Frequently Asked Questions
Expedition ON '22/'23
SV Twister

It’s quite a trip we’re going on! We can imagine you have questions. And we cheer you for doing your research! We want everyone joining on board to be super happy and aligned with the voyage. Explore below if your question may be answered. If not? Drop it below and we get back to it soon!

Frequently Asked Questions

You have a burning desire for exploration. You like to create, grow and do good. You live in, on or near the ocean to cultivate a conscious alternative active lifestyle, or desire to do so. You can’t be ‘boxed.’  You have a variety of interests with nature, health, simplicity, adventure and sustainability at the centre of it. The ocean is your home. Your playground. Your place to treasure, respect, and protect. The thought of leaving land for a few weeks excites you. You have a ‘can be done’ mindset. You have a team spirit.

 

You don’t need to have sailing experience. We believe and have experienced that a positive mindset and active adaptive attitude is much more valuable. Our Captain and professional crew are happy teaching you the ropes. After some days at sea you can sail the ship yourself! You need to be physically and emotionally fit. You are happy to take part in the running of the ship which include night watching, cooking, cleaning, and hoisting heavy sails. This on an angle, and in all sorts of weather conditions. You don’t mind getting wet, or salty, and go for a while without a fresh water shower, or limited fresh foods. 

 

When it’s maybe not for you?

  • You only want to sail on a small boat. This expedition vessel is 36 meter! It’s a different experience. 
  • You’re not excited about sailing and all that comes with it
  • You don’t want to share your space with others
  • You can’t adapt to a new situation with new people
  • You only like electric winches
  • You only want to sit back and relax
  • You’re not in a positive headspace for this kind of trip

If any of these are true for you, then you might want to pass on an adventure like this for now. But any other doubts can be taken away! There’s only one way to find out; make the decision and go for it! The seemingly impossible is not the path of the least resistance, but definitely the most rewarding one. You just need willpower, determination and a smile on your face.

 

The weather will tell. On purpose we don’t plan this out. We try to create most beautiful and interesting experience. We hope to make a stop in places like Bermuda and Brest on our Atlantic Crossing but we have to go with the best weather windows for the most enjoyable and safe experience. We’re super open and flexible to include some extra adventure elements. And also you can give your input on the trip itself. 

Our trips are hands-on learning experiences. All together we run the ship. Everyone is expected to take part in the duties to create, maintain a happy and safe community environment. For the offshore passages, this includes preparing, setting sails, watchkeeping (day and night), helming (steering), cooking, cleaning, fixing, keeping log, chartwork etc. This is a hands-on expedition and vessel. 
The Caribbean trips are a little more relaxed given the nature of the weather, route, and region. More action will be incorporated in the form of snorkelling, freediving, hiking, discovering the local fruits, etc. 

Also we aim to put together crew teams that all are keen to contribute something from themselves and throw in the mix. Your superpower, knowledge, stories, and skills to share. We all have so much to learn from each other. 

On all trips ofcourse there will be time for relaxation too. We are 15-20 souls on board so if you don’t feel well, no worries. Your fellow shipmates got your back. 

Ocean Nomads trip are beyond ‘the usual’ sailing holiday. It’s and adventure experience aimed at making the dream lifestyle reality, not just for the time with us but beyond all that. Incorporating the Ocean Nomads values, of community, exploration, and positive impact into the elements of the trip. Ocean Nomads trips are always hands-on, everyone helps with the running of the ship. 

Our trips are hands-on learning experiences. All together we run the ship. Everyone is expected to take part in the duties to create, maintain a happy and safe community environment. For the offshore passages, this includes preparing, setting sails, watchkeeping (day and night), helming (steering), cooking, cleaning, fixing, keeping log, chartwork etc. This is a hands-on expedition and vessel. 
The Caribbean trips are a little more relaxed given the nature of the weather, route, and region. More action will be incorporated in the form of snorkelling, freediving, hiking, discovering the local fruits, etc. 

Also we aim to put together crew teams that all are keen to contribute something from themselves and throw in the mix. Your superpower, knowledge, stories, and skills to share. We all have so much to learn from each other. 

On all trips ofcourse there will be time for relaxation too. We are 15-20 souls on board so if you don’t feel well, no worries. Your fellow shipmates got your back. 

