(BPT) – Looking for ways to escape wintertime blues? Experience the boat life in the middle of winter and start planning for warmer days ahead. Beginning in January, boat shows across the country offer the hottest deals around with special pricing and incentives on new boat models and marine accessories – a major draw for the estimated 85 million Americans who take to the water each year, according to the National Marine Manufacturers Association. For those ready to plan their summer adventures on the water, boat shows are the best place to start.
Whether you are interested in fishing, cruising, water sports or personal watercraft, boat shows provide the unique opportunity to browse and board hundreds of boats in one place while taking advantage of once-a-year pricing. Plus, these premier boating events offer a glimpse at the latest boating technologies and trends, as well as educational opportunities, giving attendees a taste of the boating lifestyle during the offseason with nautical fun for any age and experience level.
Discover Boating, a one-stop destination for all things boating whether you are a current boat owner or just getting your feet wet, helps people navigate ways to get on the water, providing an array of resources to get started.
Check out these expert tips from Discover Boating to get the most out of your visit and go to the Discover Boating Boat Show Calendar to find a show near you:
1. Browse online before cruising to a boat show.
Before visiting a boat show, research new boat models and brands based on your budget and lifestyle through Discover Boating’s Boat Finder tool. Boat Finder makes it easy to find your match online, which can be found exclusively at any Discover Boating boat show. To access the tool, visit your local Discover Boating boat show’s website and click on the Boat Finder button.
2. Shop the show floor.
Unlike auto shows, boat shows are the place to buy. You can shop all the region’s dealers under one roof and purchase your dream boat right from the show floor. It’s the perfect time to order a new boat to ensure it arrives ready to launch in the spring.
3. Learn the ropes.
Find out more about the boating essentials and take advantage of onsite training and education with tips, tricks, and DIY advice for first-time boaters and seasoned pros alike. Most boat shows offer interactive activities for the whole family from knot-tying and boating 101 seminars to remote-control docking ponds and more.
4. Look for the seal of approval.
When shopping for a boat at a show, online or at a dealership, always check to make sure it is NMMA Certified. NMMA Certified boats and trailers have been independently inspected to ensure they meet strict industry standards for safety and construction, as well as all federal regulations. Look for the NMMA Certified sticker near the helm of a boat.
Find a boat show near you by visiting DiscoverBoating.com, where you’ll also find a list of NMMA Certified boat manufacturers, a Safety Basics Video Series, Presented with Progressive® Insurance, a boat loan calculator to estimate monthly payments, a dealer finder to connect with local boat dealerships, plus more interactive tools and resources to help you get started in boating.