FAQs

Why Happy Days Houseboats?

We value your leisure time and we are boaters whenever we can get out on the water. We take great pleasure in sharing our experience and local knowledge with you. Happy Days Houseboats is ideally located midway on the Trent Severn Waterway and is a convenient 1.5-hour drive from Pearson International Airport in Toronto.

Our prices are an indication of the value and service you will be getting from our company. Our houseboats have more onboard features than other rentals on the Trent Severn Waterway. Extended service hours, great boats, excellent people and a perfect starting point to an awesome adventure awaits you!

Do I need a License or Pleasure Craft Operator’s Card?

Operating a boat does not require a license in the same way that operating a car does. You are required to have proof of competency. Happy Days Houseboats will issue proof of competency that is in accordance with Transport Canada requirements and includes a dockside safety checklist and on-board training. Proof of operator competency must be demonstrated prior to departure from our dock.

Also, a Pleasure Craft Operators Card is not required, it is recommended, appreciated and can be completed online.

What is a Bareboat Charter?

A bareboat charter is an arrangement for the chartering or hiring of a ship or boat, whereby no crew or provisions are included as part of the agreement; instead, the people who rent the vessel from the owner are responsible for taking care of such things. The charterer obtains possession and full control of the vessel along with the legal and financial responsibility for it. 

How soon should we book?

It is recommended that you book as soon as you are able to commit to your vacation times. It may save some disappointment later. Spring, summer or fall go ahead and give us a call. All seasons are equally enjoyable as our houseboats are equipped with all the comforts of home.

Can I use a hairdryer, flat iron, gourmet coffee maker, toaster, electric frypan, koolatron, etc.?

No, you can’t and here’s why.

High amperage appliances have a strong electric current that will overburden the onboard electrical system. All houseboats are equipped with an inverter system that takes the power from the battery system and inverts it to electrical power and as such, there is limited electrical capacity. The fridge, lights, pumps, etc that are required for the proper function of the houseboat are powered by the onboard battery system.

Breathing machines, laptops, a small fan, cell phones and other low-wattage appliances will work.

Staying at a private marina or, at a lock that is equipped with power hook up, would enable you to use high amperage appliances, but you must be plugged into an onshore electrical source.

Do you allow pets?

With prior approval from administration, a dog is permitted onboard all boats except the Luxury model. The fee to bring a dog on board is $25/day and additional cleaning fees may apply.

What does double berth mean?

A double berth on one of our houseboats is equivalent to a double bed.

Clean Marine Program

As we are just borrowing the earth from future generations, Happy Days Houseboats strive to be as eco-friendly as possible by reducing the amount of pre-packaged foods (less garbage), recycle at every opportunity, dispose of refuse in appropriate locations (lock stations, marinas, Happy Days Marina), and use biodegradable soaps where possible. Check the ingredients and the symbols.Marine Clean Logo

Happy Days Houseboats is a member of Boating Ontario and active participant in their Clean Marine program. We have been independently evaluated and rated for eco-efficiency performance by our significant commitment to environmental improvement. Happy Days Houseboats will promote clean marine practices at all times and agrees to always show respect for the environment and for the fish, birds and animals and all other creatures that share it with us.

What is there to do?

The Trent Severn Waterway is a national treasure, a designated historical site that is safeguarded and managed by Parks Canada. The Waterway links Lake Ontario to Georgian Bay and as you travel through the locks, reflect on the history of water travel as you trace the route taken by Samuel de Champlain in 1614.

Explore the great cultural legacy of Native Canadians by visiting Whetung Ojibwa Centre located on Upper Buckhorn Lake. Water sports are endless and you can fish, swim, wakeboard, canoe, kayak and paddleboard or just simply float. Plan to stargaze.

The area has many species of birds and wildlife can be plentiful with deer, otters, beavers and in some areas, bears and raccoons. There are art galleries, art festivals, music festivals and museums. Shop in the many interesting towns and boutiques along the Waterway or visit the spa or golf course. Wifi is available at Happy Days Houseboats and at different locations along this aqueous highway if you need to stay connected. But if you can, indulge in some digital detox and turn the technology off!

What equipment and utensils are available in Galley/Kitchen?

For the love of food! The most discerning of chefs will find the well-equipped galley has the following items:

  • Place settings for the maximum number of occupants including dinner plates, small plates, soup bowls, mugs, glasses and cutlery (steak knife, butter knife, forks, teaspoon and tablespoons)
  • Large and small pot
  • 2 cast iron frying pans
  • Utensils: Egg flipper, ladle, tongs, potato masher, carrot/potato peeler, can opener, scissors, big and small sharp knives, cutting board, milk jug, juice jug, cheese grater, measuring cup(s).
  • Coffee perk, 2 big serving bowls, tea kettle, teapot, ashtrays, ice cube trays.
  • Biodegradable dish soap
  • Plastic deck chairs
  • Large cooler for beverages
  • Adult life jackets for passengers over 90lbs.

If it’s not on board, just ask us. Remember… an apron is just a cape on backwards.

Great restaurants along the Waterway provide awesome culinary experiences. Farmer’s Markets offer fresh local samplings. Check us out on Pinterest for campfire and BBQ recipes.

Alcohol and Cannabis

The use of alcohol or cannabis or any other type of drug can impair judgement. It is illegal to operate the houseboat while impaired. Happy Days Houseboats will provide complete driver training when it is certain that there is no impairment.

No Smoking Policy

The interior of all houseboats is non-smoking/non-vaping.

Can we have more people on board than the maximum occupancy?

Our maximum occupancy cannot exceed the maximum allowable for the specified boat model. Children and infants are considered occupants.

Can I fish in the Kawarthas?

The Kawarthas offer great fishing.

  • WALLEYE / PICKEREL: 2nd Saturday in May – Nov. 15
  • MUSKIE: 1st Saturday in June – Dec. 15
  • BASS: 3rd Saturday in June – Dec. 5

* See Ontario Fishing Regulation Summary Zone 17 for slot size and limits. 

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