How long do we have on Whitehaven Beach?Approximately 2-2 ½ hours
Can I smoke on board?Non-smoking vessel, similar to any public transport.
How many people does the boat take?Our maximum amount of guests is 47. We usually carry up to 40 passengers.
Do I have to wear a lyra (stinger) suit?Whitehaven Xpress requires our passengers to wear a lycra stinger suit whenever they are in the water during “stinger season” (this is when there are stinger nets at the beaches too). Exceptions to this requirement can be made at the discretion of the crew on the day of your journey, but it’s just a good idea to protect both yourselves (from stings!) and to protect the reef from things like sunscreen that can be on your skin. While snorkeling outside of this season, ie the winter months we offer winter suits which are a fleecy lined lycra suit for your enjoyment, however they are not mandatory.
How long does it take to do the bush walk to Hill Inlet?The complete trip is approx. 30-40 minutes approx. 800 metres each way.
How long do we snorkel for?It is dependent on each individuals fitness, an average is approx. 30 minutes.
Do I need to book in advance?It really depends on the time of year. During peak periods, like school holidays, Whitehaven Xpress can book out up to 5 days in advance. If you are concerned about the weather being unfavourable on your selected date, you can change or cancel your booking when you arrive at your accommodation if we have space.
I am not a very good swimmer, can I snorkel?Our crew are experts at helping people learn to snorkel but to enjoy snorkelling and be safe we strongly recommend that you should be able to swim and have a reasonably good level of fitness. Snorkelling can be a strenuous activity and the weather also plays a big role in this. For example, if it is calm, then snorkelling is easy, but if the wind is over 20 knots, combined with a highest tide in the middle of the day, and you are not very confident in the water, then snorkelling may not be easy for you. If you think you may not be able to manage snorkelling, or you can’t swim at all, then the best option our glass bottom boat.
I wear glasses, do you have corrective masks?No we don’t, however they are available for hire from the marina, before we depart. If you wear contact lenses it is possible to wear contact lenses under your normal mask whilst snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef. Please make sure that you let us know at the time of booking or alert the bus driver and we’ll point you in the right direction.
Will we see whales?Hopefully! During the months of July to September migrating Humpback and Pilot whales are often seen in the Whitsundays. This is considered a bonus as we do not promote ourselves as a whale watching tour.
Should I bring an underwater camera?If you have your own digital camera with a housing you may bring it along to capture your memories of the Whitsundays. Whitehaven Xpress does hire GoPro underwater cameras for $30 per day, please ask crew or reserve one at time of booking.
Do you ever cancel due to bad weather?If Whitehaven Xpress decides that conditions in the Whitsundays are unsafe due to a combination of exceptionally strong winds or gales or high tides against Northerly winds, we will cancel the tour. In this likelihood, Whitehaven Xpress will issue a full refund to any passengers.
Will I get sick on a smaller boat?Hmmm… this is a common question! And a tough one to answer. Whitehaven Xpress is a Precision hull, similar to a West coaster, she is 15 meters long, and very “beamy”. She was commissioned for the waters between Lindeman Island & Hamilton Island and for Lindeman Island to the Great Barrier Reef, which hold bigger seas than up here at the Northern end of the Whitsunday Passage. These boats are designed to work off the continental shelf in Western Australia where 5 meter seas are common. Steve Irwin’s boat “Croc One” was one. If you are concerned about the possibility of seasickness, preventative medication Travacalm can be requested on board Whitehaven Xpress. Where possible we recommend that guests pre-purchase preventative seasickness medication from a pharmacy (drug store). Remember seasickness medication is a preventative, not a cure! If you are unsure as to how you travel on boats, we advise you to take medication well ahead of your departure at 9am
Can I bring my own alcohol onto Whitehaven Xpress?Whitehaven Xpress is a fully licensed vessel with her own alcohol facilities onboard and like any bar it's illegal for you to Bring Your Own. Sorry! But don't despair, she's well stocked at all times so you'll never go thirsty.
What should I bring for my Whitehaven Xpress trip?Swimwear and towel – of course!
A Light jacket/sweater for cool or windy days.
Don't forget your sun protective clothing, hat and sunscreen lotion!
Your camera & a sense of fun!