Preparing for the Boat Show
January 29, 2016 11:52 AM | Tagged as Boat Show Tips, Central Illinois, Springfield Boat Show

In central Illinois January, February, and March are the hardest months to get through. The holidays are over and the cold weather has set in. Most people rarely leave their homes refusing to face the bitter cold. I have a solution to get you out of your house and dreaming of the warmer days ahead. Head to the Springfield Boat Show at the Illinois State Fairgrounds February 26th, 27th, and 28th and browse the latest and greatest boats local dealers have to offer.

As we, at the Lake Springfield Marina, prepare for the boat show on our end, I thought I might offer you, the consumer, some tips to prepare as well!

Boat shows can be overwhelming! Every dealer has “exactly what you need.” So before the show, do your research so you know exactly what you and your family needs actually are. The following questions may help you narrow your search:

- What types of boating activities are you interested in?
- How many passengers do you expect to have?
- What type of propulsion do you prefer?
- What boat length best accommodates your needs?
- What is your price range?
- Where will you be storing your boat? Will you be trailering it or keeping it in a slip?

After answering all of these questions, you will have a good idea of what type of boat you are interested in. At the show you can feel relaxed knowing what you’re looking for. Then, you can ask the dealers to get a closer look at the boats that interest you and they can answer any remaining questions you have.

Once at the show, many “sales people” will approach you. Many dealers bring ‘fillers’ to take up space. Don’t be afraid to ask them if they are an expert on the brand you are interested in. Another point of interest would be if they have been to the company’s training or if they have been certified. A boat is a major purchase. You should have confidence that your salesperson is able to give you credible information about the boat and brand you are looking at. A certified, trained, specialist will be able to easily guide you through the boat buying process and ease any concerns you may have.

So what’s the deal with these “only at show” deals? Most customers don’t realize that manufacturers give incentives to create a sense of urgency. These incentives are only offered to the dealer for the boat show. If you are unsure if you are ready to buy at the boat show, talk to your salesperson. They will be able to tell you which incentives are manufacture based vs. which incentives are dealer based. If you decide to buy the following week, you will know what offers will still be available to you.

I hope these tips will help you be relaxed and enjoy your experience at the boat show. We look forward to seeing you February 26th, 27th, and 28th at the Illinois State Fairgrounds for the 23rd Annual Springfield Boat Show!

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