Boaters are a unique – and sometimes uniquely obsessed – bunch. And who could blame them? There’s nothing quite like spending the day on the open water, wind in your hair, and a breeze at your back!
Whether you know a sailboat lover who prays for good winds, a speedboat owner who loves driving waterskiers, or a yacht captain who likes weeklong trips, we have a gift idea for each of them! Read on for the best gifts for boaters of all kinds.
60 Cool Gift Ideas For Boaters
These 60 gift ideas for boat owners include everything from practical supplies to hilarious mugs to beautiful jewelry!
YETI Tundra 65 Cooler
Boaters can spend a day on the water without worrying their food will spoil in this premium YETI cooler. If they enjoy fishing, the cooler also works great for storing any catches. The three inches of insulation ensure that ice won’t melt and drinks or food will stay cold.
Fusion Entertainment Marine Entertainment System
There’s no feeling like a day on the water, floating or speeding along in a boat with the music going and the sun shining. This marine entertainment system with Bluetooth has an amplifier and is able to play AM and FM stations along with syncing to an iPhone or Android phone to play music.
Together On The Boat Picture Frame
If your sailing friend has a special first mate, this frame is a great way to showcase their love for boating…and each other. The frame reads “Together on the boat,” and it would be an especially sweet present if you have a good picture of the two of them to put in it.
Premium Boat Scuff Erasers
Boat lovers can be very particular about their (boat) baby, so products to keep the boat clean make great gifts for boat owners! These scuff erasers keep the boat looking great in between deep cleanings – they can remove dirt, grime, and scuff marks from the deck and sides of the boat.
Personalized Boat Flag
This personalized boat flag comes in a variety of colors. You can have any text you wish printed below the anchor imprinted on the flag. The last name of the boating family, or the name of the boat, would both be great options to print, and the flag can fly proudly off the stern.
Cuisinart Grill Modified for Pontoon Boat
Grills are wonderful gifts for boat owners, as long as they follow some basic safety guidelines. This grill locks onto the railing of a pontoon boat, so it won’t slide around. Once they have docked after a long day on the water, relaxing and grilling are a perfect way to end the day.
Inflatable Stand Up Paddle Board
One of the best things about owning a boat is that owners can drive away from the dock, find a secluded spot the landlubbers can’t reach and enjoy their boat toys. An inflatable stand up paddle board can stay on the boat and be used anytime it’s at anchor or docked for a fun afternoon.
Jumbo Vinyl Coated Floating Keychain
This is one of those seemingly small gifts for boaters that they will be grateful for over and over again. Protect them from the annoyance of leaning out over their boat…and watching as their keys slip into the water, never to be seen again. Floating keychains are boating accessories that would make great stocking stuffers at Christmas or useful presents any time of year.
Cabana Stripe Beach Towel - Pack of 2
Save boat lovers the trouble of remembering towels every time they head out by giving them some that will stay on the boat. These blue and white cabana striped towels invoke classic nautical vibes, are generously sized, and are very absorbent.
Marine UV Protectant Spray
Cleaning products may not seem like exciting gift ideas for boaters, but trust us – they’ll be thrilled with anything that helps them keep their boat looking gorgeous. This spray has UV blockers to prevent fading and premature aging and to restore luster to the boat. It can be used on the seats, sails, hull, and windows.
If you know a proud, new boat owner, get them a hat to show everyone who’s in charge! This captain’s hat features gold braid around the brim and announces “Captain” above that, just in case anyone has any doubt. It would be a funny boat-warming present for someone who can’t seem to stop talking about their vessel.
Ironwood DeckMate 6-in-1 Boating Tool
This cool boating tool includes two deck keys, a shackle key, a zipper pull, a screwdriver, and a hex tool. It has a rubber handle for a comfortable grip. It would be especially useful for an older dad or anyone who has some minor trouble with finger strength while working the small deck keys.
Bushnell Marine 7x50 Waterproof Binocular
Whether they’re being used for scanning the seas for other boats or obstacles, or being used for bird or whale-watching while floating calmly, binoculars make great gift ideas for boaters! These marine binoculars are waterproof and Coast Guard recommended, making them a great option.
Row Boat Serving Bowl with Wood Serving Utensils
This row boat serving bowl is perfect for boat owners! They can use this boat-shaped bowl with oars as serving utensils either on the boat or at home.
Marine Grade Canvas Waterproof Boat Cover
Boat covers make great gift ideas for boaters because they help them keep their toy in pristine condition. This cover is great for speedboats and is made from marine-grade polyester. It’s meant for covering a boat in long-term storage or while it’s being towed on the highway.
