Archive for March, 2011

Is a Cabin Cruiser Right for You?

Friday, March 25th, 2011

Find relaxation on a cabin cruiser

The cabin cruiser has long been a popular choice when it comes to recreational boating.  This type of power boat offers accommodations inside for both passengers and crew members while typically ranging in length from twenty-five to forty-five feet. A cabin cruiser is perfect for families, couples looking for weekend getaways, or just for overall convenience and comfort.

Benefits of Owning a Cabin Cruiser

Since storing a boat on the water can be expensive, a cabin cruiser (depending on its size) can be fully towable allowing summer boaters to take advantage of lower rates offered by many land storage facilities.  A cabin cruiser generally has a fully equipped kitchen (or galley) too, which means there is less need to eat out, or leave the cozy dining room area.

Features of a Cabin Cruiser

Typically, a cabin cruiser offers the following features: various configurations of berths with a possible aft cabin; a toilet or head; some type of heating and cooling capabilities for hot water and air conditioning; plus a generator and compatible land electrical system.  Many times a cabin cruiser also offers a roomy sitting area to escape the sun yet still hav fun and relax.  Over the years, cabin cruisers have become faster (mainly due to updated body designs) and provide good stability as well as overall handling.

How Much does a Cabin Cruiser Cost?

While cabin cruisers were immensely popular in Europe during the 1960-70’s with major manufacturers like Dawncraft and Norman, builders of cabin cruiser have dwindled over the years.  Recreational boaters have turned to runabouts and deck boats while others have gone on to more expensive full sized yachts and mega yachts.

Boat manufacturers still producing cabin cruiser models include:

Cruisers Yachts, Oconto, WI – models range from  300 Express (31’) to 560 Express (58’) with prices starting at $139,000

Stingray, Hartsville, SC –  2011 models range from 195 cs/cx (19’) to 250 cs (25’) with prices starting at $30,000
Marex, Oslo, Norway – 2011 models vary from 270 Estremo (27’) to 370 Aft Cabin Cruiser (37’) with prices starting at $187,000

New or Used?  

If some of the above are out of your price range, you might consider purchasing a used cabin cruiser through a dealer or even at an auction.  On Boat Trader’s website alone, there are currently 2,377 pre-owned cabin cruisers listed for sale ranging from a 1999 Regal 242 Commodore for $12, 995 all the way up to $479,500 for a 2002 Sea Ray 560 Sedan Bridge.  But there are also advantages to purchasing a new cabin cruiser for your recreational boat outings including the manufacturers warranty, personalization through choosing options, along with possible dealership incentives and rebates.

A great tip before you buy any cabin cruiser is to rent the model of your choice for an afternoon or weekend.  This way you can compare features first hand and decided what make and model is best suited to your needs.

Sources:
Flickr.com Photo Credit: Annapolis Retro Yacht by Mr. T in DC

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Discover Boating Online

Tuesday, March 15th, 2011

 

Whether you’re new to recreational boating or have been an avid enthusiast for years, Discover Boating is a valuable online resource offering tips and advice for boaters of all abilities.

Statistics show that almost 70 million individuals across the U.S. participate in some form of recreational boating. Discover Boating was designed to encourage non-boaters to try the sport by showcasing the advantages of recreational boating while giving easy-to-follow tips and advice on to how to navigate the waterways like a pro. Featured articles include choosing the best boat for your lifestyle, doing a cost comparison in relation to other sports, and even tips on how to convince your spouse that boating is right for you.

Discover Boating Online & More!

As part of the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) consumer awareness program, Discover Boating is focused on promoting recreational boating through various ways:

  1. View free DVD entitled ‘Get Started in Boating’ which offers assistance to prospective boaters (available to view online or order a copy via mail)
  2. Marine Five-Star Dealer Certification Program that helps to ensure quality and customer satisfaction when buying or servicing your boat
  3. Product Certification Program helping to ensure standards are met and maintained within the boating industry including locating certified boats and trailers
  4. Boat shows held across the U.S. to encourage the public to join in on recreational boating fun

For the new boater, Discover Boating can help alleviate that unwanted boat stress while offering step-by-step guidance in relation to choosing and financing the right boat, plus a section of frequently asked boating questions to address safety and education along with owner/operator tips. Discover Boating also explores different types of boating activities to enjoy including fishing, sailing, watersports, and power boating.

Keep Up with Discover Boating, Online

For the avid salty dog, Discover Boating can help keep you connected to the boating industry by following their Boating Blog, Facebook and Twitter updates. To help plan your next boating adventure, there’s access to listings of upcoming events, activities, and boat shows plus the Boating News Room that features the latest developments in boating.

Founded in 1979, the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) is the largest boating industry trade organization in the world. The members of NMMA produce over three-quarters of the marine items in use across North America, which means they have a strong voice when it comes to collective advocacy, policy setting, and marketing efforts.

