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Why aren’t millennials buying boats? Special Boat US report

“Why aren’t millennials buying boats?” – full report can be read on the Boat US website.

Even before starting Young & Salty, Robin and I had a bunch of questions about the state of millennial boating. Where were all the millennial sailors? Were there more or less young people owning boats today than 10 years ago? Why didn’t more of our young friends own boats?

Needless to say I was pretty excited when I got the opportunity to crunch some numbers and interview 50+ millennial boaters in a special report for Boat US magazine.  In researching this article, there were some obvious finds, like that the #1 reason that millennials don’t own boats is financial cost. There were also some things that surprised me, like how the number of 20-39 year-old boat owner declined by 41% from 2005-2015. It was also interesting to see just how different the millennial mindset is when it comes to ownership in general. There seem to be lots of people finding a way out on the water while avoiding boat ownership altogether (e.g. boat shares, boat renting, borrowing mum and dad’s boat, etc.).

There were lots of other interesting findings but too much to list here, so head over to Boat US to read the full article.

As always, we love to hear from you. So if you have ideas for how Young & Salty can help grow the millennial sailing culture and community –  give us a shout! Also, thanks to all of you Y&S readers who added your thoughts to the discussion on Facebook.

If you’re one of those millennials who thinks that boats are too expensive – check out our “Money” section, where we have lots of tips for saving money in boating:

10 ways to go sailing for under $100 a month

What does a boat cost to own

Sailing around the world on a budget

10 ways to make money sailing


Sunday 1st of October 2017

Very interesting article! I wonder if more millennial are wanting to do the van life, since vans are pretty easy to buy and maintain. I think sailing requires a lot more "know how", and you have to take lessons, know basic mechanics, etc. Maybe fewer millennials are being raised with these sorts of skills. Interesting!


Monday 2nd of October 2017

We want to do the van life!

Drew Sayer

Friday 29th of September 2017

I think the cost of owning a boat is the biggest issue here in Australia as well. There is very few places that you can cheaply keep your boat and then there is the trade off that the cheap places are not near the interesting cruising grounds. So then you have the trade off that you spend more time sailing/motoring to get to some where decent. As a marine surveyor I get very excited when I hear a younger voice on the phone asking for a survey. Definitely in my area most buyers and owners are over 50 years old. Maybe 15% of my clients every year would be under 40 years old? Cheers


Monday 2nd of October 2017

Interesting data point!

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