Log in Register
Home /  Blog /  State of the Yacht Charter Market in 2022

State of the Yacht Charter Market in 2022


State of the Yacht Charter Market in 2022
Nadia D'Addezio

28 February, 2023 | 5 min read

2022 was widely looked at as the first year of real recovery for the industry; with travel stabilizing and with no major surprises or restrictions; unfortunately, even if the latter has been proven right, many companies had suffered such severe damages from the pandemic that only two options were left to them, sell or close.

2022, and the trend is consolidating in 2023, which saw the slow disappearance of medium companies acquired by growing and growing charter companies conglomerating into large groups.

At the end of 2021, we noted how the operational issues that shipbuilders had started facing combined with the difficulties in the supply chain and as expected, these challenges extended to 2022, and we can realistically expect to continue in 2023, worsening an already known problem for smaller companies to procure new boats.

Not only the prices of the new boats have also skyrocketed; a new Lagoon 46 is now sold at 500000 ( base price) while at its launch, the base price was 438000, but also in 2022, as a consequence of the persistence of the raw material crisis, 60% of the boats were delivered with missing equipment ranging from fridges and microwaves to A/C and Generators.

Like 2021, 2022 confirmed the will of most governments in limiting or stopping subsidies and financial intervention to support the market.

Despite all the challenges above, most markets registered a steady increase in the percentage of new boats compared to 2021 with Spain registering the biggest bounce from 3% to almost 7% and Croatia from 5% to 7.3%, Greece, probably as a consequence of the lack of ESPA program, increased only from 5 to 6.5%, Italy maybe because of the new VAT regulation or maybe because of the uncertainty on the usage of tax credit in souther Italy, registers a slight decrease in the % of new boats, dropping from 11% in 2021 to 10.5%.

2022 confirmed a trend we have seen in the past 5 years or so, where catamarans proved to be the first choice, with 72% occupancy compared to 63% of monohulls. 

This is part of a larger trend that sees the market shifting from being composed of sailors to a market oriented to tourists with more comfort and amenities on board, additional services and generally a change in the product and requirement.

The charter being a way more complex product than a plane or ferry ticket, car rental or even a cruise, we are still far from seeing a mainstream product that can be booked online without assistance. The product’s democratisation is also evident in the augmentation of crewed and skippered charters.

As expected, the most rentable monohull is the Bavaria Cruiser 46, followed by the previous generation of the same boat, the Bavaria 46 Cruiser, with the Oceanis 46.1 slowly earning its spot. The 46 is a favourite of the year 2022 for the sailors. While for the catamarans, the Lagoon 42 is the most booked across all destinations.

The conglomeration in large groups and massive acquisitions are not only a trend for charter operators but also for agents with bigger fishes eating smaller ones, generationals shifts and regrouping to save in operational and functional costs. 

While 2021had shown a reverse trend from 2020, where agents had managed to recover to pre pandemic levers, 2022 has proven an harder challenge for agents with the top 5 back to almost the levels of 2017 and charter operators massively investing in direct booking channels, managing to eat part of the historical percentage that agents have been tightly holding.

The good news is that the average basket has been steadily increasing since 2019 with a current average of almost 5000€ which is another proof of the democratisation of the product as we have been registering for the past few years and that the pandemic has contributed to boosting.
The charter is not anymore considered as this exclusive luxury vacation reserved for a selected elite, but it is now considered in many cases at the same level of a hotel stay with a strong focus in the past 3 years on family-oriented vacations.