Earth Pak Waterproof Dry Bag
For motorboat enthusiasts who want to keep things dry while they fly across the water…or for paddleboarders or kayakers who use their boat as a home base to play on the water, these dry bags will be extremely useful! Toss a book, a snack, a wallet, or anything else that needs to stay dry in this bag and head out on the water. The bags come in a variety of colors and also come with a waterproof cell phone case.
Lake Topography Art
If you know someone who uses their boat on a lake, gift them with a wood topographical map that shows the 3D details of that lake. This is a unique, beautiful wall art gift that they’ll love to display on their boat or at home!
Craft Beer Subscription
Make sure your boat friend doesn’t run out of one of the most important supplies – beer! A craft beer subscription allows them to sample beers from across the country, and they’ll never have to worry about what to bring for refreshment on the boat.
O'Brien Performer Combo Water Skis
Water skis make great gifts for boaters who own a speedboat! This pair is good for people with some water ski experience and fits men sizes 7-13. The wide forebody makes these good skis for deep water starts.
Dash Mount Boat Compass
There are no roads on the water, which means boaters have to rely on other means to figure out where they’re going. This compass has an incandescent light, so it can be used at night as well as during the day. It mounts to just about any flat surface so they can install it on the boat dashboard.
Stearns Hydroprene Life Vest 2 Pack
Whether they’re on the boat or taking out a paddleboard or kayak while the boat is at anchor, boaters need life jackets! These are made to move comfortably while the wearers are paddling or doing other activities. There are ride-up tabs to let the jacket wearer pull the jacket into place.
This jacket is approved for people weighing 90 lbs or more.
Quick Charge USB Waterproof Charger Socket
This 12v USB outlet can charge two devices simultaneously. It works in a car (or marina) charging outlet and charges devices quickly. The blue LED screen monitors the boat or car battery and indicates the voltage.
Ultra HD Underwater Camera
Underwater cameras are fun gifts for boaters because they preserve the fun! This camera takes professional-looking photos at four times the resolution of a traditional HD camera. It works up to 100 feet down.
Captain & First Mate Matching Boating Baseball Caps
These Captain and First Mate hats make fun gift ideas for boaters loving baseball – especially when those boaters are a couple who will enjoy wearing the hats together! These make a wonderful, funny gift the first time you’re invited on their boat or to a boat-warming party.
Now boaters can give their beer or other drink a little life jacket to prevent the terrible tragedy of being lost at sea. This beer preserver has two thermal insulation layers, so the beer will not only stay afloat, it will stay cold as well.
These water socks protect feet from hot decks, hard rocks, and other boating hazards while still being flexible and anti-slip. They dry quickly and are lightweight, so wearers can hop in the water and swim with them still on.
3-in-1 Pool Chair Lounge
This pool or lake float can convert into a chair, a drifter, or a lounge allowing your boater to choose from a variety of positions while floating in the water. It’s easy to get in and out of and packs down small when it’s not inflated.
Carbon Fiber Telescopic Fishing Rod with Reel
One of the biggest reasons for owning a boat is to be able to fish from it! Fishing poles and accessories make great gifts for boat owners, and this rod and reel will start them off with a whole kit. This would make a great birthday or Christmas present for a new boat owner.
Portable Waterproof Knot Book
Boat owners need to know several knots for tying fenders, tying anchors, and tying boats to the dock. This waterproof knot book can help with knots for all of those things and more. The waterproof plastic means they can leave it on the boat to refer to whenever they need it.
Floating Foam Pad for Lakes
This floating foam pad can fit between three and five people and take up to 800 lbs. It will even stand up to kids jumping from the pad into the water. It rolls up for easy storage when it’s not being used. It’s sure to be a fun place for everyone to float during a day on the water!
Nautical Themed Bottle Opener
Nautical decor can make fun gifts for boat owners who love showing their passion even when they’re not on a boat! This pewter bottle opener is shaped like an anchor with rope detail, is a fun small gift or stocking stuffer.
PuP Floating Cooler
A floating cooler can be a big convenience during a day on the water! Whether everyone is floating near the boat, or headed out paddleboarding or kayaking, this cooler can be towed behind. They’ll have (dry) snacks and food whenever they wish!
Snorkel Mask with Latest Dry Top Breathing System
Depending on where your boating enthusiast friends are located, snorkeling gear could be a wonderful gift idea! This snorkel set has anti-fog and anti-leak technology so users can see through the glasses easily and the double exhaust passage also keeps exhaled breath from fogging the glass.
