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Best Time To Buy A Jet Ski – It’s Not What You Expect!

Let me go ahead and answer the question, the best time to get a jet ski is probably the worst time to buy one.

I know I wrote a little about this in a post here but I wanted to go into more details about the best time to buy. It’s a bit more tricky than giving a simple date, let me explain.

The Best Time To Buy A Jet Ski

The best time of year to buy a jet ski is in August or September.

Those two months are going to be the golden months to get a great deal on a jet ski.

Why might you ask? That is when the Jet Ski manufacturers release the new models for next year. So if it’s 2022, they’ll be releasing the 2023’s around August to September 2022. I know that carmakers are a year ahead, and that can be confusing but for the most part jet skis current year models are the year you’re in now.

Why August or September?

August or September are not set in stone as being the time to purchase. What determines it is when they release the new ones. For all we know they could change it up and release next year models in June so keep that in mind.

But for the most part, it’s always been either those two months.

Right before the release of the new models, the manufacturer wants the dealers to sell as many of the last year models as possible so that they’ll buy the latest models. With that in mind, the manufacturer cranks out some great rebates and warranties that you don’t see often.

But There’s A Catch!

While it’s often that the manufacturer will release some great promotions during August or September it doesn’t mean it will be great all the time. Sometimes the market is good, and many dealers don’t have much stock, so they don’t need to give many incentives.

Sometimes the market is bad, and dealers have a lot of inventory, so they need to give great rebates.

Just like the stock market it’s not best to time the jet ski market either. Some years are good, and some are bad.

What controls when it’s the right time to buy is often when no one is buying. Like in the winter months or offseasons. You’re going to find the best time to buy when the season is ending or is in the offseason. The catch is that when it’s the offseason, it’s not the best time to ride a jet ski as its usually cold.

The Curve Ball

The good news is that you’ll get curve balls sometimes. Either before the season starts or in the dead heat of it, you’ll find that manufacturers will come out with some great promotions.

Make sure to know the promotions before buying a jet ski, check out the manufactures websites here…

Sea-Doo

Yamaha

Kawaski

I’ve seen some crazy good promotions given in the middle of the jet ski season either because sales were slow or sales were good. The jet ski gods decided to sell – sell – sell!

Don’t Forget The Dealers

When I say what is a good time to buy a new jet ski don’t forget that each dealership might be running a promotion themselves. Make sure to follow your local dealership website or even Facebook page to see if they have any models they want to move.

It’s usually the leftover models that are the most wanted to move, and you might find some dealerships with a couple prior year models that they need to be gone. Often, the manufacturer gives the better rebates to the leftover models. So if the price is a concern ask about those first.

When Do They Ship The New PWCs?

If you have to have the latest model watercraft you might be wondering when do they ship? What usually happens is that Australia gets the newest models first because as we head into winter in U.S.A, Australia is heading into summer.

You can expect the new stuff to roll in around January all the way up to May depending on what the dealership orders in the US. If you need to get your jet ski as soon as possible make sure to talk to your local dealership about putting a deposit on the watercraft.

Usually, a deposit can help get the craft there quicker since they have money on it.

Worst Time?

There is not a bad time to purchase a jet ski, but you can time the market wrong. Just like everything in life when there is more demand than supply prices go up. If you want a jet ski that has a lot of demand but little supply you’re usually not going to get the best deal possible.

But why do they do it like that? Well, you may not want to pay that much for the watercraft but the next guy will since the demand for it is so high. That’s why companies like Apple have no problem selling expensive phones because there is demand for it.

The right timing can also play in your favor. Every region will have different promotions, so the person in Tennessee will have different promotions than the person in New Mexico. It’s important not to worry or concern yourself with what others are getting for their jet ski but concern yourself with what’s selling and not selling if all you care about is the price.

Note: If you really want a jet ski and it’s the heat of the season, and the dealership has it in stock then buy it. I’ve seen many people try to time it right and when they usually wait the models are gone for the rest of the year, and another one can’t be located. Just like money, time is a precious resource but one you can’t get back. Sometimes it’s better to bite the bullet and buy now and enjoy the summer with your family then it is to find that one golden nugget of a good deal.

Comparing Prices Online

I know no one likes to feel like they got a bad deal on something as expensive as a jet ski but it’s important to remember that people lie a lot on the internet.

You’ll get the guy on the forms saying he got a jet ski for much lower than the quotes you get. Don’t forget that different regions will have different promotions depending on what is selling. Setting the various regions to the side it’s important to remember people like to tell stories that make them look like the hero. We get this from all the movies and books we read in our lives; we just want our friends and even random strangers to know we won the battle.

While I’m not going to say that it’s not possible to get amazing deals – they’re out there – but you can’t always believe what you read.

The Full Picture

Don’t forget to get the complete picture when shopping. Never trust non-MSRP prices you see on dealers websites. Usually, the dealership can’t advertise below MSRP on current year models but can make the price of last year model anything they want.

