Article by JFA Yacht & Ship Founding Member and Partner Mike Schoettle
As we just wrapped two more successful International Boat Shows, Miami & Palm Beach, here are some insider tips on how to get the most out of your next boat show experience.
PLAN ON SPENDING MORE THAN ONE DAY
If you are a serious buyer, plan to be there more than one day. These shows are very large and there is so much to see, it can be overwhelming. You don’t want to be rushed or feel there was a lot you missed. Additionally, there are typically fun activities planned on many of the yachts. If you have time and are considering making an offer on a yacht or two at the show, talk to your broker about attending these special cocktail parties.
Before you attend, have a general idea of what type of yacht you’re in the market for (Ex: Power or Sail? What’s your objective -local cruising? Bahamas? Transatlantic?). Talking with a broker will help give you a good idea of what type of boat you need to accomplish your vision. On the show’s website, you’ll be able to view a list of all the boats that will be on display. The boat shows are extremely busy so often prospective buyers cannot all be accommodated and there are long lines. To give yourself the best chance, JFA’s Concierge Service is happy to suggest boats, set up, arrange, and coordinate showing of vessels on your behalf, saving you valuable time. This will ensure your visit to the show is productive. At JFA we love to accompany our clients to manufacturers or product they’re interested in and help them manage any negotiations or sales tactics that might not be to their benefit.
I always recommend taking lots of pictures of things you like at the show. Also, use the notes app on your phone or bring a pad of paper. Take good notes on your likes and dislikes. For example, if there is a feature on a specific yacht that you like, or a look of a yacht you like, pictures and notes are helpful to guide your broker on what yacht might fit you best.
DON’T GO IT ALONE
If it’s possible, it’s best to have all decision makers together at the show when you are viewing. If it’s not, pictures will come in handy to share with a decision maker that couldn’t be present. It’s always more fun to go with a significant other or a friend so you can share your raves and reviews on the spot. JFA’s Concierge Service is happy to accompany you as well, and hearing your thoughts means your broker will get a clearer picture of your desired yacht.
PRACTICAL THINGS TO NOTE
You’ll be doing a lot of walking so make sure to wear comfortable shoes that slip on and off as most vendors will have you remove your shoes before boarding the displays. Bring your own water to make sure you stay hydrated. In South Florida, there is always a good chance of rain so pack a small umbrella and make sure to wear sunscreen and bring extra.
Mike Schoettle is a founding member and partner of JFA Yacht & Ship. He is proud to be more of a Yachting lifestyle advisor than a broker as he assists people in gaining real knowledge of their yacht and the world they are moving into. He loves helping people realize their dreams, take the challenges of the ocean and then relax on their new boat. Contact Mike Schoettle today at 561-714-1148 or at email@example.com.