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Old 08-04-2015, 01:51 PM   #41
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This is a good point.

But I have also heard on the VHF many disabled boats that are waiting for a fellow boater to come rescue them so they don't have to pay for the tow. To me, part of being self-sufficient is not requesting (requiring?) other boaters to come to your assistance, unless that is a service they provide.

I pay $200/yr for the ability to call a trained professional with the proper equipment to assist... I happen to boat in an area where there are a fleet of 5 full-time vessel assist boats within 50nm, and don't need to impose on other boaters in the case of a mechanical breakdown.

I'm also going to get my 9.9hp kicker motor out of storage and get her back up and running as well.
No argument here!!! I fully agree that you should hire a professional. I would never ask another random boater to tow me. I might ask a friend. And when people are querying me, I always offer to call a tow for them. Have I towed someone(good samaritan), Yes I have. But I am getting older and grumpier and in today's litigious society, no good deed goes unpunished!!!!
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Old 08-04-2015, 01:57 PM   #42
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you need to understand how the towing franchises make their money....and just how important good customer service is to their business health.


it might appear as you say...but it is not that simple.
I am currently shopping for a boat. When I get it, I will join one of the services, if for no other reason than to support the service being available.
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Old 08-04-2015, 02:34 PM   #43
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Peace of mind......more than financial
We were cruising the ICW a few years ago.We left Corpus Christi headed to Port Isabel.About halfway down the coast of Texas smack dab in the middle of nowhere. Our propeller shaft just snapped right in half . Luckily the shaft zinc kept us from losing the prop.We were just cruising along watching a beautiful sunset.So after shutdown.We let the anchor down.I dropped a light down into the water.My wife was more than willing to jump in the water a have a look.She saw the damage and reported back.So there we were,in the middle of nowhere.And it was getting dark.There is no boat traffic that far south.Not to worry ,we called the tow boat.
In the mean time we took showers and had dinner.hung out for awhile.Then took a nap until about 10:30 pm until the tow boat pulled up on us.He towed us all the way up north to Padre Island Yacht Club.We tied up for the night.
He said he would come back for us the next morning.Well.... he actually did.He continued to haul us to Rockport.That is where he left us.That bill was $2,300.All I did was sign the bottom line.
So there really is more than one kind of peace of mind.We were on vacation already.My wife considered all of that excitement to be fun.We took a ton of photos.She still tells the story today.She was happy to have paid for towing ins.
Happy wife.....Happy life

That story was actually much more fun than described.We met so many nice folks in that part of the world.
When we were first towed into the boat yard.I noticed it was really busy for a place so remote.I stepped off the boat and the worker said "are you here for the hurricane"? That was not expected.There was nothing in the forecast just the day before.By the end of the day,rain bands were pummeling us.I could go on ,but I gotta go.
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Old 08-04-2015, 02:38 PM   #44
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obviously not avid long distance cruisers in these cases but...but I always have to chuckle when the spouse is RELIEVED that they are being towed back instead of the skipper driving.


another reason some are willing to pay....priceless.... in some cases...
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Old 08-04-2015, 03:17 PM   #45
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obviously not avid long distance cruisers in these cases but...but I always have to chuckle when the spouse is RELIEVED that they are being towed back instead of the skipper driving.

another reason some are willing to pay....priceless.... in some cases...
Well we are youger folks that still have jobs.We can only go 200 miles east or west.
But when you are in middle of South Texas.You are a long distance cruiser.Because you are a long distance from everything.
The point is that towing ins.is one of the the cheapest expenditures in boating.If it's available . We're doing it.
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Old 08-04-2015, 03:22 PM   #46
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Peace of mind......more than financial
We were cruising the ICW a few years ago.We left Corpus Christi headed to Port Isabel.About halfway down the coast of Texas smack dab in the middle of nowhere. Our propeller shaft just snapped right in half . Luckily the shaft zinc kept us from losing the prop.We were just cruising along watching a beautiful sunset.So after shutdown.We let the anchor down.I dropped a light down into the water.My wife was more than willing to jump in the water a have a look.She saw the damage and reported back.So there we were,in the middle of nowhere.And it was getting dark.There is no boat traffic that far south.Not to worry ,we called the tow boat.
In the mean time we took showers and had dinner.hung out for awhile.Then took a nap until about 10:30 pm until the tow boat pulled up on us.He towed us all the way up north to Padre Island Yacht Club.We tied up for the night.
He said he would come back for us the next morning.Well.... he actually did.He continued to haul us to Rockport.That is where he left us.That bill was $2,300.All I did was sign the bottom line.
So there really is more than one kind of peace of mind.We were on vacation already.My wife considered all of that excitement to be fun.We took a ton of photos.She still tells the story today.She was happy to have paid for towing ins.
Happy wife.....Happy life

