What does Melbourne have in common with Copenhagen and London? In each city you can captain a boat unlicensed and host a picnic at the same time, using a service called Go Boat. Now, Go Boat has launched in Sydney, meaning you can steer a boat with seven mates down Parramatta River, exploring the crags and coves of the inner west.
And best of all, you don't need a boat licence.
The boats are speed limited, made from recycled plastic bottles and are run by a quiet electric engine emitting no pollution.
The picnic part is up you – just leave the portable Weber at home; no cookers or flames are allowed. Customers can bring their own alcohol, but there are limits: only two drinks per person are allowed on board. (You likely don’t want to drink heavily, anyway – there’s no toilet on board.) A picnic table and sunshade are both included on the boat, for maximum comfort. Plus, you can bring your dog.
Each boat has a limit of eight people and prices start from $129 for the first hour. Customers are liable for any damage to the boat; there’s a $200 security bond per boat and every person who boards one signs a waiver.
Go Boat encourages social drinking rather than reckless boozing. A “captain” can’t have a blood alcohol content that exceeds 0.00 per cent.
Go Boat is bookable for up to eight people (including children).