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How to transport your boat? which trailer?

by Aurélie Renier
boat launch on a trailer

Fed up of not having a berth at the port? Want to discover lots of locations across Europe? Trailers become useful tools to transport your boat.
A trailer is indispensable for transporting a boat. However, you can’t just rush out and buy one as you need to be aware of certain regulations and get some advice first. Band of Boats will help you tow your boat the ideal way.

Which trailer should I choose for transporting my boat?

Your choice of trailer will vary based on the boat’s construction. There are two very important factors to bear in mind:

  • the length
  • the weight of the boat!
  • Remember to add an extra 20% to the boat’s weight (engine, fuel, equipment, etc.)

For a monohull, use a breakaway trailer with plenty of support rollers under the keel to securely hold the boat in place. Additionally, always remember to calculate your boat height so you can adjust your crank-handles accordingly.

breakaway trailer for boat
For an inflatable, you need a trailer with curvier and therefore wider sides so you can get the tubes through safely. The trailer must be equipped with roller ramps on the sides as well as single centre rollers to support the bottom. Rigid and semi-rigid boats must be mounted on multi-roller trailers so the hull strakes can fit through as well as single centre rollers to secure the bottom of the hull.

multi-roller trailer for boat
Please note that a braking system is compulsory for any trailer with a maximum permissible laden weight of 750 Kg.
In addition, the weight on the tow ball must not exceed 50 Kg with a maximum permissible weight < 500Kg and 80 Kg over 500 Kg.
Wash your trailer with clean water after each use.

Which car should I use to transport my boat?

Your choice of car will depend mainly on the maximum towable weight. 4×4 or crossover cars are very helpful, but are they really necessary?
To find out, you need the GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) as well as the GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating) of your trailer.

GVWR – GVWR = maximum towable weight.

As far as speed limits are concerned, there aren’t any changes for vehicles less than 7 metres long with trailers. Above a GVWR of 3.5 tons, the rules change (in France):

  • Urban areas: 50 Km/h
  • Other roads: 80 Km/h
  • Expressways and motorways: 90 Km/h

As for the licence plate, you keep the same registration number as your vehicle for under 500 Kg of GVW. If it’s above 500 Kg, you need your own registration and vehicle registration for the trailer.

Transporting your boat on a trailer increases your usual fuel consumption by 50 to 100%.

What insurance should I take out for towing my boat?

The weight of the trailer will determine the type of insurance required. Below 500 kg, the trailer is included in the vehicle insurance. You may want to enquire if it’s between 501 and 750 Kg. Above 750 Kg, insurance is compulsory.

It’s great if you want to transport your boat by your own means, but think about asking a professional as this may make things much easier! Our partner AltéaAd Boat specialises in boat transport, so contact them if you don’t want to invest in a trailer.

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