Jet Ski vs WaveRunner or Sea Doo?

Wave Runner yacht charter

Do you want to stand-up or sit-down? Are you looking for speed and acceleration or seat and storage capacity? In this article, we explain all  differences between Jet Ski, WaveRunner and Sea-Doo.

I’m pretty sure that many among you refer to all types as jet ski”. However, their exact technical name is Personal Water Craft (PWC) or water scooter. In fact, Jet ski is only one brand’s name among a broad range of PWC models. 

Historically, the first PWC prototype was a stand-up model that Clayton Jacobson II invented. He then entered a licensing agreement with Bombardier Recreational Products (BRP). The Canadian company gets credit for introducing the first sit-down Personal Watercraft in the 1960s, although it encountered limited success at the time.

Shortly after the introduction of PWC, Kawasaki registered the trademark for a new stand-up model : the Jet Ski.

And this is how the stand-up vs sit down PWC or Jet ski vs Waverunner arguments began.

When it comes to luxury yachts charter, three notable brands of recreational watercraft are almost always available onboard: Jet Ski, Waverunner, and Sea-Doo.

Let’s find out which one is best for you.

Jet ski, yacht charter

Kawasaki Jet Ski

Since Kawasaki introduced the first commercially successful PWC called “Jet Ski”, it has gradually become a generic name for all types of Personal watercraft and stand-up models.

Kawasaki Jet Ski is famous worldwide for its high-end performance simulating in many regards fast motorcycles riding experiences.

Wave Runner yacht charter water toys

For a long time, Jet Ski was the only PWC model available.

Until the introduction of the sit-down WaveRunner by Yamaha.

After witnessing the tremendous success of sit-down PWC, Kawasaki decided to start producing sit-down Jet Ski as well. 

As an expert, I always recommend the stand-up Jet Ski. If you are looking for extreme fun and a wild adventure, you will not be disappointed.

Yamaha WaveRunner

In the mid-1980s, Yamaha Motor Corp joined the PWC industry. At that time, Kawasaki and its stand up models were dominating the industry. But Yamaha’s line of PWC brought a real change to the market. 

The WaveRunner from Yamaha was the first sit-down PWC able to carry either one or two-persons. After its commercial success, the brand’s name WaveRunner has become a generalized trademark for any sit-down PWC. 

WaveRunner water toys

Yamaha was faithful to its traditions in motorcycles production. The WaveRunner is a perfect combination of cutting edge performance and luxury. Which is why its WaveBlaster and SuperJet models are two of the most popular PWC produced by Yamaha. 

The Yamaha SuperJet is highly regarded among stand-up enthusiasts and stands as a real competitor to the Kawasaki Jet Ski. All the models are hand-built in Japan!

To sum up, the Jet ski vs Waverunner’s argument is almost the same as Kawasaki vs Yamaha.

Share the fun time with your family and kids with the multiple-person sit-down WaveRunner. You can find various models of WaveRunner on board of Lauren L, Quantum, Tatiana which are all available for luxury yacht charter in the Mediterranean.

Bombardier Sea-Doo

20 years after its withdrawal from the industry, Bombardier Recreational Products came back on the market to challenge PWC manufacturers. As an “new old” competitor, it quickly became a real challenger for both Yamaha and Kawasaki.

Produced from 1989 to 2003, the Sea-Doo XP model was a revolution in PWC world. The XP was even named “Watercraft of the century” by Watercraft World magazine. It was the first high-performance version of a sit-down PWC.

Bombardier Spark water toys

The success story doesn’t end here. In late 2014, Bombardier launched Spark. The idea was to change the whole industry by bringing a cheaper and lighter PWC that would guarantee a maximum of fun for everybody.

Different models of Sea-Doo Bombardier are available on Seven Sins and Memories Too, some of our luxury yachts available for yacht charter in the Mediterranean.

These three companies are currently the most active in the personal watercraft market. They are also competing to attract more adrenaline enthusiasts among yacht charterers!

FAQ regarding Kawasaki Jetski, Yamaha Waverunner, and Bombardier Sea-doo

Which is best : a Jetski or a Waverunner?

Both are great PWC. The Jetski was the original PWC produced by Kawasaki while the Waverunner was the one from Yamaha. Both offer a powerful riding experience. The best depends on personal tastes and preferences between Kawasaki and Yamaha brands.

Which is best : a Yamaha PWC or a Kawasaki PWC?

Yamaha PWC is called a Waverunner while Kawasaki PWC is known as a Jetski. Both are powerful PWC similar in nature. The best one depends on your personal preferences.

Which is best : a Jetski or a Seadoo?

Jetski was the brand name of the original PWC produced by Kawasaki while the Seadoo was the one produced by Bombardier. Both are great PWC that offer similar riding experience. Seadoo are usually more recommended for beginners.

What is the fastest between a Jetski, a Waverunner and a Seadoo?

Jetski and Waverunner tend to be more powerful than Seadoo. It’s one of the reasons why Seadoo are usually recommended to beginners.

Which PWC are onboard of luxury yachts?

Three notable brands of recreational watercraft are almost always available onboard: Jet Ski, Waverunner, and Sea-Doo.

Do I need a license to drive a jetski?

Every country has its own regulations regarding PWC. Some have age restrictions, others restricted areas and sometimes mandatory equipment or licenses to carry with you while riding.

Which one is your favorite? The stand-up or the sit-down? The single or the multi-person family craft? Share your experience with us in the comments’ field below !

Water toys and leisure amenities play a crucial role in the choice of boats for a yacht charter. We talked about the novelties in the world of water toys in our previous articles:  the Freestyle cruiser slide, the Seabreacher, and the Jet Capsule.

Do you want to do jetski on a yacht?

Don't get yourself into troubles.

Laws and best locations to do jetski are different for each country and some yachts are better than other to carry PWC onboard.

Our FREE jetski guide compiles laws in all Caribbean and Mediterranean destinations, along with best spots and ideal yacht for PWC use.

Get it in the link below!

Get our 2020 Jetski Guide

Send download link to:


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here