Connecticut boat rentals

Your Yacht Charter Glossary: From Aft Deck to Windward

Written by Boatsetter Team
December 26, 2017

Last Updated on January 12, 2022 by Boatsetter Team

Yacht Charter Glossary – Learn the Lexicon

Getting ready to set sail on a boating adventure? Make sure you can speak the language with this yacht charter glossary before you leave shore!

Every industry has its own lexicon – a vocabulary known only to those who do the work day after day. Before your ocean bound vacation you are most worried about what to pack and how to mentally prepare for your sea adventure. While reviewing a yacht charter glossary is likely not on your vacation prep list, there are many benefits of familiarizing yourself with common yacht charter terminology:

You can gain a better understanding (and appreciation) for the level of maintenance a yacht and yacht charter planning requires; You can be better prepared should an emergency situation arise during your yacht charter;

You will depict to your crew members a basic understanding of the ocean, boats and yacht charters; You can pick up on how the crew really feels about your group aboard the yacht charter.

The terms below are a combination of slang and official maritime terms, which you may overhear on your yacht charter or any yacht rental experience.


Admiralty Law – the official body of law that governs maritime rules and regulations, including privately owned yacht charters and yacht rentals (read more about admiralty law)

Aft – toward the stern

Aground – resting or touching the ground

Ahoy – a term used to draw attention

Avast – aka “stop the task at hand immediately”


Banyan – a short period of rest, often a day or so

Bimini – a sun or rain shade/cover affixed to the yacht

Blue Peter – a blue/white flag that indicates the yacht charter or boat rental is about to sail

Boat Bite – bruises, cuts that crew members or guests acquire while onboard (they usually have no idea where they came from)

Bow – the forward part of the boat (See Stern)


Captain Morgan – an intoxicated (and likely annoying) guest Coasties – the men and women of the United States Coast Guard

Course – the direction the boat is traveling in


Davy JonesLocker – an idiom meaning “the bottom of the sea”


First Mate – the second in command on the yacht charter or yacht rental

Flank – the maximum speed of a ship

Flare – an emergency-signaling device that sets off a firework-like explosion in the sky (a required safety device for yacht charters)


Galley – the kitchen on the boat/yacht

Groggy – a term used to describe the feeling of drunkenness, which originated on long boat trips


Head – the toilet on board the boat/yacht

Helm – the boat/yacht steering wheel

Helmsman – the person steering the boat/yacht


Laker – used to describe a boat that never leaves the 5 Great Lakes

Leeward – the side of a boat or object protected by the wind (See Upwind)


MasteratArms – either an official or unofficial officer of the law onboard the ship (typically aboard larger vessels, not necessarily a yacht charter)


Nasties – crew who work dirty jobs on a yacht charter and who are usually not introduced to guests


On the Hill – having your boat serviced (out of commission) for a long period of time

OxEye – a dark cloud indicating a potential storm


PC – stands for “principle charter” aka the person paying the bill for the yacht charter or yacht rental

Port side – the left side of the boat/yacht when facing front (See Starboard)


Roger-that – a statement meaning, “yes” or “OK” or “I understand”

Rules of the Road –international boating laws or boating safety regulations set forth by various countries, slang for admiralty law


Saloon – a room for the crew to relax

Starboard – the right side of the boat/yacht when facing front (See Port)

Stern – the back of the boat/yacht (See Bow)


Upwind – the direction from which the wind is blowing (See Leeward)


Windward – the side of an object that is facing the wind

Now that you’ve gotten “all schooled up” on the lingo with the Boatsetter yacht charter glossary…it probably is the perfect time to get out on the water, right? Well, anytime probably is if we are being technical. Here’s how to make it happen today: search for a boat in your locale, connect with the owner and captain to confirm the dates and times, set sail. (Wow, that was easy!) Have fun on your yacht charter.

Start searching for the perfect yacht charter now.

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