Look for upcoming Discover Boating events coming
to an area near you in 2012:

May 4 – 6 Progressive Insurance Catawba Island Boat Show, Port Clinton, OH
May 11 – 12 Logan Martin LakeFest & Boat Show, Pell City, AL
May 19 – 25 National Safe Boating Week, various U.S. locations
May 19 – 20 MarinaFest, Marina del Rey, CA
June 7 – 10 Progressive Insurance Chicago In-Water Boat Show, Chicago IL
June 8 – 10 National Houseboat Expo, Jamestown, KY
June 20 – 24 Houston Summer Boat Show, Houston, TX
July 6 – 7 Chautauqua Lake Antique & Classic Boat Show, Bemus Point, NY
August 10 – 12 Maine Boats, Homes & Harbors Show, Rockland, ME
August 17 – 19 Carolina Fall Boat Show & Sale, Raleigh, NC
August 17 – 19 Progressive Insurance Summer Boat & RV Super Sale, Richmond, VA
August 18 – 19 Port of Toledo Annual Wooden Boat Show, Toledo, OH
August 23 – 26 Progressive Insurance Michigan City In-Water Boat Show, Michigan City, IN
September 6 – 9 Atlantic City In-Water Power Boat & Brokerage Yacht Show, Atlantic City, NJ
September 7 – 9 Port Townsend Wooden Boat Festival, Port Townsend, WA
September 7 – 9 CNY Fall Boat Sale, Syracuse, NY
September 12 – 16 Progressive Insurance North American In-Water Boat Show, Sandusky, OH
September 13 – 16 Newport International Boat Show, Newport, RI
September 20 to 23 Progressive Insurance Norwalk Boat Show, Norwalk, CT
September 27  – 30 34th Annual Lido Yacht Expo, Newport Beach, CA
September 28 to 30 Progressive Insurance Tampa Boat Show, Tampa, FL
October 2 – 4 IBEX, Louisville, KY

With all of the helpful information and resources that Discover Boating offers, you can simply relax and enjoy yourself on the water. Anchors aweigh matey!

Looking for Marinas in your area?

Be sure to check out our Real-Time Marinas Directory & Fueling Services!
Sources:
Discover Boating
Flickr.com Photo Credit: Somewhere Out There by Sachac

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What is MarineFuel.com, anyway?

Tuesday, March 8th, 2011

For Immediate Release
MarineFuel.com, LLC
2336 SE Ocean Blvd, Ste, 351
Stuart FL 34996    |     Contact: Christine McKenna

 

Have you heard them chatting about it on the docks? Have you seen them blogging about it on the net? Have you overheard a Captain talking about saving thousands of dollars on their last refueling through some new website? 

The consistent rise in fuel prices is driving widespread economic change across the United States, but the consumer’s demand for affordable, high quality marine fuel remains strong.  Finding the best price on preferred fuel products can seem slippery, or even evasive…

That’s where MarineFuel.com comes in…

Are you Wondering….What is MarineFuel.com?

 Answer: 
Comprehensive Marinas Directory serving boaters in the US, Bahamas
& Caribbean with real-time information and on-demand customer support 

Travel Companion.  E-Marina™    |    Fuel Dock Prices

Proprietary searching methodologies which streamline a boater’s digital access to current fuel prices & availability, and/or marina services & rates.  Sophisticated digital tools and On-Demand Concierge Services save you time and money, every time!

Wholesale Fuel Resource.  Fuel Bid Desk

Members (boaters & marinas) have access to “cost plus” pricing for huge savings in large volume fuel purchases. 

Powerful Marketing Platform.  General Advertising  |  Marina Advertising

Specifically designed to fully capture & leverage the benefits of search engine cooperation and social media participation, MarineFuel.com is a leader in the modernization of the marine industry.

Reliable Industry Resource.    Partners    |    About Us

Having secured exclusive partnership contracts with industry pillars, MarineFuel.com is the “Go-To” resource for real-time marine fuel prices, fuel & marina locating tools, and concierge wholesale brokerage services throughout the United States, Bahamas & Caribbean.

Environmental Awareness Advocate.  The Green Captain

Resources for boaters & marinas who care about the oceans, waterways and marine wildlife.   Clean Marina Information, Alternative Energy Research, Carbon Offsetting, Bio-Products, and more.


Want to talk about how we can provide YOU with time and money savings? 
We’re looking foward to hearing from you… CLICK HERE!

Actual Customer Testimonial (received 6-6-11)

“I just wanted to say that I am really enjoying using your website. I’ve been looking for something like this site for some time now, and am glad to have found it. I didn’t realize how much more I was paying for gas than I should have (I was actually driving further and paying more than I am now). The fact that you indicate whether the fuel contains ethanol is an added bonus. I’ve recommended the site to all my boater friends, and mentioned it to sellers each time I’ve gotten gas since. Just wanted to say thanks.”

