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Old 20-09-2012, 15:55   #16
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Re: How Should A Country Attract Yachtsmen?

If it concerned Russia, there was some hope. However, it is the Ukraine (most possibly) and that makes things much more difficult as they have no service culture at all.
One has to begin from scratch.

To deliver your speach is the least difficulty, I have been in Nicolaev once, corruption has deeply infested the general bureaucracy and what you discuss is something that might only develop in the next 25 years.

However, it is what Atoll suggests: if they - the local governments - find a way to get serious involved, the reward might be unexpected. But greed is all what is relevant today and particular upstart tourism in the yachting atmosphere will tempt many bureaucrats from the old stamp to fill their pockets.

Secondly, the connections with the Black Sea resorts are serviced by local air transport companies with not that good reputations.
There are many things to consider but it will take a very long time to get something airborne.

Basically the Krim area had in the past old commie time) a very good reputation among the bobo' s from the Kremlin and Duma. Maybe there are some remnants left. Who knows?
Major problem will be the connection with the outside world and other related infrastructural problems.
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Old 20-09-2012, 16:18   #17
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Re: How Should A Country Attract Yachtsmen?

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Originally Posted by dsmastern View Post
They should probably take some training from casino and cruise ship operators.
Those hospitality industries know how to keep the customers happy and coming back to spend more money.
And none of it's "cheap".
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keep marina costs low,avoid exclusivity ...
Where’s the profit in that. I doubt that anyone wants to create a haven for cheapskate budget constrained cruisers. I expect, that they’re looking to create income streams from spenders ("yachtsmen").

Concentrate on amenities, security, bureaucracy, and information issues.
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Old 20-09-2012, 16:57   #18
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Re: How Should A Country Attract Yachtsmen?

I'll have to agree with Gordmay. While amenity filled cheap marinas may be a dream, probably going to stay that way.

1. I go to countries that are safe, (no unrest, corruption).
2. Laws are clearly defined and evenly enforced.
3. Workable justice system.

The rest dockage and infrastructure are bonuses. Flat simple clearing in, and out procedures at a fixed reasonable rate, will attract boaters once the basics are taken care of.

The important things I focus on are, am I going to lose my boat because I forgot to dot an i on an official form?, (or by not paying proper bribes????).

Second am I going to have to hire taxis to drive all over the country to clear in, or is an official with all of the forms I have to sign going to meet me at the dock, take a payment for cruising, fishing permit, and send me on my way?

Empowering one official to do both customs, and imigration, and making the laws as simple as possible so minimal paperwork is required.

Allowing the import of small amounts of goods for personal use only, (IE alchohol).

If officials are paid well, fines require an independant review, and termination for corruption is enforced, and bonuses are paid for number of boaters cleared in, the temptation for bribery is reduced.

The bonuses for quantity of boaters cleared in discourage hassling that may drive boaters to another port,...or country.

Encouraging the free movement of recreational vessels is a good step towards being considered a freedom country. Commerce, and tourist dollars soon follow.

Even handed enforcement of laws against violence, and theft both with the citizens, and the small minority tourists that believe laws don't apply to them creates an environment that discourages crime, and encourages people to visit with larger amounts of spendable cash.

Infrastructure is important, but I would caution against building large amounts of shiny new docks, that may go unused if the political climate discourages visiters.

Better would be to use that money for training, and hiring the people needed to service the guests, and build the dockage as demand grows.

Well marked channels benefit both commercial, and recreational marine traffic.

I hope this helps. Good luck.

It may be a benefit, if an experienced cruiser took some of these ministers as guests, on a short cruise to some of the more friendlier nearby countries for a first hand comparison, and real world look at the life of a recreational sailer to gain an understanding of our viewpoint.
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Old 20-09-2012, 17:37   #19
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Re: How Should A Country Attract Yachtsmen?

Captain Bill has the right idea.

The speech can get into a devil of a lot of details and the message can be lost.

It sounds corny but a purpose statement should be suggested - i.e. "What is our purpose in building a cruising industry" - The best purpose statements support the user not the creator.

"To create a cruising support industry that attracts tourism and promotes our country as the most attractive country in the region for yacht cruising" for example.

Goals to support that include -

- Transparency in regulations and red tape
- Honest and supportive officials
- Accessible attractions and support infrastructure for yachts
- Safe environment with supportive law enforcement, including regulations to protect yachties if needed
- Multi-generational expansion plans that develop marinas over time in a coordinated fashion - meet the supply and demand needs in a logical manner - Approval for marina permits should include language that supports the industry long term and not the exploitation of the investors

Stick to the big ideas first. Too early for details.
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Old 20-09-2012, 17:48   #20
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Re: How Should A Country Attract Yachtsmen?

The key part of the message should be what visiting yachts can do for them.

Apart from simplifying the paperwork and making seizure of yachts by local officials subject to very high up approval they really have to do very little.

