Selecting the Right Boat for You

Choosing the right boat for you, be it a new boat or a used boat, requires careful consideration and the decisions made should specifically involve those persons who will be getting the prime enjoyment from its purchase, be that one person or the entire family.

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There are several considerations involved in this decision-making, the very first being to acknowledge that any particular boat will be a compromise of alternatives. For example, a hardcore fishing machine or a tournament ski boat will compromise family cruising enjoyment while a pontoon boat or small utility boat will compromise its use in big nasty, open waters. A small cuddy or pocket cruiser could compromise comfortable overnight accommodations for more than two persons, and a heavier, wider boat will compromise trailering ability.

In other words, think carefully of your priorities in a boat and those features you may be willing to compromise and those features that you really want to have and don’t want to compromise. Also, remember that almost any boat of any size and style will accomplish almost any on-water activity be that fishing, cruising, watersports, etc. It’s just that some sizes and models of boats are more adept at more specific activities than others and that’s where advance considerations of your priorities are so important.

Other considerations involve where you primarily want to boat; on unprotected large bodies of water such as the Great Lakes or ocean, on smaller inland lakes, on rivers, in deep or shallow waters, etc. Also consider how many persons your boat needs to accommodate 90% of the time and the age and agility of these persons and in what level of comfort they want or need. Where do you plan to keep your boat both summer and winter? Is trailering ability important? (Trailer ability and the need for it involve a complete discussion in itself.) And finally, budget considerations are of paramount importance both in the initial cost of the boat and in the annual costs of usage, maintenance, and storage. Using your boat is your leisure time and your enjoyment. You cannot enjoy it to the fullest if you are concerned each time you use it with how much it is costing you. Below, has identified four main categories of boating activities and has then outlined the available styles and models of boats for sale that best fit each of the sub-categories with a brief description of the major features and objectives of each. Finally, we have indicated those manufacturers which offer models in each of these sub-categories of styles, choosing those manufacturers which normally have new boats for sale in Canada. Of course, all of this criteria also applies to used boats for sale as well.

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