By Ken Hegan for MSN

Need a boat in a hurry?

Maybe you want to impress your boss, host a party, flee a Sharknado, elude the bloodhounds, visit a magical hidden island that’s only accessible by water, fool your girlfriend’s parents with an elaborate ruse, escape a zombie horde, and/or dump a bag of bloody evidence…but you don’t have the time, connections or cash to buy a yacht outright.

Then consider renting a boat via a helpful website called GetMyBoat.

GetMyBoat is a ‘collaborative consumption’ startup that connects boat renters and owners. The site currently list over 9,400 boats in 60+ countries, and you can use your credit card to rent kayaks, canoes, paddle boats, catamarans, rowboats, standup paddle boards, and (why not) something called a Power Mega Yacht.

Model yacht

I’m on a boat!

Basically it’s a cost-effective way to taste the joys of luxury boating for a brief period of time, i.e. enough time to search for buried undersea treasure (good for you) or to discreetly dump that neighbour you accidentally hit with your truck (shame on you).

It’s a win-win deal: renters can book a vessel that they’d normally be kicked off of for trespassing, and owners can rent out their craft when they’re just bobbing and collecting barnacles. GetMyBoat is much like renting someone’s apartment through airbnb or someone’s airplane through OpenAirplane. Except that alcohol hits you much harder on a boat. So you’ll get more booze bang for your buck.

You can search by location, length, type and age of craft, private or commercial, how they’re powered, houseboats, and fishing boats.

Find a boat

You can also search for boats with:

  • bars
  • stereos
  • crew
  • jacuzzi (hell yeah)
  • swimming pool
  • Bluetooth
  • climate control
  • dinghy
  • galley stove/oven
  • ski gear
  • windsurfing board
  • jet ski
  • trailer
  • Autopilot (because robots don’t snitch)

All you bring are food, sunscreen, and your first mate whose only job is to lie around in a tiny swimsuit. Then you can enjoy your boat as you shoot a rap video, battle that evil whale, solve a Hardy Boy mystery like the Secret of Smuggler’s Cove, ditch a knife, and then propose to your lover.

Find a boat yacht
GetMyBoat is the brainchild of ‘serial entrepreneurs’ Sascha Mornell and Rafael Collado who grew up on marinas as kids. According to a great interview in Tnooz, a decade ago they “were on a sailing trip on the Atlantic Ocean and they both wondered: ‘Why can’t more people have the opportunity to experience the exhilaration of being on a boat?'”

Of course, as a boat owner himself, Rafael knew the reason why: “Only a small portion of the population can afford the high purchase price, maintenance costs, and gas prices.”

And for those that did own boats, Rafael discovered they were, on average, “only being used 8% of the year, which leaves them idle 92% of the time.”

Ten years later, with more business experience under their belt and the emergence of the sharing economy, GetMyBoat is sailing to the rescue of boat owners and would-be pirates/beachcombers.

In my port city (Vancouver, BC), there are loads of boats for rent.

MOST EXPENSIVE BOAT: an 86-foot Cape Scott yacht that sleeps eight, has a jacuzzi (!), four showers, three staterooms, an office, and crew quarters for $6,240 a day.

LEAST EXPENSIVE BOAT: a Seattle-based 22-foot ski boat for $10 a day (!) or just $65 a week.

What do you think? Is boat sharing something you’d do to find that treasure or flee those ghosts?*
— Ken Hegan


*Everyone knows ghosts can’t travel over water

Read all Ken’s travel stories here

Twitter: @KenHegan

Photo of woman by yacht: John Rowley / Mood Board / Rex Features