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Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show Guide Thumbnail

Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show Guide

It’s the most wonderful time of the year — boat show season! Combing the docks, drink in hand, casually pondering your next boat purchase. Perhaps you want to tour a new Viking sportfisher or the Palm Beach PB70? What could be better than that?

Nothing beats boat show season, not even COVID-19. The Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show (FLIBS) implemented a robust system to protect the health and safety of visitors. By adhering to the guidelines set up in collaboration with Informa, the international events research group that developed the AllSecure standards for in-person events for COVID-19, and government and local authorities, you can enjoy the rich in-person experience of the world’s best boat show. See you there! 

FLIBS: The Ultimate Boat Show Experience

Fort Lauderdale will host the 61st annual Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show from Wednesday, October 28 to Sunday, November 1, 2020. FLIBS will be one of the first in-person gatherings in South Florida this year. Several other major events, such as eMerge Americas and Art Basel in Miami Beach, and the Winterfest Boat Parade in Fort Lauderdale, canceled their 2020 editions.

FLIBS is one of the biggest boat shows in the world and has a major impact on our South Florida economy. According to an economic impact study released by Informa and MIASF, last year’s show generated $1.3 billion, up more than $800 million since 2015. The 2019 show attracted 100,000 visitors, with about 10% coming from outside of the U.S.

FLIBS runs for five days. Hours for the show are listed below:

  • Wednesday, October 28: 12 p.m. – 7 p.m.
  • Thursday, October 29: 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • Friday, October 30: 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • Saturday, October 31: 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • Sunday, November 1: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Tickets are $35 for adults, ages 16 and up. Children under 5 years old are free when accompanied by an adult. 

There are seven different locations to explore. The main location is at the Bahia Mar Yachting Center. There are additional exhibit locations, ranging from the Pier 66 Marina to the Las Olas Marina. This link shows the full list of all locations and addresses.

COVID-19 Safety and FAQs

U.S. Boat Shows and FLIBS have partnered with Informa to implement the AllSecure standard for in-person events in order to protect visitors and vendors from COVID-19 risks. All events will be run according to official government and local authority guidance. FLIBS will follow all GBAC standards (Global Biorisk Advisory Council).

Let’s cover a couple of frequently asked questions about the show given the complications caused by COVID-19.

Is FLIBS still going on?

As of today, 10/19/2020, FLIBS is still a go. Please check the show’s website and social media sites for the latest news on the show.

Will FLIBS refund tickets?

All sales are final, but if FLIBS is canceled prior to opening day, they will refund your ticket.

What are the social distancing requirements in the show?

Events will be run according to official government and local authority guidance. Social distancing of six feet will be maintained at all times with the exception of family members residing together. You can learn more about the Informa AllSecure guidelines here

What are the requirements of the exhibitor for cleaning/sanitizing?

Exhibitors will comply with all requirements established by Broward County, including but not limited to increased sanitation throughout the day with deep cleaning and disinfection during all operating hours. Exhibitors will adhere to the AllSecure standards developed for in-person events like FLIBS.

How can I be kept up to date?

Visit the FLIBS website to access the most up-to-date information about show status, exhibitors, and events. You can sign up for the FLIBS newsletter here.

You can also learn more about the show through its social media links: InstagramFacebook, and Twitter

Plan Your Trip

With seven different locations and a myriad of exhibits and events on tap, FLIBs can be overwhelming if you don’t know what you want to see or do. Spend a little bit of time before the show outlining your goals: What dealers and manufacturers do you want to visit? What boats do you want to tour? How will you get there? Where you will eat (and drink)?

With over 100,000 visitors converging on FLIBS last year, making sure you secure lodging and transportation is a critical pre-show step. There are several hotels nearby the show offering discounts in partnership with onPeak. Use this link to find the best hotel rates available.

Further, take it from personal experience that you need to allow ample time for parking and transportation. There are several different ways to access all seven locations, such as water taxis, Uber and Lyft drop-offs, and a show shuttle system. There are also several parking garages situated around the vicinity of the show. This link provides a full list of transportation and parking options, complete with maps. 

Special Events and Superyacht Village

FLIBS offers a series of packages and events to complement your boat touring experience. The Winward VIP Club allows early access to exhibits for serious boat buyers. You can also visit the Captains Lounge at Bahia Mar, a private air-conditioned club with an open bar and hors d'oeuvres.

The Annual Kids’ Fishing Clinics, located at the Convention Center show site, is a free fishing clinic for children ages 5 to 16. The clinics will be held on Saturday, October 31, at 12 p.m. ET and 2 p.m. ET, and on Sunday, November 1, at 1 p.m. ET and 3 p.m. ET. 

Superyacht Village, introduced in 2019, offers a chance to sample the superyacht life by touring vessels 300-plus feet in length. The Superyacht Village was a smashing success last year; it features exhibits by renowned shipyards and includes helicopters, personal submarines, exotic and collectible cars, and other luxury items showcasing the superyacht lifestyle.

Financial Planning with Harbor Crest Wealth Advisors

The Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show offers a chance to enjoy the best of the South Florida lifestyle while also practicing proper COVID-19 safety precautions. Are you planning on going? Drop a line and I will see you there!

If you would like additional advice on how to manage the financial investment you made into your family’s boating lifestyle, sign up for our newsletter.