How to Rent a Boat: The Simple Guide

So you decided you want to rent a boat, but maybe haven’t done it before?

We’re here to help!

Sometimes the world of boating and sailing could feel a bit mysterious and reserved for sophisticated looking folks who know what they are doing and have been sailing boats for generations, but the good news is that getting on a boat and sailing is now becoming easier than ever. Even sailing experience is optional!

Here are the essentials that you need to know to rent out a boat:

1. Where do you want to sail

The first step is making a decision about where you want to sail. It really depends on whether you have a set vision of where you’d like to go.

Have you already made your mind up based on friend’s recommendations, a movie scene from a harbor city that really struck you, or based on some searches you’ve done online?

Or perhaps you want to rent a boat in general and location can come second?

In any case, be sure you have an idea of where you want to sail and this will already help you narrow down your search.

2. Who will come along with you?

This is a good one. It’s really important to make sure that the people (person) traveling with you has the same expectations.

Make sure they have the same adventerous and wanderlusty tendencies that you possess. If not, you may try to convince them first. Based on what your mutual interests are, you can decide what you’d like to do and for how long.

3. Boat-sharing or renting private?

Did you know that you need not afford a full boat to be able to rent it? All you need is one other person. You have to decide if you can round up at least 6–8 people to commit to renting a boat together and actually pay upfront to reserve it.

The good news is -if you don’t have enough people (6–8) to rent a full boat, Boatide allows you to combine groups with other like-minded travelers so that you all go together on the trip. Proper sailor lifestyle!

4. How long?

This one is kind of tied to the previous point. Are you planning a day sail for 2–3 hours or a 7-day voyage? Both have their perks.

For example, a 2–3 hour sail means you have the rest of the day to explore the harbor city you are visiting on foot and gives you the option of staying in a hotel or airbnb at the end of the night.

A 7-day Voyage (which we love) is a full immersion experience where you live the sailor’s life, learning the ropes, picking up some lingo, and even staying in luxury cabins overnight. Don’t worry, you will still be able to arrange with your Captain to visit the shore every couple of hours.

While you have the fortune of doing that, I doubt crew members could have similar convos with Captain back in the 1800s! Which brings me to my next point…

5. Captain included or not?

That’s probably the easiest one to decide among yourselves. Even though some places may let you have your way, do not, under any circumstance, attempt to sail a boat without having someone who has proper sailing experience.

If you don’t have a Captain among your group, Boatide can hook you up (no pun intended).

Our captains are also local which is handy when you’re sailing somewhere for the first time and you’re looking to make the most of your trip — 2 birds with one stone!

Knowing what to ask yourself before you rent a boat is key. The next step is knowing what to pack.

Here’s a fun guide that will get you and your traveling buddy excited (and educated) about packing for a boat trip.

Or plan now (for free) here

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