Frequently Asked Questions
CANSail refers to Canada’s updated sailor training standards. CANSail Dinghy is Sail Canada’s dinghy program for clubs to deliver across Canada. CANSail is a leading sail training initiative to foster performance in sailing and life long participation in the sport.
CANSail programming means lots of time on the water in a safe, fun and active learning environment, with relatively less time spent in a classroom. Sailors learn the skills and enter into fun and challenging experiences suited to their age and stage of development. The programming is designed to get – and keep – sailors excited about sailing for life! The six CANSail levels promote progressive training of core dinghy sailing skills.
Clicking on a question from the list below will take you directly to the corresponding section.
What kind of boats do students train in?
The club owns a large fleet of two-handed boats, comprising C420’s, RS Fevas, and Optimists.
Our adult courses are conducted in C420s, which are spacious and stable. We have two sizes of sails, to ensure the best experience; no matter skill, comfort level, or conditions.
Our youth courses are run into Optimists and RS Fevas. The Optimist is one of the world's largest youth sailing classes. It is an extremely versatile and tune-able boat. Meaning our instructors are able to setup/tune the boats to best suit the sailor and conditions.
The RS Feva is one of the fastest growing international youth sailing fleets. We have two sizes of sail for our RS Fevas, to accommodate a wide range of sailor sizes, skill, and suitable weather conditions. Both boats are excellently suited to both new and experienced youth sailors.
At what age do you start sailors?
We typically start sailors at 7 years old. We find this to be a good age based on average size, strength, and maturity.
We want the first sailing experience to be a positive one. If it isn't, it will be years before some return to sailing, if they even do at all.
What do participants need to bring?
Every sailor will need to bring a lifejacket (Personal Flotation Device) that fits, clothing that can get wet, sun protection, and their own food/water. Students should be comfortable in the water and be able to swim. Detailed information is sent out roughly a week before the start of the course, and is also available here
What time do your courses run?
Summer camps run from 10 am to 3:30 pm, Monday to Friday.
Our adult lessons run from 6 pm to 9 pm.
We sometimes make schedule changes due to holidays (Canada Day, BC Day, etc). We will communicate any changes as early as possible, if not already noted.
What if I miss a class?
For our adult evening classes, our instructors are usually able to arrange a make-up class within +/- a week. That being said; we cannot guarantee make-up classes, and their scheduling and feasibility is at the discreation of our instructors.
Please note: We are not able to offer make-up classes for daycamps or Wetfeet.
What happens at Sailing Camp?
All of our sailing camps are coached by Sail Canada trained and certified instructors, who teach and support students from small, motorized RHIBs. We utilize a very low instructor to student ratio, to ensure the best instruction and a safe, engaging experience.
Depending on the weather and tides, our instructors can take their sailors all over Boundary Bay. Often we'll stick close to shore, but we try to pace our lessons and distance to the class. Students will learn how to steer their boats, launch and land, and have lots of time for games and activities throughout their time at SSC.
Highlights include exploring the sandbars (tide permitting), an adventure sail, capsize practice (optional, but most sailors love it!), and more!
What is your cancellation policy?
• 100% refund less a $25 administration fee
if cancellation is received at least 10 days
prior to the start of the class.
• 50% refund if cancellation is received up to
3 days prior to the start of the class.
• There will be no refund given for
cancellations 3 days or less prior to
the start of class, or once classes have
• Exceptions can be made due to illness or injury with supporting documentation.
The Surrey Sailing Club is sometimes forced to cancel courses due to insufficient enrolment or other reasons. If this occurs, you will be notified and have the option of a full refund, or a spot in another course at SSC.
What if the course that I want to register for is full?
Some of our courses can fill up quickly! All of our programs have a waitlist available for no charge. The waitlist goes by the order in which people added their names to it. If someone drops out before, or in the first 1-2 sessions after a course starts, we'll go to the waitlist to try to fill the spot.
Additionally, if we decide to add new courses or open additional spots, we'll contact the people on the waitlist(s) first.
What if my child wants to be in the same boat as a friend?
Not a problem! In fact, it can often make it a more enjoyable experience for the sailors. It's something that we're generally very willing and happy to accommodate, whenever possible. Sailors wishing to be paired together must be registered in the same class. Conversely, if siblings don't want to sail together, we're generally able to accommodate that as well.
Tell me about this whole racing thing.
Absolutely! Sailboat racing is a sport unlike any other. We are happy to offer three different racing programs at the club. More information on each can be found at the hyperlinks below:
Additionally, there are multiple very active racing circuits in BC, as well as the rest of the PNW.
Do you offer any discounts on lessons?
We offer private lessons at a 25% discounted rate of $30/hr to those who have taken regular (group) lessons with us during 2020.
We offer private lessons to SSC members, in club boats or your own, at a 50% discounted rate of $20/hr
Additionally, we have a number of quantity discounts available if you don't qualify for either of the above.
For more information on private lessons, click here
What if my question isn't on this list?
Don't see your question on this page? Contact us by clicking here