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Comparison Between Trawler Vs Catamaran Boats  

Trawler vs catamaran

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Looking for answers about trawler vs catamaran boats? You’re in the right place. Trawlers and catamarans are ideal sailing vessels for various use in terms of commercial transport, fisheries, sea patrols, research, and more. The distinct feature between the two boats is the hull composition. Trawlers consist of a single hull or monohull, while catamarans are double-hulled vessels. (source)

Catamaran vs trawler
Catamaran vs trawler? Here’s a typical sailing catamaran.

Additionally, these two vessels differ according to several essential parameters: speed and stability, comfort, space, fuel consumption, carbon emission, manufacturing cost, maintenance cost, and depreciation value. The features of the two vessel types are briefly described in the following sections. (source)

Catamaran vs Trawler – Speed And Stability

Catamarans are known to be faster than trawlers. The high speed of catamarans is attributed to the double hull design, which promotes lighter weight distribution coupled with high stability and a higher speed along a straight line. (source)

Relatively, trawlers tend to have lower stability and a slower pace. However, the double hull connected by a platform of catamarans is challenged during rough sea conditions and is more prone to capsizing than trawlers. Furthermore, maneuverability is limited in catamarans due to the need for a higher sea surface resulting in slower turns relative to monohull vessels. (source)

Trawler Vs Catamaran – Comfort

This parameter would pertain to motion sickness, noise, and vibrations experienced by passengers on catamarans and trawlers. Passengers were observed to indicate high importance to motion sickness and were more prone to it in catamarans than in trawlers, particularly in rough sea conditions. (source)

Additionally, passengers indicated more noise and vibrations in a catamaran than in a trawler but with low importance relative to motion sickness. However, noise and vibrations would likely decrease with a modification of a resiliently mounted structure in a catamaran. (source)

Trawler Vs Catamaran – Space

The catamarans’ configuration enables its surface area to accommodate passengers or payloads greater than trawlers. Alternatively, it can be a shorter catamaran than a trawler but has similar payload capability. Hence, smaller crew members may be necessary for a catamaran. (source)

Fuel Consumption

Fuel use in trawlers is higher than in catamarans. Trawlers generally rely on fuel for propulsion. On the other hand, there are hybrid catamarans. These catamarans can alternatively use solar energy and fuel for propulsion. Furthermore, luxury catamaran yachts have sails that serve as an alternative to fuel for propulsion during favorable wind conditions. (source)

Carbon Emission

Catamarans produce lesser carbon emissions due to their hybrid capabilities (i.e., utilization of solar and wind energy). Hence, these vessels are more environmentally friendly than trawlers. (source)

Manufacturing Cost

Experts estimated catamaran manufacturing costs to be higher than a trawler. Specifically, the estimated manufacturing cost for a catamaran is USD 4,991,040, while the trawler is USD 4,644,440. (source)

Maintenance Cost And The Depreciation Value

Expenses for maintaining these vessels are estimated to be 400 hours per year at USD 278 per operation hour (i.e., machinery refits to slipping vessel life) with an expected 2% per annum maintenance increase. Terminal/marina costs would vary per location. However, the terminal cost in Kangaroo Island, Australia, is estimated to be USD 346,600 per year. Both vessel types have a life expectancy of 20 years and are estimated to have a 5% residual value. (source)


The catamaran and trawler vessel types have their advantages and disadvantages. However, selecting the appropriate vessel dramatically depends on the intent of use, budget, and personal preference.

  1. D. Setyawan, I K. A. P. Utama, Murdijanto Murdijanto, A. Sugiarso, A. Jamaluddin, Development of Catamaran Fishing Vessel, http://iptek.its.ac.id/index.php/jts/article/view/90
  2. Robert M. Stevens, New Dimensions For Naval Catamaran, https://apps.dtic.mil/sti/pdfs/AD0742083.pdf
  3. Ferry M, Comparative Study Of Hybrid Catamaran Versus Diesel Monohull Boat As Ferry For Short Distance Routes, Faculty of Maritime Studies, Malaysia, https://ejournal.undip.ac.id/index.php/ijna/article/view/4968
  4. Rodrigo Pérez Fernández, Francisco A. González Redondo, On the origin, foundational designs and first manufacture of the modern catamaran, February 1, 2022, https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/08438714221075417?casa_token=PraA_GSYuSkAAAAA%3AMrV0GTytEBIrHrY2jOKf2SjgHMiLKxUDLLZwNxQqahD-6b_Bao9Ez-y2AxHFEJjswvrUS-fPYtqrUg
  5. Aditya Rio Prabowo, Evan Martono, Teguh Muttaqie, Tuswan Tuswan, Dong Myung BaeEffect Of Hull Design Variations On The Resistance Profile And Wave Pattern: A Case Study Of The Patrol Boat Vessel, https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Tuswan-Tuswan/publication/358271503_EFFECT_OF_HULL_DESIGN_VARIATIONS_ON_THE_RESISTANCE_PROFILE_AND_WAVE_PATTERN_A_CASE_STUDY_OF_THE_PATROL_BOAT_VESSEL/links/61f9adfd007fb504472e24cb/EFFECT-OF-HULL-DESIGN-VARIATIONS-ON-THE-RESISTANCE-PROFILE-AND-WAVE-PATTERN-A-CASE-STUDY-OF-THE-PATROL-BOAT-VESSEL.pdf
  6. H.B.Moraesa, J.M.Vasconcellosb, R.G.Latorrec, Wave resistance for high-speed catamarans, https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0029801804000927?casa_token=BH_TZv-eEsgAAAAA:50A6A30Y1zvnGCOCRyeFZ48u8ngakoq6KVqh1ydAic3UhSlQ5qc-aRWhgkB2iS75XCDztTy3uLg
  7. Vincenzo Piscopo, Antonio Scamardella, The overall motion sickness incidence applied to catamarans, https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2092678216300395
  8. G. Thomas, P. Tomic & A. Tuite, High-speed catamaran or monohull? How do you choose? Pages 137-147, April 3, 2009, https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/17445300701430317?casa_token=oQickdxOAzQAAAAA%3A_KVzLu9cB2zQNf7eXFA0sHaSwQk8NCqCB4Fao4oTv61lfqTuZ1Z9ywu_FpPybUV104HT5pULIDw_yw&journalCode=tsos20

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