The sun is shining, the holidays have started and you long for the water. An excellent opportunity to go boating. Whether you go for a day or a few weeks, spending time on a boat is fantastic. Still unsure about the boat? Rent or buy? What to look for when renting a boat? Read on quick.
Rent or buy a boat
What is sensible? Buy your own boat? Would you like to rent a boat or boat for one or more days or weeks? What is actually cheaper? I will not give you a ready-made answer to these questions. Everything depends on your situation and your wishes. I would like to list the pros and cons for you.
Advantages if you are going to rent a boat
What are the benefits of renting a boat?
1. No own berth needed
If you buy your own boat, you still need a berth. There is a long waiting list at some ports. Of course, this also entails costs. This can certainly be expensive at the larger ports.
2. Not tied to a fixed sailing area
If your own boat is in a specific marina, you always leave from there. There is therefore a good chance that you will sail the same "circle" over and over again. Or you have to use a boat trailer. Then it is easier for you to choose a different sailing area. If you rent a boat, you can always choose a different sailing area.
3. No worries about boat maintenance
A boat requires a lot of maintenance. Cleaning, sanding, polishing, painting, etc. If the boat has to be treated below the waterline, it must even be hoisted out of the water. The engine requires attention and must be inspected regularly. The boat requires maintenance every season. It actually costs quite a bit per year. If you rent a boat, you don't have to worry about that.
4. First experience for yourself whether your own boat is really something for you
Have you never sailed yourself before? Then it is a certain risk to immediately buy your own boat. If you rent a boat a few times and it feels good, buying may be a later option. By renting different boats you also get a good impression of which type of boat suits you best.
Disadvantages if you are going to rent a boat
However, there are also some disadvantages to renting a boat.
1. You can't go sailing whenever you want
If you have your own boat, you can choose the open sea at any time. If you rent a boat, you still have to deal with the lessor and his agenda. Especially in the high season, many boats are already reserved.
2. The weather is unpredictable
You often rent a boat weeks in advance. You don't know anything about the weather yet. Is the day approaching when you go sailing and let the sun go blank? Then you're out of luck. Is the weather unexpectedly nice and do you want to go sailing? Then you first have to look for a suitable boat.
3. Less chance of a boat that meets all your needs
With your own boat you determine the interior and all the "bells and whistles". You can set it up completely according to your wishes. You also only use your own stuff while showering, eating and relaxing. You also do not have to carry everything with you during every sailing trip. You simply keep your own belongings on board.
Buy or rent a motorboat, sloop or sailboat, which is cheaper?
When are you ultimately more expensive? If you buy a boat or if you rent a boat? A number of factors also play a role here. For example, think of:
- Buying a boat is often quite an investment and you also have to deal with depreciation.
- You pay for the maintenance yourself.
- Additional costs such as berth, insurance and fuel.
- Renting out of season is always cheaper.
- Price also depends on the area where you want to sail.
- How much do you use the boat?
If you read the above points, it will soon become clear: buying a boat is expensive. However, this is debatable. If you have been using the boat for years and if you opt for a maintenance-free model, renting may be more expensive. What is important to you? Freedom? Adventure? Do you like odd jobs? This all plays a part in making the decision.
Emotions and personal preference play a major role
What you ultimately choose is a very personal matter. Ultimately, after weighing the pros and cons, it is best to follow your heart/feeling. Are you going to rent? Then read the tips below.
You want to rent a boat? Helpful tips!
Is it your first time choosing a rental boat? Then prepare yourself well. Have you rented a boat before? Then make your profit with the practical tips below.
1. Little experience? Take a refresher course.
Many rental companies also offer such a short course. You will then know exactly how to moor and what the sailing rules were like.
2. Ask the landlord about bridges and locks in the area
The landlord knows all the ins and outs, so make your profit with that. This saves a lot of hassle while sailing.
3. Are there additional costs?
This includes port fees, fuel, supplies and final cleaning.
4. Check the rental boat
Before you can safely sail, check the rental boat. What do you pay attention to?
- Where is the fuel cap? How many liters of fuel are there? What fuel do you fill up if necessary?
- Is the lighting OK? Stern, board, anchor and top light?
- Ask about the height and draft of the boat. Handy to know at shallows and bridges.
- How do you charge the battery?
- Do you know where to find the first aid kit and the fire extinguisher?
- How much water is there? Where is the fuel cap? Is the water still fresh?
- Does the screw turn left or right?
- Check engine oil level.
- Check cooling water.
- View the weather forecast.
- Bring up-to-date water maps with you.
5. Do you need a boating license?
You can sail without a license on all boats that are shorter than 15 meters and that sail less than 20 km per hour. In all other cases you will need such proof. There is an exception on a number of rivers. If you are going to sail there and you have a smaller boat, you must still have a sailing license.
6. Which boat do you rent?
If you are going for the first time, choose a compact boat. Also check in advance whether the boat sails easily and go for a low vertical clearance. If you are sailing with a maximum of 4 people, rent a boat with a maximum length of 10 meters. If more than 4 people are accompanying you, it is nice to opt for 2 cabins. If you take 3 cabins, the boat is immediately longer. This is of course possible if you have experience with sailing.
