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Who is going to prep your Boat Shipment - The marina, boatyard, you or a subcontractor? Most drivers do not carry the proper tools and supplies to prep your vessel for transport. Drivers are boat transporters not boat preparation experts. A seasoned Boat Transporter know what needs to be done to prep a boat properly, but his quote to transport usually doesn’t include this cost. Ask your transporter what needs to be done to prep the boat in addition to the prep person.

Check out for more details.

Secure all loose gear and electronics and stow them away if possible in a locked area. Cabinets and the cabin should be locked and stash the key somewhere you only know where on the boat for emergencies should the driver need to get into a locked area with your permission. Please note all water tanks must be empty and fuel on the vessel needs to be at a minimum. Remove the hull’s drain plugs. The bilge needs to be water free during transport, and in winter - all fluids should be drained from water systems, air conditioner, pumps, etc.

Remove anchors from the deck, disconnect and secure batteries.

A coat of linseed oil may prevent wooden boats from drying out. This type of conditioning may cause more dirt accumulation from the roads, but it is nothing that shouldn’t clean up easily.

Canvas Covers / Shrink Wrap

During transport, remove canvas covers to prevent tearing or loss. The transporter will not be responsible for damages, if these covers are not removed. Do you want the boat shrink wrapped? Unless it is being transported in winter weather conditions, we recommend not doing so. Most of the time the shrink wrap doesn’t hold up after about 1,000 miles. It is not worth the time to do so and the money, unless it is a brand new boat

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Motors or out drives need to be in the raised position. Measure the overall length of your vessel, remembering to include out drives or motors, bow pulpits, swim platforms, and motor brackets in insure you provide your boat transporter an accurate dimension. You want to make sure your driver has the correct trailer to accommodate your vessel.

To measure the height of your boat, measure from the highest part of the vessel, which is not removable, to the bottom of the keel or the lowest point of the vessel’s props and rudders. Height is one of the biggest factors in Boat Transportation Cost – but in cost overrun as well if the boat is taller than you thought. The ideal height is 12’ from the lowest point to the tallest point of the boat. This saves time and money for you and the driver.

To measure the beam of the boat, you measure the widest portion of the vessel and include anything that is attached to it alongside. The beam being wider than the driver thought based on the specs you provided can be one of the easiest way to damage the vessel. Nobody wants the boat arriving with damage. So get an accurate spec – it is so important.

Is your marina or boat yard equipped to load and unload your boat? Do they have an operating travel lift or fork lift with straps for loading and unloading? You need to know. If they do not, is there another operation close by that can accommodate your loading/unloading? Better find out. There is a very good chance your transporter may have calculated your Boat Transport Cost not figuring on his commercial style transport trailer not going into the water. If your driver puts his trailer in the water it is going to cost you for him to do so. These transports trailers travel thousands of miles in a season. Maintenance after the trailer goes in the water could mean hours of down time and hundreds of dollars for your driver. If he didn’t plan on putting the trailer in the water it is going to cost you.

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Posted by on in Uncategorized

When inspecting your potential boat-have your smart phone charged and ready to take pictures and to take notes with, and most important bring a flashlight and a mirror helps for those hard to see spots.

After inspecting the vessel you will have your pictures and notes handy to ask the seller questions.

Survey the fit and finish of the boat. If it is a used boat does it seems to be cared for? Are there maintenance records available?

Start in the cockpit. Then the cabin/berth if there is one- what is the condition of the equipment and amenities? Good or poor? Hatches, doors, hardware and gaskets working properly? Having items refurbished &/or purchasing the materials for a watercraft is expensive. Then go on top. Side decks wide enough to walk? Are there hand hold? Are rails secure? Is the non-skid areas still satisfactory? At the helm, is your vision obstructed? Are you comfortable and happy at the wheel in the Captain’s chair? Is everything to operate the boat safely within easy reach? Is the wiring in good shape and neatly held out of the way? Are cushion there and in good shape? Sometimes they just need a good bath but this can be a clue as to how the boat in general was maintained!?! Breaker box easily accessible?

