There is something truly magical about boating with the little guys!
Their unabashed excitement and joy when boating and enjoying life on the water is almost as much fun as seeing through their eyes on Christmas morning.
Who hasn’t felt their heart surge when your little princess squeals as she spots her first dolphin dancing in the wild?
Or how about the thrill you feel when your little man muscles his first fish onto the boat?
What a blast! There are so many wonderful opportunities to share life and adventure with children in tow. No doubt, we’d all agree that boating creates special bonding moments that last a lifetime.
Many of us at Emerald Coast Marine Center have children of our own. We love taking our kids boating! We’ve gathered some of our team’s best practices in hope we can collectively help maximize your family’s boating fun!
Our Top 6 Tips for Boating with Kids Include …
Consider pre-packing a special “kids-only” canvas or waterproof bag that’s ready to roll when you are!
Winning bag ingredients might include:
Preparation should also include an advance adult analysis of the boat and its logistics. Consider in advance where you want to seat the kids to avoid conflict at the dock. Also, troubleshoot any potential problem areas that might create safety hazards for little ones, like loose ropes, anchors or other gear that might trip up an otherwise awesome adventure.
In addition to the healthy dosage of sunscreen, it’s smart to bring along a cute sun hat or ball cap, along with kid-sized sunglasses to protect eyes from the harmful glare of the sun. Be sure to check out the Emerald Coast Marine Center parts department for super cute youth-sized hats!
DON’T wait until you’re on the dock and ready to take off to have this conversation, as there are too many distractions vying for their attention. If possible, meet with the kids before you ever drive to the dock, to explain the appropriate and expected behavior. Then, when you settle your crew on the boat, reference the rules once again.
Communications might include:
Consider age-appropriate messaging for the little tykes who have little experience and cannot anticipate expectations.
First, make sure everyone (adults, too) hits the head before departure.
Second, if your boat is equipped with a head, make sure everyone knows how to operate it and understands unique nuances compared to the traditional household john.
Third, if your boat is not equipped with a head, do you have a portable toilet you can bring along? Or, will you plan to stop en route at a waterfront venue where restroom facilities are available?
Consider your situation and the age of your crew as you plan for your outing. While you may have a bladder of steel, your younger guests may not.
A final tip … keep a roll of TP in a zip-lock style bag or container just in case you need it!
We truly hope this blog from your friends at Emerald Coast Marine Center is helpful as you plan boating activities and adventures for your family. Our goal is for you to have as much fun as possible!
In addition, we would love pix of you and your kids enjoying the boating life to share on our Facebook page and other social media platforms! Send us your fave pix and if we choose to use it, we’ll reward you with a fun family boating prize! Email firstname.lastname@example.org
We hope to see you and your kids on the water soon!
Feel free to share this link with friends and family on your social media channels!