British Virgin Islands

Intro to Sailing, Scuba & Marine Biology with Watersports

Our most popular summer adventure program for good reason, Vega is the perfect choice for those with limited to no previous experience in sailing, scuba diving, and marine biology.

Under the guidance of our licensed sailing experts and scuba diving instructors, you’ll earn internationally-recognized certifications in sailing and scuba diving, and immerse yourself in the world of tropical marine biology. And if that wasn’t enough, we’ll also carve out time for you to go wakeboarding, waterskiing, and windsurfing.

Although the program emphasis is on everything above and below the water, you and your crew will also get the opportunity to explore ashore. Whether it’s hiking Salt Island, exploring the Baths, or taking in a fiery sunset during a beach barbecue, you’ll discover the best parts of the British Virgin Islands. On completion of your scuba certification, you’ll also dive the famous wreck of the RMS Rhone and see first-hand why it was voted best wreck dive in all of the Caribbean.

Get set for the summer adventure of a lifetime!

 

  • Appropriate Age

    All teens

  • Student Groups

    Typically grouped aboard within +/- 12 months of age

  • Students & Staff

    12 students & 3 staff per vessel

  • Vessel Type & Fleet Size

    Monohull / 6-8 vessels

  • Flotilla Grouping

    Vega shares a basic itinerary with Polaris, Carina, Quest, Aquarius, Divemaster & Barracuda

Session 1 Jun 15 - Jul 05
Days 21 Availability Open Tuition
$5,970 $5,670
Session 2 Jul 07 - Jul 27
Days 21 Availability Open Tuition
$5,970 $5,670
Session 3 Jul 29 - Aug 14
Days 17 Availability Open Tuition
$4,970 $4,670
Dates Days Availability Tuition
Session 1 Jun 15 - Jul 05 21 Open
$5,970 $5,670
Session 2 Jul 07 - Jul 27 21 Open
$5,970 $5,670
Session 3 Jul 29 - Aug 14 17 Open
$4,970 $4,670
Use code EE2019 & save $300 before Dec 31st (prices above reflect saving)
Share this adventure

Activities

Sailing
Scuba
Marine Biology
Watersports
Service
Island Exploration

The Adventure

It all starts here
AQ Sail Side Animated Map

Vega Overview

Below you will find all the specific details about our Vega voyage, but there’s no better way to learn more about our summer adventure programs than to watch for yourself!

Teen Summer Program
Vega Activities

Intro TO Scuba Diving

PADI Open Water Certification

During the Vega voyage, students will be taken through the globally recognized PADI open water diver certification course. The course takes students through a slow and steady path to becoming a fully confident and certified scuba diver.

Your experience begins as you first learn about scuba diving through academic knowledge development sessions. From there, you will start with confined water dives, practicing diving skills in water shallow enough to stand up in. Once you master these fundamental skills, you will progress to a shallow depth just above your head, and finally complete 4 open water dives, between 20 and 40 feet deep, and always with an instructor.

High School Open Water Scuba Certification
Vega Activities

Intro TO MARINE BIOLOGY

PADI Coral Reef Conservation Specialty

Everyone likes to scuba dive or snorkel in warm, clear water on a vibrant coral reef, yet many people know little about what they’re seeing or the importance of reef ecosystems. The AWARE – Coral Reef Conservation Specialty course helps you appreciate the complexity of these habitats and teaches you how you can help conserve these vital systems.

In the course, you’ll learn

• How coral reefs function and the complex nature of life on a reef.
• Why coral reefs are so important.
• Why many coral reefs are in serious trouble.
• What you can do to prevent further decline.

ARRIVING TO ACTIONQUEST IN THE BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS

Your international summer camp begins! The majority of students will fly into St. Thomas (STT) in the US Virgin Islands. For those arriving via STT, ActionQuest’s professional staff will greet you at the airport and assist with the beautiful ferry ride to West End, Tortola where the rest of the staff awaits you. From there we’ll take you through our formal check-in process and introduce you to your new floating home. You’ll spend the rest of the day unpacking and getting to know your fellow shipmates and staff, all while the sun sets behind the dock.

For those flying directly into the BVI (EIS), students are met by an AQ representative and taken to West End via Taxi.

