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Old 09 July 2020, 11:39   #1
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RIB Hire Operators?

Does anyone have any experience of hiring their boat out to the general public?

Thinking of getting a 2nd (possibly more) boats and offering this, in part as a PB2 driver as I am sure the insurance will request it be part of the limitations.

I consider Plymouth Sound and possibly Whitsand Bay - Salcombe - Edistone if allowed by insurers to be a truly amazing area for this and cant find anyone* else offering the option.

* YHQ Drystack have a membership scheme with a hard boat and RIB available to subscribers.
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Old 09 July 2020, 12:02   #2
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I considered this and did a little homework & decided there were too many hoops to jump through, coding of boats being the biggest problem. Think this is the reason so few companies actually do rib hire as there is definitely a market for it
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Old 09 July 2020, 12:39   #3
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I considered this and did a little homework & decided there were too many hoops to jump through, coding of boats being the biggest problem. Think this is the reason so few companies actually do rib hire as there is definitely a market for it
Thats a fair point, I am hoping to keep under the full coding requirements by limiting range.

Just found that PMC offer bare boat charter.
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Old 09 July 2020, 14:42   #4
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Thats a fair point, I am hoping to keep under the full coding requirements by limiting range.

Just found that PMC offer bare boat charter.
Even if operating in categorised waters then you need local authority licences which are less onerous than coding but still make it difficult. Solent rib charter & i think bembridge marine do bareboat rib charter but theirs are coded & to realistically get coded they need to be quite big boats 6m+. Hiring smaller ribs around the 5m mark for a family aftenoon out doesnt seem to be viable which makes for an expensive boat to be hiring out
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Old 09 July 2020, 18:17   #5
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Does anyone have any experience of hiring their boat out to the general public?



Thinking of getting a 2nd (possibly more) boats and offering this, in part as a PB2 driver as I am sure the insurance will request it be part of the limitations.



I consider Plymouth Sound and possibly Whitsand Bay - Salcombe - Edistone if allowed by insurers to be a truly amazing area for this and cant find anyone* else offering the option.



* YHQ Drystack have a membership scheme with a hard boat and RIB available to subscribers.

You’d need to stick to:

Within a line from Mount Batten Pier to Raveness Point through Drake's Island.
The River Yealm within a line from Warren Point to Misery Point


For Plymouth or

Within a line from Splat Point to Limebury Point

For Salcombe

...to stay in only local authority licensing. You could go 3 miles beyond that with Cat6 coding but that won’t get you to Eddystone.

Each local authority produces their own licensing rules, but many are not much easier than Cat 6. Often you can’t easily move from one area to another (and in some cases even from one launch site to another). It may be better on the South Coast where boat hire is more common.

I suspect the sums will only add up if you take the plunge and invest heavily, market heavily and try to maximise rental rather than just recoup a few £ from a few weekends of rental.
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Old 10 July 2020, 01:35   #6
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Thanks both

I already have local authority coding for my current boat, which was easy enough to arrange so will look into that option (limits to Plymouth Sound).
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Old 10 July 2020, 02:12   #7
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Does anyone have any experience of hiring their boat out to the general public?
My main concern would be the longevity of the boats! They say the fastest car in the world is a hire car...................
A percentage of people will not give two sh*ts about your boat/s, and drive them hard with no mechanical sympathy - why would they, its being given back at the end of the day.............I used to hire 4x4's out, many 'experienced' drivers didn't have clue and drove like anchors
And stating the obvious, so much more can go wrong whilst floating compared to dry land, must be easier ways to make money
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Old 10 July 2020, 02:40   #8
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So many people have tried this over the years, and lost their shirts doing it due to the unexpected expenses, damage etc, not to mention the limited amount of hours any boat in the UK is actually hired out over the course of a year.

I made the numbers work on paper years ago, then spoke to somebody doing the same thing in a different area.
I increased some of my expenses by 30%, reduced my already conservative estimate on the number of Hire(being paid) hours by @25%, and just couldn't make the numbers work any more.
I was also told to expect every boat to come back late from hire in a completely unfit state to be hired out again without work.

I also nearly purchased a quite well known up and running hire boat company in a very busy holiday destination harbour. My accountant exposed some rather large flaws in the numbers so I gave up on it.

I'll wish you good luck.

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Old 10 July 2020, 04:06   #9
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Thanks both

I already have local authority coding for my current boat, which was easy enough to arrange so will look into that option (limits to Plymouth Sound).


And there’s the rub. How do you ensure your punters stick to the cruising area limits? Before you know where you are, your insurance/permits/coding are invalid.
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Old 10 July 2020, 09:40   #10
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Sounds like I should waste my time looking into something with more potential

Like uphill custard racing lol

Thanks all for the cander!
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Old 14 July 2020, 16:29   #11
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So many people have tried this over the years, and lost their shirts doing it due to the unexpected expenses, damage etc, not to mention the limited amount of hours any boat in the UK is actually hired out over the course of a year.

I made the numbers work on paper years ago, then spoke to somebody doing the same thing in a different area.
I increased some of my expenses by 30%, reduced my already conservative estimate on the number of Hire(being paid) hours by @25%, and just couldn't make the numbers work any more.
I was also told to expect every boat to come back late from hire in a completely unfit state to be hired out again without work.

I also nearly purchased a quite well known up and running hire boat company in a very busy holiday destination harbour. My accountant exposed some rather large flaws in the numbers so I gave up on it.

I'll wish you good luck.

Nasher
Been there. Done it. Got the T shirt (and lost a load of money in the process). Boats would come back in varying states of trashed. Worst was a certain moron who used to be well known on this forum who topped my two stroke Evinrude up with the wrong oil and it went bang. Still, you live and learn!
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Old 05 August 2020, 12:02   #12
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Urban Truant's business model looks interesting. They have a 'Rib Club' where members pay an annual subscription, in addition to a hire fee each time they want to use a boat.

Sort of a halfway house between part-ownership and dry hire, so there's a bit more incentive for hirers not to be complete muppets, because they want to get money's worth for their membership I guess. They are also part of a much larger training and yacht charter operation, so it may be that rib club isn't all that great, but could be worth looking into as an alternative to bareboat: https://www.utrib.club/
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