The hull can be tricky. No boat owner or captain wants you checking the hull with probes. But what is the general appearance and feel. Is it solid? Or if soft and spongy? Maybe you should walk away from this one.

Is the engine accessible? Or do you need to be a 125# gymnast? Items like oil and fuel filters should be easily accessible to change as well as being able to get to the raw-water pump. Or does the engine or parts of it have to be removed? Can you get to and inspect the fuel tank? If you cannot get to these items for inspection, more than likely the boat will be more expensive to maintain than one that you can get into for inspection and maintenance.

Have a clear understanding from the owner or captain as to what extras come with the boat or don’t. Such as fenders, lines, safety gear, cabin amenities, etc.

The exterior gel coating - is it in good shape without too many dents, dings and bumps? Can you see and ready the hull identification# (usually it is on the Starboard side imprinted in the gel at the rear)?

Obviously, you are going to take her on a sea trail with the Boat Owner, its Captain or Mechanic. Sometimes vessels must have the Captain drive due to the size or insurance purposes, but you should be allowed to get behind the wheel for a period of time to handle her with their immediate assistance. If the boat has a Head, use the potty while you are out on the water…

If it is a trailered boat, the trailer needs to be inspected too. Age of tires? Does it have rust spots? Have the wheels/bearings been serviced recently? Do the brakes, if it has brakes work? Lights all working? Safety strips in place? Can you read the VIN#?

Consider having a professional survey completed, your surveyor that you pay directly.

And of course is the significant other and/or the family in agreement? Does it meet their “want to have fun” expectations, too?

Things to consider and think about. Then we will be happy to assist you with your Small Boat Transport or your Yacht Transport for your new boat to her new home.

Lex Carroll
Flagship Boat Transport
252 445 1480

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Posted by on in Uncategorized

If you are looking for a boat to live on, take the family for long weekend vacations on or want get in one spot and just enjoy what’s around on a day trip and head back to the docks…the beam should be as wide as you like and can afford. The wider the more room and comfort.

If not, go sleeker. If you like speed or it’s just you or one more and don’t need the space choose a slimmer vessel. Small Boat Transport is easier and faster for your Boat Movers and less expensive for you.

Whether you are a sail boater or a power boater it works the same way.

Just a few reasons to purchase a slimmer model.

  1. Easier and less expensive to transport
  2. Less expensive at the dock
  3. Sleeker is usually faster

Boat Transport can be expensive. If you want to reduce cost height and width are issues to think about.  You can reduce the height but you cannot reduce the beam. 

Look for a vessel that is 8.5’ wide if you are looking at runabouts and fast/fun boats.

If you need a large vessel stay at 12’ wide or less. Manystates don’t require an escorts or just 1 in a few.

Need something even bigger?  Try to keep the beam at 14’ or less. Yes even 1” makes a difference. This keeps double escorts away in almost every state.

Boat Transporters will be paying each escort cost roughly $2 a mile. This varies of course depending on your sector of the US. 

If the boat is wider than 14’ you may want to consider transporting by water or at least stay on the same coast.

Whatever you decide, talk with professionals for Boat Transport, not car haulers or online auction style websites.  Start with

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Posted by on in Transport Professionalism

Usually called Tow N Goes or Drive-a-ways by a small boat transport company because they are on their own trailers mostly. But not always. Flagship Specialized Shippers has hauled many smaller boats that fit into our schedule and helped keep the lights on and fuel in the tank, as well as towed some boats on their own trailers, too. Be it a boat on its own trailer or Small Boat Transport without a trailer, we can handle your Boat Shipping.

Things to remember when you are transporting your smaller vessel.