 

 

Learning To Sail
Vega Activities

Intro TO Sailing

Keelboat Sailing

Vega sail training aims to teach students every aspect of keelboat cruising. The training is a combination of on-the-water practical experience along with in-depth theory lessons through interactive lectures. The practical days on the water find our students trading time at the helm, trimming the sails, helping navigate the course, or assisting with the engineering of the ship’s systems. Vega students truly are full-time crew members aboard a 50 ft. sailing yacht.

Intro To Sailing Classes
Vega Activities

Intro TO Sailing (Cont.)

Dinghy Sailing

Alongside all the sailing they do on our larger yachts, Vega students get to spend many hours fine-tuning their small boat handling skills on our fleet of RS Zest sailboats.

High school sailing program
Vega Activities

Intro TO Sailing (Cont.)

Small Keelboat Sailing

In addition to our fleet of AQ dinghies, Vega students receive additional training on the small fleet of 19-24 foot keelboats that we borrow from the world-renowned Bitter End Yacht Club in the North Sound of Virgin Gorda.

ActionQuest brochure icon
  • Get Our Free Online Brochure

    Full of detailed information about our adventures, staff, and FAQs for you to access anytime.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Learning to sail!

As someone new to sailing you’ll learn on the world’s most beautiful waters under the guidance of ActionQuest’s incredible staff…

ActionQuest At Sunset
ActionQuest BVI Vista
ActionQuest Flotilla

Learning to scuba dive!

Submerged in a completely different world – a world where “exotic” doesn’t begin to describe what’s in front of your eyes, that’s AQ Scuba…

Sailing Camp In The British Virgin Islands
Vega Activities

Life Aboard

Lifeworks Forum

It’s amazing how much you can learn about yourself when you are living in close quarters with a bunch of strangers…

Beyond all the exciting activities, it is this personal growth that we find equally important, and at AQ we highlight this growth through an element of all our programs called the Lifeworks Forum. Held at intervals throughout the voyage, the Forum is designed to complement the learning that takes place through the everyday interaction aboard. Students have the opportunity to participate in – and lead – discussions on topics like personal responsibility, values, integrity, communication, and goals. Of all the skills that students take from their voyages, it is the life skills that can carry them the farthest. At AQ, we feel that while building one’s life, it is important to be sure it is based on a foundation of courage, compassion, and personal integrity.

BVI Students Cooking
Vega Activities

Life Aboard

The Job Wheel

At ActionQuest, there are no passengers, only shipmates. Being a shipmate, means that you will share the day to day responsibility of running a 50 ft. sailing vessel! While the staff is there to teach and help, your daily job will be assigned by using the “AQ job wheel”. Have you ever been the head chef for 15 people? You will with AQ! Each day, the wheel turns and you will get a new job. From Skipper to Mate, Navigator to Engineer, and to roles that simply support the success of others, by journey’s end, you can truly say that you were involved in every aspect of making your adventure happen.

High School Waterski Summer Camp
Vega Activities

Watersports

Waterskiing, Wakeboarding, and Kneeboarding

AQ travels with a full set of watersports equipment. We have six RIB dinghies that are perfect for skiing, so everyone gets to try wakeboarding and waterskiing for the first time, master a few new tricks, or learn to slalom! Over the last 30 years, we have taught thousands to ski, wakeboard, and kneeboard.

Windsurf
Vega Activities

Watersports

Windsurfing

We also carry complete windsurfing rigs with multiple sails for all wind conditions! In between scuba diving, sailing and wakeboarding you’ll get to try windsurfing for the first time, practice that perfect water-start and jibe, or simply take the sails off and enjoy a stand-up paddleboard.

Beat Home Sickness Summer Camp

Time to Say Goodbye

There’s always a mix of emotions on departure day. The excitement to go home is always overwhelmed by the realization that the Adventure is over and that it’s time to say goodbye to the people you’ve grown so close to over the last few weeks. Day 1 will simultaneously seem like the day before and a lifetime ago as you and your crew take a private ferry for the last leg of your journey together.

“Wow, another truly unforgettable summer with AQ. I still remember back when I was first a Vega shipmate and shuddered at the very idea of living on a boat with a bunch of strangers. I believe that to this day my best decision was letting go of my reservations and giving this amazing place a chance. ActionQuest has truly changed every aspect of my life and I cannot thank you enough for facilitating that. I cannot think of who I would be if I had never come down here as a Vega. I hope that one day I might be able to come back as staff and change others' lives the way AQ has changed mine.”

