Frequently asked questions

CORONA - Can I book a boat right now?

These Corona rules apply in Berlin (as of June 4th, 2021)

- five households (maximum 10 people) without test
- additionally: children, vaccinated and convalescent people
- negative COVID tests are required for 10 or more people
- houseboats with overnight accommodation are allowed from 06/11/2021

Please keep in mind that we still have to comply with distance and hygiene rules. Therefore, your preferred boat may not be allowed to host the regular number of people. Most boats sail with 2/3 of their regular capacity.

Is there a boat available right now?

If you ask yourself this question on a sunny day at the weekend (especially on a Saturday), the answer is likely to be "unfortunately no". The weekends in summer are usually fully booked many days in advance. If you fill out the contact form for the boat Emma and Element, your request will land with our two largest boat rental providers in Spandau. There might be a chance that they still find a boat for you.

Boat driving license: Do I need a driving licence for boats?

Boats with an engine power of up to 15 HP may be driven without a boat license. For all other boats you need either a sport boat driver's license (SBF-Binnen) or a skipper. Our search mask helps you to choose the right boat.

Availability: Which boats are available?

Simply use the contact form of each boat to inquire about availability.

Can we pick up latecomers?

Unfortunately, it is not allowed to take in guests after the tour has started. This is only allowed at official moorings and every docking would be billed by the owners. Exception: If you are traveling with a small charter boat, you can stop at one of the many 24-hour sport boat moorings. Commercial event ships, however, are not allowed to do this.

Number of people: How many people are allowed on the boats?

The maximum number of persons allowed is prescribed by law (see each boat) and cannot be exceeded (no exceptions).

Can I leave food and drinks the day before the boat tour?

Unfortunately that is not possible. With the boats in constant use, your supplies would reduce the space on board for other passengers. Storage at the jetty is also not possible, as there are usually no offices there. The Hopper for example starts at the Oberbaum Bridge.

Our tip: use a private car (ideally equipped with a cool box) as a storage option.

Do I have to return the boat before sunset?

This is only the case with small boats. These watercraft do not have the legally required navigation lighting. This does not apply to boats with a skipper (captain). These can also be chartered well after sunset.

What are the boats cancellation conditions?

All operators have their own terms and conditions and cancellation conditions. Please just ask in individual cases. The owner of a large ship (e.g. the Diva), for example, needs more planning security than the owner of the XL-SUP. Basically, if there is any danger to your well-being (COVID, thunderstorms, etc.), the boat trips will be canceled or rebooked free of charge by the operator.

How do I contact the boat owner or captain?

If you fill out the contact form of a boat, your request will be send directly to the owner of the boat. He or she will give you all further contacts to the on-board staff or catering. Please check before the day of your boat tour that you have all the information about the meeting point and a telephone number.

What do I have to consider when it comes to self-catering on a ship?

In case of free self-catering (for example Beluga), you should bring your own plates, cups and cutlery (please use environmentally friendly and unbreakable materials if possible).The boat operator will send you information on cooling options.

Is there electricity on board?

There might be 220 volt sockets on some of the larger ships (for example the "Wappen von Spandau"). Smaller boats and rafts are comparable to cars and usually feature the classic 12 volt sockets.

What are "empty runs" and what do they cost?

"Empty runs" occur when a ship travels from A to B with no passengers on board. This is unavoidable e.g. on a shuttle ride. When the boat has dropped off all guests at the destination, it has to return empty to the home port. We therefore advise, if possible, to start and finish journeys in the home port in order to avoid such costs. Empty runs cost less per hour than the actual boat tour with passengers on board, but there may be additional costs for the external docking. These are the costs that the owner of a jetty charges in order to dock there. These costs are usually significantly higher than in the home port of the boat. Example: You want to take a ship (for example Ian Fraser) from Rummelsburger-Bucht (home port of the boat) to Potsdam and get off there (one way). This is a very long distance on the water and can take up to 6 hours to drive. So there would be costs for the journey with guests, the pier in Potsdam and the six-hour empty journey back to the home port.

When and why do I have to pay a docking fee?

This is only the case with larger boats and ships. This cost factor does not apply for smaller boats which you drive yourself. For example, when you start your boat tour in the historic harbor (for example with Jimmy), the owner of the jetty sends an invoice to us for the docking procedure. No guests may be accepted on board without this authorization. Small rental boats, on the other hand, always start and end at their own jetty. Therefore, there are no fees to pay.

Can I purchase a voucher?

The boats on our website belong to over 40 different owners. Please first choose a boat and then use the respective contact form. The colleagues will then be happy to create a voucher for you. Unfortunately we cannot offer vouchers that are valid for all boats.

Why are trips through the Landwehr Canal so difficult?

It is a one-way (water) street: if your ship or boat enters the Landwehr Canal at the upper part of the canal (at the "Oberschleuse"), it must inevitably pass through to the end of the canal. To get back to the starting point, a drive through downtown Berlin is required. The minimum travel time (including the way back) when traveling through the Landwehr Canal is therefore four hours. The only exception are ships with home ports in the canal (Josi & Phillippa). Low bridges sometimes prevent large event ships from passing through. For small rental boats there is the problem of not being allowed to drive through the city center on the way back, since a radio system and the corresponding license are required here during the day.