German Hobie Cat Association: Where the wild winds are blowing...
Raumscholz is the Yearbook of the official German Hobie Cat Association, and it is widely read across the multihull community in Europe. In Covid year 2020, Wildwind was one of the few sailing holidays operating and Raumschots published the following article on how we dealt with the sitation and managed to provide everyone with a fantastic holiday whilst keeping all our guests safe from the virus.
Where the wild winds are blowing...
... there will be sailing in 2021! Cat sailors’ heaven “Wildwind” has pulled through the messed-up 2020 season and is now already taking bookings for 2021.
Tourism has been hit heavily by Covid in 2020, and the sailing holiday industry was no exception. At the beginning of the season, life in almost all of Europe ground to a standstill and leisure travelling became nearly impossible for months. Wildwind, Europe’s hotspot for ambitious cat sailor, closed its doors and beaches.
However, the small but renowned operator has managed the crisis well. Greece actually pulled through the early days of the pandemic much better than several western European countries, kept infection rates down and started allowing tourists in on 1st July. Wildwind was ready for business when it happened and had everything worked out: The staff was flown in early and isolated before the first customers arrived, regular health checks and reduced guest numbers helped to curb the risk. Of course, some alterations had to be made – the usual frantic dancing at the legendary weekly barbecue had to be abandoned, for example, social distancing and hygiene measures were part of daily life at the center.
“All in all, our guests were able to have a good time”, says Peter Kukla, Wildwind’s German booking agent. “There were of course some regulations on the trip here, but they did not lead to great delays or inconveniences, and at the center people could go about their day pretty much as usual, of course with social distancing and hygiene rules in place. Of course, it was a shame not to be able to party as usual, but at least we could offer our guests what they love us for: Sailing in smashing conditions.”
After all, sun and wind were not affected by the virus, the legendary cross shore came on just the same in the afternoon, bringing gusts of 20 knots and more, the sun burned down as usual, and the risk of infection on the water was low. Wildwind made it through the season without a single case.
Things were more difficult for Wildwind in Mauritius. Tourism on the Indian ocean island has been suspended and as yet there are no news when this will be changed. For now there is no chance of a winter holiday under the tropical sun.
In Greece however preparations are on for the 2021 season: The first vaccines are being distributed and hopes are up; the teams in Greece and Great Britain are getting ready for starting the season 1st Mai 2021. Guest numbers will be reduced again, because there will probably still be social distancing rules in place, as not everyone will have received their vaccines by summer. Early booking is thus recommended – many guests who missed their holiday in 2020 are determined to have a go in 2021. Especially the high season is already heavily booked.