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Have you ever wanted to hit the open water on a boat with friends and family, but then remembered that a real boat was the one thing you didn't have? Not everybody has the financial means to own a boat, of course. And renting a boat can be overwhelming for the uninitiated and lead to a number of questions, such as what permits, qualifications and specific directions you need to lease a boat and use it properly on a lake, river or reservoir. Before renting a boat, see thisto know more about boating news boating.

Spring right into

Typically, the peak season to rent a boat begins around the weekend of Memorial Day and runs through summer. Buell informs potential boaters in advance of their plans to make a rental reservation. Marinas are at their peak in the summer and on weekends and may run out of boats to hire. Boating experts also recommend that boaters prepare for the weather and the fact that for several hours they could be on the water.

Follow the rules

That state has its own laws as to whether boat drivers are required to complete a boat training class before operating a vessel. Many states require a class for younger boat drivers, while some states have no requirements, such as Alaska and South Dakota. We've talked to boat rental companies that require renters to sign a waiver that recognizes responsibility for the boat and the people on board. Renters are liable for damage to the boat and injuries suffered, but not for mechanical problems such as a blown engine.

Age limit to rent a boat

For different rental companies, the age requirements for renting a boat vary. To rent at Lake Monroe or Westport Marina, for example, you must be 18, while Geist requires you to be at least 25. Davis says a staff member of the Dewitt Marine will explain how to operate the boat and the "waterways" and provide a map of the lake.

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