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Are you still looking for that perfect gift? A great gift idea is a flashlight. Even though your gift recipient may have a dozen lights aboard, the latest hand-held flashlight could become the most versatile and perhaps reach the greatest distance. Some have an adjustable light power, controlled by a number of bulbs and adjustable beam direction such as the Stanly Maxlife 360 ™. You can also set one up on its own tri-pod.

A new Personal Flotation Device is a great gift anytime. After years of testing, inflatables have proven to be the most comfortable and superior option. Be sure to choose the right size for the recipient to insure a good fit.

Stocking stuffers such as polarized sun glasses, drain plugs (who hasn’t lost one?} and Queaz-away wrist bands for that first-time sailor are other great gift ideas. A great new item is a buoy for your keys; if you drop them in the water, it inflates and keeps them afloat. Another new item is the Leatherman’s Skeletool multi-tool.

A first-aid kit with things you select (pre-packaged ones never have all the items that may be needed) is a thoughtful gift. Just paint a cross on a small, brightly colored, tackle box and place everything inside.

Free PDF versions of nautical charts are available noaa.gov. These charts are checked weekly for accuracy. It’s always great to have the latest chart if cruising to an unfamiliar area.

If the boat has a G.P.S., purchase a radio that can be set up with a Rescue 21 system. This allows rescuers to find an exact location instantly along with the boats description. All the operator needs to do is push a button and a Mayday call is automatically sent.

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