  1. It’s just like a big boat just smaller and less headaches, that’s in your favor.
  2. Smaller boats have less storage areas most of the time. What you can’t stash away, tie down. We don’t want anything left on the highway that flew out that you need in your boat.
  3. Electronics should be covered or removed and stored.
  4. If the boat is on its own trailer it needs to be secured to the trailer properly, front and rear.
  5. The boat’s own trailer needs to have a spare, wheels/bearings need to have been serviced and the tires should be 5 years old or less. Brakes-if the weight requires them, they must work. Lights, yes they must work. Due to the size of many smaller boats on their own trailers, meaning they are legal width, height, weight, your driver can travel at night and weekends if s/he wants to.
  6. Your professional driver should have an assortment of ball sizes to accommodate most boat trailer hitches. But it doesn’t hurt to know the size ball your hitch requires and tell your driver in advance so there are no delays in getting on the road.

Now even if your boat is “legal” and doesn’t require permits, your Small Boat Transportation driver needs to have a commercial driver’s license, have a motor carrier number (MC#) and should be properly insured with liability and cargo insurance. Did you know that if you pay someone to move your boat, you are insured but your driver is not, your insurance very well may not pay for your loss? No, well now you do. Don’t be hiring illegal out of work pick-up truck owners to move your prized toy, because they are cheaper and can back a trailer. It isn’t worth it to risk so much and save a few hundred dollars, is it?

So make sure your trailer is in good repair and has been serviced prior to your driver arriving for pickup. These few preliminary maintenance items done in advance can save you hundreds of dollars.

So now the driver has arrived and is ready to drive away. All because you did a little bit of homework and were a savvy boat owner. Thanks!

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Posted by on in Uncategorized

So your boat transport cost much more than you thought…here are some things that can reduce that cost. During this hopefully very short fuel crisis in the South this past week, cost of fuel has become a concern for us all with a southern drawl and those headed in that direction.

One way you can reduce some of those costs and potential surprise charges is to drain water and sewage from the boat. Admit it, there is already enough crap moving along the highways. Let’s not add to it.

It is not a good idea to transport your personal belongings in your boat. This not only adds weight but puts stress on your boat. Your boat is meant to float not be jarred along the highway loaded down with “stuff”. If you have a cabin with kitchen facilities you may want to box up dishes, pans, glasses, etc. and carry them by car if possible. (Don’t ask your driver to carry them in his truck this does not decrease the weight of the rig and space in a truck is already limited.) Don’t load the boat down with furniture and clothing or worse.

A boat loaded down with fuel can cost you money. If you are buying a new boat tell your broker to not fill it full of fuel, only enough to get you to a marina or where you can fill her up yourself at your dock or home. This adds to the weight which is costly to the driver in his/her fuel costs and can cause problems at weigh stations for the driver if the permits call for one weight and the rig and cargo is heavier than it should be. Excessive fuel can also be dangerous and could require a hazmat permit. But more important, safety first, not a good idea for anyone on the highway for the fuel tanks to be full.

Unnecessary weight can get the driver a ticket which is passed on to you or fuel surcharges by some transport companies.

Another safety issue is the truck/trailer sent to load your vessel is usually determined by the max the boat should weigh. One rig may not be adequate to accommodate your vessel and all the extras which can cause delays, extra charges and/or safety issues along the road.

Weight can be estimated by the published “dry weight” of your vessel and then adding the weight of equipment, attachments, fuel and personal belongings and a few extra hundred pounds for good luck. If you are not certain of the weight, if we have the year, make, and exact model we can help you determine the boats weight. If there are major concerns regarding the weight a weight ticket can be obtained along the road at the nearest facility, which is not the best situation but can avoid weight tickets and delays.