Max A. / New York, NY
AQ Sail Side Animated Map

Vega Overview

Below you will find all the specific details about our Vega voyage, but there’s no better way to learn more about our summer adventure programs than to watch for yourself!

ARRIVING TO ACTIONQUEST IN THE BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS

Your international summer camp begins! The majority of students will fly into St. Thomas (STT) in the US Virgin Islands. For those arriving via STT, ActionQuest’s professional staff will greet you at the airport and assist with the beautiful ferry ride to West End, Tortola where the rest of the staff awaits you. From there we’ll take you through our formal check-in process and introduce you to your new floating home. You’ll spend the rest of the day unpacking and getting to know your fellow shipmates and staff, all while the sun sets behind the dock.

For those flying directly into the BVI (EIS), students are met by an AQ representative and taken to West End via Taxi.

 

 

Learning To Sail
Vega Activities

Intro TO Sailing

Keelboat Sailing

Vega sail training aims to teach students every aspect of keelboat cruising. The training is a combination of on-the-water practical experience along with in-depth theory lessons through interactive lectures. The practical days on the water find our students trading time at the helm, trimming the sails, helping navigate the course, or assisting with the engineering of the ship’s systems. Vega students truly are full-time crew members aboard a 50 ft. sailing yacht.

Intro To Sailing Classes
Vega Activities

Intro TO Sailing (Cont.)

Dinghy Sailing

Alongside all the sailing they do on our larger yachts, Vega students get to spend many hours fine-tuning their small boat handling skills on our fleet of RS Zest sailboats.

High school sailing program
Vega Activities

Intro TO Sailing (Cont.)

Small Keelboat Sailing

In addition to our fleet of AQ dinghies, Vega students receive additional training on the small fleet of 19-24 foot keelboats that we borrow from the world-renowned Bitter End Yacht Club in the North Sound of Virgin Gorda.

Teen Summer Program
Vega Activities

Intro TO Scuba Diving

PADI Open Water Certification

During the Vega voyage, students will be taken through the globally recognized PADI open water diver certification course. The course takes students through a slow and steady path to becoming a fully confident and certified scuba diver.

Your experience begins as you first learn about scuba diving through academic knowledge development sessions. From there, you will start with confined water dives, practicing diving skills in water shallow enough to stand up in. Once you master these fundamental skills, you will progress to a shallow depth just above your head, and finally complete 4 open water dives, between 20 and 40 feet deep, and always with an instructor.

High School Open Water Scuba Certification
Vega Activities

Intro TO MARINE BIOLOGY

PADI Coral Reef Conservation Specialty

Everyone likes to scuba dive or snorkel in warm, clear water on a vibrant coral reef, yet many people know little about what they’re seeing or the importance of reef ecosystems. The AWARE – Coral Reef Conservation Specialty course helps you appreciate the complexity of these habitats and teaches you how you can help conserve these vital systems.

In the course, you’ll learn

• How coral reefs function and the complex nature of life on a reef.
• Why coral reefs are so important.
• Why many coral reefs are in serious trouble.
• What you can do to prevent further decline.

ActionQuest brochure icon
  • Get Our Free Online Brochure

    Full of detailed information about our adventures, staff, and FAQs for you to access anytime.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Learning to sail!

As someone new to sailing you’ll learn on the world’s most beautiful waters under the guidance of ActionQuest’s incredible staff…

ActionQuest At Sunset
ActionQuest BVI Vista
ActionQuest Flotilla

Learning to scuba dive!

Submerged in a completely different world – a world where “exotic” doesn’t begin to describe what’s in front of your eyes, that’s AQ Scuba…

High School Waterski Summer Camp
Vega Activities

Watersports

Waterskiing, Wakeboarding, and Kneeboarding

AQ travels with a full set of watersports equipment. We have six RIB dinghies that are perfect for skiing, so everyone gets to try wakeboarding and waterskiing for the first time, master a few new tricks, or learn to slalom! Over the last 30 years, we have taught thousands to ski, wakeboard, and kneeboard.

