Reassessing our values and priorities

Published on June 24th, 2020

RCR Yachts, a fixture on the Great Lakes sailing scene since 1972, selling new and used boats along with operating several boat yards and marinas, share their view of how the coronavirus pandemic has impacted boating.

We are now heading into the longest daylight days of the year. It has been a very interesting spring to say the least and the start of summer is welcome. We feel sorry for the many businesses and employees who have been suffering due to the COVID-19 shutdowns and layoffs.

Initially the closures hit RCR like everybody else and we had no way of knowing what it would mean for us going forward. Surprisingly we have benefited from a change in customer behavior brought on by the virus. The same thing is being seen throughout the boating industry and the RV business.

Instead of traveling on planes, driving around and staying in hotels, people are choosing to stay within the family unit or with close friends they trust. It is easy to socially distance on the water and outdoors is healthier. The result is we have been super busy selling boats.

Back in the early days of RCR we often sold boats to those with young families, or even before they had kids. Over time the average age of our customers has steadily grown. One reason for this is the explosion of youth sports which has taken up the free time of parents. COVID-19 has changed this in three ways.

First, there are fewer organized sports this summer and the family can once again do things together as a unit, and boating fits that bill. Second, when parents have been working remotely from home they have once again seen the value of spending time with the kids. Finally, when there is a shock to the system, such as the threat from the virus, it makes us all reassess our values and priorities.

Life as we knew it changed, and some of these changes may last. Doing things we love to do with those we love to be with has become even more important.

Editor’s note: Quantum Sails’ Jason Currie put together his tips for successful family sailing… click here.

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