Height - another issue that increases the cost of boat transport. If a boat can be reduced that is being hauled on a transport trailer it is best to keep the height if possible to 12’ or less. Not only is it cost effective but legal height is 13.5’ in height including the transport trailer. If you can reduce the height of the boat you must and this will save you money on transport cost. So often we are told by boat owners that they do not want to reduce the height, well it not only in your best interest monetarily but is required to 13.5’ in height if at all possible. If the railing or arch or bridge or the radar dome can dome down then it must. “But that cost me to do that “, well it is going to cost you if you don’t by either the transport company, the states your boat passes through or both. These expenses vary greatly state to state, but they usually are quite expensive.

If your small boat transport is being towed on its own trailer – service it before your boat hauler arrives. Make sure the lights and brakes work (if brakes are required). Make sure you have a spare tire. One expensive repair and/or tow along the highway could have paid for new tires and service to your trailer. Also there is the delay that will cost your driver time and that will cost you money.

If Flagship Specialized Shippers - Boat Transport, may assist you with your questions or concerns, feel free to contact us at 252-445-1480 or find us at

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I sometimes like to give a shout out to marinas we visit. This time it’s for the mid-west. Folks often speak of Southern hospitality and in most places except Florida in the winter and spring it is a “real thing”.  However, in our travels this spring headed to St Joseph Michigan with a small boat transport we came upon a truly hospitable marina.

Eagle Pointe Harbor,, with easy access from I-94 and US Highways 31 & 33, is the name of this sweet Michigan marina.  Nestled in just east of Lake Michigan and on St Joseph River the scenery is lovely and the marina is up to date and well kept. There is a sprinkling of some nice homes around the marina, but not a tremendous amount, just enough. Eagle Pointe is a full service marina, welcoming their marina residents and visiting boaters as well. We will let them tell you about rates and/or check out their nice website.  However, they have more than adequate slips for different size vessels and parkingfor your vehicle if you must have one. Service Technicians and staff are available to assist you with any boating needs. 

A Fisherman’s paradise for walleye and salmon fishing on the lake or on Michigan 2nd largest river.  Day trips to the shore of Lake Michigan are another great adventure for boaters other than just fishing from Eagle Pointe Harbor. Skiing and tubing are also a great activity on the river.

Just to name a few amenities are swimming pool, outdoor pavilion, children’s playground, fish cleaning gazebo, modern restrooms and showers, nature trails, basketball and volleyball (sand) courts and on and on…

The city of St Joseph it is big enough to find and do just about whatever you need or want.  Shopping, restaurants, golf, movies, places of worship, etc. but not so big that schools and community activities are not prevalent for the year round resident. So sounds like a great place to visit, spend the summer or live.

The staff of Eagle Pointe Harbor were personable and accommodating. Most marinas don’t welcome us boat transporters. After all we are just truck drivers, right? Wrong.  We love boats and enjoy visiting all areas of the US where boating is common.  I would venture to say that I have never ran into a nicer group than at this St Joseph marina, Eagle Pointe Harbor, not even in the “Olde South”.

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After the terrorist attacks of 2016 in Brussels and San Bernardino, in boat transport,safety is ever present on my mind. Especially as boat transporters, always on the roads and in public places, such as busy truck stops, ports, rest areas and marinas, where there are all kinds of people from all over.

I have always tried to consider all people as equals and good people until they prove otherwise. And I still do. However, I have become much more aware of my surroundings and the people around me and what they are doing and carrying. People carrying items that don’t look normal for where they are and heavy coats in warmer weather, people wearing items that disguise their faces, hostile people, etc. all could be a threat to you and others around you.

As a woman it has always been a practice to notice who is around me and make eye contact with a small smile to people I pass. A smile and eye contact says, I see you and I am not a threat and I see you and I am aware of you and what you look like. I think this is a good practice for men, women, and children. The person who is walking along not noticing their surroundings, obsessed with their phone, packages, etc. could be a target for someone wanting to do them harm. I think the best alarm is the alarm on your key remote if you have one. Those things are obnoxious and loud. Also yelling fire when you are in trouble. Folks may not want to intervene in an attack but most everyone wants to see what is on fire! And most times all you need to stop an attack is an audience, right?

