Regardless of whether you are moving across the state or across the country, if you have a boat, you’re going to have to find a way to get it to your new home. Unlike your grandma’s china and all of your clothing, you can’t exactly box up your boat and put it on the moving van. Fortunately, there are ways to transport your boat—including hiring a moving company and hauling it behind your car or truck. The following tips can help ensure that relocating your boat to its new place will go as smoothly as possible.
Contact Several Shipping Services
If you would like to hire a professional boat mover to relocate your watercraft, you should call several companies for estimates. Have the measurements of your boat handy and also the approximate distance that it will need to be moved. When speaking with representatives from the different carriers, Hurricane Marine Transport Inc. advises, ask them for their US DOT number, and now much cargo insurance they are currently carrying. This is a key piece of information to have—if a particular moving company has insurance up to $75,000 and your boat is worth much more than that, you should definitely do business with another company. It is also important to know what each company’s safety rating is. This is all information that reputable carriers will willingly give you. As you are speaking with the different companies and gathering quotes, be sure to also look up customer reviews of their services on the Better Business Bureau website or Yelp.
Consider Moving it Yourself
If you are making a relatively short move and you are already used to hauling your boat from its storage facility to a local marina, you might think about transporting your boat on your own. If your boat is quite expensive and you have a pretty long drive ahead of you, you might look into shrink wrapping the boat prior to your move. If you are not sure of how to do this, you can hire professionals to help you out. You should also make sure the gas tank is emptied out prior to hauling the boat, and remove items that stick out or up, like antennas.
Prepare Your Boat for the Move
Once you decide the best method of transportation for your boat, you need to get it ready for the big move. Make sure that the hatches of the vessel are sealed up tightly, and that everything that is stored inside the boat is secure. If you can, remove as many of the supplies from the boat as you can and take them with you in your own vehicle or the regular moving van. If you are moving during the colder months, you may wish to winterize your boat to prevent it from being damaged by snow or sleet, and for safety, disconnect your boat’s battery.
What to Do Upon Arrival
Once the move is over and you, your family and your boat are all settled in your new home, make sure you register your watercraft. The Take Me Fishing website is an excellent resource and allows you to learn the boat registration requirements for each state. Also, since boating license requirements can vary throughout the country, it’s possible that you will need to update your license. For example, if you have just relocated from Arizona to Oregon, a website like Boater Exam is a great resource that will allow you to study the state-specific requirements, take the test, and then print out your new Oregon Boater Education Card before heading out on the water.