About Tom McMahon

My family has been sailing for generations – I learnt as a child from my grandparents, from my parents and from my Aunty and Uncle. It’s true to say that sailing is in my blood.

I achieved yachtmaster status at the tender age of 25 and I am now a certified sailing instructor.

During my lifetime I have sailed all over the Mediterranean and Caribbean and I have taught many people, like yourself, how to sail.

Sailing makes me happy. I love to make people into sailors.

My background

I was brought up in Portsmouth, England close to the English Channel so that my family could continue their sailing addiction.

The first time I went sailing I was seven, and I was with my family sailing from Portsmouth to the Isle of Wight. It didn’t take long for the sea to steal my heart and to realise that I wanted to live on a boat.

Over the next decade I was privileged enough to learn many things that school can’t teach you. Such as planning ahead – we once got stuck on a mud bank when the tide went out.

Sailing also demonstrates the value of teamwork. Teamwork keeps the crew (and the sailing boat) safe and happy. Working together means you get to the pub quicker.

Sailing experience

The skills I have gained are picked up simply from sailing boats. My knowledge in navigation, weather patterns, sails and the waters is extensive.

I’ve always been in awe of moving from one place to another by sea. It is for this reason I found a way to live on a boat.

I’d heard about the superyachts – large, luxurious, professionally crewed motor or sailing yachts. I just needed the qualifications to be able to work on them. So I trained and qualified as a Yachtmaster at UKSA – United Kingdom Sailing Academy.

There after I crossed the Atlantic on a sixty foot sailboat to gain that little bit more experience. It was then I got my first job on a superyacht.

I was living on superyachts using all the skills I gained as a youth and fully managing the boat in shifts (a watch system) so that boat was operational 24 hours a day.

For a time I was ecstatic that I had finally found the perfect job. However superyachts don’t sail as often as I would of liked so I soon became frustrated and got the sack “over nothing” – quote from the captain.

After moving back to land, finding a solid job, going to the pub too much and refusing to sail I became very glum. I needed to get back to sea.

That’s when I realised that I could instruct sailing (yes, the penny dropped in the bar).

After some searching I found a job combining sailing holidays for people who want to learn to sail. So, anxiously, I jetted off to an unknown foreign country called Croatia to start a new job – teaching people to sail.

Then I realised – I had been training for this my whole life!

Sailing in Croatia, Bain

What I can offer you

What I believe is that sea sailing vastly improves people’s lives. The modern world is put on hold in the middle of the ocean; there’s no wifi and all the noise and the stress is cut out.