Chances are, you won’t be in yachting your entire working life. Not because there aren’t enough yacht crew jobs but because crew turnover is high and most people only work on board superyachts for a few years. Those who do stay longer tend to be on the operations side, rather than housekeeping, and progress up the ranks to officer level, perhaps even captain. Even then, it’s rare to see a captain over the age of 55 or 60. So how do you build another life on land after leaving life at sea? In particular, how do you create one that fulfils you? We believe that the most important issue is to make an exit plan identifying your future life goals as soon as possible and stick to it. By doing this you will maximise on the unique opportunity provided by working in the superyacht industry to achieve your future ideal, independent life and be able to save as much money as you can over the longest possible time.
There are two scenarios for what another life after yachting will look like for you:
- Ideally, you exit your yachting career at sea to live your planned dream life, financially independent and free.
- You leave the yacht unplanned to work onshore in one of any number of land based roles, possibly related to the superyacht industry using experience obtained at sea, or another field using transferable skills. However you will have missed a huge, once in a lifetime opportunity and you are still not in control of your life.
A fulfilling life doesn’t just happen. It depends on how much control you take. If you take control, you can live the life you want after yachting. If you don’t take control, you’ll end up living a life dictated by others.
Control comes down to planning.
Without goals and a plan to achieve them, you will drift through life and you will miss the life changing opportunity being a crew member on a superyacht provides to save and build a substantial amount of capital, which will allow you to go on to live your future ideal life.
So if you want to build another life after yachting, you’ll have to do some work, but you don’t have to do this alone. Yachting Financial Solutions can help you with that. The work is tough, but it is also enjoyable. It’s all about you and making your dreams happen. What could be more fun than that?
How to building another life after yachting in 10 Steps
Here are the steps we believe will help you build your dream life after yachting.
1. Know what’s possible
The world is bigger than your experience. If you only set your goals based on what you already know, you’re going to exclude things you’re unaware of, to build another life after yachting.
A good place to start is to ask your crewmates what their plans are. You’ll hear a lot of familiar things (yoga retreats and surfing shops—very popular among superyacht crew), but given the international nature of the business, you’ll hear new things too. Also focus on your interests, passions and skills. Dream big. This could be your opportunity to exit yachting to the life you really want to lead. Visualise yourself in your new location and activity.
2. Know what you want
It’s impossible to hit a target you don’t have. So once you’ve explored what’s possible, start making some goals for your exit plan. Your goals don’t need to be set in stone, they can and probably will change and that’s OK. The important thing to remember is that you can’t correct your course if you aren’t underway. It’s better to set off in the wrong direction and make a course change than to never leave port at all.
Your goals most likely will include the financial freedom of an independent income, i.e. to have sufficient financial capital to provide an income to pay for your day-to-day living expenses, without having to work. This means you can pursue those opportunities that genuinely appeal to you regardless of whether they make money. Another goal could be a home bought and paid for.
3. Know what you need to accomplish to make your goals a reality
Once you have defined your goals, then you can work out what you need to do to make them happen.
For instance, financial independence means having a sufficient amount of capital invested to generate a large enough income from the interest. For example, if you need Eur/USD 4,000 a month to live, including taxes, you’ll need circa Eur/USD 1,000,000 in investments that are returning 5% annually on average.
If another of your goals for your life after yachting is a family home bought and paid for, then you are also going to need to save at least another Eur/USD 500,000.
4. Know your deadline
When will your new life start? That is a key day in your diary.
If you don’t set this date, you will never get to it. Failure is inevitable without it.
However, do be aware that your deadline is not always in your control. You could become burnt out, have to leave yachting due to family pressures or be fired. The longest time you will have in the industry is from today. You need to start your exit plan without delay.
Be realistic, though. If your goal is to build up at least Eur/USD 1,000,000 for your life after yachting, clearly you won’t do that in a single year. You’re going to need a longer span, at least 10-15 years.
5. Know your steps
What steps do you need to take to accomplish your goals within your timeframe?
To achieve your goals is a long- term project, involving long-term saving. To ensure the best possible chance of success you will need to work with someone and Yachting Financial Solutions can help you with this. Why don’t you contact us and arrange a discovery call?
For example, if you invest Eur/USD 3,000 per month for 15 years assuming an average annual return of 8% per year, you’ll end up with just under Eur/USD 1,000,000. So you need to start and prioritise saving each month and stick at it.
