Rving vs Boating

rv vs boatWe have been asked to blog about Rving vs Boating. In this post we will be comparing our 35ft 2013 Pilot travel trailer that we have had for over 4 years and a 46ft 2000 Hunter sailboat that we have had for a year and a half.


On the go lifestyle
Adventure/ Exploring new places
Lack of space (personal and storage)


Initial cost: Rv-Under 40k, boat- over 100k. NOTE: There are tons of options for rv’s and boats so price ranges vary but again we are comparing our travel trailer and our sailboat.
Maintenance: Rv- hundreds a year, boat- thousands a year.FB_IMG_1502391077655
RV Parks/ Marinas: First off marinas usually charge by the foot as opposed to standard rates at an rv park. The average nightly cost (transit rate) at a marina is $2-$3 a foot. For our 46ft boat that would be about $92-$138 a night. Way higher than what we would spend at a rv park (granted you can find luxury rv parks that high but we like to stay under $35 a night).  When it comes to monthly rates and seasonal rates marinas are way cheaper! Example: A month at a military rv park = $550 A month at a military marina =$350. Seasonal you can get boat slips for less than $10 a day! NOTE: Some marinas may charge a live aboard fee on top of the monthly rate (usually around $100 a month)20161014_154858


Boon Docking: Can be done in either a RV or Sailboat but it is so much easier to drop anchor than to find a legal/safe spot to park the RV. On the contrary sleeping while “on the hook” can be a little nerve racking the first few times (and especially during bad weather). If you stop in your rv and set up you know you aren’t going anywhere but in a boat you are constantly moving with the tide and with the wind, hoping and praying your anchor doesn’t drag.
Locations: Rv= US, Canada, and Mexico. Sailboat= ANYWHERE your heart desires (if you have the courage to conquer the open seas.)FB_IMG_1502391206257

Safety: RV worries= road accidents, high winds/tornados, robbery. Boat worries= Boat sinking, running aground, drowning, electrical fires, high winds, lightning hitting your mast, engine failure, boat capsizing, falling off the boat, electrical shock drowning, widow makers (hidden objects in the water you could hit), sharks, jelly fish, pirates. Ok some of that is a little extreme but living on a boat is defiantly more of a safety concern.FB_IMG_1502391086350

Activities: RV life is campfires, hiking, exploring the great outdoors! Boat life is fishing, crabbing, swimming, the best sunsets you will ever see!

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Community: Our BIGGEST surprise is how amazing the boating community is! Within moments of pulling into a marina slip your neighbors are helping you with your dock lines, sharing fishing/boating stories and inviting you on board for a cocktail. Unlike what have experienced with rv neighbors who are more closed off and you may barely see. Every weekend at a marina is definitely a party!

Travel: A typical travel day for us by boat= Watching the weather like a hawk and waiting for a nice sunny day to move to next location. It also includes beautiful views, open waters, kids playing below deck, making lunch while cruising, throwing out a fishing line and trolling for dinner, laying out and getting a tan. On the contrary a typical travel day for us by rv= kids bored and tired of their car seats, traffic, stress, wasted time stopping for lunch, potty breaks, and to fill up gas.


Hookups: Sewer…Boat slips don’t usually have a dump station at every slip (I’ve only seen one marina that did) so you will have to move your boat each time to empty which can be a hassle, but your grey tanks (sink and shower water) go directly into the ocean so you only have to dump the black tank (toilet waste).  Water hookup is the same but our rv had a 50gal holding tank and our boat could hold 200 gallons. Electric for a rv is 30 or 50amp, boat was two 30amps or a 50 split.


-The refrigerator/freezer setup is better in our rv.

-Our vehicle is always with us when using the rv. When we are on the boat and move locations we need to either walk, call an uber/taxi, or get a rental car. We usually get a rental car to go pick up our truck and then bring the truck to the new marina. Its like moving twice to each location.

-We have a washer/dryer combo on the boat which is AMAZING as opposed to going to a laundromat.

-The kids have their own rooms on the boat in the rv they have bunk beds in our living room

-Getting groceries is quite an adventure when on a boat. Especially if we don’t have our truck. Check our YouTube video below for a typical grocery shopping day:

Feel free to comment below with questions you may have or add your own personal experiences in rving and/or boating. We love hearing from other full-time families!