Originally Posted by umpalumpa
What's the main reason you go out on the sea?
Could you describe why you sail?
If it happens, what make you stay a longer period of time at a harbour(with a boat)?
If you visit a harbour were the only way to book boat space is by visiting a building (where someone stands and rent out boat spaces) would you think it was a good idea if that harbour had an online booking system that you could access(that online booking system also gives you access to electricity, wifi etc).
I have been sailing all my life. I first learned how at summer camp in MN as a child and I enjoyed the dinghy sailing we did there. Further, I am a man of the sea. I spent 25 years in the US Navy and have been all over the world. I enjoy travelling. Moving from port to port is a familiar way of travelling to me because of my Navy experience. After I retire from my second career, I hope to spend a great deal of time travelling around the world over the sea.
As it is now, I go out on the Chesapeake Bay. It offers a world in miniature where you can travel end-to-end in only a few days. Whether you seek large cities, small, picturesque towns, or natural wonders, all can be found on the Chesapeake Bay. Sites of interest are close enough to each other that moving from one site to the next takes a day or less. Travelling in a 4 day weekend or over a week of vacation is practical, even in a boat that makes at best 5 or 6 knots. Even day sailing is great, except in high Summer when the Burmuda high kills our winds and raises our temperatures.
I sail because I enjoy it. I like working with nature instead of forcing my way through. I get a kick out of making a boat move where I want to go simply by using the forces of nature. On sedate days when the winds are under 10 knots, it is the most relaxing thing in the world. The quiet winds, the slap of waves on the hull, the sounds of the rigging, the birds and other wildlife make a wonderful atmosphere that has to be experienced to understand. On more challenging days when the winds are more than 20 knots, sailing is both exciting and challenging. Sailing is, in general, more challenging than power boating, and I enjoy the challenge too.
Sailing big wind is like running in a race -- exhilarating and exhausting -- but there's an added note of real danger. Is your knowledge sufficient to address the danger and reduce the risk to acceptable levels? Are you physically up to the task? The thrill of facing danger and besting it, and of harnessing untamable forces to do your will in sailing, is unlike any other sport. I am older and less capable now so I don't do that any more, but I still sail in marginally big winds to keep my skills up. You never know when you might face those situations unexpectedly. And after you succeed in wild weather there is a tremendous sense of accomplishment (and relief too, if you are honest with yourself).
A number of reasons might make me change my mind and stay longer in a place when I am travelling. Perhaps there are more things I want to do. The weather may not be cooperating and I don't want to face wild weather, or perhaps the wind is blowing in the wrong direction. Or perhaps something broke and I am awaiting parts. There are so many reasons I might change my itinerary.
WiFi is nice and I use it if it is available, but I do not depend on it. I think I am spoiled by the communications infrastructure here in the US. I have never been in the situation where I must stand in line to rent a slip. I have a book describing destinations in the bay with telephone numbers, so I usually use my mobile phone to call ahead and make my reservation. Some places are very popular and fill up early, so except for well planned vacations where I decide months ahead of time I generally don't go to that kind of place, or if I do I go in off times.
Should harbors have an online booking system? I don't know. Each place should decide for itself. What I appreciate is a web presence for a geographic location that points out the attractions and available facilities, with points of contact (be they telephone numbers or URLs). The individual facility offering services might have an online booking system to reserve their services. Governments generally do the geographically related web site but companies do their own facilities. This lays the majority of the cost at the companies, the entities that enjoy the majority of the profits from those services. I think that is a better system than the one you asked about.
Hope that helps you!