Miami Boat Show: Planning Your Visit

By Debbie Hanson

Feb 07, 2017

Boat shows are a great way to learn about new boat models and features. Learn about how to plan your trip to the Miami Boat Show using a few simple tips.

Photo Credit: Miami Boat Show

Planning to attend the Miami Boat Show this year? If not, now is the time to reconsider. If so, and you already have the Miami boat show dates from February 16th through February 20th marked off on your calendar, you are far from alone. Strong consumer confidence and low interest rates have plenty of people ready to launch into the world of recreational boating.

In fact, according to a recent quote from Thom Dammrich, president of the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA), “Economic indicators are working in the industry’s favor—a continuously improving housing market, strong consumer confidence, growing disposable income and consumer spending, and low interest rates all contribute to a healthy recreational boating market. Looking ahead, 2017 is likely to bring new dollar and unit sales gains on par with or better than 2016, and this trend will likely continue through 2018.”

Now that you know why more people are getting on board with the boating lifestyle, you might be interested in a few handy tips that can help you start planning your visit to the Miami Boat Show this year.

• Are you a member of a boat owner's club? Before you buy your tickets for this year, check to see if your boat owner's club offers a discount on tickets.

• Attend on a weekday if possible to avoid the weekend crowds. The first day of the show, Premier Day, is Thursday, February 16th and the boat show hours are from 10 AM to 6 PM. Miami Boat Show dates and hours are Friday, February 17th through Monday, February 20th, hours are from 10 AM to 6 PM daily.

• Use the park-and-ride options that will take you to and from the offsite parking locations. There are free water taxis and shuttle buses that are available to you, so you can get to the Miami Boat Show by sea or by land. You can also purchase parking tickets in advance in order to get a guaranteed space.

• If you are in the market for a new boat, do your research on manufacturers and boat prices in advance. This way, when you get to the show and are presented with special boat show pricing, you are informed. Otherwise, you are likely to miss out on a good buying opportunity.

• Don't try to do the entire show all in one day. There will be over 1,300 boats to check out this year -- including 565 boats in-water and more than 100 yachts. Given the fact that show personnel is expecting more than 100,000 attendees, and there are over 1,000 exhibitors, give yourself plenty of time.

• Dare to dream. Have you always wondered what it would be like to lounge in a luxurious master stateroom or get behind the helm of one of the best fishing boats for offshore trips? This is your opportunity because the Miami Boat Show is the place to do it.

Now you're prepared for the next time someone asks you, "Exactly when is the Miami Boat Show being held this year?" Plus, you can pass along a few bonus boat show tips. Just don't forget to familiarize with the different types of boats before you go. Use our boat comparison tool so that you know your sport fishing boats from your deck boats. Your time spent at any boat show will be much more productive with a little advance planning.
Debbie Hanson
Debbie Hanson
Debbie Hanson is an award-winning outdoor writer, women’s sport fishing advocate, IGFA world record holder, and freshwater guide living in Southwest Florida. Hanson’s written work has appeared in publications such as Florida Game & Fish Magazine, BoatUS Magazine, and USA Today Hunt & Fish. To learn more about her work, visit or follow her on Instagram @shefishes2.