Boat rental between private individuals prohibited
In application of the police regulations of the Bouches du Rhône department council, boaters may not rent their boats to other individuals. The port of La Ciotat has reminded us of this in recent days. "It is specified in the police regulations that any subletting of places is prohibited," explains Philippe Pariente, master of Port-Vieux de La Ciotat. "This entails the prohibition of renting the boat as AirBnB-style accommodation, but also any commercial aspect including renting the boat to a private individual."
The regulations apply to all marinas belonging to the department, including La Ciotat, but also Cassis. Each port then manages the application.
Avoid conflicts with professionals and accidents
Philippe Pariente justifies the application of these prohibitions after several outbursts. "In the port of La Ciotat, we have several declared professionals who see there an unfair competition. One year, it almost went bad after a rented boat was raced by a passenger launch. We also had the case of a skipper without a diploma. People don't always realize the risks they take if an accident happens."
SamBoat challenges the legality of the ban
Boat rental platforms between individuals are obviously upwind against the disposition. SamBoat challenges its legality through its lawyer Me Boulineau. "No legislative or regulatory provision prohibits the hiring from private individual to private individual, including in the field of pleasure boating. The activity of SamBoat and its clients is also considered a fundamental freedom protected by the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights, as well as by the Constitution. An unfounded and unjustified ban would clearly be manifestly excessively prejudicial to the fundamental freedoms of boaters."
Its founder Sam Calando denounces a rule that harms popular boaters and draws a parallel with parking spaces. "A boat is expensive, and to remove the possibility of amortizing the costs is to prevent access to boating, pleasure should not be reserved only to an elite! The port regulations clearly specify that any subletting of places is prohibited. However, our owners only offer boat rental in La Ciotat. The rental contract covers only the vessel and in no case its berth. As when renting a car, the parking space is not included in the rental. Thus, it is clear that the rental of the vessel could not be assimilated to the sublease of the AOT
No revision in sight
Asked by BoatIndustry about a possible evolution of the regulation of the departmental ports of the Bouches du Rhône, Philippe Pariente indicates that this is not on the agenda.