Allie and her partner Adrian, along with Allie’s dad Mark, recently completed the 5-day RYA Competent Crew course run by Southern Cross Yachting.

With plans to purchase a catamaran and set sail around the European Union later this year, the RYA Competent Crew course introduced the group to cruising 101, personal safety, seamanship and helmsmanship to the level required to be a useful and able member of the crew.

Here’s more from Allie about their big plans…

Tell us a little about yourself and how you got involved in your up and coming van rental business

I have been working as an oral health therapist for 9 years, specialising in orthodontics and owning a teeth whitening clinic (Smile Spa) in Brisbane. I absolutely love my job, however, after going on a sailing holiday a few years ago, I felt a strong calling to change the direction of my life.

I realised that the 9-5 rat race was no longer fulfilling, which led me and my partner Adrian to start planning for a sailboat. Coincidentally, I lost my car during the floods, which led to buying a van. We spent 6-months renovating it and then moved into it with the intention to save money and buy a boat overseas. Surprisingly, many people who would walk past loved the van and expressed interest in renting it, which sparked the idea of starting a van rental business (@SundaySomewhereRentals) and generating an additional income to not only buy a boat but also support ourselves while sailing.

How does your Southern Cross Yachting course certification tie into your future sailing plans

Our plan once our fleet of vans is complete is to move to Europe, buy a boat, and see where we end up! We don’t have a set plan… our goal is to experience anything and everything! During my research on obtaining the International Certificate of Competence (ICC), I found that Southern Cross Yachting offered the best course layout and a clear progression towards achieving the certification.

What benefit did you find in taking this course together rather than just one of you enrolling?

Taking the Southern Cross Yachting course together as a couple was immensely beneficial for us – I think it strengthened our teamwork skills and cemented our love for sailing together. I would definitely recommend doing it as a group – we were able to bounce things off each other.

What was the most valuable learning you are taking from the RYA Competent Crew course run by Souther Cross Yachting?

Literally everything! We learnt so much about sailing but also about each other! The communication, teamwork, navigation, safety equipment, knots, parts of boats… it was the best week!


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