Swan Program: A First Experience with Offshore Sailing

If you've ever considering deepwater sailing but were not sure how to jump start your sailing career, our Swan Program is for you.

Our Swan Program was specifically designed to introduce people to the world of offshore sailing by providing hands-on crew experience under the watchful eye of an professional skipper on a proven boat. During your tenure onboard, you’ll learn to keep watch, make log entries, navigate, use the radio, steer the boat  and perform tasks that are essential to safe offshore sailing. The Swan Program offers a fixed price for everything you’ll need aboard—you just pay for your travel to and from the boat. The Swan Program sails south from New England to Bermuda and the Caribbean in the fall, and north from Bermuda and the Caribbean to New England in the spring. Summer trips are also available.

After your first Swan Program experience, you’ll have the skills to sail on other boats. Please view the video below to learn more.

Caribbean Swan Program

2021 Swan Program: Not Everything is Cancelled

While we have watched many regattas and events cancelled over the course of the pandemic, one bright spot has been offshore sailing. If crew are tested (twice, several days apart) before departure for a long passage, offshore sailing is safe. What better way to social distance from the world by making a long offshore sail?

While the crew network services of Offshore Passage Opportunities has slowed with many boat owners deciding not to sail south to the Caribbean, their Offshore Swan Program has been the exception. Last July, one full crew sailed from Newport to Bermuda and back along with two other Swans and in the “Spirit of Bermuda” Rally organized by the Tallship Foundation of the same name after the Newport Bermuda and the Annapolis to Bermuda Race were cancelled. In October, three Swans with 17 paid crew successfully sailed from Newport to St. Maarten with a stop in Bermuda.

In May and June 2021 we have 43 deposited crew sailing from St. Maarten back to Newport after stopping in Bermuda. We also have four sets of crew making a one way, one-week sail to Bermuda or back the end of May and again in June. There is also a Swan 68 going Transat from Newport to a TBD destination in Europe in June. We have a short wait list in the event any scheduled crew cannot participate due to shore side topics.

So, while conditions seem to be getting worse in the near term as more borders and islands close their doors (all French Islands in the Caribbean are now off limits as of this week). Testing before departure and upon arrival with days at sea counting as quarantine, offshore sailing is not only still possible—but proven safe.