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Old 06-17-2007, 10:20 AM   #1
Dan98 OP
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Ferry to UK - help

Hi

In August I will be visiting UK heading from France by car. No motorcycle yet... I've looked on Google and saw a bunch of websites where you can see the routes, the timetable and even get your tickets online but I'm not sure this is a good idea to have my tickets booked in advance, who knows what could delay me on the road. So , can I get a ticket when I arrive at the docks ?
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Old 06-17-2007, 11:18 AM   #2
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Of course you can, but it's cheaper in advance.
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Old 06-18-2007, 01:13 AM   #3
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not sure where you plan to cross, dover/calais is shortest, but you will save over 1/2 if you book in advance. I just crossed a couple time going to the TT races, and the prices went up, even online, the closer to the booking date you wait. a week in advance will get you good prices. Not sure if you can change the date once booked, I have never tried
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Old 06-18-2007, 03:30 AM   #4
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i use Brittany Ferries as i live in Plymouth and the terminal is 5 minutes away. you can change booking, but it cost me 30 to do that after my trip went wrong.

depends on what time of year you travel. August is usually a busy month due to school holidays in both France and the UK.


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Old 06-18-2007, 04:01 AM   #5
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We always use the tunnel for generic trips to Europe . A std ticket has a two hour window either side of the departure time booked to be used, and doesn't cost too much to upgrade.

We have been delayed by security checks after checkin and missed our train loads of times , but never been hassled over it.

Euro Tunnel is the best way I know for "loose" travel arrangements.
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Old 06-18-2007, 05:00 AM   #6
John K
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I would recommend booking in advance, even if it's just 24 hours before.

In my experience if you have a booking, even if you miss your booked ferry you'll get on in front of anyone who hasn't booked. You'll save money too. If you just turn up without a booking you'll pay top price and be right at the back of the queue, which could mean quite a long wait.

Obviously some cheap deals may have conditions attached, but this is the way it has worked for me in the past.

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Old 06-18-2007, 07:44 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CG125
I would recommend booking in advance, even if it's just 24 hours before.

In my experience if you have a booking, even if you miss your booked ferry you'll get on in front of anyone who hasn't booked. You'll save money too. If you just turn up without a booking you'll pay top price and be right at the back of the queue, which could mean quite a long wait.

Obviously some cheap deals may have conditions attached, but this is the way it has worked for me in the past.

John
+1 on the turning up late thing. Only done it on the bike but it was no bother for them to get me on. Obviously the busier the route the easier it is to get the next one. I can also recomend paying an extra tenner for the executive lounge on Brittany ferries. Complimentary glass of champagne newspapers and nibbles and a nice quiet seat away from the riff raff. Apologies to any riff raff reading this, but after riding from the Loire valley to Calais I was glad of it!

Enjoy your trip
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Old 06-18-2007, 11:58 AM   #8
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To keep costs down, go for early morning (pre-7am?) or evening crossings (7pm plus), can make a huge difference.

If going Calais - Dover, try Norfolk Lines, we had a return crossing last year for 41 each.
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Old 06-19-2007, 05:28 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grazoid
We always use the tunnel for generic trips to Europe . A std ticket has a two hour window either side of the departure time booked to be used, and doesn't cost too much to upgrade.

We have been delayed by security checks after checkin and missed our train loads of times , but never been hassled over it.

Euro Tunnel is the best way I know for "loose" travel arrangements.
I prefer the ferry but travel chunnel for business, I agree with Grazoid, if you want the flexibility think the tunnel.

In both cases you can save a lot by booking in advance. I don't know about others but I find the online booking gets more expensive as you get closer to your departure date; I always try to book as far in advance as possible.
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Old 06-23-2007, 02:25 PM   #10
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Laugh it's all in the timing

I always use the tunnel where possible , just because I would sooner spend the time riding, I looked at Speed Ferries, Dover - Boulogne [only one ship] and Norfolk lines Dover - Dunkirk, which are both good value but the time saving and the lack of worries about Channel weather conditions are worth the extra cost. Le Shuttle use a demand based pricing system that works out cheaper the earlier you book, last year left it a bit late, and was booking two places about a week before we were due to go, and the second place cost 5 more than the first , all in the space of one phonecall!
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