Marine News from the Great Lakes

63rd Annual Detroit Boat Show Moves To January In 2020 At TCF Center

Published: Wednesday, December 18, 2019
By: Nicki Polan, MBIA Executive Director

Originally, the Detroit Boat Show had late January dates, similar to most boat shows around the country. However, as the North American International Auto Show grew bigger and bigger, the Detroit Boat Show got pushed further and further into February. No more! In July of 2018, the Auto Show announced its date change to June starting in 2020. This opened the door for the Detroit Boat Show to move back to January dates, a goal for many years.

That’s why we are excited to announce the 63rd Annual Detroit Boat Show will be held January 18-26, 2020, at the newly named TCF Center, previously Cobo Center. The earlier dates are a win-win for the consumer and more than 100 exhibitors at this event.

Some of the benefits for attending an earlier show include:

  1. Kick off winter sales season a month early, helping to assure that boats ordered are delivered in time for spring launch. After all, boats are manufactured differently than cars and need more production time – the earlier, the better.
  2. Get an unbeatable deal by taking advantage of manufacturers’ desire to balance their production cycles. Manufacturer incentives are larger when the demand is lighter, so you will see larger rebates at winter boat shows, which often disappear in the spring.
  3. Design the boat of your dreams. Get every option you want and in your choice of colors. If you wait, come spring, you may be limited to the remaining boats in stock at the dealership. If you want to customize, earlier is always better.
  4. There is more selection for used boat purchasers. Because the volume of boats sold at this event is so great, there will be a greater number of used boats coming on to the market at this time. Better selection and better pricing is always a good thing for those shopping for used boats.
  5. Get top trade-in values. Michigan has ‘sales tax on the difference’ (STOD), which means that when you purchase a new boat from a dealer, you only pay sales tax on the difference between the cost of the new boat and the value of your trade-in. To minimize this difference and motivate buyers, trade in values are typically larger at winter boat shows so the STOD savings is larger as well.
  6. One stop shopping at the Detroit Boat Show lets you avoid the lines and get it all done ahead of time. From financing to boat registration renewals, from marina dockage to electronics, from beach maintenance to decks and docks, and so much more - you can make it all happen early at the show and create a carefree start to the boating season.

Mark your calendar for Jan. 18-26 and make plans to head to the Detroit Boat Show for these great reasons and more. Even if you are not in the market to buy a boat, it is a great place to see what is new, discover boating for the first time, bring the family, or meet up with boating friends for a blast of summer in the middle of winter.

See you at the show! or find out more on our boat show calendar.


This article first appeared in the Year End Issue (Nov/Dec) 2019 of Great Lakes Scuttlebutt magazine.

tags: Boat Show, Lake Erie, Lake Huron, Lake St Clair

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