By Philippe Perut,

There are hundreds of thousands of sailors in the world. It’s hard to know the exact number, but there are a lot of sailors without boats. The question for those sailors is: What are the best ways to find someone to sail with? If you wish to find partners to sail with, you need friends with boats who are willing to take people on board. If you are a boat owner, you may need crew to use your boat more often, to sail for longer periods of time or to go offshore.

You meet the nicest people on the water.   ©


1. Join a yacht club or sailing club.

Research the sailing clubs, yacht clubs, and sailing organizations in your area. These groups often organize events, regattas and social gatherings where you can meet like-minded individuals. Participating in their activities can provide opportunities to connect with potential sailing partners.


2. Join crew finder websites.

These online platforms are dedicated to connecting sailors looking for crew positions with boat owners seeking crew.


3. Use social media.

Platforms like Facebook, Instagram and others make it pretty easy to connect with people, although you will need to share your personal information right away.

4. Find a racing team.

You may think you need to be very experienced to join a racing team, and that most skippers have enough crew and do not need you. Be aware that most recreational racers need crew on a regular basis because they sail often and there’s almost always someone missing! You can meet skippers on crew finder websites, in yacht clubs or by walking the docks before a race.

5. Volunteer with sailing charities and organizations.

Many sailing programs and organizations are in need of volunteers. By offering your time and skills, you can gain experience, make connections, and find potential sailing companions. Contact local sailing schools, community sailing programs, and maritime nonprofits and inquire about volunteer opportunities.


6. Check local sailing and boating magazines.

Pick up a copy and browse the ads and articles. Some magazines have crew finder pages where boat owners list their needs for deliveries, racing, blue water adventures, or simple day or weekend sailing.

7. Go on a sailing date!

Visit dating websites and specify you want to find someone with the same passion than yours. Joining a crew finder website may offer a greater likelihood of meeting the right person to sail with.


8. Join online sailing forums and groups.

These are a great way to connect with sailors in your area. Post about your interest in finding sailing partners and seek recommendations or opportunities to join boats and sailing teams.

9. Visit local marinas.

Spend time at marinas, boatyards and chandleries and speak with folks you meet. Sharing your interest in finding sailing partners may yield opportunities.

10. Sign up for a cruising rally.

Sailing rally organizations plan and coordinate events that often span multiple days or weeks. They establish a predetermined itinerary including start and finish locations, as well as waypoints or stops along the route. These events typically have specific start dates, allowing participants to sail together in a loosely organized group. ■


Founded by the author in 2001, Coboaters is the leading sailing and boating crew finder network, allowing crew to find sailing opportunities and boat owners to find crew. Coboaters connects thousands of boat owners with crew for adventures in North America, the Caribbean and worldwide. To start your adventure, log onto

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