Key West Int’| Airport
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Please note: Key West Florida is a partner base. No credit certificates or discounts, e.g. Captain’s Rewards or Special Offers, apply in this destination.
Please note this base is seasonally closed September 7th to 21st.
This page provides useful planning, pre-departure and travel information. From servicing airports to base arrival procedures, it will tell you what to expect to make your vacation smooth and care free.
We suggest you read the following information carefully several weeks prior to departure and also print a copy to take with you.
Before You Travel
When you arrive please go directly to the base office at 6651 Maloney Ave #1, Stock Island, FL 33040 USA and from there you will be directed to your yacht. The yachts at this base are located in 2 separate marinas, the majority of the yachts being at Oceans Edge Resort & Marina.
Pegasus – MY 40
Go Big Oar Go Home – Soana 47
Daydream Believer – Mahe 36
Espirit de Liberte – Lagoon 450
Sea Lyon – Lucia 40
Geography: Key West is the southernmost point of the contiguous United States of America and is part of the island chain known as the Florida Keys. It is well-known for the Overseas Highway that connects the Keys and ends in Key West, the famous people that once called Key West their home (e.g. Ernest Hemingway), its fantastic diving and snorkeling due to the nearby reef, as well as its trendy nightlife.
Population: approx. 24,850
Language: The official language of the United States is English
Business Hours: Most stores are open Monday through Saturday from 10 or 11am to at least 6pm, with shorter hours on Sunday.
Tipping: Tipping is standard and expected in all restaurants / bars and for other services undertaken during your vacation. Some establishments automatically add this onto the bill. Recommendations for tipping in the United States:
*Restaurants, Bars & Nightclubs: 15%-20% of check is generally acceptable if it has not been added to your bill
*Hotels: Bellhops $2/bag, Housekeepers $1-$2/day
*Doorman or Concierge: Only if providing you a specific service (ex. calling a cab, difficult-to-get event tickets)
*Valet Parking Attendant – Suggested Tipping: $1/car pick-up
*Cab drivers: 15% of the fare
Currency: The local currency is the United States Dollar (USD)
Electricity: The voltage used is 110-120 Volts
Time: Key West, Florida is located in the Eastern Time Zone
In Eastern Standard Time (EST) – UTC/GMT -5 hours
In Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) – UTC/GMT -4 hours
“Daylight” saving’s time (summer time) moves the clock 1 hour ahead of standard time. It is in effect from 1am on the 2nd Sunday in March to 1am on the 1st Sunday in November, except in Arizona, Hawaii, USVI and Puerto Rico.
Taxes: The U.S. has no value-added tax (VAT) or other indirect “national” tax. Every state, county and city may levy its own local tax on all purchases, including hotel / restaurant checks and airline tickets. Taxes do not appear on price tags.
Festivals & Holidays
New Year’s Day (Jan 1)
Independence Day (July 4)
Veterans/Armistice Day (Nov 11)
Christmas Day (Dec 25)
Movable public holidays
Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
How to Get There
Due to the number of flights we organize, the Moorings can offer some great rates to many destinations. Please make sure you contact our inhouse flight specialist at 866.649.2003 before you book your flights.
Airport is approximately a 10 min drive to the base. Ubers are available from the airport to the base. If you would rather call a taxi please use these services:
Key West Taxi: 305-296-6666
Friendly Cabs of Key West: 305-295-5555
The Key West Express is a ferry that runs from Ft. Myers to Key West/Key West to Ft. Myers. Make sure to check https://www.keywestexpress.net/ before arriving as this ferry is weather dependent.
Boarding Time/Check Out
Boarding Time Procedures
Unless otherwise scheduled with the base manager all check-ins will begin at 10 am on the first day of your charter vacation. The skipper of the vessel must go through a chart briefing before departing, as well as a boat walkthrough. Please allow approx. 2 hours for complete look at all vessel systems and inventory. This will be conducted with the captain and first mate only. Please do not load luggage or provisions before the check in process is complete.
Please note, the base is closed for starts on: December 25th / January 1st / November 25th / July 4th.
You must submit a float plan 2 weeks before arrival with a list of all passengers for the final manifest. It is important if you are considering a trip to the Dry Tortugas that you request the information sheet about this destination for proper planning. A dry Tortuga float plan is subject to approval in advance and weather conditions.
A late check in option is available at this location which includes an overnight on board. Late check ins are only scheduled for 2 pm. This option comes with an additional fee.
If you have opted to stay aboard the vessel the night before your charter starts please note there is a strict policy of check aboard after 3:00 pm due to other check outs. If your travel schedule has you arriving earlier you can inquire with the base manager to see if there is an opportunity for an earlier check aboard.
Check Out Procedures
A debriefing and final walkthrough will be done upon return so please allow enough time to complete this before the charter end time. Your yacht is due back at the base at 10 am on the last day of your charter.
What’s on Board
For all your provisioning needs supermarkets are available nearby. Visit our Base Guide page for more details.
