At a very high level here is what you WILL need !

Seaworthy, open ocean vessel well equipped, tested and ready to go capable of voyaging up to 2,500 nm without assistance between stops
Experienced skipper and competent crew
Autopilot or Windvane
Money and Credit Cards
Vessel Documentation
Vaccination Records
IF you have a Pet international Chip and Vaccination Records
Sat communications / Sat Tracker or SSB / HAM Radio


鈥 chart-plotter and printed charts
鈥 logbook
鈥 handheld GPS
鈥 compass
鈥 watch
鈥 safety gear
鈥 tracker such as delorme / gps / garmin / iridium go / sailmail if SSB 聽 HAM
鈥 anything that makes you feel comfortable
鈥 checked rig, engines, systems, running and standing rigging, ground tackle, windlass, batteries
鈥 know how to change filters vbelts oil etc.
鈥 android dual sim unlocked GSM Phone
鈥 tools and spares so you can repair things that may brake or need replacing including a way to mend sails
鈥 dinghy
鈥 medical kit
鈥 spares
– Iridium GO or equivalent

A more extensive list oF WHAT TO BRING from Downwind Marine


1. TOP ESSENTIALS: Life Raft sized for entire crew, an EPIRB and a pre-packed 鈥淒itch Bag鈥 to supply life raft in emergency. SOS Distress Lights鈥 Flares or Electronic Flare!

2. Automatic Identification System (A.I.S.) installed鈥搖se to track commercial vessels鈥 course & speed to avoid collisions.

3. Ham Radio with Marine SSB and Pactor E-mail installed,even if there is no licensed ham operator on board. In emergency Hams will talk to anyone, for either medical or vessel assistance. Use to monitor the maritime mobile HAMS for up-to-date news& weather even if there is no satellite coverage. Unlocked Android or Iphone.

4. 鈥淛ack-Lines鈥 installed on each side of the length of the boat.

5. Personal Flotation Device (PFD) with Safety Harness for each crew/person on board.

6. Personal Strobes &Whistles on Lanyards for each crew/person on board.

7. Man Overboard Pole with 20-feet of floating line attached to Horseshoe Buoy equipped with Sea Anchor and Man Overboard Strobe 鈥揝OS Distress Light for use here too!

8. Boarding Ladder or other means to get back on board.

9. Radar Reflector/Detector.

10. Masthead Strobe (Not legal except in an emergency).

11. Flashlight for each area of boat (with extra batteries and bulbs) or battery-less light.LED-type works great here too.

12. Powerful Spotlightor light beam gun. You will coem across long liners without much warning

13. Custom First Aid Kit (to meet personal needs& possible illness or accidental injury鈥& cruisers all say you鈥檒l need more GOOD band-aids!!) plus Chlorine Bleach to sanitize water.

14. One Rigid Bucket per person (for bucket brigade).

15. Air Horn and Horn Refill Can.

16. Boom Gallows, Boom Crutch, or 鈥淟azy Jacks鈥漷o secure boom(s)when not in use, or if /when a topping liftbreaks.

17. Lead Line for sounding / handheld depth sounder

18.Anchors, Chain& Rode in multiple copies, with extra Shackles, Swivels, Seizing Wire& Chafe Gear, plus Anchor Buoy with line for quick deployment in emergency 鈥 follow the 7 to 1 scope recommendation in sizing your chain.

Anchoring Note: A proficient anchor system is your best insurance. Have different anchors and anchoring gear on board to be able to leave one or two behind in a hurry and still have enough left to securely anchor again. One monster 鈥淪torm Hook鈥 is advisable

19. AIS


1. Electrical Wire, Solder, Connectors, Electrical Tape, etc.

2. Silicone Spray Lubricant (eg. Tri-Flow PTFE, Lanocote) plusEngine Starting Fluid, & outboard motor fluids and cleaners.

3. Fin,Mask, Snorkel& Hol-Tite Handle for in-water hull or prop work (also wet suit & weight belt are really useful here).

4. Spares 鈥揨inc Plates, Collars & Pencils for electrolysis control as needed, including use in cooling system.

5. Fiberglass Cloth& Tape, with resin and catalyst, PLUS Caulking Gun with tubes of Silicone Caulking & Adhesives (eg. BoatLife, SikaFlexand/orsimilar 3M-Products)

6. Splash Zone or 鈥淧oxy-Putty鈥 (both slow cure and fast cure) for underwater repair, plus Bedding Compound (Dolfinite).

7. Spares 鈥揊uses and/or Circuit Breakers.

8. 3M Scotch-Brite Pads for 鈥渂oatwork鈥, plus Sandpaper (wet/dry), Paint &Varnish, Primer, Thinner, &Brushes.

