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  2. To be fair to BF, is it not just that there are, on paper, four people booked into the cabin - so they cater for the number of people booked? The crew aren't to know that someone booked on a reclining seat is actually staying in a cabin?
  3. Today
  4. Yes, that’s a point that cannot be emphasised enough. Used to be a time when there was no need for data roaming to be on, ever, unless you want massive bills. But now that roaming on the continent comes at the same rate as your inclusive package, its use overseas has become viable. But use of data roaming on the ship is still astronomically expensive, so very important to remember to turn it off.
  5. I turn off data roaming pre-boarding as I don’t want to get caught for a huge bill when my phone connects to the satellite. The wifi on the Baie de Seine was fine two years ago: we could even get it in our Plus cabin on deck 10, enough to download newspapers anyway. Never had this on either CF or Pont Aven.
  6. I wonder if this has any relevance to the Debit/Credit card reader problems on the PA & CAP?
  7. its hard to see why BF would be so mean with customers who are prepared to pay for a Commodore cabin On the other side of it I don't know how BF cost their vitality breakfast as it is such good value & the amount of food people eat & spirit away amazes me. Was on the PA back to Cork in June & there was an elderly French couple seated next to us and I could not help notice their frequent visits back to the buffet [8 in all] I only realised after a while that they were not in fact eating most of the food they were packing it away in a large handbag that they had with them. They turned their cooked breakfast away twice because they were not finished their pilfering ! One would of thought the Restaurant staff would have noticed but maybe they just accept that is what some people do ....
  8. Great report. Sounds like they’ve spent a bit of money doing Normandie up at her last reft (presumably in preparation for move to Le Havre), which is good to hear.
  9. So time for the Annual 2 week holiday in France and this time we were heading for the Vendee after 2 years of going to Brittany. There is a little bit of sentiment involved when I book the crossings as I like to try different routes and vessels for the outward crossing plus living in Sheffield there isnt a huge difference in the distances to the UK Ports but I always like to return on the Bretagne on the inward crossing as its a nice way to end the holiday sailing out of St Malo plus the arrival time at Portsmouth means we should get home before Midnight. However after 2 successive years of being held up on the M1 by overnight roadworks and Lane Closures it was time to try something different for the return leg so I plumped for the Caen route. I booked the crossings in October hoping that the outward crossing would be on Honfleur but obviously that was not to be. Still it was at least 15 years since I last travelled on the Normandie and after getting a few negative vibes from comments on here I was curious as to what she would be like. The crossing was very heavily loaded and I could see that Deck 6 was full. We were placed on Deck 5 as we were towing and the 1st thing I noticed was how much space we had on either side of us. It makes you realise just how cramped the Bretagnes garage decks are. We had an Outside Cabin on Deck 6. It was clean and the carpet looked new as if it had been changed during her last refit. I also noticed the more modern looking light switch panel with USB points. We made our way outside onto the rear sundeck as it was a beautiful morning and then into the Derby Bar for the Kids entertainment. This area was particularly busy there were no seats in the Bar and not many in the Cafe area opposite. I got the feeling that many of the people there were spending the whole crossing there rather than getting a cabin however it made this area in particular feel a bit cramped. Lunch in the Self Service was lovely and the sea was totally calm. We arrived into Ouistreham on time and just as we were approaching the entrance to the Port some Dolphins were swimming in the waves on the Port side. In all the times I have been to France Ive never seen any marine life so that was a very pleasent surprise. I only wish I was on the deck rather than in the cabin so I could take a photo. The return crossing was on the MSM overnight from Caen. Due to what I'd read on here regarding Migrant Problems we had our evening meal in Avranches and i timed it so that we arrived at the Port at 10.05. We saw the Migrants sat around just before the entrance to the Port but they didnt appear to be actively chasing any traffic and we didnt feel threatened. The last time I went on MSM I was underwhelmed but in her defence it was a rough crossing in low season and we spent the whole crossing in the Cafe area at the back so didnt really see much of the ship. This time we were loaded onto Deck 5 into a spacious garage and our Cabin was on deck 7. The thing that struck me the most about MSM was her sheer size. It probably helped in that everyone was in their Cabins/Seats tucked up for the night but she still appeared much larger than the Normandie. Overall impressions were good I hadn't realised how similar she is in layout to Normandie just a bigger more spacious version. Overall 2 very good crossings with BF. I thought the Normandie was very nice, well kept and modern compared with other ships Ive travelled on recently. Such is the high standards that BF maintain its only when compared against her own fleet mates that she starts to look inferior. I was impressed with MSM but pleasant as she was i just think she lacks the character or personality of the other BF ships.
  10. jonno

