Does the Internet Damage Open Meeting Turnouts….!!

Do you find at  your Club that when breezes are light, or maybe above 15-20mph, members simply don’t turn out??  It certainly happens at our Club, though the FF teams generally show up regardless !! So often, great sailing is to be had on those very same days!!!

A while ago we wrote an item suggesting that easy access to accurate internet weather forecasts is what causes this.  You know the pattern:-

  1. wake up
  2. grab phone
  3. look at windguru. Inspired?
  4. snuggle back under duvet

Robert Pitts of Chew has suggested to us that this might also be a phenomenon that is suppressing Open Meeting turnouts.  What do you think??  Robert makes the suggestion that we could fix this in one easy step.  We only accept entries who pay the entrance fee online in advance – once you’ve paid you are committed – right?…..

BIFFA HQ has learned that the way to make this viable for us, is to have a paypal button online, so that people can easily use their credit cards that way.  Saves all the faff of remembering to register and pay on the day at the event, when so often one is short of time.  If a club website has no facility for online credit card payment, perhaps we should investigate using the BIFFA facility?? At the same time, advertising the event on the BIFFA website, publishing the results, Rankings  etc is all part of it.

Just about any other sporting events like ours do this already – marathons and cycling spring to mind. Plus there is all the planning spinoffs… How many are the caterers planning for?  Have we fenced off enough parking?  How big a course do we need? etc

A bit revolutionary…. What do you think??  Should we trial it for Regional Championships maybe??

2 thoughts on “Does the Internet Damage Open Meeting Turnouts….!!

  1. HISC has had pay-on-line for years but it normally only gets used for Nationals as the Open Meetings do not want to use advance payment in case it reduces numbers, as they say people will not commit to pre entry for Opens in case the weather is bad.

    Pay on line has planning advantages and also ensures the correct names, club, sail number etc are loaded direct into Sailwave, saving Office time and improving the result info.

  2. With finite budgets for travel, entries and time it makes sense to target quality events with good weather. Travel to Windermere for the Northerns last year or Ullswater for The Lord Birkett Trophy put me off the open circuit in a big way. Personally if I had to pay in advance and had bad weather I would probably never visit a venue again! If the forecast is bad and I choose to miss an event it opens up the chance to do a different event later in the year.

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