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Old 12-07-2010, 16:18   #1
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Dinghy Docking Charge

This past weekend I anchored off Sidney Spit (BC) and took my dinghy to the only dock in Sidney: Port of Sidney marina. I went up to the office and asked permission to tie up for about an hour so that I could reprovision. I was told I could but the charge is $5.00 PER HOUR. If I stayed for dinner (say 4 hours including reprovisioning) that would be a charge equivalent to a whole night's docking with power! At what point is this gouging? Dinghy dock space is usually shallow water and not fit for much else. I recognize that as a consumer I have the power to say no. The problem is that in Sidney there is no other choice. Personally, I think that private marina's are entitled to charge for dinghy tie ups (especially in a town where the user isn't likely going to spend money at the marina). But what's reasonable? I say $3 to $5 for up to 4 hours is ok and more is gouging. Cheers,
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Old 12-07-2010, 16:48   #2
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Does seem a bit high since transient mooring rates are $1.35 per foot per night at Port of Sidney. On the other hand, at least you weren't assessed at the 20ft minimum rate charged by some marinas.
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Old 12-07-2010, 17:03   #3
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Complain to the local supermarkets and other merchants there, and the Chamber of Commerce. who make a living off visitors stocking up there.
I'd use the beach, which is public property right to the high tide line, and refuse to help set the precedent of dingy charges..
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Old 12-07-2010, 17:04   #4
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The "bigger" the port, the higher the costs. There is so much demand for every square inch of shoreline, and the port has big bills to pay for cleanup, dredging, and maintenance. Someone told me that in San Diego if you have commercial property within 50 yards of the harbor, 10% of your net goes to the port.

The more remote and/or the less populated, the cheaper.
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Old 12-07-2010, 17:23   #5
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Complain to the local supermarkets and other merchants there, and the Chamber of Commerce. who make a living off visitors stocking up there.
I'd use the beach, which is public property right to the high tide line, and refuse to help set the precedent of dingy charges..
Hi Brent - those are good ideas (complaining to the Chamber of Commerce...) As to the beach, there's isn't much around with direct public land access, and the little beach that there is has too many people around - increasing the chances of vandalism. Not that I'm paranoid, But I got the distinct feeling that my dinghy may not be there upon return, or in unrecognizeable condition....
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Old 12-07-2010, 18:06   #6
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Putt-putt around the marina until you find a liveaboard or a friendly face. Tie up behind their boat. Negotiate how to transit the locked gate. Bring them wine.
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Old 12-07-2010, 18:15   #7
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Daddle,

Good idea, but obviously have never purchased wine in BC. The very cheapest bottles are $9.00 before tax and might not be viewed as a positive. I have been here 3 years and still not accustomed to the high price of alcohol.
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Old 12-07-2010, 18:28   #8
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Daddle,
Brilliant suggestion although I'd prefer to pay the marina a FAIR fee...
Cheers,
Bill
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Old 12-07-2010, 18:30   #9
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Water = pirates

SOBS will suck you dry and you often have no choice. I've asked a yacht club for a quick tie up to walk the dogs which had been at sea all day and needed to unload (I pick up) and the SOBs said, private keep out.
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Old 12-07-2010, 18:37   #10
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Originally Posted by Bill Lee View Post
This past weekend I anchored off Sidney Spit (BC) and took my dinghy to the only dock in Sidney: Port of Sidney marina. I went up to the office and asked permission to tie up for about an hour so that I could reprovision. I was told I could but the charge is $5.00 PER HOUR.

OK - I will play the a'hole.

If this is the only dock in Sidney and you don't want to beach your dinghy because you fear vandalism and further you anchored off (for free I presume) and are not really contributing anything to the marina I reckon they have a right to charge you.

In return you get security, a "drier" place to load your dinghy and access to their facilities.

Our club dock was being used by all kinds of transients. Every member was paying a fee in their dues and mooring costs for the privilege but sometimes a transient had the dock space tied up and were filling their jerry jugs from our hose. This happened at least a few times when I wanted to wash my boat and fill my water tank. The members complained and we no longer allow transients.

Most transients now beach themselves on the public beach.

$5 may be too expensive but it could also be that $5 is designed to discourage people from tying up for 4-5-6 hours or even overnight.

If it is a public dock or municipal marina I withdraw my comments.
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Old 12-07-2010, 18:51   #11
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Hi Ex-Calif,
Nope, you're not being an a'hole. I was not contributing anything to the marina and hence I expect a charge - that's only fair. But $5.00 PER HOUR for a dinghy? That's insulting enough for me not to dock up there even in the mother ship. They have dinghy space that can't be used for 'mtoherships' and hence can ONLY be used for dinghys. Sure, charge me, just don't gouge me. OTOH don't charge me, make me feel like you're the best marina anywhere and I'll tell everyone how friendly it is and maybe dock the 'mothership' there. That would really cost me....
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Old 12-07-2010, 18:51   #12
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Daddle,
Good idea, but obviously have never purchased wine in BC. The very cheapest bottles are $9.00 before tax
Ouch. Then just pour a round..
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Old 12-07-2010, 20:04   #13
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Tell some of the local merchants that the marina operator is discouraging you from spending your money at their businesses. Or go to someone else's marina.
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Old 12-07-2010, 20:24   #14
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If you're eating dinner at the marina, having a few drinks at the bar or what have you it seems particularly rude. Few restaurants charge for you to park your car in their carpark.
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Old 12-07-2010, 21:04   #15
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port sydney marina seems to cater to the mega yachts and people that dont seem to mind being gouged for everything they do. for a community that prides itself on its boating community i would think that they would have a government dock or at least a dinghy dock. may not be spending money at the marina but definately spending money in the community whether it be provisions or just getting off the boat going for dinner or drinks.
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