7. Choose a boat with a bow thruster
A bow thruster is ideal during mooring. Especially if you don't have much experience yet, this is a nice tool. Even when you have to wait for a bridge and there is a strong crosswind, you will benefit greatly from the bow thruster.
8. Be aware of other traffic on the water
You probably know exactly what the rules are when you sit in the car. Priority rules and traffic signs are a piece of cake for you. But what about on the water? A few points of attention:
- Look back regularly.
- Always give way to ferries, passenger boats, larger vessels, etc.
- Never suddenly change direction.
- Read the sailing rules carefully in advance.
Sailing can be learned; practice makes perfect
Sailing gives a wonderful feeling of freedom. However, it can be a little stressful the first time. Anyone can learn to sail. Some skills are required. Most people don't do it right the first time. What do you pay particular attention to?
- Always stay out of the blind spot of large cargo ships. This is, in front of the bow, sometimes about 350 meters. Watch your course and your speed and keep this in mind. Difficult to estimate? I have a handy trick: as long as you see the skipper in his wheelhouse, he sees you too!
- Give space to large ships. They cannot stop quickly and maneuvering is not easy for them either. They are big and heavy.
- Watch out for waves and suction from large ships.
- Always sail to the right as much as possible.
- Join the queue at locks and bridges. Don't push ahead. Use the waiting dock.
- Do not use alcohol while sailing.
- Take a sailing course.
Sailing course is recommended
Even though a boating license is often not necessary, a sailing course is definitely recommended. You feel much safer and it often benefits other traffic on the water. Ultimately, this also increases your own sailing pleasure. Many water sports clubs and sailing schools offer these courses.
What boat types are there
Are you sure you are going to rent a boat? Will it be a sloop? Or a sailboat? There are many different boat types. So a lot to choose from. The most common boats are:
- cabin sailing yachts; touring yachts, classics, racing yachts and motorsailers.
- open motor boats; sloops, fast motor boats and RIBs.
- cabin motor yachts; classics, fast motor yachts and motor cruisers.
- Multihulls; Catamaran trimaran.
- open sailboats; keelboats and dinghies.
Rent a sloop
A sloop is ideal for a day of sailing. If you want to sail for several days, renting a motorboat is a good option.
Rent a sailboat
Renting a sailboat is possible for one, but also for several days. Sailboats are available for rent in all shapes and sizes. What is important when you rent a sailboat?
- You can rent a sailboat up to 15 meters long without a license. But don't sail faster than 20 kilometers per hour.
- Some sailing experience is highly recommended.
- Sometimes a certain level is required, but that differs per tenant.
- Still sailing for the first time? Then bring crew with experience!
Children on the boat
Are you looking for a suitable boat to rent? Are children coming along? Then definitely keep that in mind. What are points of attention when it comes to young children?
- Children like plenty of room to move. So do not take a boat that is too small.
- Moor in child-friendly marinas. You will certainly enjoy yourself in the evening, but is there something for the children to do? That's just as nice for everyone.
- Put the children on a life jacket. Even if they already have their swimming certificate.
- Even if you have quite a bit of space on the rented boat, children can get bored quickly. It is nice to take a dinghy with you. The children get in and are pulled by the big boat. And whether they will enjoy!
- Apply regularly and move for a while.
- Sometimes let them sail a little bit too. Small children can hold the helm for a while on your lap.
- Give them the sailing route and let them map out the way.
Rent a boat abroad
Renting a boat abroad has its advantages. The chance of good weather is often high. Greece and Croatia are especially popular. What do you pay attention to when you opt for boat rental abroad?
- Preferably rent from a Dutch organization.
- Make sure that the organization is affiliated with one of the guarantee funds.
- Look closely at the quality of the boat. Leaflets can sometimes promise a lot and pictures can be very deceiving.
- What about insurance?
- What do you pay yourself in the event of damage?
- Prepare well for the destination.
Insurance when renting a boat
Better shy with than shy. Which insurance policies can you take out?
- Liability insurance; you probably already have it, otherwise it is useful to close it. In principle, you are then protected against damage that you accidentally cause to others. However, slightly different rules apply on the water. You are only insured for damage that you cause to another when you sail in a canoe, rowing boat or sailing boat.
- landlord insurance; In view of the above story, it is important that the landlord is properly insured. If it has boat insurance or pleasure boat insurance, it will cover the damage that you may cause to another boat.
- Casco insurance; with this insurance you are protected if you cause damage to the rented boat. Did you accidentally hit the shore during mooring? Damage to the paint? Then you can fall back on the hull insurance. Sometimes these accidents are also covered by the liability insurance.
Book a rental boat on time
Boating is popular. Therefore rent a boat on time. Usually you can rent per week, per several weeks, per weekend and per midweek. Pay close attention to the times used. Especially when good weather is forecast, the reservations go quickly. Don't wait too long and enjoy your boating holiday!