Do you rent out your boat when you are not using it? We already briefly covered the basics of renting out a boat and why it is great. This article covers how to get more renters and earn more with boat rentals. We will share tips on making your advertisements more attractive, getting good reviews, and earning more money.
Things to consider before you post your rental boat advertisement
If you are planning to rent out your boat, make a plan and research first. How much competition is there in your town? How much do other owners ask for similar boats, and how booked are they? Such research will allow you to adjust the price. Also, think about the seasons. During the high season, the prices are usually higher, so you can raise them a bit. But during the low season, there are way fewer people, so you might not get any bookings. Regularly adjusting the price can help you make much more money than sticking with the same price all the time.
Make sure that your insurance covers your boat in the hands of renters. Whether it’s damage to your own boat or another, medical bills, or legal assistance, better be safe and insured than sorry. Of course, you will have to pay to upgrade the insurance. Some boat rental sites also offer to insure your boat throughout renting periods, but it costs too.
Finally, be prepared to meet your renters. Many book last-minute, so be sure that you can meet them or find someone who can. For this reason, most owners prefer long rental periods, from a day to a week, because it would be hard to manage more. During the meetings, provide instructions and tips for the renters. You can also take them for a quick ride to let them get familiar with the controls.
How to make your boat rentals ad appealing
Have nice pictures. The better the images, the more likely people will become interested. If the photos look bad, renters are likely to skip the ad. Smartphones today take good pictures, but it is still better to take them with a professional camera or hire a photographer.
Write a good description. Just like people seeking to rent an apartment, people looking for boats want to know as much as possible to make the best choice. Help them!
Respond quickly. If you were looking to rent a boat yourself, found the one you like, and contacted the owner, you would like a quick response, no? If you take too long, your prospective renters might lose interest in your boat. Replying soon lets the people know you are excited about renting your boat and makes them like you more, thus increasing the likelihood of a good review. Some sites even rank quick responders better.
Have a captain available. In peer-to-peer boat sharing, bareback rentals are the most common: it means that you rent the vessel alone. Larger boats and yachts are usually chartered with a captain. But some people might not have a captain, and might still want to rent your boat. You can be the captain yourself (have a license then) or connect with captains to hire if there is a need. By providing this option, you can get more renters.
How to get good reviews for your boat rentals
Good reviews are crucial. People are social creatures, and they want social proof, knowing that other people enjoyed products, services, or experiences. A good review is just that: someone says they liked your boat, and people are more willing to believe they will enjoy time on your boat too. And the more reviews there are, the more willing they will be! So make sure to provide good customer service to have good reviews.
Add extra features. Just like when you offer vacation rentals, think what you would like to have when you rent a boat for your vacations or a party and include it. For example, add water toys or fishing gear. Also, it’s a good idea to leave a welcome basket, wishing the guests to enjoy the boat. It would be a lovely surprise for them to find! You could also leave a cooler with bottled water and snacks, beach towels, etc.
Clean and maintain your boat. Make sure that everything works so that there is a minimal chance of trouble. Also, have all the safety equipment in good condition, such as life vests. Finally, leave the boat clean. You can scrub it yourself or hire cleaning services.
Meet them nicely and leave instructions. We already mentioned meeting the clients: try to cover as much as possible during the meeting, from controls to routes. They will also likely appreciate you leaving notes and suggested routes. You can even include menus from nearby restaurants!
Ask for a review. Sometimes people would gladly post a good review, but they forget or need a little incentive. When the rental period is over, write to them asking whether they enjoyed the experience and politely asking to leave a review if they did.
Some of the most important things when renting out boats are a plan, research, and insurance. Make sure your schedule allows checking-in renters and that your boat is clean and well-maintained when they come. Post an informative ad with high-quality pictures and be responsive to get guests, and provide good services to get good reviews. Then, enjoy earning money with boat rentals!