Experience economy is increasingly seen as something of a bulwark against the rampant rise of internet and mobile technology. The notion that experiences are much more valuable than material items has gained wide currency off late. To prove our point, we want to shift the focus to the Boat Rental Industry, which happens to be a major contributor to the experience economy. The US boat rental market is forecast to surpass US $19.7bn by 2030, as the appeal for leisure boating and luxurious sailing experiences continues to move skyward.
The industry was even able to thrive during the COVID-19 pandemic by emerging as a safe and reliable means of leisure and travel, keeping the occupants far from crowded places. Boat rental businesses started handling bookings with the help of online rental software, providing a 100% contactless booking experience.
Bryan Petro, the COO of GetMyBoat, a boat rental marketplace claimed that during the pandemic, it felt like many people discovered boating for the first time.
According to him, there was “a 3900% increase in demand” for boat renting during the pandemic.
With significant profit-making potential in the online boat rental industry, the entrance of several new players is highly anticipated. In this blog, you will learn about the existing players of the boat rental industry, the working of a boat rental website and many more aspects to help you launch your own boat rental business.
As of 2021, following are the most popular businesses in the boat rental industry:
Several types of boats are rented out on a boat rental website. The ones with highest demands are mentioned in the graphic below:
The major activities driving the demand for recreational boat renting operations are:
Cruising is a major recreational and holidaying activity in several developed countries. According to statistics, 50% of all cruise passengers in the world reside in the United States, followed by Western Europe and Asia. You can see their exact numbers in the figure given below.
Sailing boats, jet skis and speed boats are largely used for watersports. Moreover, powerboat racing and jet ski racing are some popular watersports activities that do not require much experience in boating.
Fishing has always been a recreational activity since time immemorial. In various countries, it has strong cultural significance for people. Both these reasons lead to an increasing demand for family fishing spots throughout the globe, which further substantiate the demand for rental boats for varying fishing activities.
Below are the major types of rental agreements that the popular boat rental companies use for conducting successful and profitable business operations:
Smaller boats that do not require much crew support are often rented out for a period of a week or less. As there are no specific terms on the attendees of the boat, the renter can himself be the captain or choose to hire one. However, this also means that the renter is primarily responsible for any damage or maintenance. Rationally, luxury and spacious cruises are difficult to manage through a basic rental agreement.
Charter agreements involve renting out boats for longer periods of time such as for several weeks and months. These agreements can be divided into following three types:
The following trends are shaping the trajectory of the boat rental industry:
In the boat rental industry, the median age of customers is 50 years, indicating Gen X population to be the highest participant in boat rental activities. This also implies that the Millennial generation is expected to surpass Gen X in the near future. The racial diversity in boat rental customers is also increasing with the Hispanic population taking the lead in recent years.
Green boats are environment friendly and fuel efficient. They are also preferred by consumers for various other reasons, such as, for producing less noise and being available in electric, solar and wind powered variants. Like Tesla’s electric cars, several green boats also support a self-drive feature.
Two safety switches, which are the ‘kill switch’ and ‘man-overboard’ alarm are high in demand in rental boats. While kill switches disconnect the engine from the power supply in case of an emergency, man-overboard alarms alert the crew and nearby boats that an occupant has fallen overboard.
Consumers are reported to rent boats measuring between 28 to 45 feet long the most. Second in place are small size boats that are up to 28 feet long. Although large boats that are longer than 45 feet are less in demand, their high rental fees makes them a lucrative option for any boat rental business.
The entire boat rental industry is family-oriented, which is a trend that is expected to continue. Despite this fact, there’s significant participation from unmarried population and solo travelers, which cannot be ignored.
The remote booking experience and easy access to all necessary information on boat rental websites have made customers more accustomed to digital services. In case of any inconvenience, customers find it easier to find customer support on the website. Additionally, the secure payment methods and SSL encryption make online boat rental operations more convenient and reliable.
How a boat rental website actually works and earns money can be explained in three parts, which are the workflow of the website, the revenue channels and features. Let’s begin with the workflow.
Note that the following workflows are only for demonstration purposes. The actual workflow differs from company to company, which means you may need to make minor adjustments in the workflow before adapting it for your business.
Owners of a boat rental marketplace can earn through various channels:
Unlike regular eCommerce websites, boat rental websites have additional functionalities, such as a booking calendar to search or book boats for specific dates and duration. Similarly, invoicing and price calculation is more complex on a boat rental website in comparison to regular eCommerce sites that display a static price for selling products.
Moreover, on a multi-vendor boat rental website, the set of features required is more advanced and diverse to support multiple seller operations. Due to this reason, a usual eCommerce software cannot be used to launch a boat rental website. It should have the following features in order to fully support boat rental operations:
Yo!Rent is rental marketplace software developed after keeping in mind the specific needs of various online rental businesses. It is a readymade software, which means it supports all basic features required to start a boat rental website and also has advanced features like:
With unlimited product listings, user profiles and multiple admin accounts, Yo!Rent is a highly scalable software that grows with your business. It is also fully customizable to support any additional functionalities and features. Moreover, Yo!Rent is available at a one-time cost through which the owner obtains a lifetime usage license for the software. Our team also provides one-year of free technical support to resolve any post-deployment problems.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, consumers considered private vehicle rental activities, such as boat rental as comparatively safer. Due to this, the boat rental industry was able to evade a market downfall. With the relaxation of government regulations, the industry is expected to see a surge in various regions of the world.
Boat rental businesses may need to comply with several state and federal regulations, including various types of licenses and permits. For a better idea, visit this page or consult a licensing agent.
Electric boats are a leading technological advancement in the boat rental industry. Some customers prefer them over their diesel-based variants, so having a small fleet in your inventory would be a unique value proposition for your business. However, this will also come with overhead expenses on charging stations.
Entrepreneurs wanting to step in the outdoor adventure industry and be a part of the experience economy can also launch online bike rental, RV rental and outdoor gear rental platforms. In some ways, these are similar to boat rental businesses but the profitability varies from region to region. Click on the business names for more information.
Yo!Rent is a ready made solution to build a variety of rental websites. So many of the features needed to perform rental operations online are already available in Yo!Rent. Having said that, the solution is fully customizable to support additional features/design requirements. Please discuss your customization requirements with our sales team. After thorough analysis of your requirements, our experts will share an update about the time and cost estimate.
Yo!Rent as a software supports several types of rental operations, including boat rental. You can use it to develop a website like BoatSetter, GetMyBoat and various other boat rental marketplaces.
The cost depends on various factors such as customizations, design changes and additional third-party integrations. To get an accurate quote, kindly fill in our contact form.
Our one-year of free technical support includes server side scripting bugs and errors, logical and calculation related bugs and errors, and connection and API related issues.
Yo!Rent is a readymade software with all essential features to start a boat rental business. It supports unlimited listings and has no cap on annual sales transactions. All transactions on Yo!Rent are free of processing fees and the software itself is available at one-time cost. Moreover, Yo!Rent also supports all popular APIs like MailChimp, AfterShip, Google Maps, PayPal, etc. that are available on SaaS solutions.
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