“The adrenaline and stress of an adventure are better than a thousand peaceful days.” – Paulo Coelho

Less is more; less is more; less is more! But packing for weeks at sea, not being sure what the weather will do, what a regular day will look like, and what the next adventure will be? What to bring?
On our member platform, you’ll find an extensive offshore sailing packing list of the most important things to consider to bring as a crew member, for a pleasant, safe and happy ride. As a general rule, if you can live without it, leave it at home. For this trip a good set of waterproofs suitable for offshore sailing, and layers of clothes are key. What we’ll provide for you: towels, bed linen and a life jacket. 

As on almost any boat, you live out of your backpack / duffelbag. While not sleeping you keep your bag on your bed. You’ll have a little shelve next to your bed for tiny items.

If you’re looking to bring extra sports gear (like surfboards / kitesurf gear / diving gear / Bicycles) we can facilitate to a certain extend. There is limited space so please ask permission in advance.

If this is really beyond your budget we totally understand. That’s why we also host free meet-ups, more budget friendly trips and created the Ocean Nomads membership space to accelerate more personal dreams and missions. We have +70 members with vessels who are happy to take you on board for free or on a cost share basis. If you’re really determined to join, consider doing a fundraiser, crowdfunding or try to find sponsorship. This is a life-changing experience that people are willing to support. Not only for your own personal development but for the contribution we’ll be making with this expedition all together. 

In general with our trips, where possible we also offer scholarship options. Above all we want to make sailing accessible. Note that this trip already goes at a price that’s usually a scholarship rate for maritime school students. We do love to hear from you if you’d like to be in our scholarship database. It’s all sorts of contributions we’re after and all sorts of teaching we can share Apply for a Scholarship to be considered here.  

 

What else? Sub-rent your house, tent, camper so you don’t have rent. Eliminate what you don’t need. Stop going out for dinner. Minimize, simplify and invest in experience instead of things. You got this! And we are here to help! Find more ideas, and answers on our Ocean Nomads community member space.

The voyages we organize on SV Twister cost a lot of money. In turn they bring a lot a value. These trips are not to be compared with anything else out there. Safety, professionalism, legality, sustainability and quality take resources to make real. Especially when sailing offshore. A voyage like that requires respect and preparation if you want to minimize risk.

SV Twister is more than 100 years old. To keep her safe and ocean worthy afloat a certain level of maintenance is required. The vessel and organisation comply with all safety requirements (dozens of certificates and yearly checks) you can think of. We only work with highly experienced captains who have done similar voyages before. We carry out this voyage complying with rules and norms under the Dutch flag. This includes at least four professional crew with all the necessary papers and experience. This allows us to also take newbies on board. We spent a lot of hours recrewting and doing our very best to create positive and purposeful experiences. Hours and hours we interview applicants to create a fun, diverse, and happy vibe crew mix on board. 

You can also sail for less financial contribution across the Atlantic (Suzy wrote a step by step guidebook on sailboat hitchhiking that is called Ocean Nomad). It will just take you way more time and research to 1. find a happy, safe and meaningful ride, and 2. to sail across. There is a huge amount of variables and risk associated with offshore sailing. It’s pretty much guaranteed that it won’t go as planned. That’s part of the adventure. The average sailboat does not have the safety certificates, measures, and experience that we faciliate on Twister. This makes voyages cheaper, riskier, and longer. Please do your research. 

If you want to save time, sail a legendary vessel, with legendary people, maximize learning and meeting likeminded people, guaranteed, your investment with joining Ocean Nomads on Twister pays back multifold. 

It’s a hands-on learning experience and not a passenger experience. We aim to transform peoples lives, not just sail you across. 

A big part of the success of the trip comes with preparation. On the Ocean Nomads Network you’ll find tons of resources to get ready! August 2022 we host a theme month about Sailing Across the Atlantic. Join in to get ready!

For those more on a budget we facilitate guides, connections, scholarships, and community. Above all, we would like to get you out there on the ocean. There are different ways to go about it. 

Possibly! After a successfull team up last year we now go next level with our Twister collaboration. Perhaps we also organize another flotilla with smaller boats but we leave it up to spontaneity. Join our Membership community to stay in the loop.

One reason we can make this trip more affordable than other similar voyages out there is by provisioning ourselves, as a team. Unlike the ‘usual’ classic sailboat offshore voyages where one is generally more a ‘passenger,’ with Ocean Nomads we do things differently. With the exception of a few legs, no chef or food services will be present. 

