The global recreational boating market size is expected to grow from USD 24,995.0 million in 2020 to USD 35,380.0 million by 2027, at a CAGR of 5.1% from 2021 to 2027. Recreational boating is a leisurely activity of traveling on the water in a boat. Many individuals use this for fun and pleasure activities during an outing with family and friends. Recreational boating includes many activities such as sailing, campaigning, boat racing, fishing, and other water sports game such as sports fishing, kayaking, powerboat racing, and others. Various recreational boats are used for recreational boating, including runabouts, sailboats, pontoon boats, towboats, fishing boats, sterndrive powerboats, jet boats, propulsion systems, personal watercraft, and cabin cruisers. These boats are primarily made up of aluminum, coated fabrics, and plastic. Recreational boating events are open to all kinds of boats, such as engine-powered, sail-powered, or man-powered.

The factors, such as growing interest in recreational water sport activities and rising water-based tourism, are anticipated to drive the market growth. However, recreational boats’ high initial & ownership costs and environmental concerns associated with recreational boating are expected to hinder the market growth. Additional, technological advancement in boats & boat engines and the growing high net-worth population are expected to offer lucrative opportunities for market growth during the forecast period.

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Further, growth in water-based tourism, technological advancement in boats and boat engines, and high initial & ownership cost of recreational boats also significantly impact the market. These factors are estimated to have a definite impact on the recreational boating market. Furthermore, technological advancements in boats and boat engines are expected to drive market growth. However, recreational boats’ high initial & ownership costs and environmental concerns about recreational boating hinder the market growth. Additionally, the growing high net-worth population is projected to offer lucrative opportunities for market growth during the forecast period.

COVID-19 Impact on the Global Recreational Boating

The COVID-19 outbreak has created an unprecedented economic, public health, and logistical challenge worldwide; however, technology stepped up when COVID-19 struck. One of the biggest impacts witnessed in recent months due to the COVID-19 has been a huge behavioral shift in technology adoption. For instance, Garmin, which equips the fleet with the leading GPS navigation, radar, communication, and wind data technology, has reported that, with the heavy travel restrictions, it has witnessed increased demand for equipment for boats and water activities in many markets.

To contain the spread of COVID-19, countries, such as the U.S., India, Russia, Brazil, Colombia, and others, across the globe took extreme measures such as lockdown, social distancing, stay home regulation, and social isolation. As the situation is still difficult, several countries are extending the shutdown period. As the second wave of the coronavirus is hitting, government authorities in countries such as the UK and India are further reimplementing lockdowns to prevent more deaths.

Global Recreational Boating Market Dynamics

Drivers: Growing interest in recreational water sport activities

Recreational water sports activities include jet-skiing, rowing, rafting, kayaking, canoeing, sailing, powerboating, yachting, boat racing, and others. The growing interest of customers toward water sporting activities coupled with better participation among all age groups has influenced the development of recreational boating facilities worldwide.

In addition, watersports are becoming popular for the adrenaline rush of getting fit or excited and for several health benefits. Thus, health benefits associated with water sports are supporting the demand for recreational boating. Furthermore, in recent years, it has been observed that artificial water bodies for kayaking and rafting are gaining an increased population among water sports enthusiasts. Additionally, the rising popularity of sport fishing and motorized watersports, such as sailing, yachting activities, and jet skiing, further fosters the growth of the recreational boating market.

Restraints: High initial & ownership cost of recreational boats

Due to the sheer size and complexity, recreational boat construction requires massive facilities and professional workers, which primarily increases the initial manufacturing cost of the boat. In addition, the price of an engine equipped in the boat is one of the most direct costs associated with a boat. Recreational boats require high-performance engines, and the amount of horsepower will impact the total cost of the boat. Moreover, extra features, such as extra seating, storage, or custom interiors, increase the initial cost of boats.

For instance, the average price of yachts, speed boats, catamarans, sailboats, fishing boats, and personal watercraft is $300,000, $75,000, $10,000, $40,000, and $15,000, respectively, which is marginally higher than the average per capita GDP of several nations. Likewise, a yacht tends to be more expensive as it provides several luxury facilities to people. These yachts need various legal allowances to sail in the national or international waters. Usually, these luxury yachts are sold, keeping all the expenses in mind, making them expensive.