That story was actually much more fun than described.We met so many nice folks in that part of the world.
When we were first towed into the boat yard.I noticed it was really busy for a place so remote.I stepped off the boat and the worker said "are you here for the hurricane"? That was not expected.There was nothing in the forecast just the day before.By the end of the day,rain bands were pummeling us.I could go on ,but I gotta go.
You still could have received that same exact service....it is only the financial part that is a relief. So you missed my point still and subsequently did not prove yours. THE TOW BOAT WOULD HAVE SHOWED UP REGARDLESS!!!

But I agree with the rest of your post!!!! It is a great area down there. You really are on the middle of nowhere!!!
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Old 08-04-2015, 03:50 PM   #47
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Ok....whatever.Pardon me for missing your point and also not cruising far enough.I come here every single day for nice folks and good stories.But honestly this forum was the last one that was different than all the rest.thats why I like coming over here.Over the last year,it's becoming like all the rest.I was happy to finally contribute something,but.....
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Old 08-04-2015, 04:18 PM   #48
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The bottom line in all this, in my opinion, is it's a totally individual preference just like almost everything else is that has to do with boating.

Everyone is different. If someone feels that having towing insurance is a smart solution to a potential problem they'd prefer not to deal with, then tow insurance is well worth getting. Someone else may look at it analytically and come to the conclusion that they wouldn't use the insurance enough to warrant the cost and they're willing to deal with the potential hassle of having to conjure up a solution if their engine stops being one.

My wife has no qualms about flying into remote country in the BC and SE Alaska coast ranges where there is no communication whatsoever with the outside (we don't have a sat phone), and doing this in a floatplane powered by a single engine that was manufactured during WWII. But..... when it comes to a boat, she is at ease and confident only in a vessel with two or more engines.

Why the discrepancy? Beats the hell out of me. But that's the way she feels so we have multi-engine boats. A happy and enthusiastic boating partner is far more important than extra space in the engine room and reduced service and maintenance costs.

Towing insurance is the same way. It exists because there are enough boaters who feel it provides a degree of confidence, peace of mind and problem-solving that is worth paying for. If we had a single engine boat we'd probably have towing insurance if for no other reason that it would provide my wife with a degree of the kind of confidence she finds with a second engine under the floor.

Some people buy a fast boat that uses a ton of fuel to get to the same place the fellow in the slow boat goes using a fraction of the fuel but four times the time. Paying for the ton of fuel is worth it for the fast boat guy, and not paying for a ton of fuel is worth it for the slow boat guy. Having or not having towing insurance is no different.
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Old 08-04-2015, 04:29 PM   #49
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Ok....whatever.Pardon me for missing your point and also not cruising far enough.I come here every single day for nice folks and good stories.But honestly this forum was the last one that was different than all the rest.thats why I like coming over here.Over the last year,it's becoming like all the rest.I was happy to finally contribute something,but.....
Sorry man....I didn't mean to offend and it was nothing personal. I was just trying to make that point. I will get off of it now. Please accept my apologies!
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Old 08-04-2015, 04:29 PM   #50
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After a bonehead maneuver that resulted in my anchor rode fouling both props and the boat drifting to a rocky levee on a falling tide, I got my money's worth out of my tow insurance. One diver dove on the boat with the following results: Two props cleared, one anchor and ride recovered, boat towed from shore for an uneventful restart and continuation of our week-long trip. Cost would have been over $1300, but no charge for me.

