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Cost of channel travel
Posted: 4 August 2005 9:40 PM
Subject: Cost of channel travel

Seasoned as we are now to trotting across the channel by boat (Dover Calais/Dunkerque) I was not prepared for this years prices. We buy through the Motorhome Ticket Club. Our summer trip was £143 return to Dunk. (Bought in December as advised here somewhere, not later as usual)

We paid less than that at Easter while others managed the trip for £88. We met a couple that had paid £138 for the Eurotunnel for their summer trip (returning end of July).
I forgot to ask how the Channel ticket was purchased? The speedier time is now very attractive, especially as Dunkerque now seems very slow getting onto the boat as well as the journey.

What advice do you have for next year. Do we hold off and buy at the time or buy in advance. Through an agent or not?
Posted: 5 August 2005 7:18 AM
Subject: Cost of channel travel

How long is a piece of string? The competition between ferry companies has increased significantly over the last year on the Dover routes, and it seems that they are doing all they can to fill their spaces. Speedferries did a 2 for 1 offer, Seafrance are doing a price match pledge, no doubt keen to fill their new superferry just introduced. Eurotunnel have revamped their website and now actually display their prices!! Before you had to guess which might be a low price crossing, and put in various combinations of times and dates.
All companies seem to be using fluid pricing now, where prices start low, then as they get booked up, the price starts to rise. Then they stick in a special promotion to get more bookings for the spare capacity! In my experience, prices are constantly reviewed, but it certainly seems possible to cross more cheaply now than a couple of years ago. It depends whether you want to have the certainty of booking well in advance, or are prepared to keep an eye on prices and have the flexibility of taking off without to much forward planning/restriction on dates and times. What do others think?
Posted: 5 August 2005 7:20 AM
Subject: Cost of channel travel


We use Eurotunnel exclusively to get to the continent. We always used Motorhome Ticket Club even though we could have bought tickets very slightly cheaper elsewhere becuse we believe that the organisation should be supported.

However, in the past Eurotunnel had a very fickle pricing and discount policy, which one year, lead to a ridiculous price; not just silly but ridiculous! That year we stayed in the UK. Then Eurotunnel banned the carriage of any vehicle with a fixed LPG tank, which forced us to stay in UK.

But, eventually they relented on domestic LPG tanks AND commenced their own "special offers" and, since that time, we have booked direct with Eurotunnel. If you do it on line it is even cheaper (by a fiver). We are off in September (as usual) using tickets booked last October. Return fare for a 10M RV is £125.

I don't care what the "sailor's friends" say, considering the service, level of fuss, and crossing time, you won't do better than that; under an hour from M20 to A16.



Posted: 5 August 2005 12:00 PM
Subject: Cost of channel travel

i posted a message as i was having problems making a booking for 2006 departing jan 7 return march 24.
both norfolkline and p&o did not have the schedule for these dates on the system.
from a reply from brian and eve it seems that these dates will not be available before november!!!
so where does this leave us regarding early booking discounts?
i find their systems very frustrating to use as it seems that you have to re-type your details each time you make a change to sailing dates/times, or am i doing something wrong?
following a recommend on another posting for parking at folkestone i tried the channel tunnel site,
what a difference !!!
easy to negotiate site, options to alter to previous and next day crossings without having to keep inputting your details each time, lots of time options and very clear pricing information.
also lots of general information but nothing about any parking for motorhomes (overnight or not) but the posting for parking at folkestone gives details of a nearby 24hr tesco car park where you can park, have a meal, do last minute shopping.
needless to say i have booked. depart sat 7th jan 8.00 am return fri 24th march 10am for grand total of £124.00
last year we used norfolkline cost £98 monday crossings but the weekend crossings carried a supplement of £10.00, the sailings were late departing and facilities were fairly basic.
so no contest ... the tunnel it is then!!
kind regards

