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How to buy a pre-loved boat.

Summary: The Pre-Owned Boat is just around the corner, here are the top tips for buying a pre-owned boat in the UAE from Abdulla Al Noon, Marina Operations Manager at Dubai Creek Marina.

Just about everyone fantasises about taking to the ocean waves in their own boat but most assume it's a hobby exclusively for the rich.

Not anymore thanks to the Dubai Pre- Owned Boat Show. Still though, as with any purchase, caveat emptor applies. Here are the top tips when buying a pre-loved boat.

Know your budget

Yes, boats can be expensive but the perception that they cost more than a car or house is false. There will be vessels on sale at the Dubai Pre-Owned Boat Show starting from AED 30,000. Work out your budget and don't over- stretch yourself. Don't forget the initial cost of purchase is just the beginning. Ongoing costs include maintenance, insurance, registration fees and instruction and safety course fees - factor these into your budget.

Buying a pre-owned boat means saving on some of the costs of a brand new boat, such as safety equipment.

1. Consider your requirements

Make sure you purchase the right boat for your needs. Consider the following:

* Who will use the boat? Are you expecting large groups? As this will have a bearing on size.

* How will you use the boat? Will you be fishing, water skiing, cruising, taking day, weekend or longer excursions?

* Whenandhowoftenwilltheboatbeused? Year-round or only seasonally?

* What type of boat suits your personality? Do you want speed or leisurely sailing?

Read the documentation

Check that the seller has a comprehensive maintenance history to prove the vessel has been well maintained and is free from problems. A boat that's needed a lot of work will probably need a lot more but pre-owned boats that have been berthed for regular servicing can be an attractive option.

Also check the hours clocked, this is like checking a car's mileage. If a boat has clocked more than 500 hours you can expect to pay for maintenance and upgrades. Likewise, if a boat has too few hours you should ask why. Check too if the boat is still under warranty.

Check and test drive

Pre-owned boats are ready to go, as they've already been out to sea, but carry out extensive checks before buying. Areas to check include the propeller, the hull, signs of floor rot, upholstery, storage and the trailer. Don't buy without a test drive and take some friends along to see how the boat performs with added weight. Other things to look out for include the planing of the boat, it shouldn't feel it is dragging on the water; the level of vibration; the transition of shifting gears; reversing; response time; gauges and instruments, and whether the bilge is working correctly.

Talk to local marinas, boaters...

Do your research. Read internet reviews, ask questions on online forums, talk to other boat owners, boat club members, boat mechanics, chat with salespeople... get as much advice and as many opinions as you can.


Offering everything an aspiring or current boat owner needs in one location, the Dubai Pre- Owned Boat Show is a platform for buyers and prospective sellers from all over the GCC.

Aiming to make sailing more accessible, visitors can view striking pre-owned boats for sale as well as take part in activities on the waterfront.

The Dubai Creek Marina has capacity to display boats of up to 165ft in water or jet-ski. Limited spaces for sellers. To find out more, email

2013 CPI Financial. All rights reserved. 2011 CPI Financial. All rights reserved.

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Geographic Code:7UNIT
Date:Nov 5, 2013
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