When the COVID-19 pandemic forced Meredith Punthrangkul to cancel two vacations, she didn’t let it spoil her summer.
The Northfield resident and real estate agent used the money he saved to buy a boat for a friend.
Boat sales in southern Jersey and across the country in recent months have skyrocketed, largely due to the pandemic.
“Since states began easing stay-at-home orders in April and May, we’ve seen increased sales in all types of boats,” said John-Michael Donahue, National’s communications director. Association of Boat Manufacturers.
According to the association, which represents all aspects of the North American boating industry, total sales of new boats in May were the highest in a decade.
The last time the association saw such strong sales in a single month was in 2007.
National new boat sales are up 19% from May 2019, with personal watercraft sales up 75%, saltwater fishing boats up 9% and jet boats up 31%, according to NMMA. Outboard motor sales rose an average of 28% in June from pre-pandemic levels.
Earl Schock, managing director of Waterfront Marine at Somers Point, said it had been one of the best seasons in years for his company.