Sea Ray is the world’s No. 1
choice for pleasure boats.
Buying and financing a boat
is easy with Costco programs
By Stephanie E. Ponder
FOR SEVERAL MONTHS Costco member Kevin
Reilly and his wife toyed with the idea of buying a
boat. They spoke with a local Sea Ray dealer, who
helped them work through some numbers. Reilly
says the dealer finally told them, “The best deal
you’re going to get is through Costco.”
While the Reillys were visiting Madison,
Wisconsin, in March 2011, they popped into a Costco
warehouse and saw the boat they wanted. “We asked
ourselves, ‘Is this a sign or is it not a sign?’ ” Reilly tells
The Connection. So the couple called the Costco Auto
Program, located a participating Sea Ray dealer,
and made an appointment with the dealer after
which they purchased a Sea Ray 205 Sport Boat.
The Reillys are among the more than 3,000
Costco members who have purchased a boat through
the Costco Auto Program. Benefits include Costco
member pricing and incentives up to $3,500, as well
Costco members can save money purchasing a
boat through the Costco Auto Program. To find a
participating dealer near you, go to Costco.com and
search “Boat5,” or call toll-free 1-800-816-5177.
Costco does not sell boats or negotiate individual transactions. Members must got to a participating dealer.
For more information about the Essex Credit
program for Costco members interested in boat or
RV loans, visit Costco.com and enter “Essex7” in
the search box, or call toll-free 1-866-377-3907.
Costco does not provide loans.
as access to any national incentives and a $500 Costco
Cash card for completing a member satisfaction survey after purchase.
“Members are often surprised to learn that
Costco’s Auto Program is more than cars. We also
offer great member value on Kawasaki Powersports
products and boats,” says John Gleason, Costco services manager.
“We survey every member who buys a boat
through the Costco Auto Program, and more than 99
percent rate the program as good to excellent—with
86 percent rating the program excellent. We also get
high marks for the quality of the dealers participating
in the program. Our goal is to provide members with
great value and a great experience at the dealership.
The survey results show we’re accomplishing both.”
Whatever water activity you have in mind, from
water sports to entertaining, Costco’s program has
the right boat for you, John says. Other companies
participating in the program include Boston Whaler
and Harris FloteBote, a pontoon boat manufacturer.
The Sea Ray 185 and 205 Sport Boats are the
top-selling models among Costco members. Both
models offer versatility on the water for first-time
and experienced boaters.
That was certainly Reilly’s experience. “The
boat has a lot of different personalities,” he says.
During the first year of ownership, his family and
friends have used it for waterskiing, tubing, motor-
ing around Lake Wisconsin and floating as “an
island in the middle of the water.”
He adds, “I would have never guessed it would
be so easy to get a good deal.” C
ALTHOUGH FEBRUARY is
the shortest month, there’s
something about the weather
that can make it feel like the lon-gest. One way to take your mind
off snowy, rainy or otherwise
dreary days is to start thinking
about the fun the warmer
weather will bring.
Whether those plans include
cruising around on water or land,
Costco’s Boat and RV Loan and
Refinancing service, provided by
Essex Credit Corporation, can
help Costco members save
money to get the most out of
their summer plans.
Take John and Penny
Holmes, for example. In early
2011 the couple refinanced a
62-foot motor yacht they use in
the summers to cruise around
the Great Lakes.
“The rates were very com-
petitive,” says John Holmes, “and
the folks who handled it were
outstanding. They followed up
on every detail.”
He adds that they found
out about the boat refinancing
service through The Costco
Connection. He says, “It spurred
us on to look at refinancing,
because we hadn’t given it a
Applications can be sub-
mitted online and a decision can
be received in as little as 60 sec-
onds. More complex transactions
may take longer. In addition, the
Boat and RV Loan and Refinan-
cing Program offers no process-
ing fee, exceptional terms and a
Costco Cash card with each
“My wife tells me she got a
[Costco Cash] card out of the
deal, so she was really happy,”
Holmes says. “Overall, we were
extremely pleased with the