Cruise planning for virgins

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Zmeagol
Joined: Wed 08 Oct, 2003 16:38
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Cruise planning for virgins

Post by Zmeagol » Thu 18 Mar, 2004 08:46

This is intended to be a checklist for potential virgin cruise organisers...

The tried-and-tested formula
- run the event on a Sunday, meet around 10am, start 10:15
- have a number of 15-20 min stops so people have a chance to chat
- toilet stops for ladies (this doesn't mean bushes)
- incorporate a visit to local attraction
- minimum of 90 minutes lunch stop (60 isn't enough)
- organise photo opportunities at lunch stop and/or elsewhere
- afternoon stop for cake and drink rather than just a loo stop
- pick an interesting mix of roads

In other words, a complete package of drive, food, company, sights, rather than just haring around the countryside. Make sure the day is also of interest to passengers.

Ideally plan the route and your stops in Autoroute or similar software, as it will give you a rough idea of timings. It also means you can easily produce an overall route map to publicise the event in posts.

If possible, find someone else locally who is willing to help and can act as your 'sweeper' (looks after the rear of the group).

Organise lunch stop with booked tables, keep them updated with numbers. Check with them how long they will need to serve everyone (then add 15 mins to be safe).

A couple of weeks beforehand, drive the route together with your sweeper (preferably on the same day of the week and same time of day you will be running the cruise) and check timings. Bear in mind there's no such thing as a five minute stop--it can take almost five minutes just to get everyone started again! Getting eight cars out of a right-turn T-junction can take much longer than just a couple of cars, so allow for this.

Preparations for the day
Send out emails before the event asking for names of driver/passenger, type of car, colour, plate (to tell which is which) and mobile phone number. Give a copy of the list to attendees to help people get to know each other. Also hand out a hard copy of the route--people like to know where they have been, as well as a map being useful if they get lost.

Ensure people realise they should arrive with sufficient fuel, drinks, snacks, etc and be ready to leave at the advertised time. If people haven't arrive five minutes before the start, phone them on their mobile to find their anticipated arrival time.

You might still get late arrivers, so have some flexibility in your timings. Have your route timings with you on the day so you know whether you're running on time and whether you need to panic (ideally your route should have a 'Plan B' that enables you to knock something out to get back on schedule).

Organising the group
There's every possibility of the group getting spread out, so in a small group of say eight cars, ask the sweeper to take position number five where he/she can observe the rear of the group and tell the leader when everyone is together again. In a larger group you may need both a sweeper towards the rear, and a middleman.

Those at the rear of the group have to drive faster to catch up after road junctions, so have the faster cars/drivers towards the rear of the group.

However try to avoid having your slowest drivers in positions two and three, otherwise when you reach a 'spirited' section, the leader will disappear into the distance on his/her own.

Communications and etiquette
The leader and the sweeper should keep in touch with Talkabouts. Check before setting out that people know how to use them, and hold them at the optimum distance from the mouth (varies with models) to avoid speech distortion.

Repeat all instructions twice, e.g., "Taking second exit from roundabout, taking second exit from roundabout, follow A27 to Lewes, follow A27 to Lewis."

Ensure drivers understand cruise etiquette
- don't overtake leader or deliberately fall behind sweeper
- observe speed limits in villages
- don't overtake on blind bends
- keep optimum two-second gap between cars
- ensure you keep car behind in view and slow/stop if necessary
- when cars in front starts indicating, you start indicating

When you stop somewhere, let people know how long they have--i.e. what time you anticipate leaving. In a large event, an air horn is useful to signal people to gather back at the cars.

Now... I'm sure there must be more to add.

Tim :zmurf:
Last edited by Zmeagol on Sat 03 Apr, 2004 14:38, edited 10 times in total.

Phil
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Post by Phil » Thu 18 Mar, 2004 18:33

[Lakes-specific bits removed]

I would state in advance -- 'meet in car park 9.45am depart 10.00am prompt. No messin -- I do the Meanders/PISS like that and when its 7.30pm start it is exactly that. From my Tuesday night events I plan 30 mile drives and 1 hour for the drive even on the quickies because you have to wait at the junctions for the backmarkers. We rarely arrive at the restaurant before the allocated time. So the length of cruise up to the lunch stop can be calculated ie start 10.00am -lunch 12.30pm. - two 30 minute mini stop gives a 90 minute drive ie approx 50 miles. Afternoon say 2.30pm to 5.30pm with an one 30 minute stop and one 60 minute stop gives the same 50 mile drive maximum.

