You never forget your first day on the water.

If you’re lucky enough to live near a lake, taking the kids out boating can be a truly memorable bonding experience. However, there are some very obvious risks that come attached with going sailing.

With any adventure with your children, safety comes before anything else. This means careful preparation both on the day and well in advance. Here, we discuss the five things you can be doing to make sure your time on the water goes swimmingly.

Educate beforehand

Water should never be underestimated, and having an awareness of its potential dangers is essential.

Make sure to sit your children down beforehand and emphasise the risks that come attached with being out on a large body of water. Make sure the dos and do nots are drilled in before you put your knowledge into practice. Of course, there’s a fine balance between raising awareness and scaring the kids out of wanting to go, but you want them to be alive to the potential dangers out there.

Gear up

Any successful trip starts with packing right, in this case you’ll need to add a few specific extras to complete your preparations. Life jackets are both a lifesaver and a stress-reliever, so don’t hesitate to get your children kitted up in some solid safety gear.

Watch the weather

In typical British fashion, summer hasn’t started out so summery this year. The miserable weather we saw throughout June isn’t exactly conducive to a fun day out boating, nor a safe one.

Don’t bank on it being good weather and turn up on the day hoping for the best. Choose your day well in advance based on the calmest weather possible. If it turns out the weather report wasn’t accurate, don’t be afraid to delay your trip for a better day.

Have an emergency plan in place

The chances of something going wrong are slim to none, especially if you’ve prepared properly. Regardless, you must be ready for the worst-case scenarios you might face, no matter how farfetched they seem.

Look into creating a float plan before you set off. A float plan contains all the valuable information you’ll require in the case of an issue. Ie. information on the vessel, your location and who’s on board – easy enough stuff to remember, you might suggest, but it sure is useful to have it to hand if anything goes wrong.

Get some peace of mind

Finally, there’s plenty to worry about with the kids coming aboard for the day without fretting about the boat itself. If you’re sailing regularly, marine insurance from the likes of Gallagher may already be part of your repertoire. If not, you should consider backing your boat up against accidents and damage.

It’s easy to set-up, and it gives you the chance to focus your energy on having a safe and fun time with the kids.

There’s no need to worry too much about planning a boat trip with the kids, after all you should be focused on having a good time. All you need is a bit of preparation, care and good old-fashioned common sense, and your trip is sure to be plain sailing.

Disclosure: This is a partnered post

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