As a law abiding people we need to do our part and take action when needed. If someone in trouble either notifying authorities or intervening only if it is clear the person needs help and a first responder authority is not available. Asking the question, “Is there anything I can help you with?” to someone you think may need help can be a lifesaver.

On the road last year at a truck stop, we saw another trucker driver lose his life by being run over by a truck. Safety concerns are not just an intentional threat but accidents as well. In parking lots be aware of vehicles. Make sure they are stopping before you step out, make eye contact with the driver.

Danger can be on the road as well. Truck drivers have one of the most dangerous jobs, with the amount of time they spend on the road and the amount of traffic they endure. Too many fellow drivers don’t realize they are creating road hazards by pulling in front of trucks to close when passing, stopping to quickly without warning in front of big trucks. Drivers who make constant lane changes in heavy traffic are a threat to everyone on the road. But big trucks loaded down heavy, are at more of a risk in these situations because of the extended stopping time required.

So drive safely and consider others on the road with you and around you in those public places.

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Flagship Boat Transport had the opportunity to move the MH31 recently and Wow a great cruising off-shore sailboat. The Marlow-Hunter 31 is the latest off-shore cruising model being made by this top-notch manufacturer and designers. She maneuvers and handles well without exception. Marlow-Hunter has 40 years’ experience building fine sailboats.

Her exterior construction - hull and deck with Vinyl Ester resins and gel-coats, continuous reinforcement fibers, Kevlar and state of the art Nida-coring. The security is there with its structural integrity. A medium size vessel with a much larger look and feel inside at a glance and out too.

The MH31’s specs are 32’4”LOA, 11’10”beam, and displacement of 12,000# dry or less. Shoal draft is 4.5’ or deep draft of 5.5’ and making highway boat transport easy at a height 12’. Standard mast height is just a tad over 46.5’.  Flagship Specialized Shippers, can bring your MH31 to your dock or marina with ease.Perfect size with plenty of living space with headroom of over 6’ and some her great attributes on the interior are teak furniture and floors, Corian countertops, ball bearing drawer hardware and top of the line appliances and equipment. Nicely appointed and no skimping on options here!

My experience with this vessel is that she is sleek and clean but totally livable. I have never been a “sailboater” but the MH31 one has changed my prospective. I could spend a month cruising the southern waters on this girl and only touch ground for provisions or a swim. Never sailed before? The Marlow-Hunter website even includes programs and contact info for folks who teach you to sail. Sounds like it may be time to enjoy a more relaxing cruising option.

To check out the 31’ model or many others go to or enjoy a factory tour by Appointment Only through your local dealer go to

This sailboat was one of the hottest boats at the Annapolis Boat Show last fall. For another article about the MH31 sailboat when she was showboating in Annapolis check out:

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Having been a boating family and being in the boat transport business we had never really experienced Power Cats. But now working with World Cat out of Tarboro NC we have seen more than just a few come out of their factory. We have decided that we missed the boat, so to speak, when we lived on the Outer Banks of NC. A World Cat would have been a very nice vessel to have had for the family to fish, relax and cruise on.

The power cat’s design has select performance, structural integrity and an absolute fit. They are a well-made boat, smooth and strong on the water. World Cat uses top quality materials and experienced craftsmen in their manufacturing process. They have several designs to choose from, 23’ to 32’, cabins and dual consoles to center consoles. Models to suit just about every Captain.

The Livingston line of skiffs start at 9’ and move up to 19’. World Cats, Glacier Bay, and Livingston boats and skiffs can be seen all over in Florida to the Mid-Atlantic and North Atlantic, west to the Great Lakes and Washington State and south to the Gulf Coast.