We will figure this out together. And we provide together. And that’s a great part of the fun and making a difference! We like the challenge of sourcing local, healthy, budget-friendly foods for a voyage. Not only to maximize our positive impact but great for team building too! We’ve provisioned for numerous Atlantic Crossings before and already have created an extensive resource present on our membership platform on what to consider. It’s going to be one big team effort. And we think it’s a cool challenge! 

Our trips are vegetarian and no alcohol at sea will be consumed. We believe it’s healthier for us, the environment and our wallet. Also, we don’t catch fish. Here’s why. If you really struggle with the idea of having no meat or fish for a while, let us know and we can talk about what’s possible to support. 

We aim to source as organic, local, and zero waste as possible. The flour comes from the local mill, yoghurt will be made. We’re now also testing making our own oatmilk to minimize packaging and maximize nutrition.

We set up an initial nutritious and varied menu, mostly vegan, from which we can build on and adapt based on your personal cooking ideas and preferences.

Usually, a trip on a traditional sailing ship like Twister is out of reach because of a lack of funds, qualifications or the desire to be more than just a ‘passenger.’ As Walt Disney says, ‘If it can be dreamt, it can be done’. We’re really teaming up to make the trip about half the investment than anything else out there. The vessel, captain and crew have all the necessary qualifications on board to comply with safety and rules under the Dutch flag. But you can fully participate without having the qualifications. It can be a stepping stone to move forward in the classic sailing industry. While this trip is a great mile builder it’s not intended to be one. The intention is to bring a cool bunch together, accelerate each others’ journeys, create memories for life, create connections for life, explore, experience nature at its purest, and travel distances with the least environmental impact. 

  1. To apply fill out the application form.  The more we learn about you the better we can see if it’s a match. We get back to you as soon as possible. Bear in mind we’re also nomadding and don’t always have immediate possibilities to reply so don’t worry if you do not hear something back right away.
  2. For voyage legs longer than 10 days, we have a chat interview on the phone with one our team members to better get to know each other, explore if it’s a good fit and make sure we’re on the same page.
  3. If we’re all happy, a 50 percent downpayment will confirm your spot.
  4. The rest of the trip contribution is due 4 weeks prior to the start of the expedition.

Not sure but don’t want to miss out? We offer a cancellation free of charge for a period of one week after your spot is confirmed.

Everyone is responsible to show up healthy to the trip. We run the trip in accordance with local regulations which are subject to change. Everyone joining must take responsibility for adhering to their home country’s travel advice and local regulations relevant to the trip. Everyone joining will also sign a Medical health declaration form.

 Please take extra care to ensure your travel insurance is valid. We will send out more detailed info to those joining nearer the time, in accordance with the latest guidelines.

We offer a cancellation free of charge for a period of one week after your spot is confirmed. This way you can check flights and make arrangements with calm. You’ll get your money back if something doesn’t work out. 

At least one month prior to departure. We create a group on the Ocean Nomads membership platform for all approved expedition crew members. This way the fun and preparation starts SOON and way before the actual trip!

Definitely! That’s part of the value we can offer with your commitment and contribution to jump on board our network community and trip. We have a specific forum thread for this in the Crew Group we create for the trip.

We are a sailing vessel and we roll with the weather. Therefore we have taken room for flexibility in our schedules. For all trips we schedule more days then the actual sailing takes. We may have to sail out later than departure date and we may arrive earlier than scheduled, depending on the weather. We go with the weather as much as we can. Afterall, we’re a sailing ship. 

Given the size and ocean worthiness of the ship is extremely likely we manage to stick with the schedule we set. 

Of course we cannot for-see everything but the vessel has done similar routes before, with tighter schedules. 
If the weather is really not on our side, we have an engine too but we try to use it as little as possible (as opposed to policies of other ships doing similar routes on tighter schedules)

For frequently asked questions about Expedition ON with SV Twister, see this FAQ page.

Do you have another question?

Drop it here and we answer asap

Still smiling at the memories! Met – and still talking to – some lovely people. Refreshed my nautical skills (helming, navigation, astro identification, etc.) Shared some great experiences through conversation, music, stories, yoga, cooking together, seeing ocean wildlife, and so much more!

a silhouette of a man looking at the ocean at sunset.

