Health & Safety
Individual travel insurance is mandatory for the duration of the trip (July 30th to August 6th). The IE Sailing Club does not request the travel insurance from a specific company, nevertheless, it is responsibility of each participant to make sure that the insurance they have or choose to acquire is valid for the locations and dates of the trip. We may request documentation confirming the insurance to the final participants, closer to the dates of the trip.
Given that the IE Summer Sailing is a social sailing event (not a competitive regatta), you should not be requested to pay any extra amount for adventure sports. Social sailing, swimming, beach games, snorkeling, etc. are considered default activities of a travel insurance. In any case, please confirm the respective coverages of your insurance, and ALWAYS READ CAREFULLY ALL THE TERMS & CONDITIONS, given that any insurance always may exclude a series of pre-existing health conditions. You should therefore be in an adequate health conditions to participate in this event.
Safety on Board
Previously to the beginning of the trip, you will be informed about best practices on board. You will also have a safety briefing on the boat, before the start of the trip where a series of safety measures are explained and clarified (e.g. secure hold points of the boat, location of life jackets, first aid kit, everyday boat cleaning procedures, "man over board" exercise, verification of specific shoes used only inside the boat, etc.). Safety comes first - and these are briefing we always do in every event, and everyone participates, even those people that are very experienced sailors. Altough the probably of something happens is very low, something can always happen and in that, it's crucial that anyone and everyone in the crew can help.
The sailing route that we will do will always be very close to the shore, in a area that is geographically protected and where the sea in the summer resembles a pool - very very calm. Nevertheless, the route will be changed if necessary, to accommodate potential changes in the weather. We have never and will never force a route - we only sail in safety conditions. If that is not possible, we spend the day in a marina or sheltered bay.
All the skippers that participate in the event are vetted by the IE Sailing Club, The Ocean Week and by the boat rental company. Besides having the required sailing licenses, all of the skippers have thousands of hours of navigation and previous experience is this type of sailing events. Aside from the skippers of each boat, we will have a professional lead skipper in charge of all the technical and safety aspects of the trip. This lead skipper is a professional sailor, which has done this same route on several occasions, knows the boats, lived in Portugal, works closely with charter company, knows all the places we will and can stop, including the different restaurants and villages.
Medical care is exceptionally good in Portugal. In any case of need, it is good to know that the area where we will be is well served by several medical centers and hospitals in which city we stop. Needless to say, you are expected to always respect the rules defined by the authorities of any country where you live, work or travel to, including all the travel requirements from airports and airlines.
In any case, we have secured a special Covid-19 clause with the charter company. In the event of an official travel warning and/or a travel restriction in place from 14 days before the start of the trip due to Covid-19, we would be allowed to postpone the trip to the summer of 2023 in a date to be confirmed without any rebooking fees or extra charges.
In case you could not participate in the new dates of the event, in the spring of next year the bookings would be opened to new participants and the relevant replacements would be done, with the consequent refund (excluding transfer fees).
If the question wandering your mind right now is "how can I be 100% sure of...?" - well, for whatever comes after the three dots, the answer is - no one can be 100% sure of absolutely anything, whether it is related with Covid-19 or any other virus, at this or any other event. Even if you do not leave your home ever again in your lifetime, accidents at home also happen. We can guarantee to you that this trip is being organized to provide an unforgettable experience, safety, joy and the best value for money. But we cannot forsee. Therefore, if you decide to join us, you should be in the right shape both in physical as well in psychological terms and understand that there is a naturally risks involved (and getting Covid is just one of them).