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Halfcrown

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Everything posted by Halfcrown

  1. I always find it interesting to hear how non-dog owners view dogs and their owners.... I know from experience that the pet-friendly cabins are exceptionally well cleaned an disinfected before each crossing. If the cabin had any traces of the previous canine owner, my dog would spend his first hour investigating every inch of it for clues about it's gender, what it had been eating, it's marital status and goodness knows what other information. But he doesn't - he just settles in and asks me if it's his mealtime yet... I must admit that I do find it curious that people are prepared t
  2. Well, I can see why you might think that, but according to their web site: "Please note: We are unable to offer a waiting list facility for the availability of pet-friendly cabins or kennels." So, that would be a no...
  3. The only real reason why I travel on Brittany Ferries is so that I can take my dog with me when I go to Spain two to three times a year. I have done the two-day drive through France three times (twice planned, and once because of a cancelled sailing) - and I really would rather not, given the choice. In order to make sure I can book accommodation for the dog, I have found that I need to make the bookings as soon as the availability is released - which can be as much as 15 months in advance of my travel dates! In July 2017, I was not sure exactly when I would be in a position to make
  4. I took the Sunday evening sailing from Portsmouth to Bilbao this week, and on the Monday morning, while docked in Roscoff I was treated to the spectacle of a lifeboat drill. Unfortunately, I missed the boats being launched. The first thing I noticed was a small bright orange boat with an outboard motor zooming up and down alongside the ship. Then I noticed in big black letters, it was displaying the Cap's callsign FLSO. Intrigued, I went up to deck 10 and together with a dozen or so other passengers watched what was happening. The three lifeboats from the starboard side - numbers 1,
  5. Ahh - missed that! That makes sense. No, I’m sure that won’t make a difference for my crossing - but the weather and sea conditions might. I’ve seen forecasts for similar conditions to those that led to cancellations and delays in the last couple of weeks.
  6. I have been following the location and progress of the Cap over the last few hours (I'm booked on her from Bilbao on Tuesday) and I've noticed that she is currently heading for Brest instead of Roscoff. I've checked on the French BF web site and indeed it says that the departures for Bilbao for 15th and 22nd January will be from Brest at 12:30 instead of Roscoff. I had no idea about this. Anyone know why? Ray
  7. Jut noticed - the Cap appears to be heading West from Bilbao along the Cantabrican coast - presumably to Santander to be ready for this evening's sailing to Portsmouth. I wonder if it is carrying any traffic which was originally intending to go to Portsmouth from Bilbao on Thursday's cancelled sailing.
  8. Yes - http://www.myweather2.com/Marine/Sea-Areas/Bay-Of-Biscay/Biscay-Lat-4750-Lon-600.aspx concurs - an 8m swell with a 10s period from the West. That would not be merely uncomfortable!
  9. Who remembers Emeraude Line? They used to run footpax cats inter-island, and also to various destinations on the Cherbourg peninsula, plus a RoRo to St Malo. They seem to have vanished completely - Wikipedia mentions something about competition from Condor and a sale to another shipping line. Does anyone know what actually happened to cause the demise?
  10. Irish literary theme.... Beckett? How about Godot? It would be worth waiting for...
  11. So I've done the drive between Bilbao/Santander and Valencia (for the ferry to Ibiza) a number of times - once going South and three times going North. I was travelling with the pooch on every occasion. I generally stay at Airbnb places - easy to book, comfortable, private and dog-friendly - and warm in the winter! On the Southbound journey, I ended up at a tiny place called Lumpiaque, near Epila in Aragon - it's about 40minutes south of Zaragoza. For the Northbound journey, it is always a bit more awkward as the Ibiza ferry arrives in Valencia at about 7pm. The first time I st
  12. Well - perhaps I can expand on that a bit... I do not have access to much historical information about the size of the booking deposit, However, I made my first BF booking in 20 years in February 2016 and I was asked to pay a £35 deposit. I imagine this size of deposit would have been set in July 2015, which is when BF seem to publish their schedules for the coming year. In July 2015, £35 was about €49. After the EU referendum the pound, as we know only too well, dropped in value. When the 2016/17 schedules were published in July 2016, the deposit remained at £35. In J
  13. Of the two vessels I definitely prefer the Cap. Part of that is the pet-friendly cabins, but in my opinion the Cap is a much more pleasant vessel to be on for 24 hours. I think the smaller size helps and I think that helps create the ambiance that others have written about.
  14. Writing as a pet-owner who fundamentally uses BF so that I can take my dog with me when we go to Spain..... 1. The small number of Pet-friendly cabins available is always very frustrating; I found myself booking my crossings for Christmas and June 2018 by phone as soon as I had an inkling (thanks to these forums!) that they were on sale. 2. If Pet-friendly cabins are not available, then I will book a kennel. My dog is fine there - although the same cannot be said for all of his travelling companions. Sometimes the distressed barking reaches excruciating levels. I prefer to use a cabi
  15. Sorry - I wasn't referring to today's delays. I was actually referring to last month, when it was noted that Cap Finistere seemed to be loitering around the Breton coast for a couple of hours.
  16. I was actually on this sailing - at about 7am (BST) there was an announcement that the outside decks were closed due to a "helicopter operation". It turned out there was a medical emergency and a medic was being winched aboard. The helicopter then held off from the ship for a long while, and the outside decks remained out of bounds. After perhaps an hour or so, the helicopter flew off, but the ship maintained its position. The decks were eventually re-opened for a time, but then closed as the helicopter returned. I heard later that it had to return to base to refuel. On its return there was an
  17. Ah yes - in my day on-line access to the DVLA was a mere Sci-Fi dream and databases like CarWeb were not even a twinkling in a DB-manager's eye. We literally had to compile our own database! We phoned local dealers for Ford, Peugeot, Rover (yes, really!) etc and asked them to send us their sales literature (I think they rather fancied we were going to buy a fleet of company cars). We then manually entered the vehicle dimensions into our database. And our customers paid good money for us to do that too - I guess it was worth it for them as it saved a lot of time at booking.
  18. I think this is another example of the law of unintended consequences.... From my experience (which is that I used to write the software which calculated the vehicle availability for individual sailings on a number of different ferry operators in the 1990's) the garages on these ships tend to have a certain amount of "High-Vehicle" space and "Low-Vehicle" space (Hi-V and Lo-V as we used to refer to it). The ship's specification will determine that the tallest vehicle that can be carried safely in Lo-V will be 1.83m (or 6' in old money). When vehicles are booked, any vehicle that
  19. They do have a legal requirement to have an accurate pax count on the ship's manifest. I would imagine that by the time you get to check in it's too late to do too much to the booking or availability to make much difference. When I arrived alone at Bilbao with a booking for two no eyebrows were raised, just a quick amendment to the booking there and then.
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