SHOW ME THE MONEY, HONEY!
Are there effective ways to benefit from boat ownership? Can you generate a second income stream from owning a boat? Is it a lucrative endeavour? Are there pitfalls? Well, yes to all the above would be the easy answer, and there are many effective ways to make extra money when owning a boat, but … don’t give up your day job just yet!
If you’re an avid angler with the necessary equipment and a boat, getting the necessary licenses is the first step to your success. People love to go cruising, yet many people don’t enjoy the overloaded trips that are commonly on offer. Offering exclusive, small cruise packages will attract customers and is a lot easier for the operator to manage. Remember – most charter operators have second jobs to subsidise their incomes, so don’t chuck in the whole jamboree and sail off into the sunset without some form of income. You can even do fly fishing at sea these days! Nothing is impossible and your clients can either benefit from taking home the fish they catch or returning them to the sea in a catch and release format. It’s the catching that’s the fun!
Sunset cruises are a great way to generate an income from your boat, particularly in South Africa where we have favourable weather conditions throughout the year. Intimate wedding cruises are always a hit and there is always someone getting married. Be prepared to meet the requests of those cruising, as there will be curve balls. Always check the necessary licenses and insurances required before you jump in at the deep end.
ECO-TOURS ARE THE RAGE
Eco tours are becoming more and more popular as the public begins to understand the importance of conserving our waterways and the fish that inhabit them. Whale, dolphin and orca watching is very popular where the only shooting is with a camera. Boat and dive tours are also popular, but you’ll need a support crew and dive licenses. Do some homework and find out what sort of competition there is, because if there are masses of other operators, your slice of the eco-tour pie is minimised.
WRITE YOUR OWN CHEQUE
If you have a comprehensive knowledge of boating, cruising and chartering, it is quite possible to put your nautical know-how into well scripted articles and sell them to boating magazines who often find it very hard to get unique, new boating content. Alternatively, start a boating blog or a video blog that generates money through advertising.
HIRE YOUR BOAT OUT
It is possible to hire out your boat to other charter operators if chartering is not your thing, but be aware that nobody will treat your boat with the care that you do and the boat will probably be used a lot harder by outside charter operators, very much the same way rental cars are used as opposed to privately owned cars.
OFFER BOATING LESSONS
There are many individuals looking to gain experience and drum up their hours on the water. Offering short courses on docking, handling at sea, anchoring and the many other facets of boating will give prospective boaters, and those who require a certain amount of hours on the water to achieve their skipper’s licenses the opportunity to hone their skills.
Teaching boat safety to school children is another way to generate an income from your boat and it introduces the younger generation to the wonderful world of boating, while still generating an income.
Hiring out your boat to film crews is a great way to generate income. You will still be in charge of skippering the boat so you can keep an eye on things and the film industry, particularly overseas players, will have large budgets to bolster your bank balance. Be prepared for a very raucous party aboard your boat when filming is complete. Why? Because no self-respecting film crew would miss a chance to party.
Making money when owning a boat might not be quite as easy as it’s made out, but, with the necessary planning and market research on which the best ways are to generate income in your specific geographical location, you could soon be smiling all the way to the bank.