9. Cleaning Aids like Sponges, Rags, Chamois & Deck Brush.

10. Small Whisk Broom, Dust Pan, and/or 12-Volt Vacuum.

11. Canvas Squares for use as collision mat.

12. Plywood or starboard (as large as you can stow) for emergency hull and cabin side repair, (plus large nails and hammer in your tool kit!)

13. Wood 2脳4鈥檚 (as large as you can stow) plus Large Hose Clamps for splinting spars and other emergency repair.

14. Assortment of Fasteners 鈥搉uts, bolts and screws, etc.

15. Emergency Marine SSB Antenna and/or Ham Antenna.

16. Metal Primer & Acid-Etch 鈥搆eep safely stored.

17. Rubber 鈥淭rue Plugs鈥 and/or Tapered Plugs (wood bungs) with 鈥淪tay Afloat鈥 Bee鈥檚 Wax 鈥搆eep plugs dry but as handy to thru-hulls as possible. PLUS Gorilla Tape&Rescue Tapefor the quick fixes!

18. Expanded Inflatable Repair Kit, to include glue, hull fabric, valves, chemicals, etc.


Check with your engine maker or its distributor for a list of recommended spare parts to maintain onboard.

1. Spares Kits 鈥揻or all Pumps on board including Pressure, Hand and Bilge Bumps with extra impellers as applicable.

2. Spares Kit 鈥揻or Engine Raw Water Pump, all parts plus extra impellers and complete backup pump.

3. Spares 鈥揻or Stove, include Burner(s) and/or parts for stove.

4. Spares 鈥揻or Head, extra pump and all parts you can think of plus extra joker valves and packing.

5. Spare Bulbs for running lights and cabin lights, plusa switch or two. Try replacement LED bulbs in your fixtures!

6. Spares 鈥揻or Oil Lamps, include Chimneys, Wicks, Mantles and Burners, plus extra Paraffin Oil.

7. Batteries for everything using them.

8. Water-Separating Fuel Filter Funnel.

9. Spares 鈥揑n-Line Water Filter Cartridges & Heater Elements.

10. Fuel Additive(s) for fungus prevention and water absorption.

11. Spares 鈥揊uel injectors/points, plugs, and distributor rotor.

12. Spare Oil Filter Cartridges and OIL, enough oil for at least two oil changes and any anticipated consumption of motor.

13. Spares 鈥揨incs wherever needed.

14. Spares 鈥揌oses and Fan Belts wherever needed.

15. Distilled Water and Salinity Tester to check quality of any distilled water before using in battery.

16. Hydrometer, Battery Filler, and Baking Soda.

17. Hose Clamps plus Assorted Fasteners 鈥搉uts, bolts, etc.

18. A GOOD Volt-Ohmmeter with test leads and alligator clips

19. Tool Kit 鈥 the biggest and best you can afford and fit onboard to also include if possible a Vacuum Gauge, Prop Puller, Drill Tapping Set, Battery Operated Drill, &High Speed Drill Bits.

20. Gasket Material, Silicon Tape and Plumbing Adhesives.
21. Spares for Outboard, including prop, impellers, ignition parts, plugs, etc.
22. Spares 鈥 for Auto Pilot, including belt and parts
23. Spares Fuel Pump, Battery Switch, and Ignition Switch.
24. Spare Alternator or Generator and/or Brushes and Bearings.
25. Spare Voltage Regulator.
26. Freon Re-charge Kit (find in auto parts store), plus Refrigerator Vacuum Pump, Gauge and Dryer


