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BroadScot

Herbert Woods....

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Just had an email from Herbert Woods offering "free fuel" on hires over  Easter. Anyone else receive a similar mail?

cheersIain

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Yes, it is to those who signed up to the news letter emails - though the wording appears to suggest it is limited to £150.00 - equivalent of the usual fuel deposit.

Not a bad offer but usually suggests when these things pop up that the bookings are needing a bit of a push - annoying for anyone who booked prior to the offer going live as it only applies to new bookings.

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Yes Robin, I noticed that also. I think last years poor weather may be holding folks back on bookings, or HW prices are too expensive for some?

cheersIain

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I think Herbert Woods run a slick operation - from their website and the booking process, to the onsite staff and and generally cleanliness of the boats, however all that should be a given for any large business that provides people holidays these days.

They have brought new boats to their fleet over time, however they have all been of the same design type: Large boats with a duel helm though very well internally fitted.  I think they could have had a couple of new build centre cockpits to give some choice.

The mainstay of their fleet is very much the same as you would find in that of Richardson's or even Ferry Marina, Horning being a mixture of 'classics' that I would guess runs from the early 80's to late 90's in age.  The difference is, while you may find as the seasons pass Richardson's putting in new fresh Holly & Teak flooring, Herbert Woods stick with Lino.  New engines are a no no too and they prefer to keep the old Perkins, BMC etc going.  While every boat has 204v power, it is only a double socket - not a socket in each cabin as per some other yards. 

Personally speaking, if you can get the same or very close to it from another yard and save some money - I would go on that because no matter how warm the welcome or good the service, once you are away from base and on the rivers it is the boat you have to live on that matters most and if that can be had a little more smooth running and fresh inside for a little less money I'd plop for the cheaper option every time.

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This year on the Broads I am using my 6 speed gear box and reverse. A nice clean diesel engine 1500cc with fuel injection, and two 12volt sockets plus Sat Nav a mp3 plug in and a six speeker cd radio. I have my tender also, "Scoot" he can get me to the places the big bloke can't ! :naughty: 

You wont find this item in any boating brochure, its my Car ! Top speed 116mph :naughty:

cheersIain

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I received the offer and I also noticed Barnes Brinkcraft are offering a 15% discount over the same period. I agree with Robin's comments re the Herbert Woods interiors and engines but nevertheless I might hire from them if their prices weren't so much higher than Richardsons in the first place. An offer like this one, similar to the Sky 'we'll give you a free TV' offer at the moment, just makes me think 'if you can afford to do that, why don't you just cut your original prices and make life simpler for everybody'.

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I am a bit confused about some of the engines, I guess Robin is referring to the ex Le boat fleet, as the boat I had and its sister both had new Nanni"s in them. That was three years ago

cheersIain

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I so agree with Simon, it's like the supermarket offers of buy one get one free, we all know they are giving nothing away because they up the price on other products to sometimes almost double, just give us everything at a reasonable price, it makes me so cross 

Sorry, rant over and back on topic, I do wish the yards would stop offering all these gimmicks and just give us a good price on all their Boats, all year round. We've hired from Herbert Woods a couple of times, an excellent yard and staff in my opinion, although their Boats are more pricey than Richardsons. I know I've told this story before so will cut short, we hired a craft, from them, spent a lot of money, to be honest the Boat should never have gone out, took it back next day with genuine complaints, they admitted the Boat was in poor condition, we were given one of their Elite Boats and an extra day, great customer service

Just in case I am able to get away this year we were looking at Boats only the other day, one that would have cost us £900 out of school time is £1600 during the summer holidays and it was an old Boat, I know hire yards have got to make money, I understand all that but why such a huge increase? How on earth are normal families going to afford the new builds at something like 3 to 4 thousand a week?

