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About chid679

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  • Birthday 19/10/1981

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  1. Ive booked for next year and the Cabin prices are the same as they were this year? Or has there been an increase on the Ireland/Spain route?
  2. So this person has been promised a 5% discount off BF's price by booking through Chez Nous but is complaing to BF because the discount hasn't been applied? Just proves you can't teach Stupidity you've either got it or you haven't
  3. Could that on itself be a problem of BF's own making? By releasing the fares and timetables so late maybe it's caused a build-up of people wishing to book for next year. I had my holiday in August and have been itching to book my crossings for next August from the moment I arrived home. I managed to book mine at around 1.30 today, I had been trying for about an hour prior but didn't see the point in trying to ring BF or complain online because I figured they'd be too busy handling all the other complaints. Didn't the same thing happen last year when the Summer sailings were released?
  4. Found this in the attic. Used to watch it all the time as a kid. Just played it again for 10 mins. The music and sound is terrible quality (good old VHS) but the footage of the Bretagne and the insight into how she was constructed is invaluable when you consider the detail that went into her design its no wonder she's still going strong 30 years later. Alexander Goudie also speaks on the video.
  5. Pont wouldnt have even been in Plymouth if she still had 4 working engines. Next year it shouldnt be a regular issue
  6. 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.
  7. Whilst I have some sympathy for the re-routed customers I still believe sailing from Plymouth has got to be better than not sailing at all. However I cannot believe somebody has complained about Normandie not being on the Le Havre route yet. If they did their research before they booked they'd have noticed that on some occasions the price for Le Havre and Caen routes are the same but on average the Le Havre route is still cheaper than Caen regardless of the ship operating it. So they'd either have got a Cruise Ferry at a better price than normal or ended up on the economy vessel for the economy price so its not really like theyve been short changed?? It's too easy to hide behind your phone/keyboard on twitter and rant its makes you feel invincible like giving someone a v-sign from your car. Whereas a politely and calmly worded email to customer services or a telephone call would surely achieve a better response.
  8. And will it be the extra ship be of Cruise Ferry or 'economie' standard? In terms of pricing there often isn't much difference usually around £30 difference between the 16.30 from Caen and the 17.00/17.30 from Le Havre. In my case coming from either the Vendee or Brittany theres no point driving the extra mileage to Le Havre, and travelling on an inferior vessel just to save £30. On some occasions the Le Havre route and Caen are the exact same price, surely an argument that 'economie' is a cover for the ship rather than anything else
  9. I'd say Stena Fantasia & Seafrance Cezanne were definitely sister ships. They had different interiors reflecting their sister companies Sealink/Stena Line & SNAT but structurally i believe they were identical. I think they were actually Triplets but the 3rd one sank soon after launching?
  10. I'm booked on her 1st August, thats assuming she's in service by then. If not I'm guessing it will still be Normandie
  11. How many of BF's previous newbuilds have arrived on schedule? I remember the Mont was significantly delayed but I also seem to think Bretagne and Barfleur arrived later than originally planned? Seem to think i'd read it somewhere.
  12. What time did she leave? We got off at 1625 and there was still 2 lanes of Deck 3 plus all of Deck 5 to unload?
  13. From what I could see at Plymouth I think the upper deck might have been loaded correctly with vehicles facing the bow ready to go down the ramp and drive off the Stern but i cant say for sure that was the case. As for the weather causing her to berth stern-in at Plymouth I wondered if the Authorities had insisted on her Berthing that way because of the weather and to potentially avoid a situation like what happened to the 'Pride of Kent' at Calais? Are ships more susceptible to getting caught by the wind when reversing and turning off the berth?
  14. Having sailed on Armorique once before and enjoyed it I was looking forward to sampling her again. I'm fond of her cabins and internal decor and layout. I'd had Prior Warning that the weather was going to be grim and on the drive to Plymouth it certainly was very grim. On arrival at Plymouth i noticed she was berthed Stern-in. Thinking nothing else of it we were loaded on to deck 3 at 8.20 (for an 8.00 sailing) and she left Plymouth at around 8.35. I assumed we were late just because of the weather and because of the sheer volume of traffic being loaded on as she was totally rammed! The crossing was pretty bumpy and there were quite a few suffering from 'mal de mer' including a child in the cinema just 5 mins after the film had started. I thought the ship handled it ok and was quite impressed. There had been an announcement that we would be arriving in Roscoff 45 minutes later than scheduled but if you'd seen the weather at the time you'd have accepted such a small delay. However thats just where the fun was beginning to start, we arrived in Roscoff at 15.45 french time so had made up 15 mins from somewhere so all was looking good however we berthed Stern-in at Roscoff too 🤔. I asked a member of staff on the garage deck if there was a fault with the bow door and she said they weren't allowed to berth bow-in at Plymouth because of the adverse weather which sounds plausible but how often does this happen? So we were to either reverse out of the garage or turn around, the garage crew helped where they could by unhitching caravans and trailers and then coupling them back up but the real problem was actually with the Motorhomes. Some drivers trying to perform an 18-point turn in the garage rather than use their huge mirrors and try to reverse in a Straight line. Surely if you drive a Motorhome you should be capable of Reversing it straight between 2 lines painted on a floor? After 45 mins watching the debacle we disembarked leaving 2 full lanes still to go before the poor souls on deck 5 would be lowered. Please dont mistake this report as a rant at BF as the weather was beyond their control and the garage staff were trying their best to help although at times some of them were managing to confuse things rather than help. My gripe was about the standard of some of the manouvering i was witnessing which just added to the frustration. My guess is she will have departed Roscoff around 2 hours late for the return crossing? Maybe someone on here was on that crossing and could confirm? And then was she able to berth bow-in at Plymouth? Still a fan of the Armorique, drivers of motorhomes not so
  15. And they still are! Over 30 years on banging, screeching and clattering up and down our lines! If you are travelling on a local line in the Manchester area chances are you'll experience a 142. We dont get new trains up north we just get Southern cast offs. Digressing back to the topic, as somebody has already stated we are all aware of Bretagne's shortcomings but what other vessel is out there around that would suit the route better? Is a full Bretagne earning more than a half full Pont? So her garage can take 30 minutes+ to disembark from.. its a 9 hour crossing if you were in such a rush you would take the Caen route or even Calais. You wouldnt take a 9 hour flight and expect to be out of the airport within 30 mins
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