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Old 18-04-2011, 16:49   #1
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$1000 Extra to Avoid the Wait for Panama Canal

Hi all,
With my boat now at Shelter Bay with a two week wait to go through the Panama Canal, which I believe is only a bit longer than normal.
I've been told if we pay an extra $1000 for a pilot the boat can go through straight away.
I've heard of paying the infamous taxi driver, but it now seems the Canal Authority is doing the same.
I can understand there being an extra charge for this service but $1000 sounds like a lot.
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Old 18-04-2011, 17:01   #2
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Re: $1000 extra to avoid the wait for Panama Canal

try here,Noonsite: Panama then try Panama Canal - Canal de Panamá - www.PanCanal.com.
By what I've read, pilots are now mandatory.
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Old 18-04-2011, 17:12   #3
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Re: $1000 extra to avoid the wait for Panama Canal

I'm curious as to who told you this as it sounds like a scam to me. Don't pay anyone money for your transit except the ACP office! The exception is for Lines and such, talk to the manager at the marina.
Unless things have changed, you're assigned an advisior for your transit, a person who is in training to be a pilot.
Scheduled times for transit are based on the traffic through the canal, your combatablity with that traffic, and if you'll need to spend a night within the canal.
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Old 18-04-2011, 17:12   #4
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Re: $1000 extra to avoid the wait for Panama Canal

nah.. pilots are for ships and very large yachts. We normally get an advisor and from what I understand they are on strike or something so that yacht transits are now delayed. You can hire a pilot instead for anywhere between $1k-$3k and avoid the wait.. but why would you?

If this excites somebody; my recommendation is to relax, visit fort San Lorenzo or Gamboa or other nice tourist spots and relax. There will be situations requiring much more patience than this :-)

ciao!
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Old 18-04-2011, 17:36   #5
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Re: $1000 extra to avoid the wait for Panama Canal

Thanks Nick, that explains a lot.
I'm not with the boat so I'm getting secondhand info.
I don't think it's a scam just unfourtunate timing, I'll tell them to chill out and maybe change the rudder bearing whilst they wait.
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Old 18-04-2011, 19:47   #6
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Re: $1000 extra to avoid the wait for Panama Canal

Hmm, did a google search and couldn't find any info on recent industrial action.
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Old 18-04-2011, 20:23   #7
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Re: $1000 extra to avoid the wait for Panama Canal

Hi, If you do wind up needing a pilot you might contact AJ Dutari. He's an old friend and a senior pilot and could prolly answer questions/help.

Tell him Tiffany's sister sent ya ; -)
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Old 21-04-2011, 16:06   #8
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Re: $1000 Extra to Avoid the Wait for Panama Canal

i'm at balboa and yes, it's two weeks now. apparently the canal authority doesn't think too much of yachties and in the foreseeable future it could be four weeks. the reason i was told is that the canal authority isn't training any new advisors, so we suffer the backlog. if you want to go sooner hire a pilot for $3k. we're stuck with it. i used an agent and this is what he told me and there was even a delay from my anticipated time originally quoted. why? because there are not enough advisors...
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Old 21-04-2011, 17:24   #9
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Re: $1000 Extra to Avoid the Wait for Panama Canal

OK, looks like the 1st of May it is!
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Old 21-04-2011, 17:33   #10
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Re: $1000 Extra to Avoid the Wait for Panama Canal

Quote:
There will be situations requiring much more patience than this :-)
Were we to start important quotes at CF this would make the top 10. Cruising requires far more paiteince than ytou get with the standard equipment.
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Old 21-04-2011, 23:11   #11
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Re: $1000 Extra to Avoid the Wait for Panama Canal

Oh yes I'm sure you are right, but I also believe there is a difference between patience and procrastination.
Many indulge in the latter claiming it to be the former.
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Old 21-04-2011, 23:24   #12
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Re: $1000 Extra to Avoid the Wait for Panama Canal

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Originally Posted by Dragon Lady View Post
I also believe there is a difference between patience and procrastination.
Many indulge in the latter claiming it to be the former.
Looks like a good quote for your signature. I'd enjoy the wait and relax.

Seriously, Who would actually complain about being stuck in Panama?
(not saying anyone here is, just saying it in general)
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Old 22-04-2011, 17:27   #13
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Re: $1000 Extra to Avoid the Wait for Panama Canal

I had a delivery skipper abandon me because he didn't want to spend three weeks in the heat of Panama, as for me I'm stuck in cold wet Sydney Australia.
So no problem for me it actually suits me to have the boat arrive a little later.
The only complaint I had was the $1000 charge to go straight through without waiting.
I'm not sure how my current skipper feels about it.
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Old 22-04-2011, 17:45   #14
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Re: $1000 Extra to Avoid the Wait for Panama Canal

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Originally Posted by Dragon Lady View Post
I had a delivery skipper abandon me because he didn't want to spend three weeks in the heat of Panama, as for me I'm stuck in cold wet Sydney Australia.
So no problem for me it actually suits me to have the boat arrive a little later.
The only complaint I had was the $1000 charge to go straight through without waiting.
I'm not sure how my current skipper feels about it.
Dunno what you are paying the delivery captain, but when I was doing such things, paying MY day rate for 3 weeks to cool my heels would make the $1K look like a TIP!
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Old 22-04-2011, 18:04   #15
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Re: $1000 Extra to Avoid the Wait for Panama Canal

Fortunately my current crew aren't rockstars and the waiting time is built into the contract.
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