How Much Does a Pontoon Boat Cost?

How Much Does a Pontoon Boat Cost?

Have you ever allowed your mind to drift towards those idyllic summer days where you picture yourself floating leisurely on a serene lake with a cold beverage, surrounded by the laughter of family or friends? You lie back as the boat bobs gently, basking under the sun, while the soft splash of water against the hull lulls you into tranquility.

It’s an image of ultimate relaxation, recreation, and connection with nature, all tied into one beautiful package, a package oftentimes delivered by a vessel known as a pontoon boat. So, how much would you need to part with to own this piece of floating paradise? In this blog, we’ll explore this question in great detail, examining every factor influencing pontoon boat pricing to give you a clear estimate of the costs you can expect.

What Exactly is a Pontoon Boat?

But before diving into the financials, let’s take a moment to understand what a pontoon boat is. In plain terms, a pontoon boat is a flat boat that depends on pontoons (essentially hollow, cylindrical structures) to maintain buoyancy. These pontoons, colloquially known as ‘logs’ or ‘tubes’, can provide an impressive level of buoyancy, enabling the boat to carry substantial loads such as heavy-duty equipment, sizeable furniture, or a large group of people.

Pontoon Boat

This feature distinctly separates pontoon boats from conventional V-hull boats, which are typically less stable at lower speeds and have limited capacity. The unique design and undeniable stability of pontoon boats lend themselves perfectly to a relaxed and casual water experience. Whether you enjoy fishing, swimming, sunbathing, or just prefer to idle the time away on the water, a pontoon boat offers an ideal platform.

Types of Pontoon Boats

Before we plunge headfirst into the sea of boat pricing, it’s integral to understand that there isn’t just one standard ‘pontoon boat’ – no siree! Pontoon boats come in various styles, shapes, and sizes, each built with specific activities in mind. For instance, some are designed mainly for fishing, offering features like live wells, rod holders and fishing chairs, while others might be constructed for more performance-oriented activities, coming equipped with larger engines and sportier designs.

Even pontoon boats are tailored towards luxury, offering high-end features like plush lounge seats, intricate lighting, top-notch sound systems, and sophisticated navigation and control systems. Understanding these different types will help you decide what kind of pontoon boat you want and give you an idea of what you’ll be paying for.

Check out Our Beginner Pontoon Boat Driving Guide.

Types of Pontoon Boats

Your potential pontoon boat is just a decision away. But bear in mind, this decision should be carefully considered, given the multitude of options with different features and price tags. But don’t fret! We’re here to guide you step by step, ensuring you understand what you’re getting into before you dive headfirst into the world of pontoon boats.

Factors Influencing a Pontoon Boat’s Price

Now, I’m sure you understand that pontoon boat prices don’t land on a ‘one-size-fits-all’ figure. In fact, the cost varies depending on a medley of factors. These are some of the key elements that affect a pontoon boat’s price:

➣ Size and Capacity

To even the freshest boat enthusiasts, it comes as no surprise that size directly affects the price. Larger boats need more materials to construct, occupy a bigger manufacturing space, and thereby, cost more. Furthermore, a larger pontoon boat often carries more passengers and accessories, contributing further to the price hike.

➣ Material and Construction

Like any product, the quality of materials and construction significantly influences the cost. Higher-end materials like aluminum or steel for tubes, high-quality wood or fiberglass for decks, and marine-grade upholstery for furniture all drive up the price. The design of the pontoon boat plays a part, too. Double-decker models or those with a cabin command a heftier price tag.

➣ Pontoon Boat’s Equipment and Accessories

A bare-bones pontoon boat may not poke a massive hole in your wallet. Still, when you start adding equipment like high-powered outboard engines, sophisticated fishing gear, advanced entertainment systems, and luxurious furniture, the price begins to climb considerably.

