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Boating Consumer Research

British Marine funds and produces research that seeks to improve understanding of consumer trends in a wide variety of leisure boating sub-sectors. This includes research on boating participation behaviour, as well as purchasing and spending habits.

Boaters and Boat Owners Survey (2015) 

In 2015 British Marine published research, co-sponsored by MDL Marinas and Navigators & General, that explored the behaviour and purchasing dynamics of enthusiast boat owners and boaters across 14 key boating activities, for both privately owned and hire/charter vessels, across all UK regions and inland and coastal waters. This report complements the data provided in the annual Watersports Participation survey that British Marine commissions, which measures the size and profile of the entire UK adult boating population, from casual to frequent usage, by boating activity and key demographic segment. The British Marine Boaters and Boat Owners Survey builds on this research with greater insight into boaters' participation, purchasing and ownership habits. The full report is exclusive to British Marine members and can be downloaded from here. This report covers the following areas:

  • Boating Participation Behaviour, including where consumers go boating, how regularly, what kind of activities they like to do and how this behaviour changes across participant segments
  • Lapsed Boaters and Non-Participants, why consumers don’t participate or no longer participate in a boating activity, why this changed for lapsed boaters  and the key obstacles to engagement for non-participants
  • Training and Qualifications, including how participants originally started boating, method of learning, key factors in choosing to learn through structured training and interest in further training 
  • Boat Ownership, including craft owned, size and age across different demographic segments, correlation with owners activity profile and whose craft non-owners use to participate
  • Boat Storage, including data on how and where boats are kept by demographic, region and boat owned and key factors in choosing to berth in a full-service marina 
  • Boat Expenses, including average expenses for different boat types and sizes, covering marinas/moorings and other storage fees, antifouling and general maintenance, chandlery goods, insurance and miscellaneous leisure spending
  • Boat Purchasing Behavior, including the influences on purchasing a new boat, the resources (financial and informational) most commonly used and the movement between boat types
  • All of these key themes are broken down by relevant demographic data, providing insight into differences across age, income and other consumer segments