Record boat sales lead to historic order book

BOAT usually means ‘bust another thousand,’ but boat buyers this year might not have that option. Sales in 2020 have been historically high, resulting in low inventory levels and increased delays.

More than 320,000 boats were sold in 2020, reports Trade Surveys Only Today. Sales are a 12-year high, with industry segments reporting increases of between 8% and 22%. “New boat sales continued to be high until the end of 2020, up 40% from September to December compared to 2019, indicating that consumers are grabbing the boats as soon as they go out. of the production chain. ” says Vicky Yu, director of business intelligence for the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA). “This increased demand for new boats represented a record year of sales for the boating industry as Americans looked for ways to spend time on the water with loved ones. “

If you are looking to launch a new boat, you might be waiting as current inventory levels are 20-60% lower than they usually are. “Boat builders ship around 20,000 new boats a month and are operating at 13% above normal levels to replenish anemic stocks ahead of the peak sales season,” Yu said.Ongoing supply chain disruption and workforce issues, combined with an average order book of up to six months, will challenge manufacturers to meet new orders until at least 2021. We expect production levels to fluctuate this year as manufacturers struggle to pick up their pace and supplier deliveries stabilize. Much will depend on what kind of buying activity we see this spring and summer as things start to open up. “

Read more: How to find your best fishing boat

Boat sales explode last year, during the coronavirus pandemic, as more Americans turned to living in more flexible work environments that allowed people to spend more time enjoying the outdoors. The number of new boat buyers increased for the first time in more than 10 years, up 10% from 2019. Among these new boat buyers, the average age also fell for the first time in 20 years .

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