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How to Join a Sailing Club


Sailing Club Memberships
Sailing clubs usually offer fleets of small sailboats and are open to people who don't own their own boats.
Sailing clubs usually offer fleets of small sailboats and are open to people who don't own their own boats.
iStockphoto/Thinkstock

Want to sail but don't know which club to choose? It all comes down to what amenities you want. For example, do you want a club that has racing events? Would you like to sail a particular kind of boat? Are you looking for a club that will teach you how to sail? How far are you willing to travel to get there? How much are you willing to spend? Knowing the answers to these questions will help you decide what club is the best match for your needs.

Some sailing clubs offer different memberships based on your skill level and what services you want to have access to. For example, one level of membership might allow you to serve as a crew member, while another level lets you skipper your own boat. Some clubs also offer memberships that are valid only certain months of the year. Keep in mind that some clubs are open to the public, so anyone can join, while others are private. Private clubs might require sponsorship from an existing member in order to join.

So where are sailing clubs the most popular? Well, they exist all across the United States, but residents in some areas of the country seem to enjoy the sport just a little more than others. According to US Sailing, the national governing body of sailing, more than half (51 percent) of yacht clubs and sailing clubs in the U.S. are located in the eastern part of the country. Clubs in the central part of the country make up 30 percent, and clubs near the west coast make up about 18 percent [source: US Sailing].