If you like the idea of being on a boat but don’t want to deal with insane maintenance fees that come with buying your own, never fear.

You can still take to the water this summer and host some awesome yacht or pontoon parties with your friends.

How? Boat clubs.

boat

Boat club members pay a one-time fee and monthly dues, but don’t have to worry about the hassle of boat maintenance. Boat lovers can save up to around $3,000 a year by investing in a boat club membership instead of purchasing a boat.

Life jackets are provided (although you might want to bring your own for small children and babies), and some boats come equipped with ski ropes and coolers. Just bring your sunglasses, sunscreen and towels.

waves

Gas is charged back to the renter, either after the session or on a monthly basis. Don’t forget to factor in gas costs in when choosing between your options — there’s a major difference in four hours on a pontoon versus four hours on a Chaparral.

Spend time hanging out in a quiet cove, pulled up on a lake island, or grab lunch at one of the many boat friendly restaurants on Lake Norman, including the ever popular Rusty Rudder.

I’m on a boat

A photo posted by Connor Mccourt (@connor_mccourt_) on

Here are your options around Charlotte:

(1) Aquaventure.

Cost: $395-$895 up front; $259/month.

Perks:

– Boat safety training for beginners.

– Make three reservations at a time (rolling).

– Unlimited use.

– Renter responsible for gas.

– Lake Norman only.

(2) Lake Effects.

Cost: $399 up front; $269/month.

Perks:

– Provides boater safety training for beginners.

– Make up to four reservations at a time (rolling).

– Unlimited use of boats.

– Unlimited member guests.

– Renter is responsible for gas after use.

– Lake Norman Only

(3) Carefree.

Cost: $1,750 up front, $275/month.

Perks:

– Members have access to locations nationwide and in Canada.

– Boats on Lake Norman and Lake Wylie.

– Sail boats are available for use.

– Make up to four reservations at a time (rolling).

– Unlimited use of boats.

 

(4) Freedom.

Cost: Two package options.

– Weekday: $3,100 up front, $199/month.

– 7-day: $4,600 up front, $299/month.

Perks:

– Access to 89 locations, including Lake Norman.

– With the weekday package, you can have three reservations; 7-day allows for five.

– Boater safety class is included in membership

dock

If you’re not sure you want to join just yet, you can try out a daily rental first.

The joys of boat ownership, without all the hassle and upkeep, are now accessible to just about anyone. Well, anyone willing to pay a monthly membership to a boat club.

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