When it comes to the perfect weekend activity, having a BBQ or spending some time out on the water are probably two items high on the list for most Australians. Combining both of these activities into one incredible day out might sound like a dream come true, but you can make it a reality by hiring a BBQ boat for the day.
BBQ boats are essentially large pontoons that have a built-in BBQ. They can be hired in many locations around the country and can be found near rivers, inlets, bays and broad waters where the water is fairly calm. If hiring a BBQ boat sounds like an idea you'd like to try, then here are four things you should know.
1. You don't need a boat licence
BBQ boats aren't restricted to use by people who have a current boat licence. Because they're only used on calm, sheltered water and don't have a powerful motor, any adult can hire one and drive it. You don't even need any previous boating experience. They're easy to use, and the BBQ boat hire company will show you the ropes before you set sail.
2. Make sure you don't exceed the passenger limits
There are several different sizes of BBQ boats that are commonly available for hire. These generally range from six to twelve passengers, although some companies may have vessels that can carry more. For safety, legal and insurance purposes, it's vital that you don't exceed the maximum number of passengers that the boat is designed for.
3. Check what onboard amenities are offered
It goes without saying that a BBQ boat will have a BBQ on board for you to cook up a feast on. Most will also have a sink for cleaning up and a flushable toilet to make your day out more enjoyable and convenient. When you book your hire, check whether the boat has an onboard esky and water storage tank. If not, you'll need to provide your own for drinking water and for storing food and cold drinks.
4. Make sure that alcohol is permitted
Most Australian BBQs wouldn't be complete without some cold beers or a glass of chilled white wine. However, if you're planning to have alcohol on board, make sure that you check with the hire company first. Generally, it will be permitted, although you may need to pay a security bond to insure against damages. Also, remember that drink driving laws apply for boating, so make sure that there's a designated driver who stays below the legal limit.