Aug 10, 2023 - Business

The boat industry is still going strong

Boats cut through a channel in Miami

Boats in Haulover Inlet. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Boat sales boomed during the pandemic and are still going strong, according to a midyear market index from local advertising and software company Boats Group.

Why it matters: In South Florida, the marine industry's impact on regional employment was an estimated 141,860 jobs, according to a March report by the Marine Industries Association of South Florida.

What's happening: Boat values are almost 20% higher now nationally than in 2019.

  • The average value of a boat — counting both sailboats and powerboats — in the U.S. is $139,152 now, up from $103,629.
  • Plus, boats are also spending fewer days on the market: 187 during the first half of 2023 compared to 261 days in 2019.
  • Inventory is finally being replenished after the supply chain was disrupted during the pandemic, the report says.

What they're saying: The report reflects "a very positive trajectory," for the boating industry, Courtney Chalmers, VP of marketing at Boats Group, said in a statement.

Of note: A survey by Boat Trader in May found that two in five millennials who bought boats within the last one to three years plan to upgrade their vessels.

  • The success of the industry depends on attracting new and younger customers, Chalmers said in a statement at the time.

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