Windsurf
Vega Activities

Watersports

Windsurfing

We also carry complete windsurfing rigs with multiple sails for all wind conditions! In between scuba diving, sailing and wakeboarding you’ll get to try windsurfing for the first time, practice that perfect water-start and jibe, or simply take the sails off and enjoy a stand-up paddleboard.

Sailing Camp In The British Virgin Islands
Vega Activities

Life Aboard

Lifeworks Forum

It’s amazing how much you can learn about yourself when you are living in close quarters with a bunch of strangers…

Beyond all the exciting activities, it is this personal growth that we find equally important, and at AQ we highlight this growth through an element of all our programs called the Lifeworks Forum. Held at intervals throughout the voyage, the Forum is designed to complement the learning that takes place through the everyday interaction aboard. Students have the opportunity to participate in – and lead – discussions on topics like personal responsibility, values, integrity, communication, and goals. Of all the skills that students take from their voyages, it is the life skills that can carry them the farthest. At AQ, we feel that while building one’s life, it is important to be sure it is based on a foundation of courage, compassion, and personal integrity.

BVI Students Cooking
Vega Activities

Life Aboard

The Job Wheel

At ActionQuest, there are no passengers, only shipmates. Being a shipmate, means that you will share the day to day responsibility of running a 50 ft. sailing vessel! While the staff is there to teach and help, your daily job will be assigned by using the “AQ job wheel”. Have you ever been the head chef for 15 people? You will with AQ! Each day, the wheel turns and you will get a new job. From Skipper to Mate, Navigator to Engineer, and to roles that simply support the success of others, by journey’s end, you can truly say that you were involved in every aspect of making your adventure happen.

Beat Home Sickness Summer Camp

Time to Say Goodbye

There’s always a mix of emotions on departure day. The excitement to go home is always overwhelmed by the realization that the Adventure is over and that it’s time to say goodbye to the people you’ve grown so close to over the last few weeks. Day 1 will simultaneously seem like the day before and a lifetime ago as you and your crew take a private ferry for the last leg of your journey together.

“Wow, another truly unforgettable summer with AQ. I still remember back when I was first a Vega shipmate and shuddered at the very idea of living on a boat with a bunch of strangers. I believe that to this day my best decision was letting go of my reservations and giving this amazing place a chance. ActionQuest has truly changed every aspect of my life and I cannot thank you enough for facilitating that. I cannot think of who I would be if I had never come down here as a Vega. I hope that one day I might be able to come back as staff and change others' lives the way AQ has changed mine.”

Max A. / New York, NY

Need More Information?

Certifications

On top of all the other fun adventure sports and activities during the Vega adventure, you’ll have the opportunity to earn these certifications:

Padi Logo

Scuba Certifications

  • Open Water Diver Certification

    The PADI Open Water Diver course is the world’s most popular scuba certification. Millions of people have started diving as certified PADI Open Water Divers…
    Learn More >

  • Coral Reef Conservation Specialty

    Everyone likes to scuba dive in warm, clear water on a vibrant coral reef, yet many people know little about what they’re seeing or the importance of reef ecosystems, this course teaches you more…
    Learn More >

IYT Media

Sailing Certifications

  • IYT International Crew

    The IYT International Crew course is designed for students with limited previous experience, who are looking to become an active and competent crew member aboard a power or sailing yacht…
    Learn More >

Need to know

Is this adventure right for me?

Vega is our biggest and broadest summer adventure program, not just in the number of students who join us, but also in the range of activities we do and certifications we offer. It is the perfect program for teens with limited or no previous experience in sailing and scuba diving who are looking for an exciting introduction to these as well as marine biology and a range of other water sports such as water skiing, windsurfing, and wakeboarding. Off the water, we’ll visit the islands, explore the towns, cookout on the white sand beaches and hike to the top of the tallest mountain.

How many people go on this adventure?

You’ll sail with up to eight boats in a flotilla, each with 10 to 12 students aboard. It’s a lot of fun sailing as part of a larger fleet, where you can interact with many other teens and staff from all over the world.

How do you split up the ages across the boats?

Given that we have a number of yachts sailing together, this allows us to berth teens aboard based on their age and grade. Typically you can expect to be aboard with other students within about a year of your own age (plus or minus). Please contact us if you have any specific considerations in this regard.