Thank you “brandon” for taking the time to give us your feedback.  It’s our pleasure serving you!

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Company Profile: Chevron Corporation

Friday, March 4th, 2011

Since 1879, the Chevron Corporation has been a major player in the gas and oil industry in the United States.  With its corporate headquarters in San Ramon, CA, Chevron employs 67,000 people in 180 countries while raking in an annual revenue income upwards of USD $273 billion.

Where Does Chevron Fuel From?

The Chevron Corporation is the largest private oil producer in Kazakhstan; the top producer of oil in Indonesia; and the top producer of oil and gas in Thailand.  In addition, Chevron has development and exploration operations located in:

  • Africa – Nigeria, Chad, Angola, Republic of the Congo, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • Middle East/Asia – Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Azerbaijan, and Bangladesh
  • South America – Brazil, Venezuela, and Argentina
  • Europe – United Kingdom, Denmark, Norway, and the Netherlands
  • North America – oil operations in California, New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, the Gulf of Mexico, Rocky Mountains, Alaska, and Canada

How Chevron Oil is Refined

Generally, the refining process at Chevron is the same as any other refinery: following a series of basic steps including separation (heavy/light), conversion or cracking (rearranging the molecular structure), and treatment (additives).

Where Chevron Oil is Refined

Chevron currently has five refining factories in the U.S. and one refinery in Canada that produce gasoline; production rates are shown as ‘barrels per day’ or bpd in relation to crude oil processing.

  • Pascagoula, MI – 330,000 bpd
  • El Segundo, CA – 285,000 bpd
  • Richmond, CA – 240,000 bpd
  • Perth Amboy, NJ – 80,000 bpd
  • Honolulu, HI – 54,000 bpd
  • Burnaby, BC – 50-55,000 bpd

Chevron Corporation Brands

  • Fuel: bio-diesel, low and ultra-low sulfur diesel, ethanol blended gasoline manufactured under the brand names of Chevron, Texaco, Caltex, Gulf, Unocal, and Standard Oil (limited quantities)
  • Fuel Additives: Techron, Clean System 3, and Chevron Oronite
  • Lubricants: Delo, Havoline, Revtex, Ursa

Chevron’s Eco-Friendly Policies

Chevron shows commitment to water conservation, maintaining healthy eco-systems, and to supporting biodiversity.  Chevron has also set targeted emission policies, is investing in alternative energy projects, and is the largest producer of geothermal energy in the world.

Chevron Corporation Controversy & Environmental Record

  • 1970 – 2000: Chevron evaded taxes to the tune of $3.25 billion on an Indonesian project
  • 1998: Chevron paid a $540,000 fine in regards to their operations at Richmond, CA
  • 2002: Chevron was charged a $2 million fine in regards to an oil spill in Angola
  • 2003: after violating the Clean Air Act in California, Chevron paid a $6 million fine
  • 2006: Nigerian rebels have repeatedly targeted Chevron by sabotaging their pipelines and even by kidnapping Chevron employees
  • 2009: Chevron is currently involved in a lawsuit citing environmental damage caused in Ecuador at the Lago Agrio project
  • 2010: Chevron ranks #64 in the Toxic 100 list of the Top Corporate Air Polluters in the U.S. according to the Political Economy Research Institute (PERI) based on emission quantity and toxicity

Sources:
Wikipedia
Chevron Corporation
Chevron Canada
Ravensworth
PERI

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Boat Loan Rates Financing a Boat Purchase

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011
Boat Loan Rates

Boat Loan Rates Financing a Boat Purchase

Buying a boat is a big investment, and most buyers require the assistance of a boat loan to ease into a boat purchase. Available for both new and used boats, boat loans can help reduce initial cash outlay and spread the expense of a boat over affordable monthly payments. 

With boat loan rates typically comparable to mortgage interest rates, financing a boat purchase can help boaters move up to a larger boat or get into boating for the first time. In order to get the best rates, buyers should be aware of the many factors that can influence lender rates when purchasing a boat. Making adjustments to loan criteria such as the total amount, down payment amount or term can help reduce boat loan rates one percentage point in interest, or more.

Factors that Influence Boat Loan Rates

There are many factors and variables that can impact a buyer’s ability to attain the best possible boat loan rates when financing a boat. These factors will greatly influence available rates from a lender and range from buyer finances to boat condition.  

