At least there’s a good excuse for load shedding out at sea. The same does not apply on land where shore power is failing to live up to expectations, according to the cruising community.

A survey of all visiting yachts has returned some sobering findings, notably widespread dissatisfaction with the current energy crisis. The findings, compiled by the Ocean Sailing Association of Southern Africa, also highlighted concerns about coastal infrastructure, specifically around investment and maintenance. “

“Our services are fantastic, but our facilities are not nearly at the same level,” OSASA says of their survey results. “Together with crime and load shedding (the latter being Complaint No. 1), our facilities are generally scored low. The other constant complaint is about visa extensions, and the difficulty of working with VFS/Home Affairs. Many visitors need longer than the 90 days allowed if they require major repairs – or would simply like to spend more time in our beautiful country.”

“The laborious process of extending visas is therefore a major problem. In both cases, they end up spending more money in South Africa, so solving these issues is of direct interest to the maritime and tourism sectors.”

Complaints aside, the cruising community is largely extremely satisfied with the overall positive reception at South Africa’s yacht clubs which continue to draw international visitors, OSASA SAYS. “The most common reaction of visiting international yachties has been overwhelmingly positive, as evidenced by excellent social media postings. This has been very beneficial to the South African cruising community, with yacht clubs upping their game so far as facilities are concerned, and the Maritime Sector of Government sitting up to take notice of the needs of the maritime leisure community as a whole.”

“Next year promises further steps forward, and we hope that there will be an added incentive from Government’s side to put much-needed investment and cash into this area,” OSASA says.


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