What type of boat will I be on?

The Vega summer adventure program runs exclusively aboard traditional single-hulled yachts (monohulls). We use only the finest charter yachts available, all of which are in the 48-54 foot range. Each vessel has 5 cabins, a large salon which converts to a 6th cabin, and 4 full bathrooms (heads). The world’s largest charter company, Moorings/Sunsail, maintains all of our yachts to the highest standard.

ActionQuest adventure program sailing monohull

Learn more about our vessels

Where do we sleep?

From the moment you arrive, you’ll move aboard your yacht and live on board full-time. It’s true to say that living on a boat is A LOT tighter than living at home. With up to 12 students and 3 staff living together, it can feel cramped for those not used to it, yet this close community environment is where so much of the experience is created.

All of our vessels have 5 cabins and a large salon that converts to a 6th. While there’s just about enough room for everyone to sleep down below should it rain, on our typical clear and dry evenings many of us like to sleep out on deck, swinging in a hammock under the stars.

Who will be my staff?

AQ is proud to attract and recruit the best in our field. Our summer staff includes professional maritime captains, PADI dive instructors, and medical professionals. Above all, we hire responsible and experienced facilitators and educators. All members of our team are dynamic, multi-talented, and passionate individuals with a devotion and commitment to the safety and experience of our students.

Two or three staff members live with you aboard your vessel full-time. Your staff will consist of a Skipper,  Scuba instructor, and typically a third staff member from a variety of different roles (SCUBA instructor, EMT, Marine Biologist, etc.).

Learn more about the team

What's the food like?

At AQ we strive for nutritious and delicious meals. Student chefs of the day prepare meals onboard with help from the staff using a combination of goods we have imported from the US and local fresh food we pick up onshore every few days. Occasionally throughout the trip, students will have the option to eat at a restaurant during shore time. Living onboard a boat in the British Virgin Islands can be challenging in terms of provisioning and cooking but when it’s all said and done, mealtime is often a highlight of each day.

During the application process, families can inform us of any dietary allergies or restrictions. We are usually able to accommodate vegetarians, vegans etc., as well as various food allergies. However, if your student has a severe allergy to peanuts or other common substances, please call our office to discuss the options.

Sample Menu Download

What do I need to bring?

Given that all students will be living aboard a sailboat for the duration of their adventure, we recommend that you keep things simple and avoid over packing. Students are given the opportunity to do laundry once in the middle of the trip, so there’s no need to pack several weeks’ worth of clothing.

Our hope is that families will have minimal purchases prior to the trip, so we’ve compiled our packing lists in a way that you’ll find most of what you need in your closet at home. Around mid to late March, we make available our Pre-Trip Packet to enrolled students, which contains a detailed packing list for this year’s adventures. If you’d like to see last year’s packing list as an example, you can download it here.

Packing List Download

Nitty Gritty

Flights

Are flights included in the tuition?

Since students join us from all over the world, the cost of transportation to and from the British Virgin Islands is not included in the program tuition.

Who should we contact to book travel?

Helping to coordinate our students’ travel is of vital importance – and a mammoth task! For this reason, we strongly suggest that all families start by contacting our travel coordinator:

Leah Hernandez – AQ Travel Coordinator
Tel: +1.281.528.7727
Toll-Free: 800.329.9000
Email: leahctn68@hotmail.com

Even if you are not originating in the U.S., Leah will be able to provide options and guidance.

How do we get there?

Our recommended route is via St. Thomas (STT) in the USVI although students also have the option of flying to Beef Island (EIS).

Does AQ provide support on travel days?

Yes. We understand that travel days can be stressful for both parents and students, so no matter what time of the day or night, our office team actively monitors and supports our participants during travel. We require students to travel with a mobile phone with domestic data capability so we can monitor their progress and communicate directly if necessary.

For students flying via St Thomas, ActionQuest arranges for a staff member to assist with the transfer to Tortola via ferry. After arrival in Tortola, students are met at the ferry dock by more of ActionQuest’s professional staff, then collectively continue onto a taxi that takes them to the boats.

Looking for more detailed information on travel?

Visit the travel page

Travel Docs & Vaccinations

Travel Docs & Visas

All students traveling to the BVI need to have a passport which is valid for a minimum of three months after the date of departure from the BVI. Visitors from certain countries other than the US, UK, and Canada may require visas.