Boat transport of these vessels is a pleasure. Many folks along the highways, comment to us that we can deliver the boat to their address, and we tell them – Yes we can, maybe not this one but one just like it can find a home on your dock! How? Check out

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Ok, so you have committed to a transporter for your boat transport and you are set for pickup and delivery with your boat yard or marina, right? Maybe or maybe not…
Verify the days your marina or boat yard is available to load and unload boats. Hours of operation are important but knowing what the cut off is even more pertinent. Does the loading/unloading facilities have a travel lift or fork lift with straps? If it is a fork lift make sure they know the weight of your vessel. Is there room for a potential rig 75’ long to get in and get loaded or unloaded. Boats on their own trailers have their own set of preparation issues that are covered in a previous blog. If you are transporting your boat on its own trailer take a few minutes and read our last blog or just give us a call, we can answer any questions you may have.
It is also important to have an actual name of someone at the yard and their direct phone number for your transporter to reach the yard. This saves them and the yard time and eliminates aggravation. The folks at the yard can assist the driver with details on verifying the address, are there issues with height or width for the driver to be aware of, construction that may be going on that you the boat owner may not be aware of, etc. There are many things your boat yard or the marina can answer for the driver that you may not be able to.
Ask your marina or boatyard about charges for loading or unloading and verify how and when they want you to pay. Some facilities will not unload and most definitely will not load until all these types of charges are covered. You do not want the driver held up at pickup or delivery and sitting in the way of everyone at your boats new home or her departure location. It is often tight in marina parking areas and remember the reason you hired a transporter…more than likely he is in a rig over 62’ long.
Are there forms to be filled out and signed off on? Do they require proof of insurance? Some yards may ask you to sign a release. We have encountered yards that want a release to be signed freeing them of liability if they drop or damage your vessel &/or damage the transporters truck/trailer. If this is the case your transporter may require that you agree that you the boat owner and not the yard will be responsible for the damage to the transporters equipment. This can easily be avoided by just asking the yard or marina upfront for copies of all their forms pertaining to the loading, unloading and the storage of your boat.
As always, feel free to ask questions or join in with comments. We appreciate you taking the time to read our articles.

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Posted by on in Services


WharfBoatShow-New(3-11) from Hstrickland on Vimeo.

Orange Beach Boat Show This Weekend Orange Beach, Alabama, famous for its wonderful family fun and great fishing, is sponsoring the Wharf and Yacht Show from 10 AM to 7 PM on Saturday and from 10 AM to 5 PM on Sunday. Hundreds of boats are being shipped in including famous brands like Contender, HydraSports, Yellowfin, and Viking.

Show highlights include the VIP Show Preview from 2 PM to 6 PM on Thursday, Local's Day on Friday with $5 admission with local ID, Ladies Day on Saturday, and Lagniappe Sunday. There will be free art lessons for the kids and a performance by Florida Georgia Line. The total value of the boats is said to be on the order of $90 million.

Learn more at or call at 251.224.1900

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Congratulations; you're getting ready to move your small boat to new waters! You are likely to see new things and have great experiences, but first you need to get there. While you could transport your boat yourself, there are countless reasons why you should choose a pro. Only thing is, before you turn the boat over to your professional boat transporter you need to get the boat ready to go.


If your boat will be transported on the carrier’s trailer it doesn’t matter if your boat is 15’ or 50’; preparation of the boat is the same prior to pick up. Remove any items that can fall, break or be blown off and place them in the cabin or secure them down such as cushions, coolers, equipment, etc. Canvas, eisenglass, antennas, etc. all should all be removed and stored in a safe location. Keys, electronics, paper work, and items of value should all be locked up if possible. Protect your boat with shrink wrap if you like, however, we don’t necessarily recommend it. It is your decision. There should be no water of any kind in the boat or on the boat. If it is a winter transport it is imperative that all water is drained and depending on where the boat is and where it is going you may want the marina/boat yard to winterize the vessel. The boat should have only enough fuel to get to a fuel dock from a ramp or yard, 25% full or less is acceptable.

