If you plan to buy a certain type of boat, you may frequently visit the dealer to inspect the boat and sit in it, as well as read reviews and watch online videos. But, until you've actually sat at the controls of the vessel and steered it out into the water, it can be difficult to fully evaluate it. One of the best ways of doing so is to find a local boat rental service and see if it has the same type of boat available to rent. If so, you can rent the boat for a day or even longer, which should help you to evaluate whether it's the right one to buy. Here are some specific details to go over.


Perhaps more than anything, renting a boat will give you a good chance to assess how it performs with you at the controls. For example, you might be enticed by a motor with a high horsepower rating, but soon realize that it's just a little too much for you to handle. Or, you might like the idea of a long boat, but find that the tight turns you can take with one that is just a few feet shorter will allow you to better control it around the shore.


Space is also an important topic to evaluate when you rent a boat. Ideally, you can take those who will frequently accompany you on boating outings with you when you rent the vessel, as they'll be critical for helping you to evaluate how much space a boat has. For example, if you're planning to get a boat for fishing, and have rented the one that you might end up buying, you can see whether it feels crowded or spacious when your usual group of fishing partners is aboard.


This opportunity is also ideal for evaluating the various amenities and features that the vessel possesses. This is a broad area of focus, so it's important to be methodical as you evaluate each one. For example, you'll want to check how much storage the boat offers. Some boats are better than others when it comes to built-in storage areas. The comfort of the vessel, namely the seats and other seating areas, is also important to check. Once you've thoroughly assessed your rented boat, you'll be able to make more of an informed decision about what you want to buy.