Grace

Well, I'm glad I got that off my chest, had a rough night, feel better now though :naughty:

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Morning Grace,

Hope you feel better. We are hiring Commodore in 3 weeks at a price which is half of what we are paying for Chancellor in July. Both new boats, but the high season prices are crazy. I suppose it's what they can get and that's what you pay.

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And then wonder why poorer families try to take the children out of school for late/early holidays. The holiday industry once promised not to hike the prices for school holidays...I wonder what happened to that?

 

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10 minutes ago, Polly said:

And then wonder why poorer families try to take the children out of school for late/early holidays. The holiday industry once promised not to hike the prices for school holidays...I wonder what happened to that?

 

No they haven't hiked the prices for school holidays, they have made huge reductions for those periods in between lol. Yeah right. Mind you if they can get 95% of the fleet out at the higher price, during school holidays, better than 100% of the fleet out at half the price. Makes good business sense, called supply and demand. My wife has been in teaching all her working life, and as a family we have had to pay the high price and endure packed hotels, (or in the case of the Broads, limited moorings) for any holiday, at home or abroad.

Now people reading this thread who haven't signed up to the Herbert Woods email and had the offer for free fuel, will apply the "Me Too" policy and before confirming the booking will demand the free fuel anyway, or take their booking elsewhere. 

As Robin says, if the boat is like for like, then things must be based on price, however it is important to look at other costs, such as car parking etc. Location at the start might be an important factor, especially those using public transport.

Either way, the hire companies need the bookings, to "stay afloat" lol, over the years we have seen many boat yards close, there is safety in numbers, and some of the larger hire companies have changed their start dates virtually across the whole week, so on any turn around day, they need less staff, but employ them on a more regular basis, rather than just a Saturday morning in season, which of course still remains the main start day for many fleets.

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Have to give a big thumbs up to Faircraft Loynes or Norfolk Broads Direct ... whatever they want to call their boat hire business. If you check out their site you will see that they made the decision to keep their hire prices the same for Easter and October half-term as in the months around them. They're not charging more for those school holiday weeks. 

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2 hours ago, Gracie said:

 

Just in case I am able to get away this year we were looking at Boats only the other day, one that would have cost us £900 out of school time is £1600 during the summer holidays and it was an old Boat, I know hire yards have got to make money, I understand all that but why such a huge increase? How on earth are normal families going to afford the new builds at something like 3 to 4 thousand a week?

Grace

Well, I'm glad I got that off my chest, had a rough night, feel better now though :naughty:

If we did not have a share in Thunder we quite simply would not come for that sort of money.

our 2 week school holiday share cost us £3,500 up front (and we can sell again later) and at worst we pay £800 a year for two weeks, one of which will be in summer school holidays and the other will be Easter or May half term.

 

in fact this year we managed to use a spare week at Easter giving us 3 weeks this year for £800.

roll on two weeks time....

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I was always under the impression that Boat shares were mega expensive but after initial layout, £800 for two weeks is amazing. certainly worth thinking about

Grace

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We pay £52 per month including management fees. On top of that is the winter maintenance which this year was £150.

 

we used to have a 2 week share in Evening Shadow which we bought for £2750. Sold it 4 years later for £2950 (and paid a £200 fee on the sale) so broke even. Taking into account the extra weeks we managed to use each week cost us under £250 (plus fuel and pumpout). We only sold it because we were able to get a school holiday share on Thunder.

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38 minutes ago, TrevorAndDeirdre said:

Agree with Matt we have not looked back since we went into shared ownership it works well for us.

I fully agree, Tan & I have been share owners since 2001, it was a daunting thought to be in control of a new boat in its second week of operation. We still love our time on the Broads and have never regretted our purchase. 

This year all of our owners paid £600 for two weeks allocation.

As with all syndicates the more weeks of allocation time the more you will pay in management fees and the purchase of the the initial share.

