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PLEASE HELP! pleasure boat rental spots near philadelphia

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  • PLEASE HELP! pleasure boat rental spots near philadelphia

    How do I find pleasure powerboat rental places near Philly? Any body of water. rent (with slip) over several days for pleasure boating, stopping at different places, getting out for dining and exploring, etc as dream trip for my daughter? I have been googling for days, but can't find the right kind of thing.

    Hello. I hope it's okay to ask this kind of question here. My daughter (now 18, high functioning autism) loves more than anything else in the world to rent a little powerboat and visit different places along the watershore. She is extremely friendly and has a high IQ, despite her autism. She dreams of a job related to boats, such as tour guide, which is NOT unrealistic for the future. I don't own a boat!

    I want to give her a nice road trip to visit some friends she has near Philly. My thought was that we could find a place that RENTS powerboats for several days at a time (along with a slip for overnight "parking"), so she could have an experience that's close to the kind of experience a boat owner might have.

    She likes to learn about an area (which she does with astonishing diligence) and then take the family on pretend tours from the rented boat.

    She is the kindest person you will ever meet. It's often hard to comprehend how she is able to maintain her upbeat attitude with all the bullying she experienced in high school. I want to give her this gift.

    I even thought it would likely be easy to find a houseboat I could rent for a couple days so she could experience sleeping on the water.

    I have been searching and searching for days to try to find a way to give her this boat rental trip and I have come up empty. I have never been to the east coast, I don't know HOW to FIND what I'm looking for.

    Please help. How do I find the kind of rental place that matches what I'm looking for? ANYWHERE near Philly, ANY body of water, I just can't find it due to my own ignorance.
    Last edited by valrenter; June 11th, 2019, 11:37 AM.

  • #2
    Do you plan on staying in a motel & how are you planning your trip? Are you using a travel agent? If so, I'm sure they can come up with something. And, I would contact Philly area tourism beaureas, explain your plans & see what they say. Any special reason you're going to Philly?


    • #3
      to iBoats . . .

      Have you Googled boat rentals near Philadelphia? There may not be what you are looking for. Also, see if Airbnb has anything in the way of boats that you can sleep aboard. Also, Google boat charters.

      Do you have boating experience? (If not forgetaboutit)
      Best regards, Ted . . . . Cape Cod, MA

      Current Boats: Formula 330 Sun Sport, O'Day Mariner Sail #3224, Sunfish
      Past Boats: Catalina 22 Sail #10531, Formula 242 Sun Sport
      Twin Mercruiser 7.4 LX MPI (0F802036, 039), Bravo 3's (0F806198, 199), Mercury 7.5 HP (1969), Johnson 4.5 HP (1980)

      My Boating Web Pages: http://www.tpenfield.com


      • #4
        Originally posted by kpg7121 View Post
        Do you plan on staying in a motel & how are you planning your trip? Are you using a travel agent? If so, I'm sure they can come up with something. And, I would contact Philly area tourism beaureas, explain your plans & see what they say. Any special reason you're going to Philly?
        Thank you so much for replying!! Remember, I'm from the MIDDLE of the country and I know I'm 'stupid,' so please continue to be as kind as you have been, even though you will likely need to add patience to your kindness.

        We're camping in a detachable travel trailer. We're going to Philly to visit 3 of my daughter's internet friends. We aren't using a travel agent.

        I'm not talking about a yacht OR a sailboat (I don't have sailing experience (save for windsurfing and small sailing like a "Raider")).

        What I'm talking about has been called runabouts in some of the marinas we've used in the past. Other times they've been called bass boats, bay boats, jet boats, bowriders, pleasure boats, deck boats, fish n' ski, ski n' board, (once what we rented was called a "center console") or just generally power boat.

        Places that rent personal power crafts usually also have some kind of boat like that. If you've found a place that rents personal power crafts AND pontoons, then it's practically a given that they will ALSO have this other variety of boat for rent.

        These boats hold anywhere from 4-6 people (those are the ones we rent unless they only have big ones available) up to about 15-20 people. They look like they are especially designed for pleasure boating (either "fishing" or "skiing/boarding" or "partying"). For example, they always have very comfy "couches" all around, and often the co-pilot chair will swivel and tilt.

