Go Boating Today
No boat? No problem. Round up your crew, take the helm and head out on a voyage of boating discovery. Rentals and charters let you enjoy a wide variety of boating adventures—from fishing to cruising to sailing or watersports—without owning a boat. They’re a great way to try different boat types if you’re thinking about buying a boat or trading up to a bigger model.
Not quite ready to fully commit to boat ownership? Alternatives to boat ownership, like boat rentals, boat clubs, peer-to-peer boat sharing and charters are great options for prospective boat buyers to “test the waters,” enjoying the opportunity to try various types of boats or even specific brands and models before committing to their own boat purchase and the associated costs.
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Like automobile rental operations, boat rental locations are found in nearly all popular boating destinations, and give consumers access to a boat by the hour, day, week or even month. Renters typically pay for the rental period as well as the gas they consume. Renting is a great way to take out a boat occasionally, but may not be the best alternative for those who plan to boat more frequently as costs can accumulate rather quickly.
Use our Go Boating Today tool (above) to find rentals in your area.
Frequent renters may be better served by a boat “club.” Rather than individual rentals, boat club members pay an initial membership fee then monthly or annual “dues” to be a part of a club that owns and maintains a variety of boats. When a club member wants to go boating, they check the club’s availability, reserve a boat for a designated time period, then show up at the dock and go.
Interested to learn more? Watch as one family shares their experience as they join their local boat club...
Like a traditional boat rental, the member is responsible for the gasoline they burn during the rental period. The club, however, maintains the fleet, ensures boats remain in good condition, and provides insurance. Many clubs also offer reciprocal memberships with other clubs outside a boater’s local area, meaning members also have access to boats on vacation or when interested in exploring new waterways.
Peer-to-Peer Boat Sharing
A third alternative to ownership, peer-to-peer boat sharing, is rapidly increasing in popularity. Peer-to-peer boat sharing is little different than peer-to-peer house, apartment or car sharing popularized by Internet-based sites like Airbnb and Turo. Boat owners enjoy the ability to make their boats available to their “peers” for rental when not in use, while the renter has a wider variety of vessels at their disposal than available through the typical boat club or charter provider and doesn’t pay any monthly membership fees.
Like Airbnb and Turo, the key to the process is a company that acts as the middleman and puts interested owners and renters in touch. In the boating world, each peer-to-peer boating sharing company has assembled a list of owners willing to rent everything from a simple inflatable to a luxury yacht in numerous regions across the world. Then, the companies take a percentage of the rental as fee for their services.