I won't leave home without my BoatUS/Vessel Assist tow insurance. If I never am towed again, I still gain tremendous peace of mind...even with twins.
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Old 08-04-2015, 04:32 PM   #51
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Maybe tow companies could provide a discount to twin engine boats!!!!....
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Old 08-04-2015, 04:49 PM   #52
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We have towing insurance with Boat US and we have some included with our boat policy. I talked to our agent a while back about towing coverage and mentioned the Boat US coverage. His reply was Boat US was primary. Between the two policy's we have a combined $4K worldwide. Boat US has some restrictions like notification first, max. per hour plus a cap and I'm sure at least one other restriction I missed. Our boat policy has similar restrictions but no prior notification if an emergency. We've never tested it but it does give piece some piece of mind.
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Old 08-04-2015, 05:35 PM   #53
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Just checked my yacht insurance policy. My insurance covers the cost of towing up to my hull value. I see no need for other coverage. The difference between the coverage under my yacht policy and under a towing insurance policy is that I would most likely have to pay the bill and then submit a claim for reimbursement.

Before buying additional towing coverage everyone should check their primary yacht insurance coverage. If you are covered under your primary policy, then what you are really buying with Boat US or similar coverage is the use of the towing companies money. So for a $1,000 towing bill, a $200 premium comes to a 20% service charge for the use of the money for the time it would have taken for reimbursement under your primary policy.
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Old 08-04-2015, 05:36 PM   #54
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One point I just thought of...the dingy.


For those that range far and wide with the dingy (powered dingy)...it is also covered and worth it unless you carry the tools, spare parts, and a lot of drinks/sunscreen to git'er done and get home or row all the way.


Much nicer for the towboat to just drop you off at your transom and fix the engine at your leisure...like with a cold one and the steaks sizzling....
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Old 08-04-2015, 05:40 PM   #55
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Just checked my yacht insurance policy. My insurance covers the cost of towing up to my hull value. I see no need for other coverage. The difference between the coverage under my yacht policy and under a towing insurance policy is that I would most likely have to pay the bill and then submit a claim for reimbursement.
Not doubting you...but is the first time I ever heard that.

I would check and double check how many times you can make a towing claim before it hurts your premiums and or gets you cancelled. I have heard of that a few times that big towing claims can get you dropped. Even my boat insurance guy has towing insurance for just that reason.
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Old 08-04-2015, 05:45 PM   #56
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.have both Boat US and Sea tow because they don't want to wait. s.
We have both because we boat in different areas. You also mentioned member prioritization or members only and on the lake we lived on, members got to the front of the line.

The name of the game too is signing up or otherwise getting members in your area.

Someone mentioned incentive. Well, you fail to serve members and word gets around fast. Soon there are no renewals and not enough tow business to support servicing the area.


Now, the worst thing I believe Boat US has ever done with their towing is the Basic $24 plan which on the lake nearly every dealer was giving a year of it with a boat sale and many marinas were including it with annual leases. People don't understand that it only pays the first $50. However, it does get you treated as a member.

On the lake, bringing fuel to boats was a large part of the business.
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Old 08-04-2015, 06:03 PM   #57
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One point I just thought of...the dingy.


For those that range far and wide with the dingy (powered dingy)...it is also covered and worth it unless you carry the tools, spare parts, and a lot of drinks/sunscreen to git'er done and get home or row all the way.


Much nicer for the towboat to just drop you off at your transom and fix the engine at your leisure...like with a cold one and the steaks sizzling....
A very good point. I have recently been stranded on my dinghy. And it wasn't pleasant. Luckily I was close to home.

Which brings up another point. I am almost positive the policy holder(Sea Tow,etc.) is covered on any boat that he is responsible for. If you borrow your buddy's boat(and your buddy canNOT be aboard), then you are covered on his boat or any other boat as long as the uncovered owner is not aboard.
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Old 08-04-2015, 06:08 PM   #58
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A very good point. I have recently been stranded on my dinghy. And it wasn't pleasant. Luckily I was close to home.

Which brings up another point. I am almost positive the policy holder(Sea Tow,etc.) is covered on any boat that he is responsible for. If you borrow your buddy's boat(and your buddy canNOT be aboard), then you are covered on his boat or any other boat as long as the uncovered owner is not aboard.
true..it also covers certain charter situations and a few others I would have to look up to be positive.

towing insurance deserves a look by all boaters In areas mostly or solidly covered...but I'll agree it is not for everyone...even if it is cheaper than most things in boating.
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Old 08-04-2015, 06:24 PM   #59
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Ok....whatever.Pardon me for missing your point and also not cruising far enough.
I think you missed his point again.
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Old 08-04-2015, 06:36 PM   #60
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