Boat Rental Guide and Tips


Do you see the inviting and beautiful waters of South Florida but don’t own a boat? That’s not a problem with Rentalboat.com. We’ve got you covered with the most luxurious and easy-to-operate rental boats in Dade and Broward Counties.

Before you rent a boat, however, here are a few things to keep in mind:

Rental Agreement

Boat rental agreements vary greatly. Be sure to diligently review your Rental Agreement before signing. Some rental agreements limit how far you can travel from the boat dock and others won’t allow you to tow tubes or skiers. Most rental operations mandate that boats be returned before nightfall. Like rental cars, normal “wear and tear” is expected but you will be responsible for damage that is deemed outside of “wear and tear.”

Make sure it’s outlined how weather-related cancellations are handled so you’re not stuck paying for a boat rental you didn’t get to use.

Rental Boat Insurance

In the same way when renting a car, be sure to read the rental agreement to determine the YOUR insurance obligations and the Boat Rental Company’s obligations. Pay close attention to where your insurance responds to damage or injury.

When in doubt, contact your insurance agent to determine the extent of rental coverage you enjoy under your policy while operating a rental boat. You may already be covered by your Homeowners Policy or your Umbrella Policy.

Rental Boat Licenses and Regulations

Each state has different age and license requirements for boaters. Boat rental operators and charter captains are required to have a valid boat license, which is regulated by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC). This license allows operators to carry anywhere from 4 to more than 11 customers on board a boat, depending on which charter boat license they carry.

For those wishing to rent a boat in Florida, Florida law requires anyone born on or after Jan. 1, 1988 to successfully complete an approved boating safety course and obtain a Boating Safety Education Identification Card issued by the FWC. Other questions about obtaining a boating card can be found here.

If you are visiting from another state and meet the boating safety requirements elsewhere, you can obtain a temporary Florida boating certificate from a list of vendors. Make sure you ask your boat rental operator what they require before you show up to rent a boat.

Inspect the Rental Boat

Boats and boat maintenance can be expensive. Just as you would when renting a car, inspect the rental boat before leaving the dock to identify any damage or other issues. Take pictures with your phone and point them out to the boat rental representative BEFORE you start the motor. Otherwise, you may be faced with the responsibility to repair the boat. Here are a few things to check and to point out to the boat rental representative:

  • Scratches or dents to the hull
  • Cushion/Seat rips or stains
  • Windshield cracks
  • Damage to the motor or propeller
  • Missing, broken or loose wires, plates or fittings

Safety Equipment

Boat rental operators are required to have all U.S.C.G.-mandated safety equipment on board your rental boat and accessible in case of emergency. Be sure to physically locate the equipment and ensure that everyone on board knows where it is located. Also ask the boat rental representative show you how to check the bilge and other areas of the boat that may indicate a leak or signs of sinking.

Make sure your provided life jackets are sized and adjusted properly before you and your passengers leave. Small children must wear life jackets at all times.

Lastly, it pays to Book Your Rental sooner rather than later to ensure that the boat of your dreams is available. For more Boat Rental Tips or to reserve one of our luxury boats for rent, please give us a call.