Stainless Steel Fish Grill Basket
This portable grill basket is a great way to cook up the day’s catch for a delicious dinner! The basket is lightweight and easy to flip so food will be evenly cooked. The outer layer is oxidation and corrosion-resistant so it will stand up to harsh sea and salt in the air, or to accidentally being left outside.
Captain Awesome Stainless Steel Travel Mug with Lid
Remind the captain who’s boss with this stainless steel travel mug! It announces “Captain Awesome” to the world, with an anchor drawn in the middle of the mug. The mug will keep drinks either hot or cold for several hours, and the tapered bottom means it should fit most cup holders.
Inflatable Boat Tube
If your boat-owning friend or family member has a speedboat, gift them this towable tube for hours of fun! The tube has foam handles with knuckle guards and a foam pad so it’s comfortable to use. A reinforced towing system means it will stay attached, and a speed valve means it inflates and deflates quickly.
Stainless Steel Sideways Anchor Pendant
Help her show her love for her boat with this necklace! The small, understated anchor pendant is stainless steel and waterproof (a good thing for a boater!), and it will stay in fashion for a long time.
Universal Waterproof Pouch For Phones
Waterproof phone pouches are hugely helpful gifts for boaters or anyone who spends a lot of time around water. This pouch hangs around the neck and fits smartphones that are up to 7 inches diagonally, with room for a credit card and money inside. The clear window means they can still take pictures with the phone in its protective case.
Mens Pontoon Captain T-Shirt
He’s not captain of just any boat – he’s a pontoon boat captain! This shirt proudly announces, “Pontoon Captain: Like a regular captain, only cooler. See also: handsome, exceptional.” It would be a funny gift to give at a birthday party or boat-warming party.
Vintage-Looking Anchor Bracelet
This cowhide leather bracelet is held together with a link that looks like a vintage anchor. It’s casual and could be worn every day by men or women. It’s a nice way to indicate a love for boats and boating without being over the top!
Docktail Drink Holder
This Docktail Bar holds one 1.75-liter and one 2-liter bottle, three cup holders, two knife holders, and two accessory slots for towels, bottle openers, or other barware. The entire bar mounts to the side of the boat for easy use.
Garmin Hybrid Smartwatch
A smartwatch is always useful, but for someone who’ll be spending days on the water, you want to make sure it’s waterproof! This Garmin Hybrid smartwatch stands up to water, and can track sleep, steps, and so much more.
Rite in the Rain Weatherproof Notebook
Boaters can take notes without worrying they’ll be washed away with these rainproof notepads. The all-weather paper repels water – it simply beads up instead of soaking into the paper and warping the notes. They’re useful notebooks to have on a boat, where no one has to worry that splashes from waves will wash away any notes.
Weathered Wood Tray w/ Carved Anchor Motif
Trays and other household items with nautical themes make great gift ideas for boaters! This weathered tray has blue and white nautical colors and the anchor on the bottom of the tray showcases a love for boating. It would be a great tray for displaying objects or souvenirs from a boat trip or to use for drinks or snacks.
Lowrance HDS-Live Fish Finder
Fish finders can save anglers tons of time by helping them figure out where to cast a line. Finders are definitely a splurge, but they make excellent gifts for boat owners! Sonar helps locate the fish, and the scanning technology of this fish finder is top-of-the-line.
Waterproof Premium Large First Aid Kit
They’re not very exciting, but first aid kits are an essential item on any boat. This one is waterproof and includes 200 supplies for minor wounds and other ailments. Labeled compartments mean boaters can find what they need quickly.
Fishing Pole Cup Holders
This set of cup holders has a clamp in the middle so it can attach to a pole on the boat. The bottoms detach so users can put a fishing pole in one part of the cup holder and a cup of coffee in the other.
LEATHERMAN Pocket Size Multitool
LEATHERMAN multitools are useful in many different situations, and they’ll definitely be useful on a boat. This tool has pliers, wire cutters, a knife, a can opener, a bottle opener, and much more. From performing quick jobs on the boat to gutting fish or opening a cold one – it can handle all of that! It also comes with a 25-year warranty.
Nautical Coastal Book Ends
These bookends look like the two halves of an old-fashioned, large sailing boat. The boat has a hollow interior and iron cross-strip sides. They’re classic-looking and would be great on a bookshelf in a nautical-themed living room or bedroom.
KastKing Fishing Tackle Bag
This tackle bag stores up to seven 3600 size lure boxes in a convenient bag. The bag is water-resistant with 12 pockets for fishing tackle and an anti-slip strap. It’s easier to haul around than a tackle box since someone can sling it across their shoulder, and the tough material means it will last a long time.
