Ocean Blue Yacht Sales BLOG

Your Ultimate Guide to the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show

The Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show [FLIBS] is one of the most anticipated events in the boating world, drawing tens of thousands of visitors from all across the globe. Whether you’re a seasoned boater looking for a new vessel or someone who simply loves the thrill of being on the water, this show has something for everyone. But with so many boats, gadgets, and gear to check out, it’s easy to become overwhelmed and miss out on great deals. That’s why we’ve compiled this guide to help you make the most of your Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show visit. 

Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show

Navigate your path. 

You must do your homework to make the most out of the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show. Before you even arrive, clearly understand what you’re looking for. Determine what type of boating you’ll be doing and what sort of vessel is best suited for your lifestyle. Are you looking for a fishing boat or a luxury yacht? Do you need a boat with a cabin or open deck space? Having a good idea of what you need will save you time and money by avoiding wandering aimlessly around the show, looking at random boats, and getting distracted by features you don’t need. With over 1,500 boats on display at the show, narrowing down your options before you arrive is essential to avoid feeling overwhelmed. 

Chart your course. 

Once you’ve identified a few types of boats that interest you, it’s time to research the dealerships that will have them on display at the show. You want a boat that fits your needs and budget and a dealership that provides excellent customer service and maintenance programs. Check out their reviews online, ask for referrals from fellow boaters, and don’t hesitate to ask questions at the show. Dealerships will be eager to answer any questions and provide information on financing, trade-ins, and more. 

FLIBS is a large event with many different sections, so it’s crucial to map out a plan of attack ahead of time. The show is spread across many different venues, so make sure you know where your top dealerships and boats are before you arrive. Bring a notebook or smartphone to take notes on the boats you are interested in and to keep track of any questions you have for the dealers. 

PRO TIP: Pre-register for the show to save time and pre-book appointments with your top dealers.   

Connect with dealers. 

The Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show is an excellent opportunity to connect with dealers and build relationships. Remember that you’re not just buying a boat; you’re also partnering with a dealership. Strike up conversations with the salespeople and ask them about their experience with the boats they sell. Ask for insights on maintenance, customizations, and other unique aspects of the boats you are interested in. The experts at Sundance will be at all your favorite brand’s booths and will be able to give you great advice as you navigate the world of boat buying and boat shows. 

Dress for success. 

This time of year, in Fort Lauderdale, it’s likely to be warm, and a chance of rain showers. Wear comfortable clothes that breathe and will give you the freedom to climb onto boats, through hatches, and into engine compartments. Shoes that are not only comfortable for all the walking you’ll be doing but also are easy to take on and off are a must. Most dealers ask you to remove your shoes before boarding a new boat to avoid scuff marks; wearing slip-ons instead of shoes that tie will save you time in the long run. Have an umbrella handy in case it’s needed, and don’t forget to bring sunscreen! 

Explore more than just boats.  

The Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show is not just about boats but also features the latest marine electronics, gear, and accessories. Take time to visit the exhibitors showcasing the latest innovations in marine technology, fishfinders, and navigational equipment. You may discover a product to enhance your boating experience and make your time on the water more enjoyable. You can also chat with suppliers and manufacturers to learn more about the materials and processes used to create high-quality marine products. 

Be open to bargains. 

If you’re on a budget, don’t be afraid to ask for deals on boats that have been on display for a while. Dealers want to sell their boats, so they’ll be happy to cut a deal on a vessel that’s been sitting on the display for a while. However, this doesn’t mean you can’t ask for a discount on the latest models. Any bargaining can be just a negotiation process to ensure you get the best value for your money. 

Research the area.  

The Fort Lauderdale area has so much to offer. So, after walking and talking boats all day, treat yourself to a delicious dinner, a massage, or some shopping. Experience all the excitement that a boat show has to offer inside and out of the venue! Boat shows offer the perfect blend of fun, festivities, mouthwatering treats, and mesmerizing sights. Indulge in the exciting ambiance of the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show. 

Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show

Attending the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show is an exciting opportunity for boating enthusiasts to see the latest boats, gear, and technology on display. By planning and researching, you can maximize your time and budget and find the boat of your dreams.  

Whether you’re in the market for a new watercraft or just want to browse the exhibits and soak up the boating atmosphere, this event is a must-visit for water lovers. So, pack your sunscreen, map out your plan, book an appointment with a Sundance Marine expert, and get ready to set sail at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show.