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I would really like to hire a narrowboat for a week to sample the delights of life on the canal system this year but £500 to £800+ and that's in the low season too! WHAT!, no way could I as an ordinary working man afford that on my modest wage, it is therefore impossible for me to sample life on the inland waterways, or is there a cheaper alternative I have not though of out there?

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Ive never hired a boat, and dont know what prices are like, but £500 sounds steep to me!!

 

Where about you wanting to hire from? (i see your in warwickshire)

- I have always be told that chas harden's boats (local to me) are towards the bottom of the price range, although i dont know, i've only ever bought gas off him!

- But he's got a lovly new 60ft'er on the go.

 

 

Daniel

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Ive never hired a boat, and dont know what prices are like, but £500 sounds steep to me!!

 

Where about you wanting to hire from? (i see your in warwickshire)

- I have always be told that chas harden's boats (local to me) are towards the bottom of the price range, although i dont know, i've only ever bought gas off him!

- But he's got a lovly new 60ft'er on the go.

Daniel

 

Hi Daniel, I suppose our nearest place would be Braunstone perhaps?, we live in Coventry though so maybe there is somewhere nearer on the Cov Canal?

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Ive never hired a boat, and dont know what prices are like, but £500 sounds steep to me!!

 

Where about you wanting to hire from? (i see your in warwickshire)

- I have always be told that chas harden's boats (local to me) are towards the bottom of the price range, although i dont know, i've only ever bought gas off him!

- But he's got a lovly new 60ft'er on the go.

Daniel

Sadly it's all got BLOODY expensive in the last 20 or 30 years, it seems.

 

£500 may only buy you a long weekend. For a boat of any size, (in the south at least), £1K for a week is not at all unusual, I think.

 

When I worked for a hire base as a Saturday job in the 1970s, fortnight hirings were commonplace - today I suspect they are much rarer, (unless you are American!)

 

We only hired twice before taking the plunge this time, but I noticed that you can often shave of at least £100, and sometimes much more, by looking for (very) late availability. I panicked the last time, and booked 3 days before I wanted to go. Had I left it to two days before, I could have saved over £100 on a 4 day hiring, (and the boatyard had 2 similar boats that didn't go out at all that weekend, even at the reduced price....)

 

I'm not enough of a gambler, but if you are flexible about dates, and where to go from , there are useful last minute deals out there. This kind of site may help...

 

Link to "Latelink.Com"

 

but there are several others. Try "Googling", (I believe tha's now an official verb in the English language ?!?)....

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If you do your shopping at Tesco's did you know their "Clubcard" vouchers can be used towards narrowboat holidays via the www.drifters.co.uk/ website.

Bonus is they are worth 4 times the face value. If you're not too impatient save up for a year or so, we had 2 holidays with over £500 off each.

 

Anyone know any Hull Blackers that accept them ???? !!

 

Geoff

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We got lucky last year.

 

We have owned timeshare for many years. Ignoring the original purchase price (we still hold a saleable asset), we pay approx £400 per year in maintenance fees, but as this is just one of many monthly direct debits it's not really noticed.

 

It's often hard to find anything suitable in peak time (school hols), but last year OCM just happened to check exchange availability as someone banked their time, and we immediately grabbed 2 weeks on a hire boat in Aug/Sept (Sunterra, operated by Alvechurch). This cost us 3 years' points, our time for '04, '05 and '06 (or £1200 in cash terms), but those two weeks in that 66ft boat would normally have cost us £2,700 (and there's no way we would ever spend that).

 

So that, dear readers, is how we tried it, liked it, and are now refitting a Rodney.

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How much do you think is reasonable for a weeks self-catering accomodation for a family of four say?

 

I know the cost of hiring looks a lot, but i think if you look at it at a cost per person, it's not that bad.

 

You should be able to get a 4-berth boat for a week out of season for not much over £500, or share a boat with some friends and pay more for a six or eight berth more into the season.

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I've always known boats are expensive to hire......probably why I've never have.

 

So when I got my 18 Norman in 2002, I thought people would jump at the chance of taking it for an overnight, or weekend, to Boston, or even up the Chesterfield. Now I know I could not officially hire it, as the cost of insurance etc. is much too prohibitive, but they could contribute to the next years boating fund for licence/mooring etc.

 

A nice clean little boat, they have a large bed in the bow for 2, and with the new Mariner it was one of the best handling, and easy boats to drive, plus of course no reliability problems.

 

How many took up the offer.........none. Not only that I struggle to get people to come with a trip with me for free.

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Last year, I hired a 56ft Narrow Boat from Anglo-Welsh at Trevor and that cost me negligably under £1000 for a week. Specifications of this Boat.

 

This year, I am hiring a 62ft boat from Anglo Welsh at Norbury, which is of a higher standard than the previous one, over the May half term week and this is costing me £1250, and this includes a 2% Loyalty bonus. Specifications of this Boat.

