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Old 30-07-2009, 13:15   #1
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Thumbs down Marina Charging More for Transient Multihulls?

A well-known marina in Branford CT now charges more for multihulls than for monohulls. I was quoted a monohull transient rate of $3.50/ft but $4.50 "catamaran rate" for a face-dock or double slip.

They have a nice marina and already get a pretty hefty rate for monohulls... but we have a nice anchor, and don't mind using it. We don't need shore power, we can get water anywhere we can buy fuel, and we don't need a hose to wash the boat more than about once a month. For a 39 foot boat, $175 is a lot of money just to have a shower ashore. For that money they ought to have a valet to hold your robe and hand you the soap.

Other marinas in this area don't charge more for multihulls, or I simply haven't encountered it. If they don't have a face-dock or double-slip available to accommodate our beam we just move on, but anywhere else it's always been the same price as a monohull if they have a suitable opening.

What's happening in other areas? Is this a trend?

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Old 30-07-2009, 13:23   #2
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In 7 years I have not seen more for multis. Although I keep reading it. They have to make up the loss somewhere?....ouch......i2f

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Old 30-07-2009, 13:30   #3
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If they start charging triple for Tri's there might be something to it.

Bigger is at the end of the day bigger. It's no more than me having to pay for an extra 10 ft because of a bow sprit and davits. In your $3.50 vs $4.50 it's not a lot different. FWIW, I don't pay it that often.
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Old 30-07-2009, 13:56   #4
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Don't know if it's the $$$ or the principle which bothers you more. Most of the transient moorings around here cost $40/d or the equiv of $1/ft for the typical boat - spending 3 or 4 times that for docking a cat seems reasonable to me and by comparison, cheap.
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Old 30-07-2009, 16:08   #5
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I guess it's somewhat akin to the airlines having finally figured out that they should be charging obese people more given that many weigh, and take up as much space as, two average normal people, eh?
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Old 30-07-2009, 16:44   #6
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You shouldnt have to pay extra for an outside tie but it would not be unreasonable if you were to take up 2 slips.
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Old 30-07-2009, 17:44   #7
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Business in the marine industry is off significantly and as such operators are looking to make up for lost revenues any way they can, just like the State and Federal governments. I was in my marina office the other day and they had all times of clothing merchandise for sale with their logo on it. At the rates they charge I thought the least they could do was pay me to wear their crummy hat. At what point do they start to realize they are killing the goose who laid the golden egg and the taxpayer?
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Old 30-07-2009, 18:18   #8
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Originally Posted by clockwork orange View Post
You shouldnt have to pay extra for an outside tie but it would not be unreasonable if you were to take up 2 slips.
That's the way I feel about it.

Originally Posted by S/V Illusion View Post
Don't know if it's the $$$ or the principle which bothers you more. Most of the transient moorings around here cost $40/d or the equiv of $1/ft for the typical boat - spending 3 or 4 times that for docking a cat seems reasonable to me and by comparison, cheap.
Both bother me.

You can't compare an open mooring to an inner slip, and you can't compare a transient slip to a season slip.

A season slip involves a commitment on the part of the marina to have the space dedicated and available. Square footage matters.

A transient slip is opportunistic business at a higher per-night rate. Either rented or open, if it's on a face-dock or interior double-slip the square footage doesn't matter because it's either producing revenue or not, and an open space is not producing revenue.
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Old 30-07-2009, 18:48   #9
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Old 30-07-2009, 19:35   #10
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Hmm well when we were travelling the east coast of Australia in a 32' monohull we paid up to $160Aus for a week in some places and then extra for liveaboard but multihulls almost always paid double. You read right - double! Friend of ours was on an inside berth with a mono next to him (still room between them) and the mono (also friends) had no problem with being a little closer than normal. The multi was quoted double until he kicked up a fuss. Fairs fair he was not taking up so much room they couldn't fit a mono in next to him, he was the same length as the mono, he used no more water/electricity/showers/toilets etc so why should he pay double? Just cos he was a multi? He threatened to leave and they agreed to drop the price to the same as the mono. However charging in Oz up to double for a multi is the norm not the exception.
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Old 30-07-2009, 19:58   #11
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We encountered higher rates for transient cats in the NE from MD to MA in 2005. The marinas we saw with interior "double slips" still viewed them as DOUBLE (what a surprise!), and wanted to be compensated for giving up the potential revenue.

The marina where we spent our first year before cruising charged us...yep, DOUBLE to take two slips even though they were far from sold out.
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Old 30-07-2009, 20:31   #12
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I (and Sail Fast Tri) have folding trimarans. If I were presented with double or triple charges, I'd "fold' em" or anchor out.

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Old 31-07-2009, 02:45   #13
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When cruising our 10M cat east coast Australia 15 years ago a 25% surcharge was applied to us in about half the berths we were in, I was quite happy to pay it about 1 night in 7 & would be ok with paying double if I took 2 spots up, if its just now & then, just get over it, its your choice most places to anchor out or not, the convenience of a floating walk up berth for shopping & water & visitors is worth it. The marine industy isn't that lucrative even in the best of times, operaters pay top bucks for being on the waterfront & after leases/paying for the right to be there plus building & maintaining the berths your offered a service that represents good value in most cases. All the best in your endeavours from Jeff.
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Old 31-07-2009, 04:26   #14
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Many marinas view the T heads (or end ties) as premium spots, capable of handling large mega yachts, since they're more than twice the length of a standard slip and have no beam restrictions. No wonder they charge more for them. Even if they give you a spot there, you might be asked to move when a "big boy" comes in.
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Old 31-07-2009, 05:44   #15
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Our experience has varied so widely that I can't generalize. In the NE US, with its short boating season, marina slips are, in general, extremely expensive for both monohulls and multihulls, and in the most popular spots you can find yourself on a 3- or more rafting situation off a dock and be paying full price for being several boats off the dock. The moorings in those places are as expensive or even more so than what we can pay for a slip with water, electricity, and more in Florida. Some marinas charge double for a catamaran if it takes up two spots, though some will only charge double if it's been busy and they could rent that second slip to some transient. I.e., if they're full. Some, such as Liberty Landing Marina in Jersey City, NJ charge double for a catamaran just because they can, no matter how many empty slips they have. (Do I sound a bit bitter about the last? Probably, we felt duped by that one).

Charging double for a cat in the Caribbean has gone on in some places since we started cruising 20+ years ago. With the overabundance of mega yachts there lately, I expect that overcharging for marina space is worse than ever.

The Baltic, where we cruised in the summer of 2007, was the one place where beam usually didn't matter and marina prices were surprisingly reasonable (considering how expensive everything else is there), but the nature of our cruising meant that the very wide catamarans couldn't get to most of the places we visited in the first place. Marinas there are a much different experience than any we experienced elsewhere, with almost wall-to-wall boats in some places.

As we get older we find ourselves more appreciative of a marina slip, but in the US we've learned to call ahead to find out whether the price is what we care to pay. Surprisingly, there are still places where we were able to tie up to a dock without paying a thing, and other places that will negotiate their rate if things are slow. (Helps that our draft is only 2.5')

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