Do I need any previous boating experience?

No, you don’t need to have any experience or special licences to hire a Broads Cruiser.  On arrival, you will be given a full demonstration on how to use, drive and moor the boat.  Our experienced crew will be happy to answer any questions you may have and give any help needed before you leave the yard.  Onboard each boat is a manual giving full details of everything onboard, maps and other helpful information you may need during your holiday.
 

What happens when I arrive?

On arrival at the boatyard, find yourself a temporary parking space outside reception. You will be met by a member of our team who will show you to your boat or holiday home. If the boat or property is ready, you can start to make yourselves comfortable before coming back to reception with all your paperwork. If the property is not ready when you arrive, a member of the team will take your mobile phone number and contact you as soon as it is available normally between 2-4pm.  Once checked through, we will come and show you how to work everything, and if on a boat a 'trial run'. This can be customised to suit your individual requirements. 


What are the pickup and return times?

We will always aim to have boats ready for collection between 2- 4 pm, but often they will ready earlier but we can’t guarantee it.  Return time is 9 am.

Please remember that between return and collection times we do have to clean, service, pump-out and refuel every boat.  It is not possible for us to give an exact ‘pick up’ time on the day of your departure as we do not know what repairs or servicing is required until the boat comes back from the previous hirer.
 

Can I arrive after 5 pm?

If you unable to arrive before 5 pm or the traffic is bad and causing a delay, we can make the necessary provisions to ensure you can still get aboard your boat on your arrival. Please ring us to advise us that you plan to be late, we will moor the boat as near to the office for your convenience and leave the boat unlocked.  In the morning we will go through everything with you, issue life jackets and give you a 'trial run' before your departure. We do ask that you don't leave the boatyard that evening as it is important for safety reasons that you see a member of the team before you depart. 


Does the boat have to be returned to the boatyard?

Yes, by 9 am and in a clean and tidy condition.


Do we get life jackets?

Yes, every member of your party will be given a life jacket – they are provided free of charge.  We even have life jackets for your dogs – it is a good idea to let us know in advance if you require one as they are limited.  There is a deposit for these of £20 which is refundable on return.
 

What do we need to bring?

What clothes do we need to pack?

The most essential item is flat, rubber-soled shoes. Heels and smart leather soled shoes are not compatible with the decks or the river banks! Comfortable clothes are a must! Pack for a standard British holiday with traditional unpredictable weather. You may also like to bring something smart for an evening out in Norwich or one of the other towns by the river. Although the boats have wardrobes and draws, storage space is limited on most boats so try not to bring too much with you. 

Do we need to bring provisions with us?

Yes, you do.  You may find it is easier to arrive earlier at the boatyard and walk into the village where you will find Roy's Supermarket & Department store which has everything you will need for your holiday. Please remember that on a boat the icebox in the fridge can be quite small and not all fridges have iceboxes - please check with a member of staff if you are unsure.

Do we need to bring linen?

Bed linen is included in the price.  Prior to the start of your holiday, you will fill in an arrivals form giving the details of your party so we will make sure that you have the right amount of linen onboard for your needs.   You will need to bring towels with you unless you have hired one of our Elite Fleet boats or Holiday Homes in which case they are included.


What cooking facilities will be there on my cruiser?

Cooking facilities vary from boat to boat.  Some of our boats have electric cooking, some have gas – you will find details on individual boats on our website.  All boats will have a hob, and either an oven or a microwave.  If you have a preference, please check with our knowledgeable team who will be able to help you.


Is there a fridge or freezer on my cruiser?
All boats have a fridge onboard, usually, they are smaller than domestic sized fridges so this needs to be a consideration when shopping.  Some of our fridges will have a small icebox, please check with us when booking.
 

What toilet & washing facilities are available on the boats?
Every boat will have a toilet and shower on board.  The toilets are different from your domestic one but they are flushable and not like the old-fashioned porta-loo.  Your shower will work from the boats hot water system – remember the hot water tank will be smaller than your one at home, and the water supply to the shower is coming from your fresh water tank which will need to be filled up regularly.  Many mooring places will offer shore-based facilities so you may want to take advantage of these where available.


Will I need to have my toilet pumped out?
We recommend that for a weeks holiday you have your tank pumped out mid-week - boatyards will charge for this.  The toilet tank will be empty when you collect your boat, but how quickly it fills up will depend entirely on how much it is used.  You may find it helpful to use shore-based facilities where available.


How much water is in the tank -can we drink the tap water?

You will leave the boatyard with a full tank (tank sizes vary), however, you are always recommended to top up the tank on a daily basis.  The tap water is perfectly safe to drink.

 

How long will the diesel last?

You will leave the boatyard with a full tank of fuel (tank sizes vary). With normal cruising, this should last for the duration of your holiday. Please be aware that this does depend on the type of craft you have hired and it is best to check with us before your departure. Please also be aware that generators & onboard heating will use fuel from your diesel tank too.


