How to Choose a Boat

How To Choose A Boat

Buying a boat can be a significant investment of time and money. However, when you choose the right one, it will certainly be worth it. But how can you tell which boat is right for you? When you choose a boat, there are several things that you need to think about. Like cars, there are many different varieties of boats available.

Boats are made from different materials, have different hull designs and are ultimately suited to different applications. Marine conditions vary considerably and it is important that your boat suits your needs. That is why we have developed a brief overview of what you need to consider when choosing a boat.

Do you want a fibreglass boat or an aluminium boat?

If you have already looked at a few different boats, you might have noticed that they are mostly fibreglass or aluminium. That is because these are the two most common materials from which recreational boats are made. Both aluminium and fibreglass have their own distinct advantages, which means they suit specific purposes. Before choosing one or the other, it is a good idea to get familiar with their differences.

The most salient of these is weight. Generally, fibreglass boats are far heavier than alloy boats. This means that they can be more comfortable in rough marine conditions. However, fibreglass is also more brittle. This means it is not as robust as aluminium. If you plan on boating in shallow estuarine environments, where there is a heightened risk of hitting rocks or logs, then aluminium is probably more suitable. Of course, there are still aluminium boats suitable for offshore use and vice versa, so have a look around.

Important things to take into account

There are a few practical things that you should consider when you choose a boat. It is easy to get caught up in the excitement of buying a boat and overlook the more mechanical aspects of boat ownership.

#1 Can your car tow a boat?

The weight of a boat is one thing that many people don’t consider until it’s too late. Remember, your boat has to get to and from the boat ramp. So if you choose a boat that is very large and heavy, you will need to have a powerful car that can tow it. For large offshore boats, this probably means you will need a four-wheel-drive vehicle of some description. However this depends on the manufacturer’s specifications, so do some research and find out the towing capacity of your car before making any decisions.

#2 What activities will you use your boat for?

If you see yourself primarily as a fisherman, you should choose a boat that reflects this. For example, you should look at boats with spacious decks, rod holders and good shade. Alternatively, if you prefer water sports, you will need a fast and powerful boat that can tow skiers or tubes with ease. You may even want a boat with specialised tow points – although such finer details are a matter of personal preference.

#3 Is your boat likely to see a lot of use?

Getting your boat out on the water requires spare time. In a lot of cases, you will have to set aside anywhere from a few hours to an entire day to enjoy your time on the water. Many boat owners lead busy lives and this can see their boats out of action for weeks on end. If this is likely to be you, then you might want to consider getting a low maintenance boat. Another great option is choosing a smaller boat that is easy to get on the water at short notice. Smaller, lighter boats are easier to launch and retrieve on your own. Consequently, you may not be able to go as far offshore, but you stand a greater chance of using your boat more frequently.

Need more advice in choosing a boat? Contact the experts at Holt Marine today on (07) 3353 1928.


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