    CF vs PA

    Who me? Yeah groovy man, there's a very nice lady dressed in light blue who keeps turning up giving me sweets in a plastic cup... and I love these squishy walls by Coloroll.🤣
  11. The chap was called Michael Rayner and the glassware was very fine indeed. It was certainly there in 1979 because we bought my in-laws a very nice red vase for their Ruby Wedding. I think the premises are now a Fish and Chip shop. The IoW glass produced now is not of the same quality.
  12. Gareth

    CF vs PA

    Are you feeling alright Jonno?! 😉
  13. That’s not playing fair though, is it? With the ground at 45 degrees behind it, the ‘JCB bucket-swipe’ from its rear would be tricky. Mark you, I’m all in favour of enforcing phone misuse etc and (I’m bound to admit) my own observation of the speed limits has been sharpened by a few fines. These were before I had to exchange my UK licence for a French one and I didn’t then incur any points. Not so now !
  14. jonno

    CF vs PA

    You're dead right @Solo the kitchen location is the factor which realistically rules all of it out. When I daydream about stuff which could be moved around CF I tend to forget about the staircase behind reception too... would be nice though especially if she were ten years younger? I know she's quite limited internally but I like her and with the BF rumoured hybrid engines I think she's still going to have an important role to play post 2022. Oh great seer of vision that I am, I foresee her replacing Normandie at Le Havre... I have a cunning plan, Normandie, Bretagne and Viking Amorella will head to Moby Lines and be christened Huey, Dewey & Louie...!
  15. I think the second bit here is important. I am certain the French will equally get into trouble for failure to identify these individuals French side, and I am hopeful a swift investigation is undertook to understand what happened in this instance. I have always found the French to be among the most professional and will take every step to ensure all procedures are followed.
  16. The people who run that site must have no soul :O
  17. I travelled many times on the Quiberon and Val de Loire in a class cabin sold as a 3 berth. There was me (adult) and 4 young teenagers (3 of mine + a nephew). We had to book the cabin and two seats. Almost every time at breakfast the steward brought a tray to the cabin, smiled and fetched extra pastries and juice. We never used the seats, one boy on the couch, one in a sleeping bag on the floor, two girls in one bed (a squeeze!) and me in the other. I suspect BF have tightened up on the generosity of the staff since then.
  18. They seem to be slowly making a comeback but a lot of them are still out of action. Here is one of the new generation. It can pick up 8 different offences including not wearing a seatbelt, using a phone and, probably, picking your nose too! Ed.
  19. Not around here they haven’t. Just about every former site is empty - just (literally) the scorched earth. I remain cautious however, as mobile ones can turn up at any time. Furthermore a new and improved Mk II camera is meant to be on its way - supposedly vandal-proof, but where there’s a will, the boys will find a way.
  20. Have they replaced many of the cameras that the Gilet Jaune er fixed, yet?
  21. Because everyone has to have assigned accommodation one person is assigned a recliner as the cabin is max 4. So lots are drawn and someone ends up sharing a bunk (back when they were smaller) or in a sleeping bag on the floor. Never me. It's not really a squeeze as there's plenty of space but it wouldn't be an option in a standard four berth. Having discovered that each of us could troop off to Le Flora and eat all around us the reluctance to throw a few more pastries onto the breakfast tray is even harder to fathom.
  22. Gareth

    Condor ferries

    Hi Paul Welcome to the site. If I were you, I’d go ahead and book the accommodation on the basis that, although the details are unknown, there will be options for ferry travel. Then book the ferry when booking opens. In the unlikely event that Liberation is not sailing, worst case scenario you can always cross to Cherbourg and then take the ferry up from St Malo. Or go from Portsmouth (as it is almost inconceivable that there would be no sailings from Poole and Portsmouth at the same time). But it is most likely that you will be able to get the ferry directly from Poole.
  23. Solo

    CF vs PA

    Never been on the CF but wouldn't that mean moving the kitchens, so a major redesign.
  24. All French speeding fines from fixed cameras are dealt with in Rennes so, as far as I know, the money goes into directly into the national coffers to pay for more cameras etc. Ed.
  25. If anyone does get caught, just send the fine to your kid's school teacher. Most of the time it's they who encourage this type of behaviour for a 'show and tell' class. All I have to do now is persuade Cabin-girl that her shopping for local products (and we came beck from the Dordogne with more duck, mushroom and walnut products than is strictly necessary) is in fact looting of a natural local resource. Ed.
  26. I paid a French nominal speeding charge using my UK (HSBC) debit card on line. I thought it was through a French national scheme which sent the charge to my UK home address, so assume they re-distribute money collected to local prefectures, or is France in a minority having a national scheme?
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