Portsmouth to Santander Ferry Advice Please

Mar 17, 2020
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We are taking this ferry for the first time later in the year. Acting upon advice we have paid for the Commodore Lounge.

Just received an email from Brittany Ferries informing us that due to "operational issues" the ship will sail at 11.59 pm and not at the scheduled 10-30 pm.

I wrote to Brittany Ferries asking at what time would we be able to board the ferry and at what time and where would food be available.

The response:

"Good morning,
Thank you for your email.
There will be food available on board ready for once boarding commences around 1 hour prior to departure, they will close at 00:30am.
Please do not hesitate to contact us if you require any further assistance.
Kind regards,"

Many Forum members are familiar with the ferry service and I am wondering if this makes sense!

If boarding starts at 11.00 pm we may be on board for 11.15 lets say. But it's entirely possible we are not on board much before say 11.45 pm.

I was hoping boarding would start a fair bit before the specified one hour to allow a bit of time to settle in and grab some food. I can't find details of restaurant opening times although the Commodore Lounge shows closed at 19.30!

Looks like we will need to find food before boarding in view of the later departure time.

Any comments welcomed.

In particular the actual time before departure boarding begins (if it's always more than 1 hour before - and I can't see how all loading could possibly take place within a 1 hour period - less if sailing immediately after boarding is completed).

Basically we're very unsure of how to play this and would love to hear from any members with experience/tips etc .

Many thanks.
 
Jul 18, 2017
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We have only used the ferry from Plymouth to Santander as the sailings times are more reasonable and you get a good night's sleep and it is only one over night on the ferry.
 
Mar 17, 2020
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We have only used the ferry from Plymouth to Santander as the sailings times are more reasonable and you get a good night's sleep and it is only one over night on the ferry.
Thanks for that. Very useful information. I will be sure to change ferry next time.
 
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May 10, 2020
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Traveled Brittany Ferries many times, probably a good dozen times, and always found that us caravaners are the last to board. Never been a problem though but then again we travel during the off season.
 
May 7, 2012
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Looks like the Commodore lounge is a waste of money on that ship, we have never used it though. . We have used the service before but it boarded on time so no problem getting food. We have never found caravans the last to board, we were normally in the middle, as presumably due to our extra length they filled up with cars near the end to squeeze them in as they are shorter and it was easier.
 
Nov 30, 2022
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I would assume the response you had was the standard one and doesn't take into account that this sailing is delayed.
Having said that will you really want a meal at around mid-night?? For very late sailings we take a "cabin picnic"
As for the time to load, they are very experienced at it and achieve it in a very short period of time. Dont forget they use two loading ramps at a time.
As for Commodore Lounge, well thats down to personal taste, it's not cheap, but we love it because it provides a peaceful and calm area with comfy seats, a decent view, and food is included. Others consider it a waste of money.
Can't please all of the people all ofthe time.
It doesn't bother me if I am the first to be loaded, or the last. I have a ticket and I have a cabin, so what's the rush?
 
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Mar 17, 2020
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Thanks for the "tips" and comments.

The whole purpose of posting was to see if others have had their sailing delayed and if so, what facilities were available on board and elsewhere (port).

Clearly the response from Brittany, as Plodd points out, is likely a standard response that takes no account of the sailing changes. If the Commodore Lounge (Raywood) is open then apart from the rush a glass and a snack will be fine. Not looking for a full dinner in a restaurant.

Travelling from North Derbyshire I'm keen to minimize traffic issues. Decision regarding travelling early before rush hour, or later, has to be made and some insight from responses are really useful.

Many thanks for suggestions and help. Appreciated.

PS. Buckman, I'm pleased to hear you were once first off. I presume that was on the Plymouth sailing? On our last Hull to Rotterdam trip we were placed hard against the central wall of the ship facing the rear. To get away meant waiting for surrounding vehicles to move so we could reverse and gently move away from the wall to be able to drive forward and swing round the end of it and head forward to get off. We were last.
 

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