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Miami International Boat Show Strategy

If you’re lucky enough to be headed to the Miami International Boat Show, which opens this Thursday, you need a plan of attack. No doubt, you’ve either heard or experienced—if you attended last year or the year before—the horror stories about getting to and from Miami Marine Stadium on Virginia Key, the host venue for the past two years since the show got banished from the Miami Convention Center in South Beach.


Make the most out of this year’s event with the least amount of hassle. Photo courtesy/copyright Pete Boden/Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.

The show’s first year at its new venue—a breath of fresh air and sunshine for me as I always thought the convention center was a poorly lit dungeon—revealed all the obvious challenges of getting thousands of people to a tiny island only accessible by boat or vehicle on one often-congested bridge. In the show’s second running at the historic aquatic stadium, the organizers beefed up water taxi and land shuttle service and the experience was much improved, especially for attendees who wisely chose to arrive and depart at non-peak show hours.

Hot tip: Arrive at the show a little later and leave a little earlier than you think you need to. What’s the worst that could happen? You’ll get a bit more sleep—always coveted in Miami—and have a bit more free time to hit the beach. Most of you are escaping snow on the ground, right? There’s a reason this country’s largest boat show happens in Miami in February.

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