Cellular service by U.S. providers work well in Key West, Florida. However, cell service will be lost when heading out to the Dry Tortugas. Be sure to check with your service provider for coverage details, roaming charges and call costs if you are arriving from abroad. You will need to activate international roaming on your contract, if your provider does not offer coverage in the United States.
While most of our newer boats have Bluetooth capability, we cannot guarantee all boats are outfitted with this equipment. For your convenience, we highly recommend you bring an AUX cord so you can listen to music from your mobile devices.
Your vessel will have a full tank of fuel when you depart and shall be returned full. The cost of the fuel plus a $100 fuel fee will be charged against your security deposit if the yacht is returned without a full fuel tank.
Customs & Immigration
Entry, exit, and visa requirements depend on the locations you are departing from and traveling to. You are responsible for having the correct documents so make sure to check with the consulate of the countries you plan to visit before you travel. Visit travel.state.gov(link sends e-mail) for the latest information.
Luggage & Packing List
Soft-sided luggage or duffel bags are best, as luggage storage space on your yacht may be limited. We have no facilities for holding luggage at the base. Pack lightly and review our suggested packing list for required and necessary items to bring.
- Pack essential prescription medicine and change of clothing in a carry-on bag*
- Passport and other travel documentation
- Tickets and paper confirmations for pre-planned activities
- Light-colored, light-weight clothing
- Formal wear for upscale dining establishments
- Swimwear and cover up
- Proper deck shoes
- Hats and sunglasses
- Sandals and flip-flops
- Athletic shoes and hiking boots
- Travel-sized toiletries and hygiene products
- Insect repellent and OTC pain relievers/ointments
- AUX cable for playing music through your device
- Beach towels
- An extra cooler for fishing
We would highly recommend packing prescription medicine and essential clothing (swimsuit, t-shirt and shorts) in your hand luggage as occasionally your luggage may arrive at the base after you do.
The use of flying drones may be restricted in some areas. For current drone regulations in this destination, please visit https://uavcoach.com/drone-laws-florida/ (link sends e-mail)
A security deposit must be paid by all charterers before the charter. This will be paid directly with the charter base and their terms and conditions apply.To significantly decrease your security deposit, purchase our Yacht Damage Waiver insuranceahead of time.
Vaccination and Immunization Information
Inoculations or vaccinations are not required for entry into the United States, unless you’re arriving from an area known to be suffering from an epidemic (particularly cholera or yellow fever). At time of publication, an International Vaccination Certificate is not mandatory.
Clients wanting more information on vaccinations and immunizations should contact: The Centers for Disease Control’s International Travelers’ Hotline in the USA at 404-639-3534. Detailed traveler’s advice on traveling abroad can also be found at www.cdc.gov/travel/index.htm(link sends e-mail). This website is in English.
Visit cdc.gov(link sends e-mail) for the latest information.
Your health and safety are important to us. For advice on how to stay safe while on charter, please review our Travel Advice Information. Current travel and safety information can be obtained by visiting travel.state.gov (link sends e-mail)
Swimming is often a fun and important part of a vacation. However local rules, flag systems, currents and where swimming may be permitted, can be different and vary from country to country. Snorkel vests, Life Jackets and Diver Down flags are all available on board.
- Talk to children about water safety at the start of a vacation, making them aware of the potential dangers.
- Accidents can happen at any time on vacation, but often they happen on the first and last day, so keep watch and do not get distracted when your children are playing by, or in the water.
- Children in or near water should always be supervised by an adult and never left unattended.
- Get in the water with them, it is easier to keep an eye on them as well as good fun. Floatation devices are highly recommended for children but are not a substitute for supervision.
Be aware of your surroundings
- Check warning flags and signage on the beach and only swim where it is permitted.
- Beware of dangerous currents, these can be very powerful. Not all beaches have lifeguards and/or warning flags.
- Beware of underwater hazards, such as reefs, rocks, sudden changes in depth and marine life.
- Never swim where a sign says not to e.g. in zoned areas for jet boats or jet skis.
- Never swim at night or after drinking alcohol.
Look out for others
- Never swim alone, ‘buddy up’ with others in your party and use the snorkel vests provided.
- Know how and where to get help. If you see someone in difficulty; raise the alarm, preferably the emergency services. Ensure you know the correct number for the country you are in.
Do not overestimate your ability
- Consider swimming lessons before you go if you think it would be useful to learn proper swimming techniques.
- Even if you regularly swim in a pool, remember that open water swimming can be very different.
All yachts are equipped with adult life jackets, harnesses, snorkel vests & diver down flags. You can see all this equipment demonstrated in our online safety briefing, and we strongly recommend that you make use this equipment during your vacation. This safety equipment will be displayed in the saloon of your boat on boarding – If you have any questions feel free to ask our base staff during your briefing.
We have a very limited supply of children’s life jackets on base so highly recommend that if you are travelling with children, you bring their own. This ensures that children have correctly fitting jackets that are comfortable for them.
Children should not be allowed in the dinghy without a life jacket or buoyancy aid and should wear a buoyancy aid or harness whilst on deck.
Children under the age of 16 should not operate an outboard engine and should be supervised at all times when in the dinghy.
