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Old 05-07-2016, 05:59   #16
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Re: Idiot question #4 How do you contact the Marina?

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Use Active Captain and call on cell phone and make a reservation. If you are just arriving, hail on 16 and they will switch you to their working channel. If you make a reservation and are going to be late, call before closing time and ask for instructions. They may tell you to tie up at the fuel dock or assign you a slip number. I've done all of the above. If you arrive late, sometimes they will have a guard on duty that can check you in. Sometimes, you just wait until they open in the morning and go settle up then.


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This.

Pretty much exactly what we do. Never had a problem getting the marina to answer the phone. Have tried email but responses are much more spotty.
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Old 05-07-2016, 08:08   #17
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Re: Idiot question #4 How do you contact the Marina?

Pre-cell phones, it was a fun part of cruising Lake Michigan and visiting various ports, to complete the day's run by hailing the intended marina on the VHF. I always carried a cruising guide onboard, and could verify which channel the marina monitored. Hailing on the VHF sort of added to the whole ambience of my sailing trips.

Now, with cell phones, I still check the cruising guide, but it's to get the phone number for the marina. And, I call them on the cell and get my slip assignment for the slip I've likely reserved on the marina's website.

If I hail the marina on the VHF, it's just out of nostalgia.

Maybe in the near future, I'll just deploy a tiny drone to get a close-up view of my assigned slip, so I'll know in advance where the cleats are located and where I may want to deploy fenders. While I'm at it, maybe my drone can reconnoiter the showers.
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Old 05-07-2016, 09:18   #18
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Re: Idiot question #4 How do you contact the Marina?

In Croatia virtually all the marinas, harbours and other tying up points (restaurants etc) work on VHF ch17 so call that first rather than trying ch16 as they won't be listening on that. This information is in the Pilot Books of the Adriatic, the Cruising Guide and on the free map you get when you check in to Croatia at the border from the Harbourmaster - so no excuses.

Then there is the simpler route of sailing into your selected port of call and looking out for the Marinaros who will guide you to the correct slot and help you tie up. The Harbourmaster might be the person who helps in a smaller town harbour or the restaurant owner if you are tying up there.

Other options are websites and mobile phones but I do not recommend just looking for an empty spot, tying up and popping into the office. With the exception of dedicated visitor berths (normally indicated on marina plans in the Pilot Book etc) you will be occupying a reserved berth for someone with an annual or other long term contract. While I can understand if it is blowing an absolute hoolie I am not going to be amused if you've just dived in and taken my berth when I get back - would you if it were your spot in your marina?

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Old 05-07-2016, 09:22   #19
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Re: Idiot question #4 How do you contact the Marina?

You do have the Coast Pilot for your regions you sail, don't you? Just look up in the Pilot for the harbor you are entering and it will give you info on how to contact the various boat related stuff in that harbor. Although probably will gt a lot of flax from the board, all cruisers should have a copy of their region's Pilot aboard.
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Old 05-07-2016, 10:08   #20
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Re: Idiot question #4 How do you contact the Marina?

In Canada, marinas monitor vhf channel 68 for incoming boats. The US side monitors channel 09 I think. When I was approaching Antigua, I contacted the marina on 16 with no trouble. I think it varies by region. Cell phones have replaced the vhf to a great extent.
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Old 05-07-2016, 10:52   #21
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Re: Idiot question #4 How do you contact the Marina?

East Med Marinas normally monitor Chanel 13
Else you may use your mobile and call them
This will happen of course if you are trying to land off schedule at a marina that you had no intention to do so

A good practice is to have all the phone numbers of the Marinas in the area you are sailing (along with other phones from khospital groceries repair shops port police coat guard and police stations etc )
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Old 05-07-2016, 10:58   #22
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Re: Idiot question #4 How do you contact the Marina?

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A good practice is to have all the phone numbers of the Marinas in the area you are sailing (along with other phones from khospital groceries repair shops port police coat guard and police stations etc )
Any decent cruising guide for your area will have all this info...and much more.
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Old 05-07-2016, 11:01   #23
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Re: Idiot question #4 How do you contact the Marina?

