Most sailing fans ask themselves at a given point whether it’s more convenient to buy or rent a boat. Though we are not able to tackle this question, we thought about the major benefits and drawbacks triggered by either one of these two choices. Hopefully, they’ll help you sort out this dilemma.

sailing man reading tablet computer on boat with modern technology and carefree retired senior successful lifestyle

Think About the Costs

Sailing is a great way to relax at the weekend, but we all know this passion comes at significant costs and not anyone can afford to rent a boat regularly, let alone buy it.
In terms of figures, we are talking about expenses that can amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars if you want to purchase a new boat. Moreover, the correlated expenses incurred by storage, insurance, and maintenance also represent considerable sums, and here we refer to several thousands of dollars per year.
Renting a boat, on the other hand, implies getting far less money out of your pocket. Nonetheless, you’ll be investing in someone else’s business and if you’re an avid sailor, you should consider this aspect carefully. A rental boat is a great option if you set sailing every once in a while, and you don’t want to take upon yourself the maintenance responsibilities implied by a personal boat.
If you think about renting more frequently, there is also the option of joining a boat club. Membership will allow you to enjoy the club’s fleet and the great advantage is that they might have vessels in different locations. This privilege is however pretty expensive, so evaluate your budget and make a relevant comparison between different clubs before joining one of them.

boats in Fuengirola port, Spain
What are Your Flexibility Requirements?

When it comes to your flexibility exigencies, there’s nothing better than owning a boat. Having your own vessel allows you to travel whenever you want wherever you want to. Renting one implies various obstacles incurred by the limited availability providers often face during the busy seasons. So, again, if you plan to spend every weekend on board, it’s better to start looking for a boat you can purchase.

Don’t Forget the Maintenance Issues

Let’s be blunt, if you rent a boat, it’s not your problem to take care of it or cover for any maintenance costs whereas, buying a boat implies the opposite. Frequently, a rental boat doesn’t even require any washing before you turn it over. In other words, it’s a hassle-free experience. Nevertheless, let’s not forget that rental boats are used continuously and that makes them vulnerable. You shouldn’t be surprised if a boat you rented breaks down while you’re out in the open. Unfortunately, this might also amount to additional costs because ‘it happened on your shift’ and the rental company might consider you liable for paying the damage.
While being the sole responsible for your personal boat’s condition might seem comfortable, keep in mind that there are some costs you can’t avoid. Just like an automobile, your boat also needs to be insured and a standard insurance is somewhere around $ 600. Of course, the sum varies according to the type of vessel you own. Other inevitable expenses arise from the storage necessities. If you are not able to keep your boat in your backyard because you lack the space, you’ll need to pay a monthly fee to keep it in a marina.

Sunny pier with sail boats at anchor in Lavrion harbor, Attica, Greece
Last but not the least, just like cars, boats require regular inspection. Besides, if your boat has a malfunction, let me tell you that it won’t be cheap or easy to find replacement parts. All in all, once you purchase a boat, your worries are not over, they’re just beginning. So, if you can’t afford to invest in your vessel constantly, it’s better to opt for a rental boat.

How Committed are You to Sailing?

Finally, the ultimate factor that will help you make up your mind is your true commitment to boating. If you live to sail, no sacrifice is too big to own your own boat, especially if you have enough leisure time to enjoy this activity. There’s no greater pleasure for a sailing connoisseur than taking care of his or her own boat and steer it. If this is your case, try to save some money and purchase your own vessel.

Tropical island and boat - nature background
If sailing is just another one of your passions, buying a boat might not be the wisest decision. Unless this investment is something you can easily afford, you should think twice before purchasing. Also, bear in mind that a boat requires regular check-up and care; it’s not something you just buy and store. So, if you’re not a truly dedicated sailor, renting is probably the best option for you.

Bottom line, it’s up to you to decide whether buying or renting a boat is better for you. We hope we made our point and gave you some food for thought in this post. Until next time, sail safely!