What is it that draws such large and diverse crowds to an international boat show? Perhaps it’s the feeling of freedom and excitement that comes from the boating lifestyle: being surrounded by water on all sides, the smell of the sea in the air and the smooth deck of a well-constructed yacht beneath your feet. Or could it be the celebrity status atmosphere that we experience cruising a luxury yacht? Any way you look at it, attending a boat show is a lot of fun.
The 2019 Miami Boat Show is in its 77th year, often called “the greatest boat show in the world,” and is expected to draw more than 100,000 visitors from around 35 countries over five days from February 14-19. It will be held at the Miami Maritime Stadium Park with more than 2,000 exhibitors and over 1,300 boats on display, along with the latest in marine accessories, nautical apparel and yachting products to hit the market. Boat owners, potential buyers and yacht professionals will have the opportunity to see, board and shop from an array of the newest generation boats and cutting edge marine technology equipment. The Solar Electric Power Zone is one of the most recent exhibits that highlights the future of solar power for the boating world.
Yacht Purchase and See What’s New
There is no better place than a boat show to find the yacht that’s right for you, or simply to learn about the newest marine technology. You can check out many options by browsing and boarding, getting the feel of the seating, the deck, and the fine details that boat owners find so important. Talk to dealers and company reps, ask questions, and find out what’s best for you. If you decide to buy, you may even have the opportunity to take the yacht out on the water for a trial run before making a final decision. You may find some great deals at the show, since there are so many manufacturers represented who are all competing for your business. Some dealers create “boat show specials” to recover some of their show exhibition costs, so bring a cheque book and be ready for amazing buys.
Nautical Life Seminars and Boating Courses
The Miami International Boat Show offers visitors a chance to experience the boating lifestyle and pick up new water skills with hands-on, innovative nautical learning activities. These include on-the-water boating workshops, informational seminars, and demos of recreational equipment, such as paddle sports.
The well-known “Fred’s Shed Interactive Learning Center” hosts dozens of training sessions every day for learners at all stages, from new yachters to seasoned captains and crew professionals. Seminars are taught by marine experts, brought in especially for the show. They vary from year to year and cover a wide variety of topics from “Advanced Docking” and “How Your Prop Affects Your Boat’s Performance,” to “Learning the Basics of Marine Weather” and “Powerboating Made Easy.” For the adventurous, there are sessions like “Take Your Family around the World” and “Tips and Tricks for Long-Distance Cruising.” What is exciting about Fred’s Shed is that they offer attendees the opportunity to take a boat out on the water with an instructor to learn by doing and seeing, with hands-on instruction and clear-cut demonstrations of correct procedure.
Fred’s Shed also features a Boat Skills Virtual Trainer, so that you can take a “virtual boat trip” to practice docking and turning on a virtual “lake,” interacting with other boats.
One to three-hour boating skills classes range from $25 to $125.
Did you know that you can attend the Miami Boat Show as a VIP? Daily VIP Experience tickets cost $150-$175/day and include access to the private air-conditioned VIP lounge and outdoor deck with spectacular views of Miami and the marina, complimentary appetizers and meals, drinks, Wi-Fi, entertainment and other services, everything first class.
Where to Eat at the Miami Boat Show 2019
Food and beverage organization will be coordinated by an exclusive New York City-based catering and events company. They will partner with well-known Miami restaurants and food trucks to present guests with an outstanding variety of top-tier cuisine: everything from snacks and tacos, to sushi and steak.