February 10, 2017 by James Kell

Becoming a Skipper in the BVI: Celine (Video)

A week spent sailing in the British Virgin Islands

People ask us what a week learning to sail with Sailing Virgins is like, so we asked Celine Freixe to help us answer that question. Celine is 24 years old and comes from France. She was traveling with her father around South America when we invited her to join us in the Virgin Islands.



Celine spent a week learning the basics of sailing. She came away with her ASA-101 and 103 qualifications. One more course and she will have her ASA-104, allowing her to charter a boat in most parts of the world.


We loved sailing with Celine and look forward to her return.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does a basic course take?

Seven days. All our courses begin on Sunday morning 9.30am at the Fish N Lime, West End, Tortola, and end seven days later on Saturday midday at the same place.

What if I have sailed before?

If you have prior experience you can do the intermediate 101-104 fasttrack course. This takes you to bareboat skipper level over a seven day period.

How do you get to the British Virgin Islands?

You can either fly direct to Beef Island (EIS) or to St Thomas (STT). St Thomas is usually the preferred option as there are more direct flights from cities like New York, Atlanta and Miami. It is a single ferry from St Thomas to West End, Tortola, where Sailing Virgins is based. Check out Fareness and Google Flights.

How much does a course cost?

Sailing Courses in the Virgin Islands for a single person are approximately $2,600 per person give or take a bit depending on the exact course. For twin share ask for a discount.

Is it purely learning to sail?

No, we mix things up. You are in paradise for a week, so our instructors know how to balance sailing with snorkeling, good food and finding the better-known watering holes of the Virgin Islands.

What are the ages of students and where do they come from?

Students at Sailing Virgins are mostly in their 20s and 30s, and typically come from the US and Europe.

Is Sailing Virgins associated with The Yacht Week?

Not in ownership. However, all Sailing Virgins instructors worked as skippers with The Yacht Week. We greatly respect that company, its ability to cater to young people wanting to sail and the growth it has maintained these past ten years. They also know how to party.

When are the courses?

Check here for our calendar of courses.

How do I apply?

You can learn more and book a course online by clicking here.

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