When you want to transport your boat on its own trailer here are some things to do days or weeks before the driver arrives. Make sure the dimensions you provided the transporter are correct. The driver needs to arrive with an appropriate rig to move the boat/trailer. Check to make sure the trailer frame structurally sound. If your trailer doesn’t have a spare, get one. This could save you hundreds of dollars! Check your tires age, are they older than 5 years? Ask us how to determine the age of your tire if you are unsure. Tires time out on boat trailers due to age and dry rot they don’t wear out. Again replacing tires that need to be can save you time and money vs. repair while it is sitting on the side of the road. Have the wheels and bearings been serviced recently? Are all lights functioning as they were designed to? Do the brakes work? If the trailer has more than 1 axle, it is more than likely required to have brakes that function. If there are brakes, but they do not function, that is not just illegal - it can cost you your boat, trailer and maybe someone’s life. Is the boat sitting properly on the trailer? Is the boat strapped down to the trailer? What kind of hitch is there and what size ball does it have if applicable? Let your driver know if he will need additional straps and what kind of hitch is on the trailer. Is the equipment to hook on to the truck in good shape? Make sure all these things are checked and replaced or repaired as needed. Is there a trailer tag? If not, the driver needs to know in advance that he must provide a transporter tag.

Last, if the beam of your boat is greater than 8.5’ &/or the height is more than 13.5’ from the ground to the tallest point of the boat it will still require permits for each state it passes through on its way to its new destination. Again, if the vessel/trailer is oversize permits at a minimum will have to be obtained. So specs and weight need to be as accurate as possible. Your driver is still supposed to stop at the proper check points and weigh stations to insure all is legal and safe.


Remember, drivers don’t prep boats and do not carry enough equipment and tools to prepare for transport. This should be done prior to the driver ever arriving. The driver picking up your boat should be able to hook on to your boat, strap her down if necessary, put up proper flags if required, verify the brakes work and roll all within 30 to 45 minutes at the most. All of the above equals a “road ready” trailer to tow for your transporter that arrives to you safely and economically.

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Posted by on in Services

Do not weigh your Boat down while it’s is being moved on the highway.

Boat transport can be costly if you have ever requested a quote, you know. One way you can reduce some of those costs and potential surprise charges is to drain water from the boat. This means water as well as sewage. Yuck. Let’s admit it, there is already enough crap on the highway, no pun intended.


It is not a good idea to transport your personal belongings in your boat. This not only adds weight but puts stress on your boat. Your boat is meant to float not be jarred along the highway loaded down with extra stuff. If you have a cabin with kitchen facilities you may want to box up dishes, pans, glasses, etc. and carry them by car if possible. (Don’t ask your driver to carry them in his truck this does not decrease the weight, obviously and space in a truck is already limited.)


Fuel is a big issue to transport on the highways for more than one reason. If you are buying a new boat don’t let them “fuel her up” for you…please. This adds to the weight which is costly to the driver in his/her fuel costs and can cause problems at weigh stations for the driver if the permits call for one weight and the rig and cargo is heavier than it should be. Fuel tanks should only contain enough fuel to reasonably get you to a fuel dock once the boat is in the water. Less than 25% max is typically acceptable. Excessive fuel can also be dangerous and could require a hazmat permit. If you are just moving your boat, you do not want to even remotely be faced with that issue. More importantly consider safety first. In case of an accident you don’t want your family or others on the highway with a boat full of fuel.




Another safety issue is the truck/trailer sent to load your vessel is usually determined by the max the boat should weigh. One rig may not be adequate to accommodate your vessel and all the extras which can cause delays, extra charges and/or safety issues along the road. An important thing to remember is this…just about any rig can tow your boat down the highway but can it quickly stop it safely? That is the main issue.


