All over the globe, including Canada, boating is a fun activity enjoyed by people of all ages. When buying a boat for recreational use, some people do not understand what boat ownership entails so they often will make the wrong choice or end up spending more money than they anticipated. Before you buy a boat, it is important understand a number of important considerations.
Proof of Boating Competency: In Canada, to operate any kind of personal watercraft for recreational purposes that have a motor, you need to have a Pleasure Craft Operator Card. This operator card is a boating license that shows that you are competent to drive a motor watercraft. If you operate a motor boat without this card, you could receive a fine of up to $250.00. You can acquire a Pleasure Craft Operator Card by taking boating exam accredited by the government which is offered by Transport Canada accredited private organizations. As well, you can take a boating course that will include a boat test to prepare for the Pleasure Craft Operator Card. The cost of the exam is $49.95 plus GST. The exam can be taken online and you will need a supervisor to prevent cheating. It is always a good idea for a family of boaters to take a boating course together. Foreign visitors will not need a Pleasure Craft Operator Card if their stay in Canada is less than 45 days.
Choose the Right Boat: When shopping for a boat, it is important to know what kind of boat you will need. For instance, will the boat be used for quiet fishing excursions, waterskiing, socializing with friends and family, day trips or weekend excursions? As well, you have to consider how often the boat will be used such as seasonal or year round. You also have to know where the boat will be used such as the ocean, a lake, or a river. Having a full understanding of what the boat will be used for will help to select the appropriate sized boat and other items such as type of motor and required furnishings.
Boating Costs: When buying a boat, you have to determine how much you can afford to spend on the boat. Such costs to consider include; cost of the boat, maintenance and upkeep, storage fees, insurance, registration fees, boat course fees, and equipment and supplies that will be needed on the boat.
Assessing a Boat: When shopping for a boat, you should consider such attributes as cost, safety, physical condition, appearance, accessories, options, performance, warranty, structural integrity, electronics and other equipment that should be working properly, quality of paint job, condition of the motor, safety devices…etc. You also should decide the best financing options for your particular circumstances such as buying, leasing, or renting.
Purchasing and maintaining a boat is a fun and rewarding experience when you know what is involved with acquiring a boat, and what things you have to do before you take the boat out on the water. The most important thing to remember is that you must have proof of competency before you operate any motor pleasure watercraft. For millions of Canadian, boating is a relaxing and pleasant experience that is a great escape from life’s daily stresses and worries.
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