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Everything posted by Gareth

  1. It’s an interesting question. There have been suspicions in the past that some of BF’s sailings cancelled for “weather” reasons may have had an element of that. But “weather” is always plausible when there is bad weather around, and the truth there is that it is probably not a black-and-white issue (in that there may be a sliding scale of how bad the weather needs to be to trigger cancellation, that interplays with how well loaded the ship is. I’ve never come across “technical” issues as a cover for cancellation for lightly loaded sailings though. This one is not a sliding scale, the ship either does or does not have a technical problem, and it would be difficult to get away with just making that up. Cancelling any sailing under a cover story when the real reason is light loading is a very risky thing for a ferry company to do. Once the reputation for reliability has been compromised they’d get into a downward spiral that can only have one outcome. But, in a way, once that becomes the “talk”, the damage is already half done. So even if the cancellation (as is likely) bona fide, the challenge BF has is to manage the messages that are getting out. If the consensus is already that the sailing was cancelled due to light loading, then the task facing BF is how to correct this understanding. They cannot afford for it to become accepted perception in the minds of the customer base, irrespective of whether or not it has a base in fact.
  2. Think I might have missed a step here - what's the reason Connemara has gone up there? Lay-by to allow Pont Aven or use the Ringaskiddy terminal seems far-fetched as (a) would be easier to just put to sea for a few hours and (b) there's the other berth on the south side of the terminal that she could have shifted to. Out of service for a few days for technical attention seems like Santander (where there is a yard) would have fitted the bill better. Which only leaves medium-term layup as the plausible explanation?
  3. Another point of interest is that it rather puts paid to the notion that is the premise behind BF’s operation of quite a few routes - that BF’s mere presence on the route / at the port is sufficient to deter another operator from coming in.
  4. And will there be direct passages between Plymouth and Cork?
  5. They’re all pretty much the same. Things you may like to consider is which side of the ship it is on (if certain views / sun or absence of sun are important to you for the passage you have in mind). And location of the cabin door in relation to stairs / lifts / amenities / peace and quiet. Those are personal considerations that no one can advise you on and which you can consider by looking at the deckplan on the website. But as far as the cabin itself is concerned, there is nothing to choose between the deluxes. There is a different answer when it comes to the commodores, as there are two with extra large balconies. But that doesn’t come into play with the deluxes.
  6. Interesting that that press release makes reference to a new river berth at Tilbury. Wasn’t aware that was in the pipeline.
  7. Interesting triangle that, if successful, BF will be ruing not getting in first. Definite incursion into BF territory at Cork and Plymouth.
  8. Very restrained of you, Ed, if I may say so! Of a number of ports available to choose, into which Pont Aven would not fit and which illustrate sufficiently your main point, the choice of Swansea was, shall we say, appropriately political! 😉
  9. Sounds like BF has been getting ready over the past 12 months, from what they say. They should be well prepared in the areas over which they have control.
  10. I hope BF ban passengers who behave like that from travelling with them again.
  11. My understanding was that the reason most of the people who are put off from visiting France are put off is because of the risk of no-notice disruption to travel arrangements. Has that risk changed at all over the course of this year? You don't hear so much about the Yellow Vests these days, but is that because discontent has died down or because of something else? The problem is that things can flare up to the point of becoming a problem virtually instantly. So I guess the question has to be how do you assess the current risk of that over the course of your holiday.
  12. Come off it Tony, surely you with your experience can't seriously describe that as "very rough". That's nothing more than a force 7 or 8, and the ship is hardly moving.
  13. Well I understand these “pet friendly” arrangements are all the rage with some, but with judicious selection of sailing and accommodation options I believe it is possible to avoid them! 😉
  14. As far as the attitudes of the young are concerned, it has always been the way in every generation. Every generation resents the mess made of things by the previous ones. And, in every generation, the views of the young evolve into those of the previous ones as they mature.
  15. I never understood the appeal of travelling by air when a sea voyage will do the job far more enjoyably!
  16. What a great find hhv! I had no idea Stena had a pre-Sealink history of operation to the UK. Done a bit more digging - the ship was Stena Nordica, and he route started in 1965. Not clear how long it lasted, but looks like it might have been just the one season (summer 1965): http://www.simplonpc.co.uk/StenaNordica1965.html
  17. Yes, this is nothing to do with BF. It is a well-aired long-standing Port of Plymouth issue.
  18. A positive move from DFDS, and finally a vote of confidence in North Sea passenger provision. I’m slightly confused about what the plans are for the current Newcastle pair - on one hand it talks about the sale of them, and on the other it talks about bareboat charter. Is the idea that the charter precedes the sale?
  19. Yes, it has been known. Depending on your definition of “swimming”, both my kids have swum in the pool.
  20. I wasn’t aware that this dredging is with the intention of creating a maintained navigable channel through the Sands Jonno? Unless that is the case I can’t see that it would have any bearing on passage time.
  21. Must have been a blip. Just checked the track on Marine Traffic and there was nothing abnormal about it.
  22. I think he means Ushant. 😉
  23. BF would be a great catch for the Islands. What is less clear is what’s in this for BF, but there must be something.
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