 

I have included a link to the relevant page on the Anglo Welsh website that applies to each boat so that you have an idea of what you get for your money.

 

There is of course always a "Day Boat" which you can hire from many places for approximately £100 a day. These give a good insight into the handling of boats and working of locks etc. but they have their limitations, namely that they are generally only "yours" for 7 to 8 hours.

Edited by Stephen Fulcher

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If your from Cov, then the cheapest and one of the closest to you is Jannel cruisers in Burton.

2005, it was £470 off season, and £750 peak for a week in a 45fter.

Last year there were 6 of us, on a 6 berth, cost us bout £170 each. cant grumble!!!!

 

some boats even have slidey sun roofs........(woooooh) .wouldnt av one on me own boat mind, but they're great in the summer.

Edited by kawaton

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Hiring has now become prohibitively expensive for many which is why I have recently bought into a shared ownership scheme. One other way of sometimes getting acheap deal is to keep an eye out on E-bay. Boats for hire appear on there at fairly regular intervals and I have bought one before for about £400 all in for a week in April.

Edited by Dreamer

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I never did it and don't inbtend to do it now (and realistically I'm not sure I have the necessary skills) but I was thinking last year that if you could 'salvage' 2 broken down old shells each year and renevate them seeling one and slowly building up a hire fleet with the other, you could make quite a reasonable living in quite a nice way. After 2 or 3 years you would begin to have a mooring problem but this would be a good problem to have in some ways. I assume there is a fundemental flaw to this plan (other than where to get the broken down old boats from) but I still don't know what it is...?

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I never did it and don't inbtend to do it now (and realistically I'm not sure I have the necessary skills) but I was thinking last year that if you could 'salvage' 2 broken down old shells each year and renevate them seeling one and slowly building up a hire fleet with the other, you could make quite a reasonable living in quite a nice way. After 2 or 3 years you would begin to have a mooring problem but this would be a good problem to have in some ways. I assume there is a fundemental flaw to this plan (other than where to get the broken down old boats from) but I still don't know what it is...?

Yeah, its a bit like Chas Harden down at Beeston, every winter he buy's an empty shell, tow's it home behind his boat, and then spends the winter fitting it out, so that come summer, he's fleets one boat bigger.

 

 

Daniel

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I would really like to hire a narrowboat for a week to sample the delights of life on the canal system this year but £500 to £800+ and that's in the low season too! WHAT!, no way could I as an ordinary working man afford that on my modest wage, it is therefore impossible for me to sample life on the inland waterways, or is there a cheaper alternative I have not though of out there?

 

I was in the predicament of the wife thinking it too expensive for a holiday she simply wasn't interested in.

 

I still wanted to sample life on canals so I left the wife at home and me and six mates paid in £210 each for a ten berth boat which gave us a week away with a £500 beer kitty. Worth thinking about I reckon !

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Estima

 

I wouldn't say too expensive, just value for money.. Although I would say that as we hire our boat out! :lol:

 

You have to remember that you're taken a fairly valuable asset (which could be worth up to £70K or more)

out onto the canal network. Fair enough you may only be able to speed along at 3-4mph but potential damage can still be done. Plus you have the additional expense of commercial licensing & insurance, plus increased servicing & mooring costs, laundry and cleaning costs, additional wear & tear etc etc..

 

Have you thought about a short break? These are normally offered at around 60-65% of the weekly rate.

 

 

 

Kawaton

I think Jannel have now stopped hiring out boats.

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well, suprise suprise, my brother who used to have a share in a narrowboat has just mailed me asking if I would be interested in coming along with him and his mates as he has hired a boat for Easter :lol::)

 

there may be hope yet!

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I would really like to hire a narrowboat for a week to sample the delights of life on the canal system this year but £500 to £800+ and that's in the low season too! WHAT!, no way could I as an ordinary working man afford that on my modest wage, it is therefore impossible for me to sample life on the inland waterways, or is there a cheaper alternative I have not though of out there?

 

 

Try Foxton Boat Services, I think they still operate "Sensible Boats at Sensible prices" The boats are basic but perfectly good for a week's holiday.

 

Tony

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Try Foxton Boat Services, I think they still operate "Sensible Boats at Sensible prices" The boats are basic but perfectly good for a week's holiday.

 

Tony

Hi we moor near foxton they still do boat hire heres a link to them

 

www.foxtonboats.co.uk

David

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I think the best idea is to shop around and maybe even haggle a little?

When you work out the cost you have to consider what the cost of renting an equivalant cottage somewhere in beautiful countryside would be at that time of year if its a 6 berth boat you would need to look at a cottage that sleeps six for example) and also that for the duration of your stay on the boat you will not be putting any petrol in your car either which could be a considerable saving.

