V&A Waterfront Sweet and Cape Town parking marshalls Sour Service Awards

The Sweet Service Award goes to the V&A Waterfront, for their surprise gift box, to publicise their festive season gift ideas.  The box contained a number of personalised, specially selected, gifts which the V&A Communications Manager Donoven Gloy thought I would enjoy: the book “Hints to Lady Travellers at Home and Abroad” by Lillias Campbell Davidson, a bottle of Graham Beck Brut, and two champagne flutes from Spilhaus.  Gift ideas for the outdoor lover, the sophisticate, the foodie, the homemaker, the chic sailor, the jet setter, the summer lover, the patriot, the singleton, the young intellectual, the trendster, the little dreamer, the mini crafter, the sporty kid, and the summer baby are presented, with V&A Waterfront outlet names at which they can be obtained.  The Waterfront website www.festive.waterfront.co.za has an innovative gifting service, in that it generates gift ideas when one types in the age, gender and interests of the person one is shopping for.

The Sour Service Award goes to the Cape Town city centre parking marshalls, who seem to think that being rude to and harassing their ‘customers’ will intimidate them into paying up.  Yesterday I popped back to the Christmas Market of the Freeworld Design Centre, to return a book to Neil Stemmet, and to see the stalls that had not opened the day before due to the poor weather, and told the marshall that I would pay on my return.  He started shouting at me, and immediately threatened to call the traffic police if I did not pay him R10 for an hour or longer upfront. I had no intention of staying for that long, and I was sure that he would not refund me should I have stayed for half an hour or shorter.

The WhaleTales Sweet & Sour Service Awards are presented every Friday on the WhaleTales blog.  Nominations for the Sweet and Sour Service Awards can be sent to Chris von Ulmenstein at info@whalecottage.com.   Past winners of the Sweet and Sour Service Awards can be read on the Friday posts of this blog, and in the WhaleTales newsletters on the www.whalecottage.com website.

12 replies on “V&A Waterfront Sweet and Cape Town parking marshalls Sour Service Awards”

  1. Louise says:

    The City of Cape Town marshals are part of the City’s parking by-law and payment for parking is compulsory. There is no choice whether or not you feel charitable and pay a car park guard. The marshal is just doing his job. Payment for your guesthouse is surely not on a voluntary basis either and if people leave halfway through the night you will not refund the guest any money.

    The City could have put car park meters in place, but chose to go for creating jobs for car park marshals.

  2. Nick Jones says:

    Hi Chris,
    Re your problems with the parking attendant; are there now fixed rates for parking downtown? On my last visit 2 years ago a couple of ZAR seemed to satisfy the attendants. Has there been an onset of rapid inflation?
    By the way, hope you have a happy & peaceful Christmas.

  3. Yes, Nick, the rates are fixed, and visible on the poles.

    My issue is with the tone and attitude, and that they don’t allow you to pay on one’s return, when one know’s how long has has been. I think he was worried that I would stay later than 5 pm, when he would go home and not make any money. Some of the chaps are exceptionally rude, and a complete switch-off in coming to town.

    I wish you and Mel a whale of a festive season too.


  4. Dear Louise

    Thank you for your comment.

    Perhaps you missed my point, which I have just made to Nick as well? It is not about paying, it is about paying upfront (the rules appear to differ here),and the rudeness and intimidation that goes with paying on one’s return.


  5. andre says:

    I wish a car guard would be rude to me.He would get a earful back and maybe a meat sandwhich or too to the head.

    I always insist on a reciept from them as most of them just pocket the money without accounting for it at the end of the day.

    These marshalls are making the CBD a unpleasant place to visit and at a time when the CBD is going through its worst period ever in terms of tourists and visitors.

  6. I absolutely agree with your last paragraph Andre. The marshalls should be taught manners and how to interact with clients.


  7. Brandon Nel says:

    If I think I am unsure about the length of time I pay for 30 mins in advance and if I subsequently need 1 hour then I pay the difference on my return.

    They always offer me a slip (which I need for my tax return) and I haven’t experienced any problems.

    Payment is required upfront which is fair and I appreciate the flexibility they show in allowing me to pay for any overstay later.

    In the UK lots of pay and display car parks require you to pay in advance and you run the risk of either paying for more than you need or returning after your allotted time has elapsed to find a penalty ticket or worse – your car clamped.

  8. Thank you Brandon.

    In Sea Point we are allowed to pay on return – I don’t understand that there can be two sets of rules for one City parking system. The issue, once again, is the rudenesss in communication, and not the cost of the parking.


  9. Dave Snoek says:

    I think Brandon needs to get a life. Wasting precious time to receive a receipt for 1 hours parking to show the tax man. PLEASE JOIN THE HUMAN RACE BOET. I’ve not had such a good laugh for ages. I agree with you Chris, It’s all about attitude.

  10. Brandon says:

    I think Dave Snoek needs to review his attitude and I am not his boet. There seems to be a lot of anger out there these days and perhaps parking attendants etc are reacting to that.

    I pay out a lot in parking fees every day and spending 20 secs to collect the slip is worthwhile to me.

    Wonder whether Chris, as a self employed person, does the same

  11. I certainly don’t collect the slips Brandon, as I avoid the city centre on principle until 5 pm, when the parking marshalls go home!


  12. Annika says:

    Given the amount of people that probably just quickly drive off without paying, I don’t blame them for asking for money upfront. But I agree that the guys are overall just really rude. Is there one rule now for CBD and Seapoint as to whether one can pay for 10 minutes as well?

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