Richard

Expedition ON '21

"The experience on twister with other Ocean Nomads was just really beautiful and I felt connected for the first time in decades, I felt part of a community and had companionship. I was so happy that it’s so all inclusive of gender race religion nationality and most importantly age. It has connected me with like-minded people of all ages and being very transformational personally because my life has been incredibly isolated as a single parent Who works from home. I can honestly say October and November I felt happy and free for the first time in maybe 22 years.  It gave me everything I was looking for. It has opened up so many possibilities to meet new people with similar vibes, including connection, companionship, purpose and being one with nature." 

a woman sitting on a boat reading a book.

Cay

Expedition ON '21

“In my opinion Ocean Nomads sailing adventure are: 1. A reward for the senses by discovering incredibly beautiful places and breathtaking sceneries. 2. An unbeatable way to get introduced into the nice world of sailing, 3. An open window to learn watching our world and the people from another more conscious perspective. I see Suzanne as an inspirational person who, with her example, inspire others with ideas and proposals to define or redefine life projects and use inner energy for more noble purposes. Our oceans need strong committed people like her to advocate for our natural resources and leave them intact for the generations to come.” 

an aerial view of a boat with dolphins in the water.

Jose Maria Perez

Sicily 2018

"The sailing with such a beautiful ship. It is absolutely breathtaking to sail a tall ship and minimize the use of the motor as much as possible.

I joined the Twister Expedition to share my knowledge as a marine scientist studying cetaceans. I look at the sea a little differently than most sailors do, so it is beautiful to be able to share this knowledge and viewpoint since I believe science is not only for scientists.

There are many things that sailors and Ocean Nomads can do to help as citizen scientists.

Small tasks such as collecting data on cetaceans (Whales and Dolphins) on a sail can have a large impact in the management and conservation of species. 

an aerial view of a boat with dolphins in the water.

Marc

Expedition ON 2021

"It’s amazing how many awesome friends you can make, and how much just one week on an ON trip can change your life"

an aerial view of a boat with dolphins in the water.

Marcin

Canary Islands '19

“Good sailing experience that makes me feel more confident on open seas.
Made good connections to nice people and got valuable insights for my master plan.”  

a man is standing on the deck of a boat.

Andi

Expedition ON '21

This was one of the most epic experiences of my life so far, and I can tell it is just the beginning.  The ocean has taught me so many lessons…to embrace all experiences (even seasickness), not worry so much, and just be in the moment. Two weeks without connection to the outside world was absolutely glorious. I feel reset. After a very fragmented life the past few years, being around a crew of 17 people every day was amazing…to interact naturally with each other, feel a part of a family of diverse ages, nationalities and backgrounds…I learned so much from these amazing humans. My heart feels so full.” 

a young woman climbing the mast of a tall ship.

Sael

Expedition ON '21

“Last summer I had my first sailing experience on an Ocean Nomad Sailing Trip in Spain. I initially signed up for one week, but ended up staying 1,5 months, and sailed as part of the crew from Northern Spain to the Canaries Islands. On this trip, I met a lot of like-minded people with similar goals and dreams. I also realized that it is possible to learn sailing in a low-key, affordable way. After this trip, I got so inspired that I decided to buy my own sailboat. After some research, I decided to buy a previous sailboat of an Ocean Nomad friend that I just met, and together we sailed the boat from Ireland to Spain. Without Ocean Nomads this would not have been possible. So if you are slightly interested in sailing, the ocean, meeting like-minded people, join!"
 
a man is standing on a sailboat with a sail in his hand.

Nadiem

Galicia '21

The most unforgettable week. The trip preparation and the crew members turned what would otherwise be an adventure into something a bit more special. I took part in two ocean nomads trips so far. To say it was life changing sounds dramatic but it really was. Being able to share time and experiences with people with different backgrounds but of a similar mindset was incredible. I like to think that I can have and help contribute to a similar experience for myself and others as a member of the Flotilla crew.” 

a group of dolphins swimming in the water.

Ben Clipstone

ON Lanzarote & Galicia

“The things I like the most about trips with Ocean Nomads is the mix of different nationalities, ages and levels of experience. With these trips, there’s always a general plan but also plenty of opportunity for spontaneity to have a real adventure!”

a woman reading a book on a boat.

Louise Agren

Croatia 2019 & Madeira-Canary Islands 2021

Connect with trip alumni & other ocean adventurers on our member network
Ocean nomads sailing crew adventure logo.

We are a global vagabonding community of impact-driven travellers, sailors, (free)diver, surfers, and active salty souls passionate about the ocean and driven to not settle for anything less we’re capable of living and contributing.

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