I know quite a few groups of people get together to hire boats and it does bring the cost down considerably but I know some hire firms have a policy of not hiring to any parties of 'same sex' I think this is to try and ensure they do not get binge drinking stag/hen parties and the likes hiring the boats as they would very probably get them back in a condition worse than when they left! (and a string of complaints from other canal users too I suspect) So unless you guys have found a hire firm that does not have that clause in the small print you might like to try and get yourselves a couple of willing female crew members :lol:

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Estima

 

I wouldn't say too expensive, just value for money.

 

I agree entirely with you.

 

well, suprise suprise, my brother who used to have a share in a narrowboat has just mailed me asking if I would be interested in coming along with him and his mates as he has hired a boat for Easter :lol::)

 

there may be hope yet!

 

 

Go for it !!

 

Should certainly bring your costs down.

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I think the best idea is to shop around and maybe even haggle a little?

When you work out the cost you have to consider what the cost of renting an equivalant cottage somewhere in beautiful countryside would be at that time of year if its a 6 berth boat you would need to look at a cottage that sleeps six for example) and also that for the duration of your stay on the boat you will not be putting any petrol in your car either which could be a considerable saving.

I know quite a few groups of people get together to hire boats and it does bring the cost down considerably but I know some hire firms have a policy of not hiring to any parties of 'same sex' I think this is to try and ensure they do not get binge drinking stag/hen parties and the likes hiring the boats as they would very probably get them back in a condition worse than when they left! (and a string of complaints from other canal users too I suspect) So unless you guys have found a hire firm that does not have that clause in the small print you might like to try and get yourselves a couple of willing female crew members :lol:

 

Well the first time I hired it was for a stag week - though I do see your point about the risk of getting the boats back in worse condition.

 

Our crew is all in their thirties/fourties so perhaps treat the fact we are hiring someone elses boat with a bit more respect than a group of lads in their early twenties (though I'm not suggesting that there are not sensible groups in this age bracket). We simply didn't want to do the usual stag night thing of just getting drunk in a club - in fact I imagine most of our group wouldn't even go clubbing - and we were all keen to sample life on the canal. Indeed we did have quite a few cans of beer on board, but there again, we did drink a lot of tea and coffee too. We also had one of the crew who wouldn't even let someone dispose of a fag end in to the canal - everything had to be binned and he kept reminding us there was a place for everything and everything in its place. The maintenance checks on the engine were followed meticulously to the letter and were done at 06:30 am sharp. We spent the evening before dropping the boat back off cleaning it thoroughly, though I had cleaned all week because that's what I'm used to doing.

 

I suppose it is difficult for hire firms to distinguish between groups of same sex people who would act in the manner you describe and a group such as the one I go with who appreciate the history, heritage and scenic splendour of canals and aim to treat other people we meet along the way in the same manner we would be expected to be treated ourselves.

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We spent the evening before dropping the boat back off cleaning it thoroughly, though I had cleaned all week because that's what I'm used to doing.

 

oooh! that makes me want to hire my boat out! :lol::):D

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I know quite a few groups of people get together to hire boats and it does bring the cost down considerably but I know some hire firms have a policy of not hiring to any parties of 'same sex' I think this is to try and ensure they do not get binge drinking stag/hen parties and the likes hiring the boats as they would very probably get them back in a condition worse than when they left! (and a string of complaints from other canal users too I suspect) So unless you guys have found a hire firm that does not have that clause in the small print you might like to try and get yourselves a couple of willing female crew members :lol:

Some companies get around this by charging a large up-front deposit to any same-sex parties; bring all of the boat back in one piece and you get the deposit back. Seems like a good idea to me.

 

Back in the early 70's I used to hire regularly, and one of the crew used to bring his girlfriend as the willing 'token female'. She came on the condition that she never did the cooking or washing up. Then in '76, after we had booked the boat but before we went on the holiday, a slight change of allegiance meant that I married his girlfriend, so we just re-assigned the cabin arrangements and the same group of 8 took the boat as planned except that for 2 of us it was our honeymoon.

 

They said it wouldn't last. This summer we'll be having a party at our mooring to celebrate 30 years of marriage.

 

Allan

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Back in the early 70's I used to hire regularly, and one of the crew used to bring his girlfriend as the willing 'token female'. She came on the condition that she never did the cooking or washing up. Then in '76, after we had booked the boat but before we went on the holiday, a slight change of allegiance meant that I married his girlfriend, so we just re-assigned the cabin arrangements and the same group of 8 took the boat as planned except that for 2 of us it was our honeymoon.

 

They said it wouldn't last. This summer we'll be having a party at our mooring to celebrate 30 years of marriage.

 

Allan

 

Hope you've changed the cooking an washing up conditions now you're married ! ? :lol:

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