➣ New vs. Used Pontoon Boats

As with most things in life, age influences price. A brand new pontoon boat will cost more than a used one. However, don’t rule out used boats just yet. They can offer great value, especially if the boat has been well cared for and doesn’t have too many nautical miles under its belt.

➣ Brand of the Pontoon Boat

Lastly, the brand value plays a huge role in determining the price. More famous and trusted brands usually come with a higher price tag.

Pontoon Boat's Price

Price Range of Pontoon Boats

Now that we’ve examined what influences the cost, let’s consider the price range you can expect to encounter.

➣ Basic Model Pontoon Boat Price

Basic models of pontoon boats usually start at around $20,000. They are generally small, measuring around 16 to 20 feet, and designed to carry 6 to 10 people. They generally include minimal accessories and have modest power, suited for leisure rides and occasional fishing trips.

Basic Model Pontoon Boat

➣ Mid-range Pontoon Boat Price

Mid-range pontoon boats typically range from $30,000 to $60,000. These models usually measure 20 to 25 feet and are crafted to carry up to 15 people. They offer a balance between luxury and budget, including upgraded features like better upholstery, larger fuel tanks, improved engines, and additional recreational equipment.

Mid-range Pontoon Boat

➣ Luxury Model Pontoon Boat Price

Luxury pontoon boats will set you back by $60,000 to $100,000. Some ultra-luxury models even cross the $200,000 mark. These boats are larger, over 25 feet, and include high-end luxury features. Improvements could include better materials, sound systems, wet bars, high-tech navigation systems, and powerful motors.

Again, these are just ballpark figures, and actual prices can vary based on the factors we discussed earlier.

Luxury pontoon boat

That’s the price part done! But wait, don’t pull out your checkbook just yet! There’s more to consider before you can truly estimate the cost of owning and enjoying a pontoon boat. Stay with me as we look at additional costs that come with owning a pontoon boat.

7 Popular Pontoon Models and Their Price

 Sea-Doo Switch Pontoon

1: Sea-Doo Switch Pontoon

PRICE: $21,799 (base model with trailer)

CAPACITY: 5 passengers

Manitou Pontoon

2: Bennington SX

PRICE: $28,000 (estimated)

CAPACITY: 8 passengers

Manitou Pontoon

3: Manitou Pontoon

PRICE: $75,000 (estimated)

CAPACITY: 10-12 passengers

Crestliner 240 Rally DX

4: Crestliner 240 Rally DX

PRICE: $45,000 (estimated)

CAPACITY: 16 passengers

Princecraft Vectra 21 RL

5: Princecraft Vectra 21 RL

PRICE: $25,000 (estimated)

CAPACITY: 10 passengers

Sylvan L-3 DLZ

6: Sylvan L-3 DLZ

PRICE: $50,000 (estimated)

CAPACITY: 12 passengers

Harris Crowne SL 270

7. Harris Crowne SL 270

PRICE: $150,000 (estimated)

CAPACITY: 16 passengers

Other Costs Involved in Owning a Pontoon Boat

Owning a pontoon boat doesn’t just end with handing over the money and getting the keys. Like any other vehicle or property, owning a boat involves some additional costs you need to consider, including:

➣ Maintenance Cost

Maintenance is an integral part of boat ownership. This might include regular cleaning, engine maintenance, repairing damages, replacing worn-out parts, and winterizing the boat. On average, expect to spend around 10% of your boat’s initial purchase price on annual maintenance.

➣ Operation Costs

This includes fuel, which depends on your boat’s engine type and usage. You’ll also need to account for mooring fees if you don’t have shoreline property and need to moor your boat at a local marina. Costs also include docking equipment and necessities like life jackets, first aid kits, lights, ropes, and anchors.

➣ Insurance and Other Miscellaneous Costs

Boat insurance is a must-have to protect your investment. Policy costs depend on the boat’s value, engine size, age, and intended usage. You may also have towing and storage fees, depending on your usage, location, and storage during off-seasons.