Will my cruiser have heating?

Yes, all boats have onboard heating.

 

Can we bring electrical equipment?

Please be aware that 240v power onboard boats are limited which will mean that you may not be able to use all your usual household appliances.  You can bring your own hairdryer, although we do provide them onboard each boat.  For specific items, please check with our booking staff.

 

Will we be able to charge our phones? 

All of boat are fitted a 12volt socket but you will need to bring your charger along - best to bring both 240v & 12v if you have them.

 

Wifi


All of our Elite Fleet boats have onboard WiFi, and you get 250MB of data included in the price of your hire. If you wish for additional data, this can be bought at a cost of £5 per GB.  For the rest of the fleet, we have WiFi pods which can be used if required.  There is a refundable £10 deposit on the pod and a fee of £15 for 1 GB of data.  Please be aware that WiFi on cruisers is provided by mobile data, therefore the signal strength will vary in different areas and can be quite patchy. 

If you need to collect your emails while you are away or you can't bear to be without social media, you can get free wifi whilst moored in our boatyard. What's more, we have a live webcam covering the boatyard so give the camera a wave, you never know who's watching! Our Interactive Map also shows details of places on the Broads that have wifi you can use during your holiday.


How far can we get?

Horning is the next village downstream of Wroxham and it can be reached in about a one and a quarter hour direct. However, if you stop at Wroxham Broad, Salhouse Broad and Black Horse Broad on the way, it can take two days. Please refer to our 'Plan Your Holiday' pages on the website for further details on routes, timings etc.


Are the Broads tidal?

Yes. There is a rise and fall throughout the broads. The tide and currents get stronger the closer you get to Great Yarmouth and on the southern rivers. Particular care must be taken at Great Yarmouth.


Are there any locks?

No, there are no locks so you can enjoy the hidden delights at your own pace, hassle-free. 

 

Can I fish on my holiday?

To fish on the Broads you need a National Rivers Authority (NRA) licence which can be bought from any Post Office.  Make sure you bring your licence with you on holiday as fishing without one can incur a fine of up to £2,500.  Closed season (no fishing) is between March 15th and 15th June inclusive.
 

Passage under bridges. 

Wroxham, Potter Heigham and Beccles all have low bridges through which some boats will not pass at any time (bridge restrictions apply) Water and tidal conditions may alter the clearance of bridges, but check with the height marker near the bridge and then check the height of the boat to see what clearance you have. If there is any doubt please do not hesitate to call a member of our friendly reception team. 01603 782625. 


What is there to do - How much can we see in a week?

Relax and enjoy the slow pace of life of 4-6 mph, riverside fishing, lovely nature reserves, bird watching, bbq's, pubs and picnicsIt is possible to see all of the navigable parts of the Broads in a week, but a Broads holiday is not really about dashing around. Broadland has a slower pace of life and it is as much about the journey as it is the destination. You may find our 'distance calculator' tool useful when planning your holiday.

 

Are children allowed to drive the boat?

Children over the age of 14 are allowed to drive whilst under the constant supervision of an adult. There are no age restrictions, we think that a Broads boating holiday is great for people of any age, we do recommend that at least half of your party have good mobility for moving about on the deck and mooring. 


Can I bring my dog?

All of our boats will accommodate you and your pet comfortably, so a relaxing holiday for all the family including the dog is possible with us - we even offer Pet Lifejackets. We do ask that you bring your best friend a bed and even their special blanket just to keep the upholstery nice for the next customers.  Please see the optional extras for pet charges. 


How easy is it to drive the boat and do we get tuition?

Because of the low speed, you have time to react, unlike motoring. Full tuition is given and we are happy to repeat tuition to your satisfaction. We have a lot of visitors who have never driven a boat before or with limited experience and although the rule of thumb is that if you can drive a car then you should be fine. You will receive full instruction on the safe operation of the boat before you embark on your holiday. We do not let you leave the boatyard until you are completely happy. 


Can we moor anywhere?

You are welcome to sensibly moor anywhere unless signs state "No Moorings". There are free moorings, however, there are many chargeable moorings especially where services are available.  You can also moor free of charge in any boatyard displaying the Hoseasons sign (space permitting)


Are maps supplied?

Maps are available free of charge when you check in. More comprehensive maps are available at £6 each.


Are mallets supplied?

No, but you can hire one from Reception - small deposit payable.

 

Is a security deposit required? 

We only ask for a security deposit for single sex parties.  

If you are charged a security deposit, when taking over the boat we will ask you to check for any unknown bumps and scrapes, in the same way you do when booking a hire car. 


If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact us direct on 01603 782625 or email: bookings@barnesbrinkcraft.co.uk

 

 

Barnes Marine Units Ltd Riverside Road Wroxham Norwich NR12 8UD Registered in England & Wales Reg 1321482