For big discounts on retail marine parts, equipment, and supplies, Boat Owners Warehouse is a great place to head. Stocked with just about everything you could possibly need for your boat (and quite a few things you probably don't need but really, really want), it's a cut above the competition. But there are always ways to make a good shopping experience even better. If you want to maximize your next trip to the store (or maybe just pick up some useful hints about the best way to navigate the online site), here are ten tips to help you get the most of Boat Owners Warehouse.
1. Save with coupons
As waterwayguide.com notes, with over 20,000 brand name hardware, maintenance and supply items, BOW is a one stop shop for all your marine requirements. Better yet, the prices are some of the best around. But no matter how fantastic the deal, there's a way of making it even better - coupons. Coupons can help you cut a big chunk off your overall spend, giving you the freedom to add even more into your shopping cart than you would have otherwise. Before hitting the store, check out the online coupon websites to see if there's any deals running - you won't always get lucky, but scour enough sites and eventually you'll hit payday.
2. Stay connected on Facebook
If you want to keep abreast of all the latest news at both Boat Owners Warehouse and the boating world in general, friend BOW on Facebook. It's also a great way of connecting with other boating enthusiasts in your area.
3. Use the special-order department
There's nothing worse than spending a Saturday trawling the aisles of a store only to come away empty handed. But it's sometimes inevitable: regardless of how big the store, how massive the stock, and how varied the selection, there are always going to be times that what you're looking for simply isn't there. Maybe the product is a little niche. Maybe another customer grabbed the last one before you arrived. Whatever the reason, it's annoying. Fortunately, it's also not the end - at least not at Boat Owners Warehouse. If you're trying to track down a particular piece that's not in stock, take advantage of their special-order department to make sure that next time you arrive, it's there waiting.
4. Collect your order from the store to save on shipping fees
You might not want to waste your weekend trawling around a store, but you probably don't want to pay a fortune on shipping fees either. Now you can combine the best of both worlds by placing your order online and then picking up from the store. After you place your order, Boat Owners Warehouse ask you wait 24 hours for your order to be packed. After they send you a notification that it's ready to collect, you have 48 hours to make your way to your nearest location for pick up. Payment doesn't need to be made until you collect the order. Best of all, you won't pay a cent on shipping.
5. Ask questions
Boat Owners Warehouse might have great pricing, but it's also got great staff. Use them to your advantage. If you're new to boating and aren't quite sure about the difference between a fuel filter and a water separator (or even if there IS a difference), ask. Not only can they help you narrow down on what you really need, they can also give you guidance on manufacturers, materials, and plenty else besides.
6. Pay extra for expedited shipping
Sometimes, you need a part and you need it NOW. While Boat Owners Warehouse trys to ship every order on the same day as receipt, delivery timescales are contingent on carriers’ pick-up schedules and transit time - neither of which they have control over. But there's a solution. For customers in a hurry, Boat Owners Warehouse offers expedited shipment. It comes at a small extra fee, but it's more than worth it for those times you can't wait around for your order.
7. Stock up on the basics
If you're a first-time boat owner, there are certain basic you're going to need to get you started. Discover Boating has some great suggestions about what to add to your checklist, including life jackets and wearable personal flotation devices, throwable flotation devices, fire extinguishers, visual signaling devices, sound signaling devices, skier or diver down flag, a heavy duty flashlight, a snorkel mask, a VHF radio, a bailing device or bucket, an anchor with line, and a medical kit for emergencies. Boat Owners Warehouse carries all of these, and a lot more besides. Rather than hitting the store with a wad of cash but very little idea of what you need, make a checklist before you head off. As well as potentially saving you a lot of money on unnecessary 'extra's, it'll also make sure you don't accidently forget something crucial.
8. Sign up to the mailing list
Want to be the first one to find out about new products, promotions, and sales? Then do yourself a favor and sign up to the mailing list on the Boat Owners Warehouse official website. With all the latest news being delivered straight to your inbox, you'll never miss out on a great deal again.
9. Understand the return policy
There's nothing more frustrating than being caught off guard by an ambiguous return policy. The Boat Owners Warehouse is clear enough, but it's worth paying attention to the small print, none-the-less. If you're not happy with your order, you need to contact Customer Service within 15 days of the purchase date to request a return authorization number. The number should be clearly marked on the outside of the package to be returned, while the goods themselves will be subject to an inspection before your refund is processed. No returns are accepted on electronics, equipment with electronic components, electrical Items, personal use items, products made for consumption or cut items.
10. Visit a store
While most sales are generated via the website, the Boat Owners Warehouse also offers customers the chance to browse the goods directly at one of their brick and mortar stores - a great option if you prefer to see the products for yourself before handing over your cash. Currently, stores are located at 750 East Sample Road, Pompano Beach; 311 SW 24th St., Ft Lauderdale; 2230 Broadway (U.S. 1), Riviera Beach; and 1830 SE Federal Highway, Stuart, FL. The opening hours for each location can be found on the Boat Owners Warehouse website.
Written by Garrett Parker
Read more posts by Garrett Parker