Marinas Expect Big Weekend

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A Great Day on the Water!

“The boat rental business is very solid right now,” reported FMB Sea & Sun Rentals owner Jim Figuerado! “We feel very blessed to be able to serve the public and we do so with all Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines to protect your family. We offer two rental options: an all-day boat from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., as well as two half-day blocks, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1 to 5 p.m. We have rentals that range from 19-foot deckboats up to 30-foot double-deck pontoons, 23-foot center consoles, and regular pontoon boats from 20 – 24 feet, along with single and double kayaks that you can rent by the hour or day. Our most popular rentals right now are the pontoons, but fishermen love the center consoles!”

To rent a boat, “all you basically need to do is to call us, let us know your needs, and we will make the appropriate recommendation,” Jim said. “You do need to have a boater’s license but if you do not know how to go about this, we can guide you through the process. We prefer you to call when you want to rent a boat, as we like that personal touch, because when you reserve one online, you may not be able to get all the information that you need, and we find that when we speak to people, it makes them feel so much more comfortable.”

FMB Sea & Sun Rentals practice all CDC guidelines, “including limiting the number of people we allow on each boat,” explained Jim. “Boating is perfect for our social distancing world, as it is easy to stay apart from other boaters and everyone else, while enjoying a wonderful day on the water with your family or those people with whom you feel perfectly safe. We never allow any more than 10 people on any one boat, and when anyone returns a rental, we completely sanitize it with special cleaners before it goes out to any other customer, so you can be sure that it is spick-&-span clean.”

He expects excellent business for the Fourth of July holiday weekend. “Our advance registrations are quite strong and the only thing that could slow us down is rainy weather, but my nickname is ‘Mr. Positive!’ Boating around Fort Myers Beach is a ‘No Brainer’ because at any time you can experience manatees, dolphins, fantastic wildlife and mangroves right here in our own slice of Paradise, and that does not even include all the beautiful restaurants where you can stop for breakfast or lunch. Renting a boat during the coronavirus is something that you and your family can safely do, to enjoy everything that makes Southwest Florida special!”

FMB Sea & Sun Rentals is located at 645 Old San Carlos Blvd, Fort Myers Beach. Hours: 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. Phone: 239-314-5631. Ftmyersrentalboats.com


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“The boat rental business is booming!” enthused Salty Sam’s Marketing Director David Kastan! “We are actually doing much better for this time of year than the past several seasons, because the coronavirus shutdown really got people wanting to get out of the house, especially in an activity that allows them to reconnect with the environment in small groups and what better way to do that than boating. We offer pontoons, power catamarans, trimarans, center consoles and bowriders, along with one-person and tandem kayaks. There is no one particular boat rental favorite these days, as it depends on what you want to do. For a leisurely cruise, our flat-bottom boats are for you, but if you want to go out into the Gulf or to Sanibel or Captiva, you may want something with a little more speed. We have something in our fleet for every boater and occasion.”

David encourages prospective renters to book their boat reservation online, so they can pick the boat option just right for them. “This allows you to do your paperwork, sign your waiver, and make your touchless payment, so when you arrive at Salty Sam’s, all you have to do is watch a quick water safety video, then get out on the water in the fastest possible time. An often overlooked aspect of the Salty Sam’s boat renting experience is all the amenities we offer here through our Ship’s Store! You can get all your food and beverages from us plus other essentials like ice and sunscreen, we have everything our customers need to get out on the water quick!”

Salty Sam’s takes coronavirus precautions seriously. “We have signs everywhere to encourage people to practice at least 6 feet of social distancing,” David related. “We ask our guests to wear face masks, but they are not mandatory, though our staff wears them. Every time a rental boat returns, it receives an immediate and thorough bleach-solution cleaning, scrubbing and disinfecting even before it goes back into storage.”

As for the famous Salty Sam’s Pirate Cruise over the holiday weekend, “We are offering an ‘All Ages Pirate Adventure’ with a free meal for kids at 11am and 2pm,” explained David. “In ordinary times, we would have a Fireworks Cruise on July 4, but since there is no show this year, we have a Fourth of July Adults-Only Cruise at 7:15 p.m. to enjoy a fantastic Saharan dust cloud-enhanced sunset. We expect a busy weekend, so the earlier you reserve a boat with us, the better!”

David described Fort Myers Beach as “a water destination for people from all over the world, as our beautiful beaches and clean sparkling water appeals to everyone! There is a big difference between driving to the beach and taking a boat to the beach! There are few more enjoyable days than being on the back bay and seeing all the interesting wildlife, birds, manatees and dolphins.”

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This pontoon is ready for a few hours of fun on the water! Photo courtesy of Salty Sam’s Marina.

Salty Sam’s Marina is located at  2500 Main Street, Fort Myers Beach (on San Carlos Island). Boat rentals are available from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Ship Store Hours: daily 8 to 6 p.m.; Holiday Weekend 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Phone: 239-463-7333. Saltysamsmarina.com

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“Snook Bight Marina and Circle of Boating has 22-foot pontoons and 25-foot tritoons, as well as a number of vessels that our boat club members can take out,” said John Cello, Director of Sales for Circle of Boating. “Of the two, people prefer the tritoon because, per CDC guidelines, you can still get 10 people onto one, as opposed to just eight on the pontoon. The tritoon is a bit more expensive, but folks today favor the bigger boat. We have several timeframes for our reservation boats: four-hour blocks from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and then again from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. Our six-hour block is from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and of course our 8-hour slot is 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.”

Pontoon-Boat-Rentals-Snook-Bight-Busy-boat-rentals-on-FMB
Plenty of room for the family on a rental pontoon boat. Photo courtesy of Snook Bight Marina.

John explained, “It is really easy to reserve one of our rentals; just go on our website and do so online, or give us a call at the Ship’s Store and you are all set. The big thing is if you were born on or after January 1, 1988, the state says you must have a Boater Safety Card; those born prior to that are grandfathered in and do not need one. We are taking all the necessary coronavirus precautions for the safety of our staff and guests, so you must wear a face mask until you leave our dock. We clean and sanitize all boats after each use and have big jugs of hand sanitizer everywhere. Ninety-five percent of our customers really appreciate all our additional measures, so if it takes a few minutes longer than usual to get their boat, they understand.”

Snook Bight expects business to be fabulous over the Fourth of July holiday weekend!  “All of our rental boats were totally booked last weekend and over half our boats are already on hold for this weekend,” John said! “So reserve yours ASAP. Boating in our crazy new world is one thing people can do to get out with their family and safely enjoy the beach environment, as wildlife, water, our scenery, and of course Florida weather make boating a perfect day! Bring plenty of ice, soft drinks and sunscreen, and be ready to deal with the heat, as boating on the water is the best place to be!”

Snook Bight Marina is located at 4765 Estero Boulevard, Fort Myers Beach. Hours: 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Phone: 239-765-4371. Snookbightmarina.com