How to Convert Someone Who Isn’t Interested in Boats

How to Make Someone Fall in Love with Boating

You may love boating, but there's a chance your partner, your kids, or your friends don't share your interest. How can you win over someone who isn't naturally interested in boats? Can you convert them to fall in love with boats and boating activities?

The short answer is yes – or at least, probably.

How do you do it?

Don’t Force It

Most people are open to the idea of finding a new hobby, but nobody wants to feel forced or pressured into accepting a new activity. When you introduce someone to the world of boating, do so patiently and calmly. Don’t make someone feel like they must be interested in boating to remain in good standing with you, and if they’re adamant about not wanting to go on your boat, don’t keep pushing the issue. Even if the “pushy” approach is successful in getting someone to join you, they may grow to be resentful of the entire experience as a result.

Choose the Right Boat

Some of your success will depend on your ability to find and use the right boat. If you’re with someone who loves adventures and the thrill of speed, a power boat may be ideal. If you’re trying to convince your family to join you for boating, a bigger boat with more space may be better. In general, roomy and functional boats (in good condition) make for excellent group experiences.

Address Fears and Apprehensions

If you’re trying to convert someone who has fears or apprehensions about boating, try to address those fears and apprehensions. For example, if you’re working with someone who doesn’t know how to swim, you might be able to assuage their concerns by telling them about your onboard lifejackets and safety equipment. If someone is afraid of open water in general, you might have your work cut out for you. Some anxieties and fears may be too strong to overcome, so don’t push too hard here.

Find Common Ground

There are tons of activities you can try in the boating world, including swimming, wakeboarding, fishing, and of course, simple activities like sunbathing. If you want to make a compelling case for why this person should join you, find an activity that both of you will enjoy equally.

For example, are they a foodie? Maybe they like the idea of catching, cleaning, and cooking their own fish. Are they a thrill seeker? Wakeboarding might be something that interests them. Do they just like relaxing in a quiet place? Take them to an area with no other boats and bring some food to enjoy an onboard meal together.

Show Interest in Their Hobbies

If you show interest in the hobbies of the people around you, they’ll probably reciprocate. They aren’t currently into the idea of boating, but you may not be particularly interested in basketball, video games, crocheting, or the other hobbies they have. Spend some time with them, doing what they love to do, and you’ll probably have a great experience. Afterward, they may be much more interested in following you in your favourite hobby.

Start Off Slow

If you do convince this person to join you on a boating expedition, start off slow. Don’t immediately recruit them into a multi-day marathon trip or ask them to go fishing with you every morning for a week. Instead, start with a light to moderate activity and only stay out for a few hours at a time. If you overdo it, you might end up turning this person off.

Experiment With New Activities

If your guest shows signs of starting to like boating, but they need some extra persuasion or motivation, consider experimenting with new activities. Try various water sports or water-related activities on your boat, or rent a totally different kind of boat and see how that feels. Your guest will feel involved in the process of choosing new activities – and sooner or later, they’ll probably find something they love.

Ask for Feedback

This experience isn’t just about you and your enjoyment. It’s also about your guest’s enjoyment. Accordingly, you should ask for feedback regularly. Ask them what they think about this current activity. Ask them what they’ve liked the most so far and if there’s anything they haven’t liked. Ask them if there’s anything you can do to make the experience more enjoyable. When they answer these questions and tell you their thoughts, listen carefully; it’s the best opportunity you have to tailor the experience to their wants and needs.

Accept Mistakes Gracefully

Your guests won’t know even the most basic elements of boating etiquette, nor will they know how to operate your boat or how to treat your boat. Because of this, they’re probably going to make mistakes – and they might be irritating or expensive mistakes.

However, it’s important to stay cool and accept these mistakes gracefully. If you show irritability or anger in response to an innocent mistake, it could make your guest refuse to ever boat with you again.

Make Each Boating Experience Meaningful and Memorable

Do what you can to make each boating experience meaningful and memorable. If you’re taking your spouse or partner, prepare a candlelit dinner. If you’re taking your kids, bring along their favourite game and play it on the back of the boat. Know who you’re working with and cater to them to make this experience more exciting and engaging.

Know When to Quit

Also, it’s important to know when to quit. Some people, no matter how hard you try, simply won’t be interested in boating. If you’ve tried all these strategies and more, they may be unpersuadable – so it’s best to cut your losses and move on.

If you have a boat you love, and one that can accommodate all the activities you want to try, you’ll have a much easier time convincing other people to join you in your favourite hobby. Whatever kind of boat you’re looking for, we probably have it – so browse our selection of new and used vessels today!

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