In return they do not have to provide any infrastructure at all, (visiting boats would be self sufficient) and they'll be getting boats that spend of the order of $5,000+ each month direct into their poorest areas.

That's gotta get their attention.
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Old 20-09-2012, 18:10   #21
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Re: How Should A Country Attract Yachtsmen?

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... In return they do not have to provide any infrastructure at all, (visiting boats would be self sufficient) and they'll be getting boats that spend of the order of $5,000+ each month direct into their poorest areas...
I would very much doubt that "self-sufficient" cruisers might spend anywhere near $5K/Month.
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Old 20-09-2012, 18:15   #22
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Re: How Should A Country Attract Yachtsmen?

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I would very much doubt that "self-sufficient" cruisers might spend anywhere near $5K/Month.
Those would be the ones with really big boats
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Old 20-09-2012, 18:56   #23
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Re: How Should A Country Attract Yachtsmen?

I would imagine developing yachting in the Black sea would be a challenge. Lack of natural harbors and and very long stretches of featureless coastline without any islands to speak of would be attractive to only hardiest of cruisers. Even if there were charter fleets and marinas developed, and heavyhanded authorities and corruption somehow vanished, I think most people would rather charter in the Med rather than the Black Sea. Access for cruising sailors via the Bosphorus or the Danube is difficult, to say the least. I think the Black Sea economies would be benefit much more from developing beachfront resorts and tourism first.
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Old 20-09-2012, 20:47   #24
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Re: How Should A Country Attract Yachtsmen?

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And none of it's "cheap".

Where’s the profit in that. I doubt that anyone wants to create a haven for cheapskate budget constrained cruisers. I expect, that they’re looking to create income streams from spenders ("yachtsmen").

Concentrate on amenities, security, bureaucracy, and information issues.
it was the cheapskate budget hippies that put goa,torremolinos,marrekesh,maui,tahiti,rio,ibiza,h urghada,sharm el sheik,cancun,phuket etc on the map!

not to mention budget backpackers that have created an international flow of people to some of the remotist parts of the globe!

by catering to the rich and the super rich you have an exclusivity problem,unless you can offer stunning natural beauty,an exceptional climate,fine local quisine etc.

what may work of course is having a good laundry,that is a "money laundry" for all the eastern europeon gangsters to park their megayachts next to
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Old 20-09-2012, 21:22   #25
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Re: How Should A Country Attract Yachtsmen?

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I would imagine developing yachting in the Black sea would be a challenge. Lack of natural harbors and and very long stretches of featureless coastline without any islands to speak of would be attractive to only hardiest of cruisers. Even if there were charter fleets and marinas developed, and heavyhanded authorities and corruption somehow vanished, I think most people would rather charter in the Med rather than the Black Sea. Access for cruising sailors via the Bosphorus or the Danube is difficult, to say the least. I think the Black Sea economies would be benefit much more from developing beachfront resorts and tourism first.
I agree, having sailed in the Black Sea. I doubt if it will ever represent serious competition to the Med, for this reason. But these guys aren't doing it to boost the local economy - they want to improve the image of the country and give access to the sport to their own citizens.
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Old 20-09-2012, 21:37   #26
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Re: How Should A Country Attract Yachtsmen?

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I would imagine developing yachting in the Black sea would be a challenge. Lack of natural harbors and and very long stretches of featureless coastline without any islands to speak of would be attractive to only hardiest of cruisers. Even if there were charter fleets and marinas developed, and heavy handed authorities and corruption somehow vanished, I think most people would rather charter in the Med rather than the Black Sea. Access for cruising sailors via the Bosphorus or the Danube is difficult, to say the least. I think the Black Sea economies would be benefit much more from developing beachfront resorts and tourism first.
I second this post but would add that I would happily charter near the Crimea. I also believe if the lower Danube had some reasonable marina or docking facilities and the piracy issues were eliminated it would become a wonderful gateway to the Black Sea. I doubt that I will live to see such a thing.
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Old 20-09-2012, 23:10   #27
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Re: How Should A Country Attract Yachtsmen?

Develop some marinas based on proven layouts incorporating many of the above touted points.

Run some championships on different levels in affordable boats, Laser style, so locals can connect and not be put off by expensive yachts (to them).

People will visit if the experience is good, word will spread, a tourism board needs to be in place that has an overriding power to intervene in matters of clearances/customs/security on this quite low level.

The officials need to understand the very limited threat that visitors at this level create.
Seasons will dictate but at least the locals will have another avenue of earning. Is EU involved with funding?

Good luck ....
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Old 21-09-2012, 00:39   #28
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Re: How Should A Country Attract Yachtsmen?

Easy long time visa's, no fear for VAT consequences..
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Old 21-09-2012, 02:48   #29
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Re: How Should A Country Attract Yachtsmen?

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1. Train customs and immigration officers to clear yachts in and out in a friendly and professional manner, after studying the practice in Western countries. They are presently trained to deal with merchant ships only and make a real unpleasant hash out of dealing with yachts, which keeps people away.

