Boat Transport: Can Boat Transport Companies Transport Small Boats?

Patrick MacFarland Patrick MacFarland · Updated: April 12, 2023 / Published: April 4, 2023

When you own a boat, you want it to be in the water as much as possible. However, sometimes transporting your boat from one location to another is necessary. Boat transport services can help make this process easier and provide peace of mind. But, can they transport small boats?

The simple answer is yes. Boat transportation companies can transport boats of various sizes and types. In this blog post, we will discuss everything you need to know about boat transport for small boats and provide you with tips for choosing the right boat transporter.

Types of Small Boats

Before we dive into the specifics of boat transport, let’s define what we mean by small boats. Small boats can range in size from a couple of feet to around 30 feet. They can have different types of hulls, including flat-bottomed hulls, round hulls, and v-shaped hulls. Some examples of small boats include:

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  1. Kayaks
    2. Canoes
    3. Dinghies
    4. Inflatables
    5. Jon boats
    6. Fishing boats
    7. Pontoon boats

When it comes to transporting small boats, the type of boat you have will affect the transportation process. For example, inflatable boats can be transported in a duffel bag or rolled up, while pontoon boats require specialized trailers.

Methods of Boat Transport

When you are ready to ship your boat, there are different methods that you can choose. These methods include:

  1. Boat Trailer Transport: This is the most common method of boat transport. Boat shipping companies can attach a trailer to their truck and haul your boat on a trailer. This method is often used for boats that can fit on a trailer.
  2. Flatbed Transport: This method involves using a flatbed truck to transport a boat. It is most commonly used for smaller boats that can be lifted by a crane.
  3. Water Transport: If your boat is located close to a waterway, boat haulers can move your boat by water. They can also use a combination of land and water transport to get your boat to its final destination.

Tips for Choosing the Best Boat Transport Company

Now that you understand the basics of small boat transport, it’s time to choose a boat shipping company. Here are some tips to help you make the right decision:

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  1. Experience: Look for a company that has experience transporting all kinds of boats, small and larger boats. Ask for references and check online reviews.
  2. Licensing and Insurance: Make sure the company you choose is licensed and insured. This will provide you with peace of mind knowing that your boat is in good hands.
  3. Pricing: Get multiple boat shipping quotes from different boat delivery companies to ensure you are getting a fair price. Keep in mind that the cheapest option may not be the most reliable.
  4. Communication: Make sure the company you choose has good communication. They should provide updates on the progress of your boat’s transport and be available to answer any questions you may have.

Boat Shipping Cost Factors

There are several factors, though, that go into the cost of boat shipping. Let’s take a look at them below.


A smaller boat will cost less than transporting a larger boat. The weight, width and length are all factored in to determine the cost.


Boat transport costs are determined per mile, which means that a larger distance will increase the overall cost of your boat shipping.


If the destination is remote and hard to get to, then it will cost more. If the port that you are putting the boat in has costly fees, then this will increase the cost more, as well.


The summer months end up being more expensive. The spring and autumn months are usually the cheapest. The winter months end up being more expensive because of the weather conditions that could impact transport.

How Long Does It Take for a Small Boat to be Delivered?

Usually a boat shipping company traveling by land will deliver your small boat in a matter of days. For example, a delivery that has to go from Maine to San Diego will take approximately 5-7 business days to get there. A boat getting shipped from North Carolina to New York can take 2-3 business days (roughly half the amount of time) because of the proximity between the two cities.

Bottom Line

Boat transport companies can transport small boats of various types and sizes. When you are in need to ship a boat, make sure you choose a boat transport company that has the right experience, licensing and insurance, fair pricing, and good communication. With the right boat transport company, you can rest assured that your boat will be transported safely and efficiently to its final destination.