A stop at some place of interest with an admission fee usually takes longer than 1 hour.

DavidM
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Post by DavidM » Thu 18 Mar, 2004 19:12

I think that getting them to act as sweepers is a start

I also think that saying, "You can always ask Tim, Phil, Surj, DavidM etc for advice - they have a few under their belts" is a good thing - they would then have an avenue to ask questions

I thought Stu's handout was great at the Yorks run - actually the whole of Stu's cruise was bl**dy great - laced with the right amount of serious vs funny stuff - it set the tone for the run - we don't want to be all stern about it.

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Giles
Joined: Fri 10 Oct, 2003 18:51
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  Not specified

Post by Giles » Thu 18 Mar, 2004 21:31

[Lakes-specific bits removed]

What I would love to see eventually is lots of different and varied events every week - sure not everyone will be able to attend, but at least the 'Z flag' will be flown with regularity.

I think it's fair to say that most cruisers want to see things...i.e. not just hare around the countryside. It's a good idea to include local areas of interest, view points etc - anything that can provide good photo opportunities.

I guess what I'm getting at is it's good if the day is a 'complete' package, drive, food, company sights...am I making sense?

RachelM
Joined: Sun 11 Jan, 2004 16:23
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  Z3 roadster 2.2i
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From the passengers viewpoint...

Post by RachelM » Fri 19 Mar, 2004 00:04

I agree with all that's been said - all very useful to put into a guide on Cruise organising. I especially agree with Giles' last post re. the day being balanced as this is particularly important for the passengers.

Having a slightly longer stop in the afternoon around afternoon tea time (4pmish) is also rather nice as that means you can get some cake and a drink, rather than it just being a loo stop. You can see where my priorities lie :D

I have to say both John and I were inspired to arrange a cruise after our first one (last year's Lakes) and we planned out the initial idea, but then didn't have time to do the detail as John was sent out here. I have to say the thought of doing the whole thing on your own is daunting and John and I would have split it with him deciding the routes and me sorting all the bits in between. :idea: Maybe we should have a forum for people to team up in that way who are near each other. Might mean more people "get started" as such.

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Zmeagol
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Post by Zmeagol » Sat 03 Apr, 2004 14:16

Thanks for the feedback so far, and I have updated the original post to incorporate it.

Tim

garyw
Joined: Fri 07 Nov, 2003 22:29
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Re: Cruise planning for virgins

Post by garyw » Sat 03 Apr, 2004 16:03

Zmurf wrote:- don't overtake leader
oops :oops: :oops:

Phil
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  M roadster S54
Location: Solihull

Virgins welcome---------

Post by Phil » Sat 03 Apr, 2004 17:40

Marise and I seem to spend loads of our spare time arranging drives and dont mind giving our support to anyone trying to organise their first event.
If anyone wants to arrange a Tuesday night PISS let me know and they can take one on. I'll even do the trial run with them and possibly even the meal test. :P :P
Sapphire black/Imola red and black interior/ red roof/ S54 - the only RHD one made.

"The only time you have too much fuel is when you're on fire."

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EnthuZiaZT
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  Z3 roadster 2.0
Location: Sutton, Cambridgeshire

Re: From the passengers viewpoint...

Post by EnthuZiaZT » Sat 30 Jul, 2011 14:13

RachelM wrote:I agree with all that's been said - all very useful to put into a guide on Cruise organising. I especially agree with Giles' last post re. the day being balanced as this is particularly important for the passengers.

Having a slightly longer stop in the afternoon around afternoon tea time (4pmish) is also rather nice as that means you can get some cake and a drink, rather than it just being a loo stop. You can see where my priorities lie :D

I have to say both John and I were inspired to arrange a cruise after our first one (last year's Lakes) and we planned out the initial idea, but then didn't have time to do the detail as John was sent out here.

I have to say the thought of doing the whole thing on your own is daunting and John and I would have split it with him deciding the routes and me sorting all the bits in between.


:idea: Maybe we should have a forum for people to team up in that way who are near each other. Might mean more people "get started" as such.
:idea:
:thumb: We think that this could be good, then everyone in that area (where ever that may be) can hook in, to see if anyone just wants a ride out or a drink in the pub :cheers which could lead to the beginnings of a cruise :thumb:
Mike & Sandy - Mora Metallic Individual 2.0L

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