Opportunities: Technological advancement in boats and boat engines

Innovation in boat engines, such as VTEC system, direct-injection technology, selective gear rotation system, electronic fuel injection capability, and four-stroke technology, increases engine power and demands recreational boats. Engine manufacturers are developing high-powered and low-polluting engines to meet consumer demand and reduce emissions from boating activities. Also, the launch of two and four-stroke engines with direct injection technology that offers increased fuel economy, low emissions, and more power promotes the demand for the advanced recreational boat. Furthermore, market players are introducing twin-turbocharged engines that provide high torque and power, supporting boats equipped with high horsepower engines.

Moreover, ongoing technological developments of outboard recreational boats, such as joystick docking control, propulsion systems, digital throttle controls, and automatic trim controls, strengthen the product demand. Furthermore, the introduction of outboard boats equipped with such advanced features increases the adoption of outboard boats for racing events. So, ongoing technical innovations in boats and boat engines offer growth opportunities for the recreational boating market.

Scope of the Report

The study categorizes the recreational boating market based on power, product, activity, size, and region.

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By Power Outlook (Thousand Units, Revenue, 2017-2027, USD Million)

  • Engine Powered
  • Man Powered
  • Sail Propelled

By Product Type Outlook (Thousand Units, Revenue, 2017-2027, USD Million)

  • Inboard Boats
  • Outboard Boats
  • Inflatable
  • Sail Boats
  • Personal Watercrafts

By Activity Type Outlook (Sales, USD Million, 2017-2027)

  • Watersports & Cruising
  • Fishing

By Size Outlook (Thousand Units, Revenue, 2017-2027, USD Million)

  • Less than 30 ft
  • 30 to 59 ft
  • 60 to 79 ft
  • 80 to 99 ft
  • More than 100 ft
  • Full Custom

By Region Outlook (Thousand Units, Revenue, 2017-2027, USD Million)

  • North America (US, Canada, Mexico)
  • South America (Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, Peru, Rest of Latin America)
  • Europe (Germany, Italy, France, UK, Spain, Poland, Russia, Slovenia, Slovakia, Hungary, Czech Republic, Belgium, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Rest of Europe)
  • Asia Pacific (China, Japan, India, South Korea, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Myanmar, Cambodia, the Philippines, Singapore, Australia & New Zealand, Rest of Asia Pacific)
  • The Middle East & Africa (Saudi Arabia, UAE, South Africa, Northern Africa, Rest of MEA)

By power, the engine-powered segment is projected to account for the largest market share

By power, the recreational boating market is categorized into engine-powered, man-powered, and sail-propelled. In 2020, the engine-powered segment accounted for the largest market share of 72.2% in the global recreational boating market. An engine-powered boat, also referred to as a motorboat or powerboat, is propelled by engine power. Increasing innovation in recreational boat engines, such as diesel-based recreational boating systems, is key for the market’s growth. In addition, various leading companies are collaborating to develop advanced boats equipped with enhanced engines, thereby fueling the market growth.

Moreover, rising demand for watersports & cruising also increases the need for engine-powered recreational boating. Furthermore, the introduction of electric and hybrid boats also boosts the engine-powered segment. These boats are used recreationally for cruising, racing, fishing, duck hunting, water skiing, etc. Engine-powered boats include ferries, fishing boats, motor barges, coasters, cruisers, ski boats, inflatable boats, jet boats, personal watercraft, etc.

Asia Pacific accounts for the highest CAGR during the forecast period

On the basis of region, the recreational boating market is analyzed across North America, Asia-Pacific, Europe, South America, and the Middle East & Africa. Asia Pacific is expected to have the highest CAGR of 6.6% in the worldwide recreational boating market during the projected period. The Asia-Pacific recreational boating market is analyzed across countries such as China, India, Japan, South Korea, and the rest of Asia-Pacific. The rest of Asia-Pacific includes Singapore, Malaysia, Australia, Thailand, Indonesia, New Zealand, and others. A growing economy and rising income levels in countries such as South Korea, Japan, China, India, and others, allow consumers to spend on recreational boating.

The rising economy in China, India, Southeast Asia, and South Korea and growing interest in boat riding primarily help grow the recreational boating market. In addition, increasing tourism, rising water sports operations, and increasing investments in developing markets also foster the development of the recreational boating market in the region.

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Key Market Players

The recreational boating market is mildly concentrated in nature with few numbers global players operating in the market such as Brunswick Corporation, Azimut Benetti Group, Groupe Beneteau, Marine Products Corporation, Hobie Cat Company, Mastercraft Boat Holdings, Inc, Sunseeker International Limited, White River Marine Group, Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd., and Polaris Inc. To get the most market share, each firm pursues its business plan.