You’ll see lower, often crazy low prices on last year models. This is a selling technique to get you to call or email. Always get the final price in writing and remember that this can be a gamble. If you don’t live in the state that you bought from you might not get the full promotions, and this is why I encourage people to buy from their closest dealership or one in their state.

It’s more vital to purchase from your local dealership for the simple fact you’ll need to take it to someone you trust. You’ll need someone to service and work on it and having someone near that is good is more ideal. It’s honestly worth the extra cost of buying from your local dealership as they can be more of the less hassle approach in such a time demanding world.

After You Buy

After you have bought the Jet Ski, or even before you get one, you’ll need to make sure you have all the correct gear and tips.

I have a guide on the 107 must-have jet ski accessories and tips that will help you get on the right track for when it comes to jet ski know-how.

16 thoughts on “Best Time To Buy A Jet Ski – It’s Not What You Expect!”

    • The biggest brands of now are Sea-Doo, Yamaha, and Kawasaki. There used to be more like from Honda, TigerShark, WetBike, and Polaris.

      Reply
  1. Looking at either the ex deluxe or the vx limited. I live on the inter coastal so will be using on that mostly. Is ex deluxe able to handle rougher water smoothly ?

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  2. Any advice on which machine would be the most comfortable for a taller rider (I am 6’6″)? I am waiting for some good deals anytime.

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  3. If you had the option between a 2020 GTI 170 and a 2019 GTX 155 similarly equipped ( stereo) which would you choose? Would you expect the pricing to be about the same given the latest model year and more HP compared to the lower HP but larger hull and “ luxury “ model GTX? Any insights would be helpful.

    Thanks,

    WGS

    Reply
    • I honestly go with the GTX 155 especially if you’re taller as the GTX body has more legroom. The hull does ride nicer and things like engine mounts on the GTX make things smoother. While I don’t see or think the new engine or new GTI body will give any issues but the GTX body and 155HP engine is proven. Plus, a dealer is more willing to bend to move a leftover model.

      Reply
  4. Any idea how the currentVirus situation might impact Dealers and pricing? Thanks for a great and informative site.

    WGS

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    • Buy now. Dealers are starting to get hungry and when things get “back to normal” you’ll see a mad rush because people have been in their homes and want out. The season might even be longer than usual because school schedules are messed up and the season has been pushed back.

      Reply
      • Thanks, another question if I may. We are looking for a machine that will primarily be used for basic running around at moderate speeds ( we are both older) but would like it to have the ability to pull our sons ( in their 30s) and also our grandkids on tubes, skies and wakeboards. Actually I have 2 questions first will the 130hp SeaDoo be enough power or will the 170 be significantly better. Second in the 170 models would the GTI be sufficient or do you really need the Wake model for getting someone “up” . As I understand it the only thing the Wake model adds is a ski launch control.

        Thanks again!

        WGS

        Reply
        • The 130 would get you by but that 170 will be better in the long run if you’re pulling adults. The SKI Mode is helpful if you’re doing pulls all day long but if you’re doing it occasionally it’s not worth it. Touring mode and cruise control are fine if you don’t have SKI Mode. I would save the money and go with the GTI SE 170 over the WAKE in your situation.

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  5. Makes sense! Thanks. Hey another question.. when looking up used prices on NADA or Kelly, or even PWC…. the prices they list are always much lower than what is on the market around here! Been looking for 2014 VX Deluxe or Cruiser.. and the NADA prices are like around $5700-6700. But on Craigslist and Market place on FB they are all going for like $7000-$8000! I have emailed some people a copy of the NADA prices to pro e how out of range they are… hoping they would go down on it. But they rarely budge, maybe $500 less. WHY??? So fustrating!

    Reply
    • Looks like a seller’s market right now. They’re basing the pricing on what other machines like what they have are going for. Plus, the NADA and Kelly Blue Book are only guides to about where those two companies think they should be (its still a good starting point). Then people will always have a bias on their own machines; the best thing to do is point out the flaws of the machine and let them know it’s going to cost money to fix such and such. September and October are also very awkward months. Its still warm and plenty of time to ride so you’ll see the people selling used jet skis wanting top dollar still as the guys who want new ones are at the dealerships looking at the stuff that just came out in these months. I would wait til December as it will become more of a buyers market as people will be in a need of cash. If you want one now the new ones will have the best promotions so that the dealers with leftover models will want to move them to make room for the new stuff. I don’t want to push you to new but Sea-Doo does have some really good promotions going on now.

      Reply
  6. What is best time to buy a used one from individual? Right before winter or during winter? Seems like people would be done with them by end of summer and dont want to winterize them and take up garage space till next year.. if they have lost interest in them.. or want to get something newer..? We are in Texas… so maybe Sept/ October?

    Reply
    • Right before Christmas or even Thanksgiving would be the best time to buy used because people will be looking to make some holiday money.

      Reply

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