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Boat Show Do's and Don'ts

With the summer season winding down, a new excitement for the cruising and racing sailor alike rises on the fall horizon, boat shows! With these shows comes the opportunity to see the newest boat designs on display, shop for new sails or canvas, scope out the latest technology in energy efficient solar panels or those new weather radar overlay features on the latest chartplotter. All in one place! Maybe instead, these shows bring the opportunity for you to meet your favorite sailing YouTubers and social media influencers, snap a selfie for your own socials? There’s no mistaking that boat shows are an exciting time for the sailor and sailing industry. Calling upon years of experience, we’ve polled both those attending and working the shows for top tips to maximize the experience.

DO's and DON’Ts of Boat Shows. 

  • Do bring a small backpack or shoulder bag with sunscreen and room for small purchases.
  • Don't hesitate to ask for directions... many have attended the boat show for decades and most know the quickest way to the water refill station, the head, or where to grab a bite to eat. 
  • Do bring a lifejacket for your small kiddos, the docks can get crowded.
  • Don’t fall in the water.
  • Do ask your sailmaker about the best downwind solution for your cruising boat. Furling AWA/Code sails can be a perfect option for your sailing needs. 
  • Do come prepared with all the details about your boat. Mast-head rigged, in-mast or in-boom furling, outboard leads, traveler location, measurements would be great, but that level of detail can be worked out using our database.
  • Don't be afraid to ask any question about sail design, materials, or trimming tips... our team has been doing it for years and we genuinely want to help you have the best experience.
  • Do park in the remote lots and use the bus, ride a bike, dial up your favorite ride-share app, or use local e-scooters or e-bikes. There’s so much to explore around your favorite hosting town. Visit the Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport, the Naval Academy in Annapolis, bask in the French Riviera sun in Cannes.
  • Don’t be alarmed when you’re asked to remove your shoes before boarding. 
  • Do wear non-marking comfortable footwear that is easy to put on and take off. 
  • Do read up on our latest article “Conversations with your sailmaker” that details out more info so you’ll be prepared to get an accurate quote from our Quantum experts. Information such as:
    • For cruising: Ask about options for shorthand sailing for the sailor with a smaller crew. 
    • For racing: Ask to compare your setup to your competitors’.

Some more tips, just for fun: 

  • For the Annapolis attendees: Don't get a level 5 on your first trip to Pussers. Ease your way into celebrating that new sail purchase.
  • Do try and sample it all: Steamers, stuffies, clam cakes, all the different crab dips and regional libations. Boat show towns are fun, enjoy the local vibe!
  • Do make sure you’ve got room on the CreditCard or ApplePay. No, you might not need a new foulweather jacket, but when you see the deal for 40% off, go for it, indulge yourself. You’ll be happy when you're dry. 
  • Don’t forget to get something for your sailing partner/spouse/friend. You’ll be happier if they’re dry too. 
  • Do pretend, dream, and live vicariously. Embrace the ambition of a larger yacht, that far-away destination it will take you.
  • Do envision yourself in the cockpit surrounded by your friends laughing about how you almost fell in trying to pick up a mooring ball. 
  • Don’t actually fall in. Remember one hand for you, one hand for the boat. 
  • Don’t take a nap onboard and definitely do not use the head down below on any boat in the show. (Big No-No!)
  • Do drink a lot… of water. Hydration is key to having fun.

Finally and most importantly: Do stop by the Quantum Sails booth! Even if you’re not buying sails. We love to chat with all sailors and we’re so excited you chose to spend your day at the boat show with us.

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The Discussion

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