Sorry For What I Said Boating Mug
Get the boater in your life – especially the one with some colorful language – this amusing mug that reads, “Sorry for what I said while I was docking the boat.” Let them know you won’t hold it against them…you’re probably used to it.
Marine-Grade Nylon Dock Line
You can never have too much dock line on a boat. Lines are one of those very practical but very helpful gift ideas for boaters. This line won’t fray and stands up to salt, water, oil, and UV rays. It can be used for tying to a dock, tying something to tow behind, and for many other boating uses.
Columbia Men's Rain Jacket
It’s inevitable that boat lovers are going to get wet while out sailing. However, there’s a big difference between getting a cool splash on a hot day and freezing in the rain while trying to maneuver a sailboat or other watercraft back to shore. For the second scenario, gift your boating friend with a good quality rain jacket they can keep on board and help them be prepared for unexpected rain or wind!
Mariner Cheese Board and Tool Set
This ingenious cheese board looks like a ship’s wheel, with all the cheese knives and other tools as spokes of the wheel. It’s a clever way to serve cheese on the boat…or at home while dreaming about being on the boat!
Sun Hat for Men/Women
Sun protection when spending a day on the water is an absolute must. You can help your boating friends take care of themselves with this sun hat. Unlike a baseball cap, this hat shades their face, chest, shoulders, and back for added protection.
Packable Duffle Bag
Duffel bags make great gift ideas for boaters who have a yacht, houseboat, or other boat where they plan to spend nights onboard. They’ll need a bag to pack for weekends on the boat, and this bag is perfect. It has several compartments for various items, and when it’s not being used the bag folds in on itself for storage.
Sailboat Salt and Pepper Shaker
This adorable blue and white salt and pepper shaker set features ceramic shakers in the shapes of two halves of a sailboat. The salt shaker has hand-painted watercolor stripes, and the two sides have an embossed “S” and a “P” to tell which is which. The sails sit in a mango wood boat base.
Personalized Anchor Christmas Ornament
Christmas ornaments make thoughtful gifts for boat owners, especially to commemorate the first year they own a boat! This personalized anchor has room for a first name at the bottom, plus the year the ornament was given at the top. The anchor is strung with Christmas lights, giving it a festive feel.
Boat Serving Dish With Oar Scoop
This serving dish is shaped like a boat, with a bamboo oar and metal anchor chain at the bow. It says, “Life is great at the lake” on one side of the dish. It would be a great bowl for serving dip or salsa!
Gifts For Boaters FAQs
What Should I Get My Boater for His Birthday?
There are lots of options when it comes to gift ideas for boaters! Before you begin present shopping, consider a few things about your boater first. Is the boat fairly new? Is he new to boating itself? Does he have any other hobbies, like fishing or water skiing, he likes to do while he’s on board?
If the boat is brand-new (or new to him), he’ll need lots of supplies like a first aid kit, towels or rain jackets to keep on board, or even cleaning supplies to keep his new baby looking pristine. If he likes to fish, a new pole or other gear could be useful…or even a fish finder if you want to splurge.
An underwater camera or waterproof bag for his cell phone are also great ideas so he can safely take pictures of his adventures!
What Should Every Boat Have on Board?
For the safety of the captain and everyone on board, there are a few items that should be on every boat! Life jackets are a must for each person on the boat, and they should be stored where they can be grabbed easily. The captain may even want to require everyone to just keep them on. Don’t forget pets! Most dogs swim naturally, but they can get tired.
A throwable life ring is another item to keep on board a boat so it can be tossed to someone in the water to pull them in.
Fire extinguishers, a first aid kit, signal flags, and a horn or whistle that can be used during fog to alert other boaters are also essential items on board a boat. Finally, boaters should make sure they have a way to communicate with shore – a cell phone, satellite phone, radio, or another communication device is important!
What is a Boat Blanket?
A boat blanket can be used to protect the fenders or the boat itself from sun and other damage. They’re made from tough materials that are gentle on the boat side but UV and chemical-resistant on the outside.
What Can You Not Take on a Boat?
There are no hard and fast rules about what not to bring on a boat, but the captain may request that guests leave the following behind:
- Shoes with soles that would mark up the deck
- Glass containers, especially if a lot of people will be going barefoot
- Cigarettes – if there are smokers on board, there may be a designated area. Smoking in certain areas of a boat can be a fire hazard.
- Plastic bags or other items that can be swept away easily – keep those waterways clean!
There are also some interesting superstitions about things you shouldn’t bring on a boat because they are bad omens. Boaters say bananas are bad luck! This probably dates from the time when bananas had to be transported quickly before they spoiled, meaning fishermen didn’t have enough time to catch fish properly.