What to pack on an RYA Day Skipper Course

We are regularly asked by students what they should pack when coming to sail with us here in Gibraltar. Here’s a suggested packing list to help you arrive prepared;

Practical Students on Day Skipper Practical Courses

  • A soft bag (up to 70 litres) - 50 litres should be enough. A bag with wheels makes travel easier. A zip pocket for laundry is useful. There is a 24 hour ‘wash, dry and fold’ laundry service available at Queensway Quay Marina for around £8.50.
  • Passport & Travel / Personal Insurance
  • RYA logbook with qualifying miles & shorebased theory certificate
  • Passport Photo (so that we can issue your certificate if you pass)
  • Any medications plus next of kin information - please make sure you inform us of any dietary preferences or medical conditions or disabilities when booking.
  • Euros & Sterling. We are based in Gibraltar (Sterling) but we sail widely along the coasts of Spain, so some Euros would be useful. There are cash points in and around many of the marinas. 
  • Mobile phone & phone charger (UK mains plug or 12V will suit). Jolly Parrot offers its students complimentary use of our wifi on the dock at Queensway Quay and most marinas offer complimentary wifi to visiting yachts.
  • RYA Day Skipper / RYA Competent Crew handbooks - Don’t worry if you don’t have one - we have them in stock and available for purchase.
  • Washbag & toiletries (remember to pack this in your hold luggage)
  • Sunscreen - ideally Factor 50! It’s sunny here in the Med for much of the year and between June and August it can get hot hot hot!
  • Sunglasses & prescription lenses / contacts. Spare glasses are a good idea.
  • Lip salve (with UV protection)
  • Foam Ear plugs (If you are a light sleeper ear plugs might help you if there are snorers aboard!)
  • Sun hat (ideally vented and with a wide brim). A chin strap is a good idea - we are sailing after all.
  • Summer clothes. Ideally lightweight ‘wicking’ T shirts and shorts for the day (perhaps a couple of long armed shirts with UV protection to protect you from the sun) and something for the evening. In the middle of high Summer a change of clothes, after a day on the water and a welcome shower, is usually welcome. There are some pleasant shoreside cafes and bars and after a day’s sailing a cold glass of beer amongst the beautiful people is never a hardship!
  • Sailing / deck shoes and a pair of shoreside shoes (perhaps sandals)
  • Underwear. Again, underwear that will ‘wick’ will stay fresh for longer and is comfy to wear - but good old fashioned boxer shorts or pants will be just fine.
    Socks! You may not be a socks and sandals kinda guy (or girl) and for that we are all very grateful, but a sufficient number of liner socks for your deck shoes will make for less smelly feet on board - which everyone likes.
  • Sea sickness tablets. If you suffer, it might be worth bringing them along - although most people are just fine in most conditions.
  • Swimming costume - on a hot day it’s not unusual for our instructor to sometimes find a safe anchorage to allow crew a swim before lunch.
  • Long trousers (ideally lightweight and quick drying)
  • Lightweight fleece (for the odd chilly evening)
  • Woolly hat (for the same)

During the early Spring and late Autumn the temperatures fall a little, although they are rarely below what you might expect of an early English Summer. It can get a little more unsettled though, so another fleece for night sailing and a couple of longer sleeved shirts and a pair of jeans might be sensible - and a lightweight shower jacket.

Are you a Shorebased Theory Student?

We offer free onboard accommodation to our shorebased theory students for the duration of their course but please note that only our practical water-based courses are victualled by us. Shorebased students should make their own provision for eating ashore - or make arrangements to shop locally for food onboard. 

It may be worth all students taking a short taxi ride to the local Morrisons supermarket on the day of arrival to buy some staples for you and your fellow students to sustain you through the theory element of your course. Many students eat ashore anyway, taking advantage of the many reasonably priced quayside restaurants in the immediate vicinity. There are shorebased showers and toilet facilities and free wifi is usually available on board courtesy of the Jolly Parrot pontoon wifi or from local restaurants.

If you have your own breton plotter, dividers, soft pencils, erasers and other equipment then feel free to bring them along.

If you are unsure what to bring please contact us for a chat.

What you don’t need to bring to Jolly Parrot;

  • Wet weather salopettes and jacket - We can lend you this kit free of charge so that’s less for you to have to pack!
  • Towel - We supply all students with their own freshly laundered towel on arrival
  • Bed linen or sleeping bag - We supply all students with a freshly laundered sheet, pillow and pillow case - and a sleeping bag at the beginning of each course. Just strip your bed at the end of the week and we deal with the rest.
  • Navigation Instruments or charts - as you might expect, we supply all necessary navigation paraphernalia, pencils, plotters, dividers, etc for your use during the water-based practical phase of the course.
  • Lifejackets and safety kit - We provide fully tested and regularly checked life jackets, liferafts and emergency equipment as required under MCA coding regulations.
  • Enthusiasm and a sense of humour - hopefully you have your own but if you forget to bring it along don’t worry, our instructors have lots to spare. 

We look forward to meeting you on arrival. We are usually on the Quay - just look for the Jolly Parrot boats and our Jolly Parrot polo shirts!