Progressive Atlantic City Boat Show returns following COVID pause
Another sign that New Jersey is returning to normal following the COVID-19 pandemic is the return of the Atlantic City Boat Show at the Atlantic City Convention Center.
“I would say 75% of the boats we have sold here so far have been first-time buyers,” says Tony Sandora, of Schooner Island Marina & McKee Yacht Sales.
The pandemic paused the boat show in 2021, but did not stop sales.
“I’ve been doing it 18 years and I’ve never seen anything like it,” Sandora says.
He says sales skyrocketed during the pandemic, with more people looking for a way to get out of the house, but still social distance and feel safe with their families. Sandora says that inventory is currently low, but it is not the boats themselves that are in short demand.
“Motors are what’s holding everybody up. But Honda and Yamaha who we are dealing with is ramping up production. So I would think by the beginning of next year, I think they’ll be caught up and I think everything will hopefully get back to normal,” Sandora says.
Back at the Progressive Atlantic City Boat Show, potential customers can not only check out all the boats on display, but also hop in a kayak or jump on a paddleboard and test it out on the water.
“Yesterday we put in, I think, three or four different models and everybody can try them out. Not all of them can quite turn inside the pool, but half of them can and you can go in, hop on the boat, and try them out,” says Bill Wiggins, owner of Fanatics Marine Supply.
The boat show is open Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m.