Will the Future of Boat Shows Be Virtual?

2020 was not an easy year. The entire world fell in the grip of the COVID-19 pandemic that made life difficult for people globally. Almost every industry started finding ways to cope with the situation, and so was the yacht industry. Months of lockdown, social distancing, personal hygiene, and many other measures to control the spread of the virus made life even more challenging. However, while many business and industries found it hard to embrace the new normal, many found opportunities even amid all the chaos. Online work, remote working became new normal for many businesses. An increasing number of meetings, conferences, events and exhibitions were conducted online to maintain social distancing and, the trend continues even to date. Though for an industry like a yacht, conducting boat/yachts shows virtually would seem difficult as many would find it difficult to adjust, but keeping the present scenario in the mind, it is seen as an option to reach out to the yacht lovers without creating much fuss.



Boat or yacht shows are a great way to interact with the boating community. You get the opportunity to meet sellers, buyers, yacht brokers, traders, manufacturers, consultants, and many from the industry. You can even find yachts for sale on display, which opens a possibility for you to examine yachts before purchase if you are looking out for one.


So, the question is will virtual boat shows become popular in the next few years?


In 2020 after the pandemic hit most parts of the world, boat shows were cancelled due to the doubts of them getting successful. The cancellation of shows has left people in the industry to question: What is the future of boat shows?


Amidst all the uncertainties, the Palm Beach International Boat Show was one of the first and the only boat show to plan a virtual show last year during the spring season. It included interactive yacht presentations, live virtual boat walkthroughs, and several videos. Although it was online, the show still featured 436 exhibitors, over 150 superyachts and nearly 800 boats. It also offered youth fishing clinics and boating seminars. As the situation is still not under control, it is for the industry experts, brokers, sailors, boaters, buyers, and sellers to decide if virtual shows are going to be the new normal for some time.


The observers believe, although virtual boat shows may not appeal to many in the boating community, they can still be beneficial in many ways. When a show is virtual there are no worries about travel and accommodation issues, and one saves the money spent on them. Moreover, it reaches out to more people, making it accessible to more attendees. Furthermore, people who either love to stay indoors or are unable to go outdoors for health reasons can attend virtual boat shows as well. It provides people with a platform for social interaction from the comfort of their house without worrying about becoming infected. 


In these times of uncertainties, it is difficult to predict how boat shows will be conducted in the future. However, the most essential factor that bothers most of us is, the infection rates must decrease and things go back to complete normalcy so that we can go back to full house yacht shows.

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