1. Spares 鈥揃locks, Shackles, Thimbles, Clevis Pins& Cotter Pins/ Rings.

2. Spares 鈥揕ines for sheets, halyards and/or Wire Rope.

3. Spares 鈥揚iece of Rigging Wire (long as your longest stay).

4. Cable Clamps for every size wire on board.

5. Nicopress Tool and assortment of Nicopress Sleeves.

6. Cable Cutter (capable to cutlargest diameter wire on boat).

7. Tape鈥揜igging Tape, Duct/GorillaTape, Chafe Tape, Rescue Tape鈥

8. Rigging Knife with Shackler for each crew member.9. Marlin Spikes and Seizing Wire.

10. Bosun鈥檚 Chair & Tackle and/or consider a Jumar Ascending Tool.

11. Spares 鈥揥inch Handles.

12. Winch Handle Pockets.

13. Downwind Pole(s).

14. Mast Steps or Ratlines for spotting coral (also highly recommend Polarized Dark Sun Glasses).

15. Boom Vang -Preventers.

16. Hand-Powered Sewing Machine.


1. Foul Weather Gear and Boots to fit everyone.

2. Hats and Cpasfor everyone, with spares as needed.

3. Sunscreen for lips, nose, and skin.

4. Flip-Flops, Tennis Shoes, Heavy Boots & Reef Walkers.

5. Electric Fan(s) plus a Wind Scoop to fit to your front hatch!

6. Sun Awning 鈥揵est if it can be left up while sailing.

7. Solar Water Showers.

8. Good Dodger and Weather Cloths.

9. Cockpit Cushions and Cockpit Lantern.

10. Reliable Self-Steering 鈥揥ind Vane or Autopilot, or both or redundancy

11. Velcro Hatch Insect Netting and Porthole Screens.

12. D-Con Bombs for roaches, Mosquito (& no-see-um) Coils.

13. Flopper Stopper 鈥搊cean-swell roll controller 鈥 unless you are on a cat

14. Propane BBQ to cook outside!

15. Laundry Aids like rub board, large tub, plumber鈥檚 helper, portable wringer and clothespins, plus Tide for salt water laundry.

16. Saltwater Soap (for dishes, decks, and shampoo) 鈥損lus Hair Rinse. (Joy dish washing soap works great in saltwater!)

17. Insulated 鈥淭ravel鈥 Mugs and Thermos Bottles 鈥2 or more.

18. Aluminum Foil Plates for rat guards on lines.

19. Non-skid Matting for lockers, drawers, carpet bottoms, etc.

20. Beach Towels and lightweight, fast-drying Sleeping Bags,Blankets & Pillows.

21. Cookware, Tableware, Cups, Stemware and Kitchen Timer.


1. Extra Set of Oars and/or Paddles.

2. Dark Glasses with polarized lenses necessary for spotting coral聽 -and lots of extras too.

3. Jugs for Diesel, Gas and Water as needed 鈥搈ake sure these are well labeled (color-coded) and well secured!

4. Waterproof Document Bag.

5. Backpacks, Heavy Canvas Bags, Sport Bags.

6. Net Bags and Hammocks.

7. Sparker Lighter for stove and Waterproof Matches.

8. Deck Washing Bucket 鈥揜ubber or Collapsible Canvas.

9. Funnels to fit everywhere you need.

10. Paper Towels and Toilet Paper.

11. Fishing Gear鈥揂ssorted Hooks, Lures, Line & Wire Leader, Shock Cord, Net or Fish Gaff, and Small Bell. Be licensed!!

12. Deck Knife and Sharp Knives including 1 large for filleting fish & Filet Board.

13. Machete and Folding Shovel.

14. Boat Hook(s). with the ability to hose-clamp on a knife to cut long lines

15. Shock Cord鈥搃n different diameters and lots of it.

16. Tie-Down Line, 1/8鈥 or larger 鈥搈inimum 250-feet.

17. Heavy-Duty Gloves 鈥搈inimum 2 pair.

18. Flags鈥揅ountry Courtesy Flags for each country visited, Quarantine Flag, and one extra 鈥淗ome Country Flag鈥 (or bag of Nylon in assorted colors to make your own flags).

19. Assorted small gifts for trade, (e.g. dark glasses, printed T-shirts, any clothing from Levi Strauss.) Bring School Supplies for village kids.

20. Folding Shopping Cart.

21. Head Lamp, 12V Drop Light and/or Lights in Engine Room 鈥揊ind good LED versions to work here too!

22. Amp (or Amp Hour) Meter on ship鈥檚 main battery bank, plus Amp Meter for Alternator.

23. Hand-Held VHF radio(s) 鈥揳nd good concise language-translation dictionary for every country you plan to visit.

24. Printer Scanner Copier Combo

25. Barometer with History

26. Wifi hotspot
27. Wifi range extender antenna


1. Water Maker 鈥揼ood to have a salinity tester for this too 鈥 check with CRUISE RO WATERMAKERS

2. Portable Generator,Wind/Trolling Generator,Solar Panels.

3. Video or Digital Camera, Blank聽 Memory Cards/Sticks, Large Hard drives with聽 Video Library.

4. Folding Bicycle(s).

5. Deck Wash-Down Pump.


American Practical Navigator 鈥 Volume I (75 MB)
American Practical Navigator 鈥 Volume II (47 MB)
Volume I 鈥 Low Resolution Version (37 MB)
Volume II 鈥 Low Resolution Version (11 MB)
American Practical Navigator (2017 Edition Archive) (38 MB)
American Practical Navigator (2002 Edition Archive) (38 MB)