Posted: 5 August 2005 12:17 PM
Subject: Cost of channel travel

We booked our chunnel crossing a few weeks ago with Caravan Club.Cost £210.But that includes the dog at £30.But,yet again due to it being 26th,Bank Holiday weekend this is where the high price of £180 came in.Otherwise we were Quoted £144.Motorhome is 22ft Swift Kon-Tiki.
See you there,the sun the heat,cheap drink,wine-mmmmm,Cider farms this year with France Passion(glug,glug,glug,burb,pardon me)Can`t wait.By the way the dog says Woof Woof to all you`s wonderful people out there.
P.S.If any of you are approached by a hansom fair haired Tom Sellick(Magnum)lookalike wanting to hear of any good places,its just me.
Good Holiday,
Posted: 5 August 2005 10:26 PM
Subject: Cost of channel travel

I have just booked Dover / Dunkerque at £38 return plus £20 for the dog, traveling at night but who cares. Does anyone know of a easy to find pull in once we leave the boat at about 3am where we can sleep for a few hours before moving on.
userMel B
Posted: 5 August 2005 10:41 PM
Subject: Cost of channel travel

Well done Pete, but I pity you as well!

We did a couple of these late night and early morning crossings when we went to Ireland a few years ago - never again! We travelled over at 3.00 am and were knackered for the rest of that day and the following one, on the way back we came over at midnight and again were knackered! We wished we'd paid the extra money, around £30.00 then, and had travelled at more reasonable times. But then again, I suppose it depends on what you want to do when you get there, eg if you are on a specified length of time for your holiday, or if you've got time to just recover for a day or two, we were the former but we'd love to have been the latter!!!

I did notice quite a few 'vans parked up for the night at Calais when we passed through at one point, but don't know whether there's anything around Dunkerque, have a search of the forum (spell it Dunkerque and Dunkirk) and see what pops up.
userMike Culver
Posted: 7 August 2005 9:13 PM
Subject: Cost of channel travel

If you collect 'Tesco' vouchers and change them for travel on the Tunnel you get 4 times their value, so it makes it a easy and cheap way of getting over, we have just done it, no problems, just takes a little longer and its done over the phone.

Safe driving and be lucky.Mike.
Posted: 7 August 2005 11:49 PM
Subject: Cost of channel travel

That sounds intriguing - though confusing. Can you explain a bit more about that. What Tesco vouchers? I have their points vouchers. Are they what you are talking about.
userMike Culver
Posted: 10 August 2005 9:56 PM
Subject: Cost of channel travel

Evening Norma,
sorry if I didn't make sense, the Clubcard vouchers they send you can be exchanged for Clubcard Deals Tokens, its four times their value and can be used for all sorts of services, Air miles, Euro tunnel and ferries etc. Our trip is costing £219, we are paying with Tokens and cash.
Tescos have a Clubcard Deals service team on 0870 842 0842, give them a call and they will send you the booklet, its certainly saved us money, more to spend on essentuals over there, wine etc! Hope I've explained it better.

Be lucky, Mike
userAlan and Lynn Parkin
Posted: 28 August 2005 8:51 PM
Subject: Cost of channel travel

We too have used Tesco vouchers for a number of years. P and O only accept them for sailings from Portsmouth or Hull so Dover crossings are out.

Also, they will not accept them in conjunction with other offers, so you end up paying rather more (but in vouchers) than you would in cash. We have had a "free" trip on vouchers most years, as we live quite close to the Hull Terminal and Zeebrugge is convenient for most of our trips. We have used them on the Chunnel, but it uses up all your cheap diesel driving back up here. You cannot use them via the internet so need to use the phone.
Anti -Tesco campaigners will tell you of course that you are paying over the odds for your groceries, but there you are.
Posted: 29 August 2005 11:20 AM
Subject: Cost of channel travel

Alan & Lynn

Intersting last point but you can now tell the anti-Tesco campaigners that you are NOT paying over the odds for yout groceries.

From the Times Business section last Friday, Tesco is now the UK's cheapest supermarket. This was established over a 6 month period of comparisons by a professional body. Asda has been banned from using the slogan that claims it is Britain's cheapest supermarket!

There you have it!


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