        Sometimes there will be a little 'tanning' cushion in front of the steering wheel area where 1 or 2 people can lay down, sometimes there's a whole seating area up there, although every once in the while, all the "fun" is behind the driver. They can have bar-b-ques built INTO the boat itself off in a corner, or built in "fishing" contraptions (we just step around those, lol). Sometimes special attention has been paid to sound--speakers everywhere, multiple "stations" to plug in your devices, etc).

        Sometimes they are very big and quite powerful, allowing you to go very far in a short period of time and THEN go do your little pleasure activity (for ex, sometimes you can get an "express" fishing boat or something with an enclosed top on it (like a convertible fishing boat kind of thing). We don't need something super powerful like that.

        I have been to Florida ONE time, and there were marinas like this all over the place. You walk up and you can get anything from a kayak all the up to some monstrosity that has stairs and "hallways" and everything (which we aren't interested in).

        It's never been hard for me to google and just find lots of options. Usually, there are plenty of places to do this kind of thing. You can find marinas like this on big lakes and also on large branches of large rivers. You can find them even on the HUGE lakes, and I found them in Florida, even though it was a "coast."

        It's like renting a pontoon boat, but instead, you rent a little power boat (for ex, something you might use for water skiing).

        Usually, If they rent pontoons, they also rent "houseboats." Sometimes what constitutes a "houseboat" looks like it's just a tiny house sitting on a pontoon style bottom, sometimes the "houseboat" is just a slightly larger "powerboat" (often called a "cuddy"), sometimes they are BIG convertible fishing boats where you can sleep, sometimes they LOOK like pontoon boats, but instead of 2 distinct pontoons, it's just looks like the "boat stuff" keeps going all the way down, but is split into 2 parts where you'd expect there to be pontoons.

        I care MOST (exclusively, in fact) about trying to find the pleasure boat thing, rather than the houseboat thing. We'd be perfectly happy WITHOUT sleeping IN the boat. At this stage, I'd even be happy just to find one of those "4 hour" rentals, as I am at the point of giving up the search.

        The ORIGINAL plan was this: First, find the marina!!!! THEN, find the hotel that rents out the boat AND slip for several days at a time. Ditch the travel trailer and stay a few days in that hotel, so "our" little boat would be right there "in our backyard." Come and go as we please, riding around in the boat to and fro, visiting all the restaurants/towns that have slips there for boaters (just like parking lots), OR, if it's arranged differently (sometimes it is), PLAN for the 1-2 hour boat drive all the way to another town (or what have you), park the boat, spend the day in that other place, get back in the boat and make the boat 'drive' back to our home hotel.

        The whole "houseboat" idea was an after-thought, BEFORE I knew how impossible the task would seem to turn out to be. If there aren't any family houseboats for rent anywhere, that's no big deal. I just can't figure out what, specifically, to ask google.


        • #5
          Well, have you Googled marinas in the Philly area?.The Deleware River if it's navigable & I don't know if it is or not, runs right thru Philly so I'm sure there must be marinas where you can rent a boat if so. I know one thing, be prepared to pay. The last time I checked into a boat rental on a lake it was $100/hr. for an 18 ft. runabout & that was 10 years ago. Good luck.


          • #6
            I know where your coming from. I have two autistic grandsons.....One high functioning and one that needs assistance

            Pretty much guarantee no houseboat rentals in Philly.

            The Delaware River in Philly is a major industrial seaport. Not many people want to rent a houseboat to tour the refineries and petrochemical plants that line the river around Philly.

            On top of that, the river is tide water. Constantly changing water levels with strong tidal currents. Lots of commercial traffic along with ocean going vessels. Not the place for a first time boater. Liability insurance for a boat rental place would be off the scale

            Don't know what to tell you. With no large natural lakes, and most reservoirs electric only, few boating opportunities exist outside tidal water.


            • #7
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              Are you determined to come to the Philly area for this?

              I have lived around here my entire life and haven't ever heard of a place like you describe around here. The Delaware river around Philly is a nightmare for experienced boaters in anything under 24'.

              Out in the middle of the state their is Raystown Lake and a place called Seven Points marina that we rented a house boat years back that also rents smaller craft.

              Beautiful reservoir with lots of natural beauty, but not much in the way of places to visit.

              Last edited by RaisedByWolves; Yesterday, 05:46 PM.