Sailing Yachts vs. Power Yachts: What to Know About Owning the Two

So, you’re looking to take the next step into yacht ownership. Are you thinking that you’d rather have a sailing yacht or a motor yacht? There are many considerations involved in yacht ownership, with one of the first being which type of yacht is the right one for you. There are certain considerations when deciding between purchasing a sailing yacht or motor yacht. Let’s take a closer look.

A Yacht’s Purpose

What are you using the yacht for? It’s probably for vacation, but how do you vacation?

Some people see yachting as the most practical way to travel from marina to marina, and from one mooring to the next. However, most boaters prefer the journey itself.

If your real fun begins once your feet are back on dry land, you will most likely enjoy the speed and functionality of a motor. However, if you love the salty breeze in your hair and the challenges of negotiating the elements, sailing yachts are the way to go.

Consider the Costs

Over a given distance, motoring is more expensive, as fuel prices add up, and more so if the conditions are less than favorable. The benefit is that travel times may be reduced.

On the flip slide, the wind in your sails is free. Even if you need to use the motor on some legs of your trip, you will certainly be saving money when sails come into action. So if time isn’t a matter of concern, sailing wins on cost. 

Required Maintenance

Both yacht types require maintenance, be it anti-fouling paint, teak oils, or cushion replacements. Regular maintenance is normally not dictated by yacht type, but depends more on the size of the boat, how frequently it is being used and under what conditions.

With motor yachts, regular engine check-ups and oil changes will significantly increase the total maintenance fee. But without maintenance, mechanical failures become more frequent and quickly drive costs much higher than expected.

For sailing yachts, sails and rigging must be regularly maintained, and in many cases, replaced every 5 years.

Both yacht types require careful maintenance to operate along with yacht insurance for proper protection. 


There is no doubt that using fossil fuels have a negative impact on the local ecology and marine life. And any time you crank up that speed, your emissions will only increase.

Sailing, on the other hand, is a much eco-friendlier option as there is virtually no gas used, and a tiny carbon footprint as a result.

Whether you opt to glide through the waters on a sailing yacht or choose to power your way to your next destination, it all comes down to personal preference. Both have their pros and cons, and neither is inherently better in all aspects.

No matter which type of yacht you choose to purchase, what really matters is getting time on the water and securing peace of mind with yacht insurance. Don’t wait until an incident occurs to think about coverage. Secure coverage before you take that first excursion, to ensure that no matter what happens, you and your new yacht will be covered.

About Mariners Insurance

Mariners General Insurance Group was founded in 1959 to protect boat owners and marine business clients. We are marine insurance experts and insure boats worldwide – in every ocean on the planet. Marine insurance is critical if you own a boat or nautical business. Trust the professionals with all of your Boat Insurance needs – trust Mariners Insurance. Call us at (800) 992-4443 any time you have questions or concerns about insurance for your vessel or marine business.