This post covers 37 things that can help you to make the most of your travel to France on Brittany Ferries. From the cabins, to seasickness to travelling with pets, you’re covered!
We sailed from Plymouth to Roscoff on Brittany Ferries, and have previously sailed from Portsmouth to Caen.
- For an overnight crossing eat before you get on board so you can go straight to bed. Take sandwiches, in Plymouth there were very few places to get food, apart from the KFC on the roundabout on Union Street and Martin Street just before you get to the ferry terminal.
- For your return trip remember to allow plenty of time for your supermarket shopping – read our guide on what to bring back from the French supermarket.
- Cabins on the overnight journey out are essential so the driver can get some sleep
- Pack an overnight bag with a change of clothes to take on board, cabin space is limited especially if there are 4 of you.
- There is 9.5″ clearance under the bunks (the height of an iPad), so take a bag that will fit underneath
- If you are a light sleeper ear plugs are essential
- I found the air conditioning very drying so take a large bottle of water
- The ferries are French boats – sockets in the cabins are continental so remember your adaptor socket for charging phones/ tablets.
- If you go to bed before your cabin mates leave the bathroom light on – the gap under the door gives enough light to see by but it is dark enough to sleep
- The ship’s morning alarm wakes you up in plenty of time for a group of 4 to shower, pack and have breakfast
- Cabin showers are fantastic. Powerful with plenty of hot water
- If you suffer there are sea sickness bags throughout the ship, but bizarrely none in the cabins, grab a few before you need them if you think you will suffer from mal de mer.
- Do not set your car alarm, you do not want to be called back to your car en voyage to reset if should it go off.
- The shop sells all the bits you need for your car to drive legally. See here for more info.
- There is complimentary wi-fi on the ship, but unsurprisingly, it’s not extra fast.
- Seating is comfortable, and with a little hunting you should be able to find a socket to recharge phone / tablets (as above remember adaptor socket)
- Sailing from Cork to Roscoff book a table for dinner as soon as you board as the food is excellent – from @babaduck71
Some hints from Melodie at the Good Cornwall Guide
- Wear elastic bands with a bead threaded on (easy to make yourself) apply to each wrist and position over pressure points a little way up. Alleviates sea sickness.
- Book a cabin, or find a comfy chair…
- Drink cocktails from the bar before departure with ginger in. Great for sea sickness (and fun). Or ginger biscuts (suggested by Ed)
- If you can, do a spot of yoga before you set off and use the meditative lying down pose to reset you balance
- Try and stand up!
- Think swimming there might be better… at least until you see land
- Eat a lot of food – stick to ginger tea or sips of tonic water
“I get sea sickness terribly on the ferry across and to be honest the pressure points really works for me. I still cannot walk in a straight line but the nausea isn’t too great and it doesn’t linger after you get off the boat.”
Problems / Queries with the Brittany Ferries
- Brittany Ferries are very helpful on twitter and respond to queries / questions out of office hours. @brittanyferries
- The staff are very helpful if you need to change crossing, eg family emergency etc
Travelling with Pets
Here are a few points re travelling with pets, from Jude at a Trifle Rushed
I really recommend taking your pet on holiday with you. I love my walks on the dunes and on the beach with the dog, it is lovely to have his companionship in France as well as at home. Both you and your pet will really benefit from the time spent together.
- We have been taking our dogs backwards and forwards to France since the introduction of Pet Passports.
- The whole procedure is very simple, your first step is to visit your own vet and get your pet microchipped and inoculated against Rabies, I would suggest looking at the government website here.
- Booking with Brittany Ferries is simple, when you are buying your ticket there are opportunities for inputting pet details, make sure you fill this in as they do need to know how many animals will be on each boat.
- Make sure you pack the pet passport! Have it somewhere accessible in the car.
- When you arrive at the port and are checking in you will be asked to scan your pet’s microchip, it will be verified with the number on the passport, if all is correct you will be given a pink paw sticker for your car!
- On some of the ferries there are kennel options, my husband looked at them and felt they were a little cold, they are right on the top deck and you can use the lift to get there. The advantage of the kennel is that you can visit your dog during the crossing.
- We however always leave our dog in the car where he feels safe and secure, with the window slightly open for fresh air, night crossings are great, as the dog just sleeps as usual.
- Before you return to the UK you need to visit a vet for various entry treatments. There is a window of between 5 days and 24 hours before you return. Again check the latest guidelines as this timeframe can change. You will need about €40-60 to pay the vet, and make sure the passport is dated and signed.
- We use a vet in St Pol de Leon, and if your not sure where to find one contact Brittany Ferries, they are very helpful. (My brother took his dog to Spain, and found the vets were very good there, he simply asked a neighbour for a recommendation.)
- The pet will need to be checked in before boarding the ferry home. At Roscoff we take the dog into the terminal where the Brittany Ferry Staff verify that all is correct, then it’s back in the car for the journey home.
- Please note that foot passengers are unable to travel with pets on the ferries.
- Pet passports are available for dogs, cats and ferrets! You will need to check government guidelines for horses and other animals you wish to take abroad.
Fuss Free Flavours travelled as a guest of Brittany Ferries.
What advice would you offer when travelling by Brittany Ferries?