Boat shows are the best way to check out the new seasonal offerings before you hit the water this year. As you shop the boat shows in your area, though, what, primarily, should you shop for in a new boat? This guide should help.
First, look around the boat shows near you for a good selection of boat styles that fit your needs. Some want the right pontoon boat to carry more party gear. Others need a speed boat for boat racing that reflects their fast, sleek personalities. Whatever your chosen boat style, though, understanding what you need before you walk into any boat shows is essential.
Once you’ve narrowed things down by style, it’s time to start looking at the general size of the vessel. While vessel styles may actually help you determine the size, with boat styles like speed boats, you’ll have lots of choices. Keep in mind that you need to choose a boat size that fits both the trailer you currently own and your level of experience. Bigger boats take a lot more maneuvering than smaller ones do, and if your last lake boating experience was a dinghy with oars, you may need to start small or at least invest in some boating courses to get the job done right.
Now that you’ve looked at styles and size, your next step is to start choosing the preferences that best fit your needs. Most people look at engine capacity first. The larger the engine, the faster your boat is going to go, and boat shows are a great way to look at the engine technology that is currently available. Talk with dealers about what is new in the world of boat engines, look at demonstrations, and if you’re interested, talk about alternative fuel technologies. After all, gas is getting expensive for every engine, including those you’ll be seeing at the boat shows you attend.
In addition to engine size, you need to consider other boating accessories. While you can do lots of accessorizing after the fact, choosing a model at the boat shows you visit that comes close to meeting your needs may help things out quite a bit. Look at the lights, seat covers, and furniture included to be sure that you’re getting the right boat. If you’re shopping for higher end accessories or boating apparel or you have special boating needs (fishing and so forth) be sure to ask boat show dealers what could be added to their current model to make your boating experience a bit smoother.
Not sure where to find boat shows in your area? Go online. With thousands of boat shows from coast to coast, you’re sure to find one within driving distance. It’s unquestionably the way to get a look at all of the hottest models of the season and help narrow down your boat purchase choices. Moreover, though, you can check out some of the awesome boating products boat makers have created for the market this year. It may just give you the fix you need to make it to the next season.