how to sail than it is to teach your friends."

The Perfect Crew

To get a perspective from the owner's side of the equation I will describe a perfect crew.

OPO member Mark from NJ joined OPO years ago when he wanted to make the transition from coastal sailor to offshore. Mark is a very good offshore cook, is mechanically inclined, and loves to drive the boat rather than watch the auto-pilot. He often does more than his fair share of steering. He is also a small plane pilot and is a pleasant person who has stories and can talk to whittle away watches. He did many passages with OPO over the years and bought his own boat four years ago and now contacts OPO for crew when his friends and family can't join him.

This is how we present out service to boats owner and skippers who are looking for crew:

Delivery skippers and boat owners – As they (should) know, our service is free to delivery skippers and boat owners. They contact us and let me know what they are looking to do. If it sounds like a good opportunity we collect the information, write up a "crew request" and send it to all our active OPO members at the same time. In rare occasions, when it is short notice, (crew has a last minute emergency at home, or gets hurt days before departure, etc) we may not have as much time to do as much pre-screening, we will let you know in the body of the crew request. But mostly we do a good job.

I always instruct the owner or delivery skipper to make sure they respond to any OPO members who contacts them, even if it is only to let you know they have chosen crew and do not need you. That way you know you can go on to the next potential crew opportunity, simple common courtesy. Since they are not members and pay no fee to me I can't 100% enforce this, but it is good that you know we try. As an OPO member you can respond to more than one passage opportunity at a time. Some owners take a long time to decide and they lose out. Others will take the first crew who contacts them because they are confident of their own skills and just want a body or two to keep them company and wake them when something seems amiss.

Conversely, we do not want OPO members agreeing to make a passage with someone and then cancel on them without a great reason and making every effort to find replacement crew by letting us know right away so we can send out another crew request as soon as possible. Just as you rely on the skipper or owner to have the boat ready for offshore, a big part of this is having the right crew in place. If one person drops out last minuet it puts the rest of the crew in a bind and possibly bad situation being short-handed at last minute. This will reflect badly on you and OPO and the owner and skipper will not use us again and worse tell others that OPO does not work.

Contact Us

It is easy to join online on our web store. Once you join we snail mail you a membership kit explaining how we work. We add you to our address book so you get all the crew requests while they are active. You will also get our monthly "Notice to OPO Mariners" Newsletter sent the 1st of every month.

All you have to do is have a sailing resume ready to cut and paste to send to a boat owner or delivery skipper when you want to join a passage. If you ever have any questions or problems you can call or e-mail and get a person to respond. If I am offshore on a delivery or long passage, my wife checks the office. Best to e-mail at or call 1-800-4-PASSAGe (800-472-7724), but if it is the busy season, it is best to e-mail as you will likely get my voicemail.