Time spent by the water allows us to switch our mental state from an overactive ‘red mind’ state into a more contemplative ‘blue mind’ state and that this is vital to our wellbeing. So every yacht charter is a great way to improve your wellness and wellbeing, with an added dose of sunshine and discovering new cultures!

As part of my series about “How To Create A Travel Experience That Keeps People Coming Back For More”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Simon Morgan.

Simon Morgan grew up in Tasmania, Australia, and was taught to sail by his uncle Alan. He soon caught the bug, and started sailing seriously, eventually traveling the world to compete on the Olympic Laser Class circuit.

Hi Simon, can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?

After university, I gained my captain certificates, and headed out to the Whitsunday islands to work as a captain on charter yachts. That’s where I met and fell in love with my wife. I followed her back to London and managed to find a job as a yacht charter broker. That’s where I met Peter, and we realised we had a shared vision for a modern, bespoke approach to creating unforgettable vacations on the water, and took the plunge to strike out on our own and start HELM. This vision of unforgettable holidays, fully tailored to each guest has been our guiding star ever since.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started your career?

We are often put under time pressure when dealing with last minute charters, sometimes with stressful, if humorous consequences.

In the summer of 2021, I took over dealing with a big client for a last-minute charter, so that my business partner Peter could take a day to get married. This particular booking was very complex, due to VAT requirements that saw the start location change less than 24 hours before it was due to start. They had to move to another country altogether.

The long and short of this is that I spent the bulk of Peter’s wedding sat in full morning suit in the back of my car on my laptop!

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

Mistakes are par for the course in a start up, and they are crucial learning experiences. We have made plenty, especially when just starting out — we were two young guys so excited to sell charters and get people on the water that we forgot about some of the important but boring business functions, like accounting, and cashflow modelling.

This caught us a bit short after getting excited about doing lots of bookings in our first January, but not realising we weren’t going to see any revenue from these until the summer. This important function of course underpins the business and all decisions these days

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?

I am very grateful to have a great and complimentary business partner in Peter Harrison-Hill. We each bring different strengths and perspectives to the business, and there’s a lot of trust between us when it comes to making key decisions.

While business partnerships don’t always work about, so far, our relationship over the last 7 years has been fantastic and has allowed us to focus on different areas of the business with complete trust that the other will be doing a good job. This has been vital to our continued success.

As you know, COVID19 changed the world as we know it. Can you share a few examples of how travel and hospitality companies will be adjusting over the next five years to the new ways that consumers will prefer to travel?

The events of recent years have forced us all to look at new, smarter ways of working. It has also made the yacht charter market rethink the road ahead, adjusting to changing real world conditions and customer attitudes.

The travel industry is having to become more flexible and adaptable, with more flexible booking policies, with reduced and/or refundable deposits.

Customers are increasingly discerning, and so we are seeing more people prioritising quality over quantity with their travel choices. In our niche, we are seeing first-hand the growth in luxury yachts and an increase in the number of catamarans on the market, as skippered and crewed charters allow non-traditional yachties to experience the joys of life afloat.

You are a “travel insider”. How would you describe your “perfect vacation experience”?

I’m a bit of a snob when it comes to travel! I like luxury, I hate queues, and I like my beer cold. Plus, everything I do is last minute, which is a tricky combination and makes me a discerning (difficult!) client. But if an experience is properly tailored, with some real thought behind it, it really shows.

My fastidiousness is actually very useful, because I hold every fleet, we work with to the same standards I would expect for my own vacation, which means we can be confident of delivering the very best to every guest.

Travel is not always about escaping, but about connecting. Have you made efforts to cultivate a more wellness driven experience? We’d love to hear about it.

Holidaying on a yacht is an excellent source of relaxation in the fresh air and is about as self-sufficient as it is possible to be as you explore foreign lands.

Yachting is all about being connected to nature, giving you time to relax and reflect in a blue environment. There’s been plenty of research recently around the ‘blue mind’, the meditative state we fall into when near, in, on or under water.

Time spent by the water allows us to switch our mental state from an overactive ‘red mind’ state into a more contemplative ‘blue mind’ state and that this is vital to our wellbeing. So every yacht charter is a great way to improve your wellness and wellbeing, with an added dose of sunshine and discovering new cultures!

Ok super. Here is the main question of our interview. Based on your experience and success, what are the five most important things one should know in order to create a travel experience that keeps bringing people back for more? Please share a story or an example for each.

To us, the two most important components are transparency and value. People often confuse value with price or being cheap. But in reality, value is about the amount of ‘bang’ you get, relevant to the spend. Often, paying a little more can really transform the experience via loads of extra added value. In order to achieve this, you need to be able to trust the company and person you are booking with, and it is absolutely vital they have a strong knowledge of what they are selling.

That’s why we send each of our brokers out to yacht shows and to the destinations to meet the fleet operators and examine their fleets, so we know the boats and areas in granular detail and can help our clients get the absolute maximum.

How can our readers follow you on social media?

I’m not the most active user of social media, but we have a flourishing Instagram account at @helm.yt, where you can find inspiration, itineraries, and news. We’re also on LinkedIn (helm.yt) and Twitter


This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for joining us!


  • Savio P. Clemente

    TEDx Speaker, Media Journalist, Board Certified Wellness Coach, Best-Selling Author & Cancer Survivor

    Savio P. Clemente, TEDx speaker and Stage 3 cancer survivor, infuses transformative insights into every article. His journey battling cancer fuels a mission to empower survivors and industry leaders towards living a truly healthy, wealthy, and wise lifestyle. As a Board-Certified Wellness Coach (NBC-HWC, ACC), Savio guides readers to embrace self-discovery and rewrite narratives by loving their inner stranger, as outlined in his acclaimed TEDx talk: "7 Minutes to Wellness: How to Love Your Inner Stranger." Through his best-selling book and impactful work as a media journalist — covering inspirational stories of resilience and exploring wellness trends — Savio has collaborated with notable celebrities and TV personalities, bringing his insights to diverse audiences and touching countless lives. His philosophy, "to know thyself is to heal thyself," resonates in every piece.