The Japanese Friendship Regatta programme is now in its 22nd year and forms a unique offering to our NZIODA members. Each year three NZIODA Optimist open fleet sailors who are not in a travelling or development team are eligible by invitation only to participate in the International Friendship Regatta in Japan.
The Japan Friendship Team is convened by invitation between members of the New Zealand sailing community and the Japan Junior Yacht Club Union.
The sailors must travel with a parent, are provided boats. However, they must find their own accommodation at the venue.
This is an international regatta with several other junior classes competing and the emphasis is on cultural exchange. Our Japanese hosts have shown a long and outstanding tradition of hospitality to our sailors through this connection and the racing and supporting events are highly organised.
The sailors are rewarded with a truly amazing cultural experience, gift exchanges, and sight-seeing. Sailors are required to make a trip presentation to the NZ convening panel upon their return.
The purpose of this programme includes:
- International travel experience for Open Fleet Sailors
- Cultural exchange with sailors of other Pacific rim Nations (e.g China, Japan, Russia, Singapore, Thailand, Australia.)
- Learning to manage charter boat set-up
Successful applicants will be responsible for flights to and from Japan, visas, travel insurance, accommodation and any coaching fees. Ask any past NZIODA exchange families and they will all agree this is one of the highlights of your time in the junior fleet.
2024 Regatta Details
Provisionally fly out Monday tbc July and return Monday tbc July, 2023. Regatta is Friday tbc to Sunday tbc July (3 days).
Timings are very tight from invitation being sent by NZIODA to your sailor and us liaising with Japan. It is important that if you think your sailor may be eligible to think ahead about acceptance. In previous years sailors and their families have undertaken a few days sight seeing before attending the event.
The Friendship Regatta is held annually in a different city. In July 2023 it was held at the Wakayama Sailing Centre near Osaka. The 2024 venue is still tbc.
By invitation only. Invite will be sent to NZIODA in April and we will contact sailor/parent directly. This team will leave in July.
Three (3) current financial members of NZIODA
One (1) Yachting New Zealand Qualified Sailing Coach with current NZIODA endorsement can be arranged if required. However, there is no pre-requisite that a coach should travel.
Team Manager to be selected by all parents attending. If you are interested in this role then please familiarise yourself with our wealth of resources on being a Team Manager.
Approx $10,000+ per sailor + parent cost (includes share payment of coaches airfare & expenses if required).
Travel/Accommodation & Regatta Costs
How to get to Japan? There are direct flights from Auckland. The regatta always finishes on a Sunday so earliest to depart would be on the Monday.
Accommodation (B&B) for sailors is provided including a daily lunch box for the length of the regatta (note that accommodation is NOT provided leading up to the regatta). Also the entry fee and the Fee for International Friendship Party is borne by the organising authority, Japan Junior Yacht Club Union.
Parents will need to pay for their own accommodation and food costs. However, in previous years the organising authority have arranged accommodation for parents at the same hotel as the sailors.
What equipment do I need to take?
Sailors must take their sails with them, all other equipment is provided. However, if you wish to take any of your own equipment you can do so.
Example of paperwork
Want to find out what happened at the 2023 event then read the NZ Team Managers report here.
NZIODA Admin Fee for 2024
$400 each per sailor