8.5 million anglers considering boat purchase

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – There are about 8.5 million fishing enthusiasts who are currently considering purchasing a boat, according to a study just released by the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation and the Outdoor Foundation.

The study revealed that there are 48.5 million anglers in the United States, and of those, 8.5 million are interested in buying a boat. In fact, the special report on fishing and boating provides detailed information on participation by gender, age, ethnicity, income, education and geographic region.

“We know that there are strong ties between boating and fishing and it is critical to understand this relationship to grow participation in our beloved outdoor sports,” said RBFF President and CEO Frank Peterson. “The research finds that anglers who don’t currently own a boat represent a great potential for boat sales. This special report will be valuable in shaping future programs and stakeholders can use it to their advantage by focusing on the analysis that’s most important to their organization.”

The report shows that 33 percent — about 12.7 million — of all fishing participants own a boat, and males and females have nearly equal ownership rates among this specific group, 34 percent and 32 percent, respectively. And greater access to more and better fishing is the leading motivation for fishing participants considering boat ownership (52 percent) followed by opportunities for recreation and relaxation (24 percent).

Other key findings of the survey include: (1) Fishing is the most popular gateway activity to get kids interested in other outdoor pursuits; (2) Fishing continues to be a strong pathway to boating.

“Boating and fishing enthusiasts are among the most important and influential members of the outdoor community. Therefore, it is critical that we learn more about their preferences and motivations,” said The Outdoor Foundation Executive Director Christine Fanning. “This special report should be required reading for anyone who wants to inspire a greater appreciation for and participation in the outdoors.”

The full report is available at RBFF.org.

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