The last time we move a boat that was loaded down with “extra possessions”, and was deemed overweight by Florida Department of Transportation, it ended up costing the owner, yes, the owner, over $1,000 and the driver was delayed more than 2 hours sitting waiting for the ticket to figured and written.


Weight can be estimated by the published “dry weight” of your vessel and then adding the weight of equipment, attachments, fuel and personal belongings and a few extra hundred pounds for good luck.


If you are not certain of the weight, if we have the year, make, and exact model we can help you determine the boats dry weight. If there are major concerns regarding the weight a weight ticket can be obtained along the road at the nearest facility.


As always if you have questions or comments feel free to contact us.



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Posted by on in Uncategorized

Boat transport with height issues is the tallest hurdle (no pun intended) and if the height is not reduced can be the most expensive part of shipping a boat. Legal height is 13’6”, this means from the ground to the tallest part of the vessel on the transport trailer. This is for all cargo not just boats. However, boats are pretty much all we transport. So that is our focus obviously. 

Department of Transportation states any load that can be reduced must be. Doesn’t matter that you don’t want to, it is what must be done to be legal on the highways.

Some states you can get by with it being 14’ without it being excessively expensive to transport and obtain a permit to move. But in the Northeast there are bridges that when they say 13’6” they mean it and if you are 13’6”or more in height you may have route problems and excessive cost to get it to its destination.  Obviously, no one wants your boat damaged! 

Average trailers add 18” in height to your loaded vessel. So it is best to be 12’ or less. There are low boys or wide bellys that add only 8” to the overall height. Now this is where it gets expensive. These are expensive and thus the cost of your move goes up.  If Height requires this type of trailer at least there is an option to move down the highway with one. 

If you think it is expensive to pay for the boat yard or a professional to prep and reduce the height of your boat, what until you pay for a lowboy or get caught with the vessel being over the legal height and have to try to reduce it while she is sitting at the inspection station on your driver’s trailer…this I do not recommend. 

Arches and bridges, believe it or not, can be easily removed and put back up. So can the radar, fishing equipment, towers, rails, etc.  In the long run to be prepared to remove these items in advance if necessary is well worth the extra time and money it takes to do so. 

If you need to move a yacht that is over 12’ feel free to call and talk with us we will do our best to advise you of your options. 

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Professional boat transportation companies do the majority of their work with private boat owners. However, professional boat transport services have much to offer boat manufacturers and brokers, especially those who deal with high end vessels. So why should a yacht builder, or any other boat vendor for that matter, contract with a professional boat transportation service like Flagship Specialized Shippers? Boat transport pros can ensure seamless delivery to the client, giving a more satisfactory full customer service to your valued clients. It is also the nature of the business to keep strong and healthy relations up with a large number of marinas, so we can help your client get their new vessel to the right new home.


boat hauling


Many people purchasing new yachts or other vessels are first-time boat owners. When a potential customer is looking into ordering a new boat, they are picturing being out at sea having fun; or maybe they are picturing their friends' faces when they see the new boat, but either way they certainly are not looking forward to the logistics of boat transportation. If the first step of owning a boat looks like work and not fun, this can tip a potential customer's cost-benefit analysis in the wrong direction.


Of course a shipbuilder or broker could offer their own in-house delivery service to bring clients' new vessels to wherever they need to be going. Still, this could require complicated permitting or licensing not typically kept on-hand by most boat sellers. It could also require coordination with marinas or harbors with which the boat seller has no previous relationship.


Knowing specific rules and preferences of the destination marina can save a lot of time. Boat transport pros already work with most marinas and harbors that a boat might be going to. This means less overhead and quicker service for expectant clients. Let's face it: clients are excited about their new boat and delivery is key to creating an overall positive customer experience that will recommend itself to positive word-of-mouth advertising. Building these relationships, and creating this environment for good customer service, is what boat transportation services already do. When a client wants a new boat, they are right to choose a professional boat construction or brokerage service. When that service wants to ship a boat, they are right to choose boat transport pros.

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