Surveys

A big thank you to those of you who completed our Cost of Boating Survey 2009. Clearly not everyone keeps records of how much running a boat costs, or wants to know how true “Bring On Another Thousand” is! Those costs were the “must haves”, so we ended up with 44 very useful sets of data,

as in the table below:

Number of Data Sets

Previous Year

This Year

Fixed costs

40

44

Variable Costs (records)

25

29

Variable Costs (estimate)

9

11

Our main goal was to find some typical boat costs, so that we could monitor increases year on year. So maybe you will recognise your boat in the table opposite (figures in brackets in the This Year section show the % increase above the Previous Year figures; figures marked * were estimates):

Turning to the other information we gathered while we had respondents' attention: of the 44 boats for whom data was entered, 1 was a Cruiser, 2 were Barges, 40 were Narrowboats and the Dinghy had an electric outboard motor. Clearly this doesn't record a statistically reliable sample of NABO boaters, but nevertheless it does act as an indicator. Look out for a simpler, more comprehensive survey in the coming months.

The Narrowboat dimensions (including a motor and butty, counted as a single length) were categorised as below:

Length

20'1”-30'0”

30'1”-40'0”

40'1”-50'0”

50'1”-60'0”

60'1”-70'0”

70'1”-80'0”

 

Count

1

3

10

22

2

2

 

Width

6'7”

6'8”

6'9”

6'10”

6'11”

7'0”

7'1”

Count

1

1

1

33

2

1

1

Overall, draft varied between the enviable(?) 9” and 4' 0”, as below:

Draft (all)

0'1”- 1'4”

1'5”-1'8”

1'9”-2'0”

2'1”-2'4”

2'5”-2'8”

2'9”-3'0”

3'1”-4'0”

Count

1

3

15

10

10

4

1

19 of the boats had been purchased second-hand, and of those purchased new, the newest was purchased in 2007, the oldest in 1989, with a mean age of 11 years.

Apparently most NABO boaters who own up are around the legal retirement age:

Age

36-45

46-55

56-65

66-75

76-85

86+..

Count

3

3

21

11

1

1

 

 

Typical Boat Costs

Dinghy

Cruiser

N Barge

W Barge

N/B A

N/B B

N/B C

 

Length

7' 10”

27' 0”

61' 0”

72' 0”

41' 0”

56' 10”

70' 0”

 

Beam

4' 2”

7' 0”

6' 10”

13' 10”

6' 10”

6' 10”

6' 10”

 

Draft

0' 9”

2' 4”

2' 2”

4' 0”

2' 1”

2' 5”

1' 10”

 

Age

5

s/h

s/h

s/h

s/h

7

20

 

Hrs Cruising/year

90

80

500

123

350

420

60

 

 

 

 

 

P

R

E

V

I

O

U

S

 

Y

E

A

R

Licence

70

374

 

1254

475

552

650

Insurance

60

145

 

760

268

308

250

Mooring

 

 

 

 

1300

1858

515

BSC

 

 

 

 

 

98

80

Diesel/Petrol

 

45

 

1800*

120

338

1240

Gas

 

12

 

 

20

 

105

Coal/Wood

 

 

 

 

50

 

150

Rout.Maint'ce

 

98

 

 

180

358

300

Blacking/A-F

 

 

 

 

 

 

250

Extr'y Maint'ce

 

 

 

 

100

 

1000

Fxd. C. Sub Total

130

519

 

2014*

2043

2718

1415

Var. C. Sub Total

 

155

 

1800*

470

794

3125

TOTAL

130

674

 

3814*

2513

3512

4540

 

 

 

 

 

 

T

H

I

S

 

Y

E

A

R

Licence

75 (7.1)

405 (8.3)

636

1320 (5.3)

497 (4.6)

568 (2.9)

707 (8.8)

Insurance

65 (8.3)

194 (2.8)

161

700 (-7.9)

274 (2.2)

312 (1.3)

260 (4.0)

Mooring

 

262

1790

0

1600 (23.1)

2730 (46.9)

555 (7.8)

BSC

 

 

135

180

111

 

 

Diesel/Petrol

 

89 (97.8)

300

2000*(11.1)

150 (25.0)

482 (42.6)

806 (-35.0)

Gas

 

13 (8.3)

130

 

30 (50.0)

 

45 (-57.1)

Coal/Wood

 

 

110

 

70 (40.0)

 

100 (-33.3)

Rout.Maint'ce

 

77 (-21.4)

350

 

200 (11.1)

427 (19.3)

375 (25.0)

Blacking/A-F

 

 

250

3280*

325

730

 

Extr'y Maint'ce

 

60

1275

2350*

200 (100.0)

3400

750 (-25.0)

Fxd. C. Sub Total

140 (7.7)

816 (57.2)

2587

2200*(9.2)

2371 (16.1)

3610 (32.8)

1522 (7.6)

Var. C. Sub Total

 

239 (54.2)

2550

7630*(323.9)

1086 (131.1)

5039 (534.6)

2076 (-33.6)

TOTAL

140 (7.7)

1055 (56.5)

5137

9830*(157.7)

3457 (37.6)

8649 (146.3)

3598 (-20.7)

Figures in Brackets show the percentage increase

On average, contributors spend about 5 hours cruising per day on 93 days, totalling 380 cruising hours and are aboard for 173 days a year.
Even non continuous cruisers are aboard 136 days a year, cruising for half of them.
The 9 Continuous Cruisers cruise, on average, just under 4 hours a day on just over 200 days a year.

Since last November, boaters buying diesel have to sign a declaration at the point of sale, to say how much will be used for propulsion, and how much for domestic purposes (i.e. heating, charging batteries, cooking etc.) Some boatyards will only accept a fixed declaration of 60%, but HMRC give users the right to declare the intended usage. Those who had made a declaration of % diesel used for propulsion declared as below:

%

0

1-10

11-20

21-30

31-40

41-50

51-60

61-70

71-80

81-90

Count

7

3

3

4

1

2

9

1

2

1


 

Respondents Areas and Moorings:

Current Navigation Area

South: 11
London/Thames: 4
Anglian: 1
Midlands: 13
Northwest: 13
Other: 2

Home Navigation

Coventry Canal: 2
Grand Union Canal: 8
Kennet & Avon Canal: 3
Leeds & Liverpool Canal: 2
Llangollen Canal: 2
Macclesfield Canal: 1
Peak Forest Canal: 1
Regent's Canal: 1
River Nene: 1
River Thames: 2
Shropshire Union Canal: 2
Southwick Canal: 1
Staffs & Worcs Canal: 2
Trent & Mersey Canal: 7
Continuous Cruiser: 9

Type of Mooring

Canal Off-line: 1
Canal Off-side: 6
Canal Towpath side: 1
Continuous Cruiser: 9
End of Garden: 5
Marina: 20
Out of Water: 1
River: 1

 

Licences (some boats have more than one licence):

British Waterways E&W Annual Licence (Canals and Rivers): 36 

BW / EA Annual Gold Licence: 6

British Waterways Short-Term Licence: 2

Environmental Agency Annual Licence (Anglian): 1

Environmental Agency Annual Licence (Thames): 2

Environmental Agency Short-Term Licence (Thames): 4

Avon Trust short term: 1

River Avon, Bristol Harbour: 1

BW 6 month Canal & River: 1

 

We hope you found this analysis interesting. Was the survey worth it? We certainly think so, and we are grateful to the 38 people who said they are willing to repeat the exercise next year. It helps us represent YOU better.