Buy, Hire or Share?

So, you want to get into jet skiing this summer? Great idea. Riding the waves at high velocity is a lot of fun — and good for your physical fitness, too. But, is purchasing a jet ski the best way to go? Is there a more cost-effective option?

You may feel that buying a jet ski makes sense. With ownership, though, comes expenses that are over and above the initial purchase, like insurance, maintenance and storage. Also, how often will you use your jet ski? If you live in Auckland, where the weather isn’t always so flash, you might only clock up a couple of weeks in a year, all while your jet ski depreciates.

Purchasing a jet ski

Buying a second-hand jet ski comes with risks — you never know how it’s been treated, and you can get hit with some nasty maintenance bills. So, let’s assume you choose to purchase a brand-new jet ski. The following table, breaks down the costs for borrowing $20,000 over 36 months at 10% interest with a $10,000 deposit.

CostCost per monthCost per yearCost over 3 years
Monthly repayments$670.19$8,042.28$24,126.90
Depreciation (based on 14 days use per year for a new $30,000 jet ski)$41.67$500.00$1500.00
Annual trailer warrant and registration$12.50$150.00$450.00
Plus $10,000 deposit$39,826.90

So, in my example, you see that the cost of owning a jet ski for one year is $9,942, not including the $10,000 deposit. And, I haven’t factored in storage, which could easily add up to an extra $2,400. Of course, if you pay cash for your jet ski, you can deduct $4,127 for finance, which takes the cost to $5,815

Hiring a jet ski

An alternative to buying is hiring. With this option you avoid the hassle of maintenance, insurance and storage, and, of course, you only pay when you want to go out on the water. However, at typically around $450 per day, renting is still quite expensive.

There is another way to go ….

Sharing a jet ski

Have you heard about timeshares — where you pay to stay in a property at certain times in the year? Well, the same arrangement can apply to jet skis. For example, at Jetshare, you can pay to use a 2019/2020 jet ski for 7, 14, or 28 days a year. Apart from fuel, all other expenses, such as insurance, maintenance, storage and fishing gear, are covered. And, the cost? Well, for us, it’s $2,499 for a 14-day share, which works out to $178.50 per day.

Here’s a summary of the benefits of sharing, rather than buying a jet ski:

  • Pay only when you use the jet ski ($2,499 for 14 days, instead of $9,942)
  • Enjoy brand-new equipment
  • No need to worry about things like storage, insurance, maintenance and depreciation.

Sure, there are plenty of benefits to owning a jet ski — it’s a heck of a lot better than sitting on the beach as a spectator. However, think about the actual costs and whether timeshare better suits your needs.