For many boat owners in Florida and the southeast U.S., a trip to the Bahamas is on their bucket list. However, many are concerned with their ability to cross the Gulf Stream.
Enter the Bahamas Summer Boating Fling Program. For over 30 years, the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism has been organizing summer flotillas to teach Gulf Stream-crossing newbies how to safely make the crossing in a fun and relaxed atmosphere.
Under the guidance of a lead boat and experienced captain, participants in the Bahamas Boating Flings make the Gulf Stream crossing in a group. Flings depart from Bahia Mar Yachting Center in Fort Lauderdale. In year’s past, when several boaters plan to depart from the Treasure Coast, the Ministry has arranged either a Treasure Coast lead boat or a rendezvous point mid-Gulf Stream for the groups to merge and cross together.
Here is the 2018 Fling Schedule
- 13-17 Grand Bahama Island (Port Lucaya)
- 20-24 Bimini (Bimini Big Game Club)
- 27-July 1 Bimini (Bimini Big Game Club
- 11-22 Extended Fling (The Abacos, Harbour Island, Eleuthera)
- 25-29 Bimini (Bimini Big Game Club)
- 1-5 Bimini (Bimini Big Game Club)
Flings begin on Thursdays. Wednesday before all trips is a mandatory Captain’s meeting. Trips end on Sundays during the months of June and July.
If interested, register early as space is limited to 30 boats. Dockage space is on a first-come first-served basis. Minimum boat length for all flings is 22 feet. There is a $75 non-refundable registration fee per boat, per fling.
Event dates are subject to change due to inclement weather. Those boaters traveling long distances, are encouraged to make refundable lodging arrangements.
For more information, or to register for a fling or flings, call (800) 32-SPORTS or visit www.bahamas.com/boating-flings.