For the most up-to-date and thorough information, please visit travel.state.gov. Students traveling on non-U.S. passports should verify passport and visa requirements for your nationality by contacting your local British embassy or consulate or the nearest BVI Tourist Board Office.

One important point to mention is that most students joining us in the BVI do so by flying via St. Thomas, which is part of the US Virgin Islands. This means that those students not flying on a US or Canadian passport need to consider whether they need to apply for a U.S. visa or ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorization). Please call us with any questions.

Vaccinations

For visiting the BVI, the CDC recommends that all travelers are up-to-date on routine vaccinations that most of us had as children (measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine, varicella (chickenpox) vaccine, polio vaccine.

That said, we understand that families have varying opinions on vaccinations. Some greatly desire the precaution; others prefer to avoid possible side effects of certain medications. Coupled with the fact that each student has unique medical considerations known best by his or her doctor, AQ does not supply medical advice. For this reason, we recommend that all families refer back to the expertise of the CDC from time to time (wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel), their health care providers, and/or a travel clinic to gain the most up to date information.

Tuition

AQ Tuition Covers the following:

  • All accommodation and group meals once the adventure is underway
  • Vessel charter and related government fees
  • Staff, local guides, and tips
  • The use of all sailing, scuba and water sports equipment (except for wetsuits, if needed)
  • Sailing and scuba diving certification costs

Not included in the AQ tuition:

  • Air transportation and related travel expenses (baggage, taxes, visas etc.)
  • DAN Membership (Divers Alert Network) for any student diving with us (est. $35)
  • PADI required course books and materials (est. $51)
  • Personal spending money

Discounts and Savings

  • A one-time total tuition fee deduction of 5% is granted for any two adventures or for two or more students from the same family.
  • Any two consecutive programs may be joined to form one extended course. In the interim between programs, students stay with staff. The total cost is determined by combining the cost of each program and subtracting the 5% extended course discount. (This discount also applies toward any trips adjoining our sister program GoBeyond.) ActionQuest and/or GoBeyond enrollment for any two programs in the same summer will be considered as a single extended program in the event of withdrawal or dismissal from the trip at any time.

Itinerary

Flotilla Sailing

Beyond the strong friendships that naturally form while living aboard a sailing vessel, one of the truly great and unique parts of AQ is the experience of sailing as part of a larger fleet, or ‘flotilla’ of boats.

A flotilla is defined as a group of yachts that voyage together and there are many reasons why sailing this way may be preferable for both a novice and more seasoned sailor. While 90% of all activities are done with your tight-knit team of 10 to 14 aboard, being part of a larger group is a ton of fun when we are ashore to explore, for a beach BBQ or party night! Plus, we’ll get some friendly competition going between all the boats on our race days! Flotilla sailing also offers the big advantage of having backup support if necessary. It allows us to have our advanced medical staff travel with the group full-time. It also allows our directors to interact with all of our students and staff, ensuring our high level of professionalism, instruction, and safety standards are being met.

Living in the moment

Though the fundamentals of our adventures don’t change, specific logistics evolve as we get closer to the summer and then day by day based on weather. The animated map along with the adventure overview portions on this page should give all families a basic understanding of the kinds of activities we do on the voyage. We also suggest looking through last summer’s Trip Logs for a more detailed travel log created by the students.

With this in mind, we encourage all participants to “live in the moment”. Traveling by boat requires flexibility and a willingness to accept adversity and change. We hope you’ll take any bumps in your stride, and enjoy the adventure!

Are flights included in the tuition?

Since students join us from all over the world, the cost of transportation to and from the British Virgin Islands is not included in the program tuition.

Who should we contact to book travel?

Helping to coordinate our students’ travel is of vital importance – and a mammoth task! For this reason, we strongly suggest that all families start by contacting our travel coordinator:

Leah Hernandez – AQ Travel Coordinator
Tel: +1.281.528.7727
Toll-Free: 800.329.9000
Email: leahctn68@hotmail.com

Even if you are not originating in the U.S., Leah will be able to provide options and guidance.

How do we get there?

Our recommended route is via St. Thomas (STT) in the USVI although students also have the option of flying to Beef Island (EIS).