For sure - and with the procedure written in both local and english (and other languages?!), including on a website. Could wrap in with the existing Tourist Board info that could also include info that is relevant to boats (especially on repairs / haulouts - sounds like there won't be too many small boat repair facilities - onshore storage (a field with a modicum of security - plus the haulout capability) would be an attraction, and land aside cheap enough to establish.

Possibly a central "help desk" telephone number (for both yachtie and customs / police - so Officer Dibble in backwater numptyville has an easy way to find out that it is ok for a strange foreigner to be wandering around / can make sure he is asking for the right paperwork).

I dunno how the country concerned is with existing yachts clubs (next to Nadda?!) - but setting up a string of these on a Franchise basis / licenced by the Govt (to give them some semi-official status) might be a cheap (and private enterprise) way of establishing the bare bones of a network - whether the Yacht Club is an existing bar, shop or whatever (at least initially) creates a contact point (for both Yachties to each other and to obtain local info).....over time some of these could grow into a more regular YC operation. Overlooking the harbours / moorings would be nice, but IMO not essential (work with what is to hand).




2. Reform laws so that yachts don't have to clear in and out in every port. They clear in once when entering the country and clear out once when they leave, and have fun in between.

If they can get the People Visas easy to obtain (in advance or on arrival) and clarity on the boat stay length (before it becomes an import) would make everyone's life easier. IMO cost (within reason!) would be secondary to certainty. Annual Boat and Boat person(s) Visas at a cost of XXX, folks would keep there boats in that country for extended periods.


3. Build marinas and/or set aside room in existing ports for yachts, with shore power, water, shower blocks, and friendly harbormasters in jon boats helping people get moored up. With free WiFi everywhere.

I think the Marina thing is more of a medium to longterm thing - can certainly start off with simply a pontoon or 2 (even if not connected to the shore!). Facilities ashore? I don't think so important initially - but certainly a freindly harbourmaster would be useful and a spot ashore where folks could find information (or simply get directions or cab / bus to the local town etc). If the area is a bit underdeveloped / commercial having a uniformed waterbourne presence (and a number to call) would be a comfort to many.

Free Wifi (and a decent local website for each area / port).

I mention the above as fairly cheap / quick to set up.

My guess is that the locals can come up with the squillion dollar marina projects themselves - once they have decided whose cousin will be building it .


4. Lay free moorings.

Yes, but depending on area (i.e. within harbour) then i don't think a charge is out or order - especially if also with some sort of harbourmaster / waterbourne presence.

5. Set up Navtex and VHF weather reports in English.

Useful, and cheap

6. Advertise in CF -- throw some parties with free mooring and entertainment -- and otherwise do PR.



Anything else?
1) Coming back to the theme of ease of access - how about a "Black Sea Rally" (ARC style) - Say, with 2 start / pick up points. Greece (Cyprus?) then onto Turkey and through to the mystery country! The idea being to get folks through the Bosphorous en-masse and with local knowledge.......and possibly a rally coming back .......once folks start to learn that it is doable the Rally becomes less important (although probably still a money spinner). Some official sanction to the Rally would be very useful (ease of entry?)

2) Charts - free would be nice!, or at least easily accessible / cheap - digital online or on paper.

3) Pilotage Books - could start by populating the Cruisers Wiki! - and would overlap with the Website info I mentioned earlier.

The idea with all the above is that most is pretty small scale, can be done piecemeal and by private enterprise - although some degree of official sanction would add value (and possibly the mix of private and public would create the opportunity for officialdom to get actively onboard - by benefiting from the spoils ).....time will build upon what works and will provide useful information on what visiting boats actually need / want.

Of course you are probably half way through the speech by now...........
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Old 21-09-2012, 03:02   #30
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Re: How Should A Country Attract Yachtsmen?

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I agree, having sailed in the Black Sea. I doubt if it will ever represent serious competition to the Med, for this reason. But these guys aren't doing it to boost the local economy - they want to improve the image of the country and give access to the sport to their own citizens.
One thing that you could highlight is that messing around with boats is a great social leveller - size of boat is not always a indicator of size of wallet or background. Whilst most folks visiting will only provide direct benefit from the cash they spend when on holiday, given the varied backgrounds of folks on boats then it is a good way of the country getting known to some folks who are capable of identifying commercial opportunities for selves or for there employers (even if only on a "it's not as bad as people think" basis ).

And maybe for the locals could start with Dinghy clubs (if not already) - cheap enough to get themselves on the international racing calender to attract folks in (just add enough facilities and cash!). Doesn't have to even be at the top levels - it's about getting numbers of bodies in.

If the country is not fighting the neighbours then would make sense to co-operate within the black sea area - including making entry and exit easier. the bigger the pie the more to go around, and from comments given already the country concerned may on it's own (and it's neighbours?) not be interesting enough on it's own.
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