What Your Briefing Will Cover

Welcome aboard...

We have a deep-seated need to ensure that every guest has a safe and enjoyable experience on our houseboats, and a comprehensive briefing is a part of delivering this service. This briefing covers important topics such as driving and anchoring, navigation, emergencies, electrical use, toilet and water usage, kitchen and appliances, tender and tinny motors, safety and equipment.

Some may not know, that a boating licence or even boating experience is not needed to hire a houseboat.  Even for the most advanced or experienced boaties, the briefing is a compulsory procedure that is required under TfNSW and AMSA regulations.  The briefing is a great opportunity to familiarise yourself with your floating holiday home and ask as many questions as you need to confidently cruise the beautiful waterways of the Tweed River.

An example of what will be covered:

Driving and anchoring

  • You will be given practical driving instructions which will include maneuvering, travel speed and safety tips.
  • You will also be shown how to use the winch, given advice on finding a suitable anchorage point, the appropriate amount of anchor chain to let out and how to ensure you are anchored securely.


  • This is one of the most important jobs during your holiday! To avoid a possible 36 hr sandbank stay, we will give you clear navigational instructions using our river charts and maps.  Don’t worry, the Tweed River is a simple river to navigate, with only a few tricky points to look out for. 
  • Please watch our Navigational Video prior and during your holiday to ensure you are confident navigating the waterways.


  • How to act in case of emergency; including life ring, life jacket and fire extinguisher locations.
  • What to do if you come in contact with a sandbank and other obstacles.
  • A full list of emergency numbers will be provided to you including a 24/7 help number.
  • The boss always says…it’s not the problem, its how you deal with it!  The quicker we know about a situation to quicker we can assist.

Electrical Use Onboard

  • Where power points are located, what you can and cannot run on your houseboat. Our houseboats have been solar powered for the past 30yrs!  Meaning your power supply receives a trickle of charge whenever the sun is hitting the panels.

Kitchen and Appliances

  • How to use the stove/oven, BBQ, hot water system and fridge.

Toilet usage

  • This is a big one! You can swim in the clean water of the Tweed knowing the black water or sewage is contained in tanks which are pumped out on your return.

Water usage

  • If you rely on tanks at home, you know the drill here. You carry all your fresh water with you.  If you use all the water in the tanks, the only place to refill is back at the marina.  Once you run out, you’ll be bathing in the river (at an additional cost)!

Tender and Tinny Motor

  • How to start the motor, fuel tap, refilling of fuel, securing the tender so you don’t have a drift away.
  • NSW life jacket regulations while using the tender.

Safety and Safety Equipment

  • Such as the location of life jackets, life rings, first aid kits and weather conditions.

Additionally, we operate a piloting system to safely navigate you in and out of the Tweed Marine precinct. Once outside the restricted marina area, our captain will pass the wheel to you, allowing you to familiarise yourself with manoeuvring the vessel. Once you feel confident in your driving skills, our team member will disembark, and you can continue your journey along the Tweed River.

Throughout your stay, we are just a phone call away, ready to assist you in any way we can. Our 30 years of experience in houseboating ensures that you are in capable and knowledgeable hands. So, ready yourself for an incredible adventure aboard one of our houseboats, knowing that we have prepared you thoroughly through our comprehensive briefing.

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