Does AQ provide support on travel days?

Yes. We understand that travel days can be stressful for both parents and students, so no matter what time of the day or night, our office team actively monitors and supports our participants during travel. We require students to travel with a mobile phone with domestic data capability so we can monitor their progress and communicate directly if necessary.

For students flying via St Thomas, ActionQuest arranges for a staff member to assist with the transfer to Tortola via ferry. After arrival in Tortola, students are met at the ferry dock by more of ActionQuest’s professional staff, then collectively continue onto a taxi that takes them to the boats.

Looking for more detailed information on travel?

Visit the travel page

Travel Docs & Visas

All students traveling to the BVI need to have a passport which is valid for a minimum of three months after the date of departure from the BVI. Visitors from certain countries other than the US, UK, and Canada may require visas.

For the most up-to-date and thorough information, please visit travel.state.gov. Students traveling on non-U.S. passports should verify passport and visa requirements for your nationality by contacting your local British embassy or consulate or the nearest BVI Tourist Board Office.

One important point to mention is that most students joining us in the BVI do so by flying via St. Thomas, which is part of the US Virgin Islands. This means that those students not flying on a US or Canadian passport need to consider whether they need to apply for a U.S. visa or ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorization). Please call us with any questions.

Vaccinations

For visiting the BVI, the CDC recommends that all travelers are up-to-date on routine vaccinations that most of us had as children (measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine, diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis vaccine, varicella (chickenpox) vaccine, polio vaccine.

That said, we understand that families have varying opinions on vaccinations. Some greatly desire the precaution; others prefer to avoid possible side effects of certain medications. Coupled with the fact that each student has unique medical considerations known best by his or her doctor, AQ does not supply medical advice. For this reason, we recommend that all families refer back to the expertise of the CDC from time to time (wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel), their health care providers, and/or a travel clinic to gain the most up to date information.

AQ Tuition Covers the following:

  • All accommodation and group meals once the adventure is underway
  • Vessel charter and related government fees
  • Staff, local guides, and tips
  • The use of all sailing, scuba and water sports equipment (except for wetsuits, if needed)
  • Sailing and scuba diving certification costs

Not included in the AQ tuition:

  • Air transportation and related travel expenses (baggage, taxes, visas etc.)
  • DAN Membership (Divers Alert Network) for any student diving with us (est. $35)
  • PADI required course books and materials (est. $51)
  • Personal spending money

Discounts and Savings

  • A one-time total tuition fee deduction of 5% is granted for any two adventures or for two or more students from the same family.
  • Any two consecutive programs may be joined to form one extended course. In the interim between programs, students stay with staff. The total cost is determined by combining the cost of each program and subtracting the 5% extended course discount. (This discount also applies toward any trips adjoining our sister program GoBeyond.) ActionQuest and/or GoBeyond enrollment for any two programs in the same summer will be considered as a single extended program in the event of withdrawal or dismissal from the trip at any time.

Flotilla Sailing

Beyond the strong friendships that naturally form while living aboard a sailing vessel, one of the truly great and unique parts of AQ is the experience of sailing as part of a larger fleet, or ‘flotilla’ of boats.

A flotilla is defined as a group of yachts that voyage together and there are many reasons why sailing this way may be preferable for both a novice and more seasoned sailor. While 90% of all activities are done with your tight-knit team of 10 to 14 aboard, being part of a larger group is a ton of fun when we are ashore to explore, for a beach BBQ or party night! Plus, we’ll get some friendly competition going between all the boats on our race days! Flotilla sailing also offers the big advantage of having backup support if necessary. It allows us to have our advanced medical staff travel with the group full-time. It also allows our directors to interact with all of our students and staff, ensuring our high level of professionalism, instruction, and safety standards are being met.

Living in the moment

Though the fundamentals of our adventures don’t change, specific logistics evolve as we get closer to the summer and then day by day based on weather. The animated map along with the adventure overview portions on this page should give all families a basic understanding of the kinds of activities we do on the voyage. We also suggest looking through last summer’s Trip Logs for a more detailed travel log created by the students.

With this in mind, we encourage all participants to “live in the moment”. Traveling by boat requires flexibility and a willingness to accept adversity and change. We hope you’ll take any bumps in your stride, and enjoy the adventure!