How Long Does a Boat Have to Be in Order to Be Called a Yacht?

A leisure boat typically must be more than 30 feet long to be considered a yacht, according to the Westlawn Institute of Marine Technology. Smaller vessels are usually labeled pleasure boats or recreational boats. However, sometimes slightly shorter boats that are clearly expensive and elegant are categorized as yachts.

Yachts vary in size significantly. Those that are under 197 feet in overall length are considered boats, while longer yachts are classified as ships. If a yacht is more than 100 feet long, it is sometimes referred to as a megayacht. Super yachts stretch more than 150 feet. Though a charter yacht is a commercial vessel, it is hired for recreational purposes, so it still fits the designation of yacht.