Just to add to the confusion Groundtackle was right for BC 66A is the only channel most marinas monitor, not sure what is used on the east coast. As others have said Cruising Guide or Marine Directory. Pacific Yachting have a very handy free Marine Directory, that includes Puget Sound and the entire BC coast. 265 marinas and 1500 Marine businesses.
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Old 05-07-2016, 11:03   #24
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Re: Idiot question #4 How do you contact the Marina?

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JPacific Yachting have a very handy free Marine Directory, that includes Puget Sound and the entire BC coast. 265 marinas and 1500 Marine businesses.
So do Waggoners & Dreamspeaker.
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Old 05-07-2016, 11:15   #25
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Re: Idiot question #4 How do you contact the Marina?

Your question well answered above.

One thing we learned regarding wide catamarans. Rather than calling ahead we would do the pull up the the fuel dock and ask maneuver.

I found that calling ahead at 5pm+, stating we had a 27' beam, many dock masters would say no availability. It's late in the day perhaps, they don't want to deal with an unwieldy cat bang around the docks. Several times this happened and we would anchor out and go in by dinghy only to find plenty of possible choices.

By coming in to the fuel dock they get a chance to see how you maneuver and our experience is that once they do they generally find you space for the evening.

Just a nod to our beam challenged bretheren :-)
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Old 05-07-2016, 11:22   #26
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Re: Idiot question #4 How do you contact the Marina?

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Just to add to the confusion Groundtackle was right for BC 66A is the only channel most marinas monitor, not sure what is used on the east coast. As others have said Cruising Guide or Marine Directory. Pacific Yachting have a very handy free Marine Directory, that includes Puget Sound and the entire BC coast. 265 marinas and 1500 Marine businesses.
Add my agreement with both Groundtackle and Lancerbye re Channel 66A for BC marinas. Pacific Yachting Blue Pages are both free, available at many marine outlets throughout the year, and updated annually. Latter is important when sailing in more remote areas of the BC coast. Blue Pages also give services available at each marina and phone numbers if you want to contact them well in advance for reservations.
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Old 05-07-2016, 12:25   #27
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Re: Idiot question #4 How do you contact the Marina?

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Email in advance, sat phone, cell phone.
Good answer but you have to have the address or phone numbers. I have done this though. I have found some marinas will post a telephone number to call and they are in the guide books.
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Old 05-07-2016, 12:35   #28
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Re: Idiot question #4 How do you contact the Marina?

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Originally Posted by reed1v View Post
You do have the Coast Pilot for your regions you sail, don't you? Just look up in the Pilot for the harbor you are entering and it will give you info on how to contact the various boat related stuff in that harbor. Although probably will gt a lot of flax from the board, all cruisers should have a copy of their region's Pilot aboard.
No flak from here as I think it actually is a requirement to sail in Croatian waters to have suitable pilot guides

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Old 05-07-2016, 15:44   #29
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Re: Idiot question #4 How do you contact the Marina?

NZ information. (if my link works, am new here.)
VHF CHANNELS | Bay of Islands Marina
Seems pretty standard , call and announce yourself and the Marina is your friend. If you are foreign , coming in, there are Marinas that handle customs. Others can but they will charge you to come out / travelling time and it can get expensive. It will help to check on which Marinas have customs if you are watching costs. Up here in the North of NZ, Opua (Bay of Islands Marina) or Whangarei are good choices.
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Old 05-07-2016, 16:33   #30
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Re: Idiot question #4 How do you contact the Marina?

In addition to preceding comments, many berthholders advise the marina manager when their berth will be vacant and available for others to use. Where I am, the berthholder and the Marina operator share the income from the casuals. Especially in holiday weekends, this offsets berthholders costs, and more so for berths situated close to Marina reception.

The following it pretty obvious, but as it does happen ... a casual occupant of a berth should never touch, use or adjust the lines pre-existing on the berth. They'll be arranged so the returning vessel can easily grab them with boathook,, in any wind conditions, and their length will be set for a particular vessel. Single handed in a wind, I could hook and use my portside stern spring to arrest the boats' backward movement within inches of the walkway. I anyone changed its setup, I could be doing damage.

Use your own lines. Failure to do so is what contributes to berthholders not making their berth available for casual visitors ... and helps clog the whole system up.
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