There are a huge number of second hand boats for sale so how did we end up choosing a Beneteau Oceanis 393?
We had a basic search criteria that included:
Must be forgiving for novices to sail.
Less than 12 metres to keep marina fees down.
Of roughly 2000 vintage when build quality and materials were generally of a higher standard.
Depreciation for the most part has already bottomed out.
We wanted an owners model, meaning two decent sized cabins rather than three.
Never chartered would be a bonus as long as it was in regular use.
I did my day skipper course on a 2000 Sun Odyssey 40 which gave me a good idea of what I wanted. Of all the online research I did the 393 kept popping up with good reviews. This is a production boat built to a tight budget carrying all the compromises that that entails but those who own them seem very attached. The interior is very spacious and has been compared to vessels three feet longer, this includes the headroom which is roughly 7' in the saloon.
With roughly 600 393's built there were a lot to choose from. It also meant a huge wealth of online resources for dealing with any maintenance, repairs and other issues -not to mention how to sail one. We decided that if we were going to do this we should do it properly and if we wanted friends to join us on the trip it would have to be comfortable for us and them. So the 393 was the boat for us. We found a 2002 model with two careful owners, British registered and for sale through a British broker in Greece.