Life and work onboard a yacht is extremely dynamic meaning the crew need to be prepared for any situation at any given time. Keeping each other and guests up to date with vital and correct ‘boat and itinerary-related’ information at the right moment is not only important, it is a necessity. In terms of onboard communication, the most prevalent and longstanding technical solution used by crew is, of course, the use of radios. These aid for faster and better communication making work more efficient. But what additional technical solutions are on offer to crew to further assist in getting information around the boat? In this article, we discuss how the use of technology can simplify the communication process on board and help the crew when it comes to informing guests.
A prime example of a technical solution that, whilst not its primary purpose, does, in fact, work to the advantage of the crew is the entertainment and control system. Designed to make life as easy as possible for the end user, it provides management of the audio and video system as well as control over the climate, lighting, blinds and curtains: all from just one control panel. It is a host of tasks enabling the user to be in charge of their own environment without the need for crew to assist. And should crew ultimately still be needed, the integrated steward call means that help is only the touch of a button away.
For guests this means ease of use and discretion and for the crew it means a technical solution to a number of guest related services. That isn’t to say that crew have been replaced in this situation but the technology available certainly works to the advantage of guests and in turn, crew. Guests enjoy an element of independence with the assurance that the crew and that personal touch still remain on hand if needed, crew can rely on the technology to support their role and achieve a number of tasks that would otherwise need their input. In fact, the perceived benefit is such that the desire to integrate yet further technical solutions for guests with the control systems is on the rise. Industry popular control platforms such as Crestron, DALI, Control 4, AX, KNX and Lutron are all tasked with handling more and more technical feeds to bring guests the services they need.
An example of one such service is information related systems. These can be designed to deliver details directly related to a guest’s stay on board either via an independent system or via means of the existing entertainment and control system. This makes the process of how the crew provide, share and hand out information more efficiently and more effectively without adding to their workload.
The workload for the crew is extensive and, whilst part of their job, finding and presenting all the information related to guest activities and questions can be time consuming, especially on a busy charter or owner trip when the schedule involves a lot of different destinations. For those heading ashore – what is there to do, how is the shopping area, is there much sightseeing and which are the best restaurants for lunch? For those staying on board making the most of the water activities and facilities – what is the water temperature, what sea-life can we expect to see, what is the weather forecast?
The standard approach is for crew to search the internet beforehand or when asked and contact the local harbour for details on what to see and do onshore. Research complete, they write it down and tell each guest what they can see or do or may even print it off for distribution and for them to read at their own leisure. Simple enough, but labour and time intensive. The solution? How about YachtEye’s Itinerary feature, specifically designed to combat this very issue. It is a technical solution that enables crew to share all kinds of relevant information with the guests about any specific location on the itinerary. With this digitised information distribution service, the crew can easily manage the information they send to the guests and deliver it quickly and easily. For example, they can integrate the map of a city so that guests can see for themselves the best places to visit or where to have lunch. They can connect pre-selected websites for certain venues or events of interest to guests meaning access to the exact website they need is available at their fingertips. They can also upload the PDF brochure of a particular exposition providing guests with even more detailed information if desired. Every connected screen on board has all the information they need through one efficient and effective channel.
Acting as a tool to help the crew communicate key information more easily with guests, such a technical solution not only supports the crew themselves but also enhances the guest onboard experience. A further example of this can be seen with YachtEye’s Gallery feature. Imagine, after a day filled with different activities, the guests are curious to see what everybody else has been doing and has experienced. They want to share all the fun they have had, the things they have seen and the pictures they have taken. The very nature of the task demands a technical solution. One where the crew can easily upload and share all footage from the day for the guests to enjoy. YachtEye’s Gallery feature can be used to host and display any type of uploaded visual content, such as photos and videos of memorable trips or evenings, places visited, underwater video footage or aquatic activities captured during the day. All content can be distributed to all connected screens within the YachtEye system and videos can be played back via a touchscreen or a connected control panel. Crew add the content whilst YachtEye takes care of the rest.
To support the crew further, YachtEye can be integrated with any onboard entertainment or control system. Control panels can be used to directly experience all of the features of YachtEye as well as to explore the relevant information managed by the crew. The system forms a portal to communicate everything the guests need to know about their trip. Add in YachtEye’s Welcome On Board and Calendar features as well and then the crew really do get the ultimate support from the technical solution. From safety procedures to unique yacht features and from daily planned activities to menu choices, crew can make sure the cutting edge technology at their fingertips supports their work and delivers superyacht-standard communication.
For more information, visit YachtEye