The most common queries asked at our stand at the Poole Boat Show – Questions from new and aspiring boaters…..
Poole Boat Show Queries
Hi and thanks for visiting our blog. In this blog we look at a few questions that were raised by our visitors at the Poole Boat Show. We love helping people to get afloat for the first time & we aim to provide info to assist. We had a fabulous time at the show last weekend. There were lots of visitors to our stand and taking up our free powerboat taster trips out in the RIB.
The show was brilliantly organised and inspired so many people to think about boating. It lead to people considering whether boating was something they could take up. Over the coming weeks we hope to spend more time looking at each of these topics. Let us know what is the most pressing boating question for you.
Should I buy a boat – if I don’t buy how can I get afloat?
So the answer to this will be different for everyone. For some the exhilaration of boat ownership leads to a sense of freedom on the seas. For others, the costs or time implications are prohibitive. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t get afloat. Options include hiring or volunteering with organisations. There are Sea Scouts Volunteers , the Maritime Volunteer Service or sailing clubs and events. If you’re looking to buy then questions arise over: where to buy – new or ‘new to you’, private seller or broker, what to buy and how much to pay. You then move into questions over storage and maintenance. We’ll look at these topics over the next few blogs.
I’ve agreed to buy a boat or seen the boat I’m buying what training should I think about?
This will depend on any previous experience, your own learning style and any insurance requirements. In the UK there is no requirement to have formal qualifications to boating. (Although there is for the VHF radio on board – that’s for another day). However, you may find your insurance company asks for a qualification to show competence. If you’re no previous experience afloat then training certainly seems a good idea particularly if you want friends and family to come boating with you again!
Many of those starting boating in the UK undertake a RYA course. This may be the Helmsman and Dayskipper for Motor Cruisers or the RYA Powerboat Level 2 for Powerboats and RIBs. You may prefer to undertake bespoke training focussing on the areas that particularly affect your boating. It makes sense to undertake the training on your own boat if possible. This way you learn the ‘quirks’ of your boat. The Instructor can also give tips and hints that are specific to your location.
I’m thinking of hiring or not sure what boat to buy – can I undertake training?
In fact, our clients are evenly split between those who train on our boats and those on their own boats. If you’re not sure what to buy then undertaking a course first will help focus your mind. You can consider what is important to you and you can get advice from your Instructor. If you’re thinking of hiring then make sure you undertake a qualification that meets the requirements you’ll need . Often if you’re hiring abroad you’ll require an International Certificate of Competence. This is a relatively easy process for most people after their RYA course but make sure the course you choose qualifies. If in doubt contact the RYA about the International Certificate of Competence or ask a training centre like ourselves.
Where do people keep their boats round the Dorset Coast?
There are lots of options for boat storage ranging from keeping it on the land in your drive, on a trailer in a yard or on a drystack in a marina or keeping it afloat on a swing mooring or on a pontoon.
Can my youngsters be involved in training?
Absolutely -one of the best things about boating is that it’s a family friendly activity. Make sure your training provider is comfortable with training youngsters. Get them involved at whatever level is appropriate for their age and maturity.
Let us know which is the most pressing question for you and we’ll try to get it answered for you in the next blog post. Thanks for reading, new to this blogging lark but hoping we can start a conversation finding out from our readers what topics they want covering and developing our own style of blog so please stick with us!