Cruiser Yachts vs. Motor Yachts – What’s the Difference?

Cruiser Yachts vs. Motor Yachts – What’s the Difference?

Updated: April 19, 2024

If you’re totally new to the world of yachting, you might be only vaguely aware of the different types of yachts available. We wouldn’t blame you. There’s a lot of overlap between these categories. That can make them seem just a bit arbitrary to the casual or novice boater. However, if you have some idea of what you desire out of your yachting experience, you will want to know the key distinctions between these types of vessels. So, you can make the choice that suits your wants. Here are a couple of major differences between cruiser yachts vs. motor yachts.


Note: you’ll likely find boats with different specifications than what you see below that would still be classified as either of these kinds of yachts. That said, we still tried to keep this as general as we could for your convenience. If you have any questions, ask the people who have all the answers at The Advantaged Yacht Charters.

Knot Speed

Cruiser yachts are like the sports cars of the boating world. It’s not just the sleek and streamlined shapes or the at-times bold color choices: it’s also how fast they can go. Many cruisers can reach high speeds in the water, reaching 30 knots or even more. The smaller size and angular designs make them more hydrodynamic, which is perfect for adrenaline junkies. If your idea of an excursion is a high-seas adventure, cruiser yachts might be your style.


Of course, for many people, speed isn’t everything. I’m talking about people who picture being on the open seas as a way to kick back and relax, now that they are miles away from the pressures they find on land. Cruiser yachts tend to prioritize chilling out over cutting loose, so they tend to reach the relatively milder high speed of 20 knots. Ironically, this means that motor yachts may be more ideal for “cruising” than the actual cruisers!

How Much Room on a Yacht? 

Another reason that motor yachts can’t go as fast as other kinds of yachts is also a major part of their appeal: they’re significantly larger. These kinds of boats tend to come with multiple heads and staterooms, but more space also means more amenities. You might find bars, spaces for eating, and lounging areas aboard a motor yacht. Do you remember when we mentioned earlier that cruiser yachts are like sports cars? It wouldn’t be too far off to say that motor yachts are the boating equivalent of stretch limos.


Cruiser yachts typically have less room for such features and fewer cabins. Still, what it lacks on the inside is made up for by the emphasis on what is outside; you may find more outdoor space on a cruiser, so you can enjoy that fresh sea air. Motor yachts may be a better vessel for a fancy dinner party. But, the cruiser yacht may be better suited for those who prefer bringing a cooler, grilling up, and casting out a fishing line with a few buds.

Contact The Advantaged Yacht Charter

Of course, no one type of boat is inherently better than the other. It’s all subjective and depends on your own taste and interests. This means that in the debate over cruiser yachts vs. motor yachts, there is only one clear-cut winner: you. The Advantaged Yacht Charters can help you make that decision and get the sailing experience you’ll love most. Check out our selection of cruiser yachts and motor yachts, and take a look at our many other options as well.