Regards

Alan

 

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I completely get the benefits of syndicate ownership but I've never liked the idea of the draw system for time allocation. I think you have a good deal though Matt with the school holidays share as for me that would cut out some of the uncertainty over what weeks I'd end up with. When I read about syndicates week allocation in tends to be on the one week per spring, summer, autumn, winter system so I'd be interested to know how often school holiday shares become available.

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The only BCBM managed boat with school holidays is Thunder although Ranworth Breeze has the and Southern Crusader is fixed weeks.

 

Swapping weeks is often done though. There is currently a share on Moonlight Shadow for sale where the allocations are all school holiday weeks so they must have swapped.

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9 hours ago, Broads01 said:

I completely get the benefits of syndicate ownership but I've never liked the idea of the draw system for time allocation. I think you have a good deal though Matt with the school holidays share as for me that would cut out some of the uncertainty over what weeks I'd end up with. When I read about syndicates week allocation in tends to be on the one week per spring, summer, autumn, winter system so I'd be interested to know how often school holiday shares become available.

Hello Simon,

I am not sure about the other syndicates and school share, we found in the past that school shares were the harder to sell but over the last of years we have sold three shares. Standard shares always sell better than the school shares in our experience or maybe it is down to the people we sell to, most people seem to prefer to not be on the Broads during the summer school holidays.

Regards

Alan

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On 11/03/2016 at 3:38 PM, LondonRascal said:

Yes, it is to those who signed up to the news letter emails - though the wording appears to suggest it is limited to £150.00 - equivalent of the usual fuel deposit.

Not a bad offer but usually suggests when these things pop up that the bookings are needing a bit of a push - annoying for anyone who booked prior to the offer going live as it only applies to new bookings.

I can understand that. Years ago, we booked a boat with the now defunct "Kingline" from Horning. We wanted to book a boat called Tobago King, which my brothers brother in law hired with his family. The boat was already booked, and they offered us one of their "Malibu King" class at the same price, because it was in late October, and they only had 2 boats out that week. 2 weeks later, my brothers brother in law decided to join us, but only for a 4 night break, we had the full sat - sat 7 nights, and they booked the second Malibu King.  However, because they had a sudden run on bookings AFTER we booked ours, my brothers in laws had to pay tyhe full 4 night rate, which happened to be more than we payed for a week. Needless to say, he was far less than pleased, especially as it was from HIS recommendation as a previous customer that encouraged me to book with them.  Now, although we did benefit greatly, i do think this was seriously unfair, and all it achieved was to lose King Line a valued customer.

Ironically all their boats ended up in Herbert Woods fleet.

 

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The holiday business is no different from public transport when it comes to peak and off-peak pricing. 

If there was a constant amount of demand throughout the year (or day) prices could remain static. 

The fact that this constant does not exist must therefore mean that a business has to encourage people to travel at less busy times by reducing the price and try to level this out by charging more at busy times. 

This year, we have chosen only to increase the prices on the Easter bank-holiday weekend with the following dates (still in the school holidays) being low rate again. 

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Andy, I hate to say it but you can bang on about pricing till you're blue in the face. We all know it, we all understand it but as soon as the prices get mentioned again, all this knowledge and understanding seems to be blown to the four winds again and hire fleets get accused of "hiking the prices" again.

 

 

as if you didn't already know that!  :)

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That's cool free diesel from HW Easter weekend ,  Well i do moor @HW so that must include me :bow

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I always think your most loyal, earliest bookers should get the best deal, and a business should be run for the long term (though I understand you have to survive the short term sometimes to get there, so it is a balancing act, especially if you've not learnt the lessons previously handed to you yet), so last minute deals sit a bit uncomfortably with me.

There's some boats in the Herbert Woods fleet I would like to hire.

Their pricing & approach to specal offers means they have never stacked themselves towards me hiring one.  Last time (and the time before) I got a new boat from Richardsons for very close money to their twenty odd year old offering....

I believe that in retail the selling price and the product/standard offered are the two things most likeky to affect the business success. 

I dont see any difference with boat hire

Dan

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