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transmanche ferries


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Just thought i would join the band wagon regarding cross channel ferries and tell everyone about our trip this week with Transmanche Ferries.

Very cheap - £72.00 return for 3 pax and car 5 day return

Daytime crossings - from Dieppe 1230 and returning from Newhaven 0800, and the crossing were only 4 hours as opposed to the usual 6.

On schedule departures, very clean comfortable boat and relatively quiet.

We would definately recommend them and we will probably use them again as we find BF too costly, LD lines OK but would prefer to have a choice with crossing times and Dieppe was very easy to reach on the A28, travelling through Rouen was a little tricky but it looks like they are building a new bridge which may eventually skip the town completely.

Kate

 

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Did you book online?

I just tried to get a quote from them - but the online booking is a bit of a nightmare. You go through the whole procedure and it tells you that it can't quote because some aspect of what you have requested is unavailable. But it doesn't say which! So you have to input all the data again, changing something, but you don't know what was unavailable - a date, a cabin, what? I did it twice and gave up.

I think they need to invest in a proper on-line booking service.

Do all the cabins have shower/WC? What is the general level of comfort like?

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Hubby has just switched from Transmanche to LD because, although TM are cheaper they seem to have great difficulty keeping to their schedules.  Journey time goes out the window and do they care..............................................................................................................[:(]
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Dick

I used this service over Easter. A few comments:

Timekeeping seems to be a problem. We were 30 mins late leaving on the outward journey, 2 hours late on the return.

One of the ships used then was fine, the other an aging rustbucket.

Cabins seem to be available for (I think) £25 - you apply at the Enquiry Desk. But who needs a cabin on a 4 hour crossing?

As far as ports go, Dieppe is fine but Newhaven is the a******* of England.

HOWEVER

From my perspective the important thing is transportation from England to France at a reasonable price. On this criterion, TF beats BF hands down. Having ships decked out like mini liners is just a further excuse to empty passengers' wallets while they are trapped in a floating prison.

For booking try Aferryto.com - but I suspect they add a booking charge.
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An update on Transmanche - I don't think www.aferryto.com adds any surcharges, though some booking agents may. Of the two ships, Cote d'Albatre was delivered this year, and a sister ship is being built to replace the Dieppe, which is basically a Baltic freight ferry. Newhaven and Dieppe ferry ports are both owned by Transmanche, and although the company (which is actually a consortium of French local authorities headed by the Seine Maritime local council) is happy to be a port operator it wants to transfer the ship operation side of things to a proper shipping company. I understand LD Lines was in the frame, but turned it down because the standard of maintenance and dredging of the ports was so poor.

The shoreside operation, particularly at Newhaven, is amateurish to the point of having a certain charm. Newhaven is not the most picturesque town, and facilities are pretty lacking, but you are soon out of it and the road communications are in fact pretty good compared with some other ports. You used to be able to get off the ferry straight on to the train - I don't know how this works out currently but it was a benefit compared with, say, Portsmouth, where the stations are a £5 taxi journey from the port.

My own concern with Transmanche is its safety record. There have been several encounters with solid objects, the French official inquiries showing that in at least one of these alcohol had a part to play. Dieppe's last port state control inspection, in December 2005 by the UK authorities, highlighted 11 defects, covering things such as fire safety, crew certification and a rather worrying four structural safety defects.

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The shoreside operation, particularly at Newhaven, is amateurish to the point of having a certain charm.

I couldn't have put it better.

You used to be able to get off the ferry straight on to the train.

Cars are now loaded from the old passenger terminal beyond the railway station on the east side of the railway line. One therefore has to drive across the tracks in order to board. Vehicles exit through the old vehicle terminal - which is fine.

There is no footbridge onto the ships and foot passengers have to walk along the car ramp to board and leave the ship. But the railway station is just a few yards away.

The Cote d'Albatre is quite acceptable but the Dieppe is not.
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I guess we were very lucky with our experience then - we were on the Cote d'Albatre for both journeys and both ran to schedule. Can't comment on the cabins - as somebody has mentioned, it is only a 4 hour day crossing so we didn't need them

We tried to book on line and although it came up with a quote it advised us to phone to reserve a crossing - which we did and it came out even cheaper than the online quote.

The comments about Newhaven are dead right!! It's a pretty sad little port - even the customs & excise shed had nobody manning it.

Kate

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Read elsewhere of someone who checked a fare on the Aferry site - £166, then rang Transmanche and asked about the same details, and was charged £133.

Aferry add in small print that the booking is not confirmed, but Transmanche booking direct do confirm the booking.

The only problem I have had with Transmanche is their billing system. They quote in ££, and charge in ££, but then convert to €€, and your card issuer then converts this back to ££, so what you see is not what you pay.

Admittedly that was last year, they might have sorted it out by now.

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We've got a group of bikers here on a long weekend for the Moto GP.  They were chuffed to get a TM Dieppe return crossing with cabin for 42 pounds for each bike.  Is that good for a motorbike?  The crossing was supposed to be 3 hours but took 4 (maybe one of the boats is faster than the other) apparently due to heavy seas.  [+o(]

Phil

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I've just asked them (they're not happy that Rossi broke down) and they say the bikes were strapped down with one strap over the seat, on the sidestands.  Seemed secure enough given it was a rough sea and nothing came to grief.  They did book well in advance.

Phil

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