We recommend purchasing travel insurance for your vacation. The Moorings offers comprehensive travel insurance for your peace of mind. If you have your own travel insurance, verify that it covers the destinations and activities of your Moorings charter vacation.
Dial Tel #911 anywhere in the US to reach emergency service by fire, call the police, or get an ambulance. This is a toll-free call & no coins are required at public telephones.
Please note: Key West Florida is a partner base. No credit certificates or discounts, e.g. Captain’s Rewards or Special Offers, apply in this destination.
6651 Maloney Ave #1
Stock Island, FL 33040
9:00am – 5:00pm Monday to Friday
Cruising Area Restrictions
The Florida Keys can be a tricky place to sail, the currents are strong and the tidal range can very greatly. It is important that you are well versed in anchoring and feel comfortable setting an anchor. If your party wishes to sail to the Dry Tortugas there are additional resume requirements as this is a difficult and weather dependent sail.
It is strictly forbidden to sail alone, we require two persons minimum on board.
Charts & Pilot Books
All the charts and pilot books you will need for the sailing area are issued at your chart briefing. It is recommended that you download a charting app such as Navionics to familiarize yourself with the sailing areas ahead of time.
You must be moored at least one hour before sunset. Night Sailing is not allowed at this destination.
Moorings and Anchoring
Anchorages are widely available, overnight mooring balls are available in limited destinations on a first come first serve basis. It is recommended that marina slips are reserved ahead of time. Please contact the marina you wish to stay in to reserve slips.
Captains and Crews
Captains, crew and cooks are available at this location but must be booked by the charterer directly. Please request a list of recommended captains, cooks, and crew from your booking agent.
Qualified local captains are $400 per night + 18-20% gratuity on the total charter cost. Please also plan on providing your crew with a meal stipend or including them in your provisioning order.
The Key West base offers a selection of sun care products, dry bags, towels, snorkel equipment for purchase, and insulated drinkware. If your vessel is located at Stock Island Marina Village there is a small ships store near the fuel dock for ice, snacks, and sunscreen. For vessels at Oceans Edge Resort & Marina the fuel dock offers ice.
The charterer is responsible for their own provisioning. Nearby grocery stores in Key West include Publix, Winn-Dixie and Faustos. Publix offers grocery delivery to the marinas through the InstaCart app. Nearby convenience stores include CVS Pharmacy, West Marine, Dion’s QuickMart.
Rental Items From The Base
Coolers, additional refillable water jugs, beach towels, and DVD players are all available for rent from the base directly. Please contact the base for pricing. Orders on these items must be placed in advance.
Kayaks and Paddleboard Rentals
For kayak and paddle board rentals the base is able to facilitate the delivery of these items to your boat but does not directly rent this equipment.
If you wish to go fishing while on charter you must have a up to date Florida Fishing License from https://myfwc.com/license/(link sends e-mail). No more than 2 light tackle fishing rods will be allowed onboard, guests much bring their own cooler for fish and bait, cutting boards, and fillet knives. Knives, coolers, and cutting boards that are supplied with the charter are not to be used for fishing purposes.
The Key West Base has snorkel equipment for sale. If you prefer to rent snorkel equipment please contact Finz located on Stock Island inside Hurricane Hole Bar & Grill. (305) 395-0880.
Due to the warm waters of Gulfstream in the Straits of Florida, the Florida Keys enjoys a subtropical climate. The annual average temperature is 77 degrees with the average days of sunshine 76% of the year. Winds conditions are predominantly from the East throughout the year. They vary from 15-20 knots November through April and 10-15 knots May through October. Sailing conditions behind the barrier reef protection are generally excellent with minimal wave action. The Florida Keys offers many idyllic anchorages, but few opportunities for overnight mooring balls.
Historical Weather (Averages by month):
|Month||°F Max||°F Min||°C Max||°C Min||Avg. #Wet Days||Avg. Wind Speed|
|January||77||71||25||22||6||NE 10-12 kts|
|February||76||66||24||19||5||E 10-12 kts|
|March||78||68||26||20||6||E 10-12 kts|
|April||81||72||27||22||5||SE 10-12 kts|
|May||85||76||29||24||7||SE 8-11 kts|
|June||88||79||31||26||11||SE 7-10 kts|
|July||89||80||32||27||12||SE 7-9 kts|
|August||89||80||32||26||14||SE 8-10 kts|
|September||88||79||31||26||16||SE 8-10 kts|
|October||85||76||29||24||11||NE 9-12 kts|
|November||80||72||29||22||7||NE 10-15 kts|
|December||76||67||24||19||16||NE 10-15 kts|
Large volumes of water move through the Straits of Florida between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic creating strong currents between the islands. The tidal range on average is 1 – 2 feet with occasional King Tides occurring in the Fall.
Charterers can obtain the weather situation at any time by listening to the maritime weather forecasts.
NOAA – 62.400 MHz (serving the Keys from Key West through Marathon) gives relevant weather updates 24 hours a day 7 days a week
Step Aboard Here
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