Marina or Drystack Boat Storage?

How do you decide whether to put your boat into a marina or a drystack?
It’s a question we’re frequently asked.  So, let’s start… if your boat is under 4 metres or over 13 metres long, or has a mast then read no further, a drystack is not for you! Have a look at our marina and other storage options.

Drystacks

Drystack Boat storage Portsmouth
These giant boat racks have up to 5 or 6 tiers of boats. Your boat is launched by a large forklift and on your return, it is lifted from the water quickly rinsed and stored back on the rack. Drystacks can be a rack outside, a building with 1 or more open sides or fully enclosed.

Keeping your boat out of the water means significantly less wear and tear as well as a clean hull, boosting performance and saving fuel.

At Trafalgar, we have a fully enclosed 60,000 square foot building – a monster boat hangar!

Marinas

Marina Berths Portsmouth
Marinas allow you to store your boat alongside pontoon docks. It means you can walk directly from your car to your boat, although you will need to go through the security and walk the pontoons. Just turn up when it suits you, cast off and go.

In all marinas your boat is stored in the open so the environment can take a toll.

At Trafalgar our marina berths are dredged for boats up to 1.5m draft and we offer a wide range of options.

Marina vs Drystack

DescriptionDrystackMarina
Suitable for small to medium-sized powerboatsYes (4m – 13m)Yes (Marina Specific)
All other boatsNoUsually (Marina Specific)
Convenience
Need to book to have boat launched ready for your arrivalYes (1hr from call to launch)N/A, boat in the water
Guaranteed unlimited boat launching 7 days a week (1 hrs notice)YesN/A, boat in the water
Walk from your car straight to your boat = easy to get on board, load gearYesYes
Boat is launched and recovered for you (also freshwater rinse)YesN/A, boat in the water
Quick and easy to cast off and goYesYes
Easy access to power and freshwaterYesYes
In peak times you may need to have to queue to enter/leave the marinaNoMarina Dependant
Full tidal access to open waterYesMarina Dependant
Maintenance
Antifouling requiredNoYes
Regular anode replacement requiredNoYes
Fresh water rinse and inspection on returnYesNo
Bookable powerboat maintenance racks with water and powerYesMarina Dependant
Boat Cover RequiredNoYes
Better fuel efficiency from clean hull (No barnacles/weed on the hull.YesNo
Security & Safety
Covered indoor storage and on racking (high security)YesNo
CCTV and security patrolsYesYes
To review potential costs savings on your boat storage view this page here


In summary, when looking at marinas and drystacks look at these key factors:

  1. How important is convenience to you?
  2. How quickly can you drive to the marina or drystack and get out to sea? (drive time + distance from sea)
  3. How quickly can you go from car to being on your boat?
  4. Are you prepared to pay/do maintenance on your boat? (marina based boats require more)
  5. How important is the resale value of your boat? (open to the environment vs fully enclosed)

Comparison of a selection of Solent accessible drystacks and marinas

DrystackMarinas
Drystack
Portsmouth/Fareham/GosportSouthamptonHamble
OverviewIndoor fully enclosed
Top of Portsmouth harbour easy acess from M27
Clean and secure in a Boat Hangar
Open to the weather,
Bottom of Portsmouth “Island”, Secure.
Open to the weather
Bottom of Gosport
Secure in a marina
Open to the weather
Northam, Southampton Industrial Area
Secure in a boatyard
Open to the weather
Northam,  Southampton Industrial Area
Secure in a boatyard
Open to the weather
Northern end of Hamble River
Secure in a boatyard
Open to the weather
Southern tip of Hamble
Secure in a boatyard
Access5 mins from M27
20 mins to sea
15-25 mins from M27 (very traffic dependant)
10 mins to sea
20-40 mins from M27
(very traffic dependant)
10 mins to sea
15-30 mins from M27
(very traffic dependant)
45 mins to sea
15-30 mins from M27
(very traffic dependant)
45 mins to sea
5-15 mins from M27
(very traffic dependant)
45 mins to sea
15-30 mins from M27
(very traffic dependant)
15 mins to sea
Annual£4,193£3,465£3,430£3,174£3,843£3,920£4,215
Monthly£436£497
Refund guaranteeYesNoNoNoNoNoNo
Note: Prices based on a 7 metre boat and researched 21st March 2021

Marinas
Portsmouth/Fareham/GosportEmsworth, Chichester, Hayling HarbourHamble/Southampton
DescriptionMarina top of Portsmouth IslandMarina with lock top of Portsmouth IslandMarina bottom of GosportMarina top of Chichester HarbourMarina (Tidal) next to EmsworthMarina (Tidal) next to EmsworthMarina at Southern tip of HambleMarina Centre of Southampton
Access5 mins from M27
20 mins to sea
5 mins from M27
20 mins to sea
20-40 mins from M27
(very traffic dependant)
10 mins to sea
10 mins from A27
40 mins to sea
10 mins from A27
40 mins to sea
10 mins from A27
40 mins to sea
15-30 mins from M27
(very traffic dependant)
25 mins to sea
15-30 mins from M27
(very traffic dependant)
45 mins to sea
Annual£3,255£3,740£3,430£3,730£2,765£2,891£3,678£3,678
Monthly£424£467£417£467£249
Money back guaranteeYesNoNoNoNoNoNoNo
Note: Prices based on a 7 metre boat, researched 21st March 2021

Check your travel time on our automated mapping system

To help you decide the best place to store your boat see our checklist.

Let our customers do the talking…

“Fantastic service, so glad we’ve got our RIB at the Trafalgar Wharf DryStack”.
Robert Meekings
“Probably the best indoor DryStack facility in the UK. Fabulous facilities, great staff and 3 marina fork trucks. Launch and recovery is absolutely guaranteed with as little as an hour’s notice”.
Paul Garner
If you have a motor boat and want to keep its maintenance to a minimum then storing it under cover at the Portsmouth Drystack is the best option for both you and your boat.
Ian Wakefield
Trafalgar Group
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Trafalgar Wharf Limited: Registered in England & Wales;
Registered Office: Midland House, 2 Poole Road, Bournemouth, Dorset, BH2 5QY Vat No. 942 7079 08 Company Number 6671758

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