If you’re going to do courses either for your yachting career or your future life, you’ll have to identify the appropriate ones, sign up and complete the modules and exams.
6. Take those steps. Don’t stop until you reach your goal
From our experience, many people who know their goals, their deadline and the steps they need to take still don’t get there. Why? Because they didn’t do the work. For whatever reason (and let’s be honest, life will throw an endless supply of reasons your way), they stopped taking the steps needed. They stopped investing and saving. They stopped doing the course.
Taking those steps without faltering isn’t easy. Long-term investing is a marathon not a sprint. It’s one of the reasons we put a heavy emphasis on mentoring and coaching, when we help yacht crew to build another life after yachting. You need someone to help you stay on course. Call it an accountability buddy, a life coach, whatever. To build your life after yachting our top advice here is to work with someone who will keep you on track during the tough times. (We designed our unique partnership programme VPC specifically for this reason.
7. Measure progress
There are two reasons why you should measure your progress.
The first is to make sure you’re on track. Are your savings performing according to your needs for your life after yachting? Do you need to top up? Maybe add a supplementary investment to the mix? Are you passing through the course work on schedule? Are you passing the tests on time? Are you getting the marks you need? Etc. etc.
The second reason is to give yourself a boost. For instance, after 5 years of investing Eur/USD 3,000 at an 8% return each year, you’ll have over Eur/USD 211,000 and over Eur/USD 521,000 after 10 years. Passing milestones is a great motivator.
8. Know how to change
Remember when we said your end goals for your life after yachting don’t have to be carved in stone? Change is a part of life. You won’t be the same person five years into your plan you were when you started it. You might have decided you want to design furniture instead of breeding horses. You might realise you want to get out of yachting sooner than planned. You might have changed where you want to live. Or you might need more money.
Alternatively, your goal and timeframe are the same, but you’ve been thrown a curve ball in your yachting career. Perhaps you had to leave the industry.
At Yachting Financial Solutions we are prepared for this and by regularly reviewing your financial/life plan we can ensure your plan adapts to reflect any changes in your life.
There’s a saying in military circles that no plan survives contact with the enemy. In other words, once the shooting starts, things will change in unforeseen ways. To get round this, militaries around the world use the principle of commander’s intent. A simple example: the goal is to take a hilltop. That’s the commander’s intention. If the plan to do so goes awry because the enemy isn’t cooperating, the troops in the field can improvise to achieve the goal. The intention stays the same, the way to achieve it changes. You can take this approach to your plan too and having a coach or accountability partner can really help you navigate the changes you need to make.
9. Avoid temptations and distractions
There will be plenty of distractions along the way. Not least the influence of people around you. Sometimes there is jealousy, other times, advice is well meant, but detrimental.
For example, many yacht crew think they want to invest in property, advice they are often given by family and friends. There is nothing wrong with this, providing you realise that it isn’t always the best thing to do. Property looks good on paper, but in the real world it’s a fixed asset that can be difficult to sell. It isn’t ‘liquid’. What happens if you change your plans for your life after yachting (maybe the country you want to settle in), but you have bought a property elsewhere? Selling it can be difficult and unlikely to be at favourable terms to you.
You’ll also be exposed to peer pressure during your yachting career. Often, that takes the form of matching their luxury spending: drinks, holidays, cars, watches, etc. etc. You might even be tempted to emulate the luxury lifestyle of your employer. But never forget that they are ultra-wealthy and financially independent. You as a captain, engineer, chief stewardess or other crew aren’t.
You’re trading your time for money. Once that time is spent, so is your opportunity to earn money from it. Respect your time and the cash you earn. Do treat yourself occasionally. You deserve it. But never lose sight of your goals.
10. Know your exit strategy
How will you leave yachting?
If your end goal is financial freedom, and you’ve achieved it, you can leave yachting any time you please. The pressure is off and you are now in the driving seat of your life.
If one of your goals is re-training for another career, then to save you time you need to ensure that all elements are in place to allow you to pursue this (accommodation/courses/suitable location etc.) before you leave the boat.
Has this article has given you the start you need to plan another life after yachting? We do hope so. And remember, you don’t need to do it alone. We have made it our life goal to help you achieve your life goals and we believe you can do it. Get in touch today, and start your journey towards your ideal, independent life.