Twenty years ago, if a British holidaymaker wanted to charter a boat to take them around the Caribbean for a fortnight they would have had to spend a lot of time and money organising their trip.
Now however, tourists from all around the world can organise boat charter from the comfort of their own home in as little as 15 minutes thanks to modern digital technology. In this article we take a look at how this tech has changed the way we charter boats and what this means for the consumer.
Digital Technology and Boat Chartering
As alluded to in the introduction, boat chartering as little as twenty years ago was a time-consuming and costly business. Holidaymakers usually had to rely on the expertise of booking agents or the recommendations of friends and family.
The modern holidaymaker doesn’t have to worry about any of that. They can simply open up their mobile phone and find the perfect boat package to suit their needs and budget. How has this happened? Well we have AirBnB to thank for the current boat hire landscape.
Founded in 2008 in California, Airbnb changed the way that we thought about holidays. The site not only allowed existing hotels and BnB’s to advertise rooms to customers, but it also allowed regular people to list their properties as holiday rentals.
The concept of regular members of the public renting out their spare rooms or properties to holiday makers seemed bizarre back in 2008. Nowadays however it is a run-of-the-mill concept, especially for the 2 million global users in over 190 countries with listings on the app.
This model has been copied by dozens of online boat rental companies who not only provide great deals for customers, but also passive income options for those lucky enough to own their own yachts and boats.
The Impacts of Digital Technology on Boat Hire
Now that you know how digital technology has changed the world of boat hire, it’s time to have a look at some of the knock-on effects of the changing boat hire landscape. Here are just a few key areas that have changed with modernisation:
If you head over to www.borrowaboat.com , the first thing you will notice is that the company offers over 35,000 boat rentals in 65 countries. That’s a huge amount of boats and a global coverage of around half of non-landlocked countries on the planet.
Within that there is a huge amount of variety for customers to choose from. Holidaymakers looking for yacht hire in the Caribbean can not only choose whether or not to have a captain or how many cabins they want, but they can also choose the exterior colour and internal décor of their boat of choice.
Two decades ago, there were a handful of companies offering Caribbean yacht hire services from the UK. As such, the price of hiring a boat for British holidaymakers was often astronomical.
Modern companies like Borrow a Boat have far more competitors than their predecessors and as such, prices are falling. It’s not only large companies that are in competition with one another either, every private listing on aggregate sites are in competition too.
All of this has led to a healthy market where the consumer benefits more than ever.
It’s not only price where individuals and big companies are fighting it out. Battle lines are also being drawn over experiences and services. In years gone by a top of the range yacht with a captain would have been more than enough to satisfy a holidaymaker.
Now companies and individuals are beginning to offer more enticing and exciting packages to potential customers. These typically include specific routes picked for the amount of sights on offer and experience packages that can include things like snorkelling in coral reefs.
Is a Yachting Holiday For You?
After reading about the technology fuelling the success of yacht and boat hire, you might be starting to wonder whether you should be considering it yourself as a future holiday option. If so, here are a few things to remember:
Whilst sites like Borrow a Boat have certainly helped to reduce the price of boat and yacht hire, they haven’t made it as affordable as a traditional holiday. Hiring a yacht is still going to be pretty expensive, so if you’re on a limited budget this type of vacation might not be for you, unless you’re planning a big, once in a lifetime trip.
Most holidaymakers love the idea of the Caribbean or the San Blas Islands until they realise that to get around them, they’ll most likely need to hop on crowded tourist boats. Hiring your own boat gives you the freedom to explore at your own pace and customise your holiday to your own specific needs.
Hiring a yacht to take you around the San Blas Islands is a bad idea if you’re the type of person that likes to do things at full speed. A boating holiday is not for thrill seekers, rather it is for the type of person that wants to unwind and relax in the most beautiful of settings.
If the idea of relaxing on deck with a book, soaking in the hot rays of the sun surrounded by nothing but the big blue expanse sounds great, then a boating holiday is right for you!