Some of the variables in boat loan rates and lender requirements include:  

  1. Geographic area – boat loan rates tend to vary by state, region or country
  2. Buyer credit scores – with any loan, lenders favor high credit scores for lower rates
  3. Buyer debt to income ratio – lenders prefer low debt and high income when awarding the best boat loan rates
  4. Buyer’s cash liquidity – a buyer with more available cash assets will be less risky for boat loans
  5. Amount of down payment – a down payment of 10% is typically the minimum amount required, but a higher down payment of 20% will help get lower boat loan rates
  6. Amount of boat loan – boat loan amounts over $100,000 can typically get lower rates and longer terms, but lenders require and require the boat
  7. Boat loan term length – boat loan rates are typically lower for 15 or 20 year loans
  8. Age of boat – lenders may require shorter term lengths and lower loan amounts on older boats for good boat loan rates
  9. Condition of boat – a survey or appraisal may be required by lenders to determine the condition of the boat for financing

Getting the Best Boat Loan Rates

There are many boat financing loan sources to consider when applying for a loan. Boaters should seek out banks or lenders that are members of The National Marine Banker’s Association (NMBA) for financing. NMBA marine lenders are familiar with the process of purchasing a boat and can typically offer the best possible boat loan rates. Some marine lenders also offer refinancing of an existing boat loan with a lower rate. 

New boat purchases should expect to put down a 20% down payment in order to get the best possible boat loan rates. A higher down payment also helps to prevent the boat’s future resale value from being lower than the amount owed on a boat loan. Many marine lenders will set the required loan term based on the age and condition of the boat. With a willingness to have flexibility in term length, down payment and loan amount, boat buyers will be more likely to attain the best boat loan rates available on the market.

When you’ve found the boat, arranged suitable financing, and your dream vessel ready to go, be sure to check MarineFuel.com’s time and money saving features via Fuel Dock Prices™ & E-Marina™ Searching; Our marinas directory is the best for the US, Bahamas and Caribbean… and, our searching tools are paving the way to the future!  Easy access to real-time information and Live Fueling Concerige Services are at your fingertips… register today to see why boaters and marinas trust MarineFuel.com for current fuel prices and marina information.

Sources: 

  1. National Marine Banker’s Association
  2. BoatUS.com

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NOAA Clean Marina Initiative

Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011
NOAA Clean Marina Initiative

See Directory of Participating States – click here

Although true roots date back to 1807 with the founding of the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) was officially established in 1970 as a federal branch of the U.S. Department of Commerce. 

Headquartered in Silver Spring, MD, the responsibilities of NOAA include advising as to potentially hazardous weather conditions, climate monitoring, conducting research, fisheries administration, charting the Earth’s seas and atmospheres, along with creating environmental awareness.

According to the U.S. Coast Guard, there are over 17 million boats registered for recreational use across the nation.  With so many boats on the water, there’s a high chance some pollutants will enter and impact overall water quality from time to time.  It’s important that the recreational boating community, which includes marina owners and operators, are diligent when it comes to eco-friendly boating practices.

What is the NOAA Clean Marina Initiative?

As part of their environmental awareness quest, NOAA developed the voluntary Clean Marina Initiative program designed to encourage pollution reducing eco-friendly practices when it comes to marina owners and recreational boating enthusiasts.  Even though not all states have a Clean Marina Program, NOAA offers participants a variety of information and resources including materials, support, technical help, along with Best Management Practices.

Why should I take part in the Clean Marina Initiative?

As a recreational boater, it’s your duty to ensure you’re not harming the environment while enjoying a day of boating.  It’s as easy as following the suggested Tips for Clean Boaters which offers a wealth of suggestions when it comes to green boating.  Doing your part helps to ensure the viability of waterways for future generations.

As a marina owner, benefits of joining the Clean Marina Program include reducing the possibility of any legal problems due to regulation noncompliance, reducing the cost of waste disposal, free compliance assistance, and the free publicity that comes along with being a certified Clean Marina within your state.  Many recreational boaters will actively seek out a Clean Marina over a standard marina when planning their boating trip itinerary. 

Find reen-marinas hereUsing MarineFuel.com’s E-Marina™ Advanced Search
will allow you to quickly find Green Marinas in the
United States, Bahamas & Caribbean.
 

Additional Clean Marina Resources

As 50% of U.S. residents reside in coastal areas, NOAA’s State of the Coast department also helps to ensure the viability of America’s coastal waters and coastline.  Their objective also includes sustainability for the commercial fishing industry as well as for recreational boating.  The Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management and the Coastal Services Center are part of the NOAA State of the Coast program.

MarineFuel.com features resources for boaters & marinas who care about the oceans, waterways, and marine wildlife through their website feature called The Green Captain™.  For a complete listing of states offering a Clean Marina designation, view the U.S. Directory of States Offering Clean Marina Certification.

 

Sources:
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Flickr.com Photo Credit:
GOES Satellites Capture Holiday Weather Travel Conditions by NASA Goddard Photo and Video

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