San Antonio Terminal International
¡Buenos días! Following a packed day and a good night’s sleep, the study group was grateful for a rather «late» start at 09:30. In line with our schedule, we visited Chile’s most significant port, namely San Antonio Terminal International (STI), which is located in San Antonio. In fact, this port plays a crucial role for the Swiss corporation MSC, the world’s largest shipping company. On site, we first attended a highly informational presentation that included facts and data regarding the supply chain and the port itself. We were all impressed by how modern and technological the entire port is, with digital networks to optimize each process. We also discovered that even while working 24 hours a day in three separate shifts, the loading and unloading of a larger ship can take up to three days. The organization’s core values, which include safety and productivity, were also underlined. Although the unloading and offloading procedure appears to be unsafe, it is highly safe, with only few incidents. As a result, the safety component of their core value is not directly concentrated at the protection of its personnel, but rather at keeping all containers safe from thieves. Subsequently, we got the opportunity to visit the port and observe the onloading of containers onto the ship. Our study group was excited to discover the connection between a customer’s online shop order, this port, and the connection to the customer’s doorstep. Furthermore, we got to witness the enormous amount of effort and speed with which the employees and machines loaded and offloaded the ship.
Following a short journey, we arrived at our next destination, the coastal town Valparaíso. One of the few remaining funiculars took us to the top of the city after the bus dropped us off. These elevator-like motorized vehicles are a national heritage and a delightful trip that were formerly widely used to move from point A to point B. Following this brief introduction to Valparaiso, we had approximately an hour for lunch, during which we had a wide range of alternatives to pick from, ranging from local to Italian. Following that, our class was divided into two groups, and each group had an outstanding touristy tour of the city, led by two passionate guides who showed us the streets and history of the UNESCO World Heritage city. Valparaíso is recognized for its colorful mansions and the rich impact of French, Spanish, and British culture throughout the 19th century, which adds to the city’s architecture and atmosphere. The vast quantity of wall murals and graffiti plastered across the streets, however, is the most eye-catching feature Valparaíso offers. Unfortunately, the area is still prone to wild fires and has therefore lost many of it’s native trees. The guided tour concluded with a boat trip through the harbour, where we learnt that the current navy ships there were formerly used by the British. The unexpected encounter with two friendly sealions may have been the highlight of the day. Eventually, it was time to return to the hotel at around 19:00.