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Custom, Luxury Yachts! Oh My!

Like Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, purchasing a custom fishing yacht can be a whirlwind experience. Many desk jockeys yearn to get out of the dreary round of everyday life and into the open sea, even for just a little while. But just like being in the Land of Oz, there are pitfalls on this path to self-discovery.

For one thing, custom luxury yachts are often cost-prohibitive; it is often considered the plaything of the rich and the super-rich. Depending on the type, a new luxury wind- or engine-powered yacht for the first-time buyer can cost anywhere from $24,000 (19 feet) to $400,000 (37 feet).

But there is no need for despair if your budget does not run into the well-known brands. It is quite common to have one custom-built and the price will really depend on what the buyer wants. A yacht is after all just a fancy name for any boat or ship used for recreation, such as fishing. In that sense, a rowboat would be considered a yacht.

Taking it from there, a customized luxury fishing yacht can be a large sail boat with a built-in fishing chair, compartments for the tackle box and other fishing paraphernalia, and a cooler. It can also be a gas-powered boat with a cabin. In fact, as long as it serves its recreational purpose as a watercraft, it may be rightly considered as a custom, luxury yacht.

Anyone can literally contract a boat builder to make a customized fishing boat based on the owner’s specifications and preferred budget. There are no rules that require a recreational boat to be a certain length or accoutrements as long as it is seaworthy. However, it would be best to do your research and consult with an experienced boat builder to help in designing a yacht that will meet your needs.

In general, recreational and leisure boats should be registered. Registration requirements for both sailing and motorized boats depend on the state where it will be registered. In general, a reputable boat builder will be able to provide advice on what needs to be done to comply with the applicable laws, including import documents of the engine, if any.

Cruise Ship Injuries during Excursions

Going on shore excursions is frequently the highlight of any cruise vacation, especially if the port is in a foreign city. Most passengers sign up for at least one shore excursion when booking their passage, and in general it all goes according to plan. The passengers come home hale, hearty, and full of interesting stories to tell.

There are times, however, when misfortune will strike and the passenger sustains an injury during a shore excursion. Accidents happen at any time and any place, and it does not have to be anybody’s fault; this is why it is good to have comprehensive travel insurance when taking a trip. But when the accident is due to the breach of care of a third party, such as the tour operator or the local tender boat company, then it is a different matter. The victim has every right to sue for compensation. The question is who is liable?

It may be suggested that since a shore excursion is off the cruise ship, the cruise liner is not responsible for any injuries. This is not necessarily true. If the cruise ship owns and operates the shore excursion tour more fails to include a disclaimer in the ticket, the cruise liner remains liable for any injuries while on a shore excursion. If the injury happens in or getting on or off a tender boat (which transports passengers from an offshore ship to the port and back), the liability may still be the cruise liner’s because they are responsible for the safe transport of their passengers.

There are many ramifications in determining liability for injuries arising from cruise accidents, not the least of which because cruise lines are often foreign-owned and registered. This means a complicated tussle on a myriad of local and international laws. When injured on a cruise whether on board or during a shore excursion, consult immediately with an experienced cruise ship injury lawyer.