Common enquiries about your charter
We aim to make the process of chartering a luxury private vessel with us as easy as possible.
We have detailed the six simple steps to creating your bespoke event on the River Thames with us on our Booking Procedure page. To further help you throughout your booking and event preparation, please find the answers to our most frequently asked questions below.
Viewings, charter times and piers
Where and when can we view the boat?
Our fleet of luxury vessels are moored at Butler's Wharf Pier, a stone’s throw from Tower Bridge. Guided viewings with your dedicated event coordinator can be arranged between 10am and 4pm on weekdays. Please speak with your event coordinator if you require a viewing outside of these times. We highly recommend viewing the fleet or your chosen vessel as this will help you gain a real feel for the venue and how your event will look when it all comes together.
We no longer own M.V. Erasmus, however we are pleased to continue offering her as a venue on an agency basis. As a result she is now moored at Cherry Garden Pier. Please speak with your event coordinator if you require a viewing of the Erasmus.
How late can we hire the boat?
Our charter rates are valid up until midnight. Following this there is an hourly surcharge.
How far can we travel?
This will depend on the vessel, the length of your charter and tides on the day. If you have any areas of the Thames you wish to cruise through during your event, our friendly Captains will always endeavour to accommodate your requests.
Where do guests embark and disembark?
We are able to book a number of piers along the River Thames best suited for you and your guests to embark and disembark, as well as any additional pier calls you may require. Access to some piers will be tidal dependent and piers away from central London may be subject to additional running time costs.
We own/operate Butler's Wharf Pier, Putney Pier and Imperial Wharf Marina, and so are able to offer greater flexibility when using these piers for your event. Please see our River Thames Pier Map for locations and speak to your event coordinator for further information.
How long will we have at the pier to embark and disembark?
We allow 15 minutes boarding time at each pier for embark, disembark and additional pier calls. If you require more time alongside a pier we can arrange this for you at an additional charge. We own/operate Butler's Wharf Pier, Putney Pier and Imperial Wharf Marina, and so are able to offer greater flexibility when using these piers for your event. All pier calls have to be pre-booked and are scheduled in advance of your charter.
Catering and final numbers
When do we have to decide menu choices?
We require minimum numbers for catering three weeks prior to your charter and will do our best to accommodate any changes and additions to your menus following this point.
When do you need our final numbers?
Final numbers can be increased up to three working days before your charter.
Can we have our own catering?
Our award-winning caterer Food by Dish have a huge amount of experience across some of London's most prestigious venues. As London's leading event caterer, they are able to bring you a selection of contemporary and creative selections, including bespoke menus based on your individual requirements.
However, if you would however like to provide your own catering there is currently a surcharge of £5 +VAT per person and you will need to provide all of your own crockery, cutlery, linen and serving equipment. Please speak with our Events Management Team if you require more information about this.
Is there heating on board?
Yes, central heating is installed on all vessels.
Are there life jackets on board?
Your safety is of the utmost importance to us. As well as extensive regular training for all crew, every vessel is equipped with life jackets suitable for adults.
Are children allowed on board?
Yes, although we have a limited number of infant and child life jackets so we may need to hire more at an additional cost. Please let your event coordinator know if you plan on having children on board.
Is there wheelchair access?
Wheelchair accessibility varies between different vessels. Please speak with your Event Coordinator about any wheelchair requirements.
Setting up for your event
Can we set up before our event?
Set up for your event takes place at Butler's Wharf Pier. We try to allow two hours where possible, although this is not guaranteed. Set up times are usually confirmed on the Friday before your event. Please contact your event coordinator for further information.
Is there car parking at Butler's Wharf Pier?
The nearest car park is Butler's Wharf BCP Car Park (SE1 2NE), which is a two minute walk away from our offices and pier. Please refer to the Butler's Wharf Pier directions sheet for more information.
On board your event
Is there a bar on board? And does it take cards?
Yes, there are bars on all vessels. The Edwardian has one bar and the Elizabethan, Erasmus and Dixie Queen each have two bars on board. Card machines are available on all vessels. Unfortunately we may lose signal from time to time but please bear with us, it will return!
Can we vary the cruise on the night if we want to?
Unfortunately we cannot extend the charter or change locations without prior notice as all pier calls have to be scheduled and booked in advance. If you would like to make changes to your charter schedule in the run-up to your function, your event coordinator will endeavour to fulfil requests where possible.
What happens if it rains or snows?
Rain or snow does not affect your charter arrangements and your event will go ahead as planned, although use of outside deck spaces may be restricted if the Captain feels this is necessary. Severe fog could potentially cause issues with visibility, which could result in a change to the varied route, but fortunately this is rare. Please contact your event coordinator if you have any questions or concerns.
Can I wear heels on board?
Of course! You are welcome to wear whatever you feel comfortable in.
Is your question not answered here?
If you still have questions about any aspect of your charter, please contact a member of our Events Management Team who would be delighted to help you.
Ready to enquire?
Interested in finding out what memories you could create on the River Thames? Our highly experienced and friendly Events Management Team are ready and waiting to help you create a truly special event, so use the button below to enquire or phone us on 020 7357 7751.