Boat Shows: The World’s Best Shopping Trip

Here’s how to get started. Bay Boat As the name suggests, bay boats are popular with inshore anglers. However, not all bay boats are built the same and improved technology and design have expanded the bay boat category, blurring the lines between a bay boat and a center console. If you’re in the market for a used boat, you might not think there’s a reason to shop around at a boat show. And whether you’re looking for a new or a used boat, you should start your shopping process by looking at the newest makes and models of boats in the market, so you have a grasp on the latest advancements in design and technology. Center Console The most popular style of boat among fishermen in the Northeast, center consoles allow angler to leave behind inshore waters and head out into open water in less-than-perfect conditions. Most center consoles come equipped with a T-top which, in addition to providing shade and rod storage, makes room for anglers to fish around the perimeter of the vessel. You want a boat. A boat. Dual consoles offer the best of both worlds for many fishermen who also want a family boat, often with a head, that is good for water sports and cruising.
Boat show

Whether it’s your first time setting foot in a boat show or just your first time walking the aisles as a serious buyer, there’s no reason to feel overwhelmed. A visit to a boat show to buy a boat can be the best shopping trip of your life. Here’s how to get started.

Narrow Down your Choices

Start by getting familiar with the basic boat styles and decide what makes the most sense for you. The fishability of a bay boat? The big-water potential of a center console? The blend of family-friendly features that come in a dual console? Or are you ready for a sport fisherman to get you offshore and back?
Consider your needs and your wants, set your budget, and the overwhelming aisles of the boat show will quickly shrink down to a manageable size.

Bay Boat

As the name suggests, bay boats are popular with inshore anglers. Built with a flatter bottom than a deep-V hull and less freeboard than an offshore boat, they offer plenty of stability in calm water and lots of room for unrestricted fishing.

Nauticstar Bay Boat

Less deadrise also means a shallower draft, allowing bay boats to run in shallow waters of the back bays. The obvious trade-off is a less comfortable ride in bumpy conditions and, due to their low gunnels, they are less seaworthy in rough conditions. However, not all bay boats are built the same and improved technology and design have expanded the bay boat category, blurring the lines between a bay boat and a center console. They tend to be no frills and no nonsense craft, with large casting decks, storage, rod holders, livewells and very little else—however, as the bay boat’s popularity has grown, you’ll find more options in the category than ever before. If inshore fishing is your main focus, it’s worth checking out what bay boats have to offer.

If you’re in the market…

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