Stories from the Crew Side: Four Findings for Financial Freedom

At Palma Superyacht Show ACREW ran a panel discussion about crew personal finance, led by Captains and experienced crew to a packed audience. Finance experts from multiple fields were present to answer technical questions from the floor.

Here are the 4 key things we learnt:

  • Superyacht Crew recognise the need for financial advice
    Tim Reedman commented ‘In the financial sphere crew are generally either knowledge poor or time poor, or both. The services of a financial adviser addresses these needs’. Factors specific to SY crew make it a complex task to manage personal financials without professional help.
  • Find an Adviser you can Develop a Relationship With
    The relationship between an adviser and the client is key. Like any business professional, financial advisers need to make a living. If they say they are working for free, be wary. Paul Evans from UAM shared ‘Obviously make sure they [finance advisers] are regulated, qualified and have good recommendations. Anyone who says they are working for free is lying. It’s in your adviser’s interest to make your money do more for you, but no investment is risk free.’
  • Get Yourself on the Map
    The importance of putting yourself ‘On the Map’ in terms of tax was emphasised and two crew members shared the opinion ‘Tax return forms in UK are terrifying!’. Patrick Maflin from Marine Accounts, commented ‘Paying tax in a chosen country is of great importance for later life when you need a good credit score. Think carefully where you may be buying property and make sure you are in the system somewhere.’
  • Use Superyacht Specific Tools and Products
    It was agreed in most cases your financial adviser will often act as a ‘gatekeeper’ of the products and services and recommend those that fit the best.
    Sheena from Standard Bank shared the advantages of their Seafarer Account over a regular bank account and Shaun Dash from International Foreign Exchange added ‘the advantages a foreign exchange company can provide in terms of improved rates and the ability to lock in rates is hard to beat.’

Conclusions

The Superyacht Crew lifestyle makes personal finance complicated

If you want to make the most out of your time of high income, low outgoings you need a plan

To create and stick to a plan you need to know your stuff

If you do not have the knowledge or time for this, get an adviser to help you where you need it

Make sure you find someone you can trust

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