How Much Does Boat Fuel Add to My Motor Cruiser Costs?

When investing in a motor cruiser, there are many costs to consider. Not only will you have to pay for the initial purchase, but also insurance, boat supplies, maintenance and of course, fuel. With the price of petrol and diesel rising, you may be wondering, how much does boat fuel add to your motor cruiser costs?

Learn about the costs of boat fuel and how you can keep them low with these handy tips and tricks.

How much fuel do motor cruisers consume?

How much fuel a motor cruiser consumes will of course depend on the model and size of your vessel, as well as how far you intend to travel. Not only will your vessel need fuel for cruising, but it also requires it to run the generator when the boat is anchored as well, some water sports apparatus may need fuel too.

How is this measured?

On average, to determine the amount of fuel you will be using you should calculate the number of gallons you use per hour and then divide the horsepower by ten. 

What can impact the cost of fuel?

Size of your boat

The size, weight and model of your boat will also impact the cost of fuel. It doesn't take a genius to understand that a larger motor cruiser will need more fuel to run, so this will cost more. Whereas, a smaller cruiser will not need as much fuel.

How far can you travel?

The distance you travel and your boating itinerary will also impact the cost of fuel. If you plan on going on lots of adventures and travelling across many waters, fuel will add a lot to your motor cruiser costs.

Sea conditions affect fuel efficiency

Sea conditions also impact fuel efficiency. When there are rough conditions, it makes boating less steady and often more fuel is used to slow the vessel down or to reduce plunging.

How to minimise the cost of fuel

If you are aiming to keep costs low, there are several ways that you can do this:

Take advantage of weather conditions

Planning your trip around predicted winds, tides and currents is a great way to save both fuel and money. Before heading out on your boating journey, first take a look at tidal information, charts and forecasts to plan the best route and understand what the conditions will be like.

Throttling back can save fuel

By throttling back, you can reduce the amount of fuel that flows to the engine and therefore reduce cost.

Docking in a marina rather than anchoring

When you anchor your boat overnight, the generator will still need to run which of course consumes fuel. This means it would be running for almost every hour of the day. If you dock in a marina instead, you could save a considerable amount of money on fuel. At a marina, you will be able to connect to the shore water and power.

Red (tax-free) diesel

Red (tax-free) diesel will also impact fuel and motor cruiser costs. This type of diesel is still available in Great Britain at the waterside however, recreational boaters need to pay the complete rate of duty when they purchase for propulsion. If it is for the use of electricity generation or heating, then it can be bought at a reduced rate. If the purpose is for propelling a private pleasure craft then a declaration will need to be made, along with the percentage that will be used towards this.

Several factors impact the cost of fuel, it's important to budget for this when purchasing a motor cruiser so that you can enjoy your adventures out on the water with less worry about the costs.

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