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Gareth

BFE Staff
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Everything posted by Gareth

  1. Probably complimentary on the company (or should be). The last thing BF needs. They’re probably wondering why they bothered reinstating the St Malo route.
  2. Looks like she’s on track to get to Roscoff on time this morning. Must have got away from Portsmouth some time before 0300.
  3. Cap Finistere looks, from the tracker, to be sailing a good couple of hours behind schedule. The passengers who boarded in Santander unaware that they will need to quarantine upon arrival look like they will be getting in nearer 10 or 11pm, rather than 8pm. Nothing on BF’s sailings updates page.
  4. Update on the BF website makes it clear that sailings to Spain are operating as normal. Advice is to check gov website for travel advice, and if necessary to cancel or amend bookings then do so using the Manage Booking facility.
  5. I’d go. What’s the downside? If at any point I wanted to return to the UK, I may need to isolate for 14 days - if I am unemployed in the UK, that is a risk I’d probably consider to be proportionate in order to go and take employment in Cyprus.
  6. I’d be surprised if this removal of the quarantine exemption for Spain lasts for long. Once they get the Catalan outbreak under control I suspect it will be reinstated. These local lockdown scenarios will probably work like that. But equally, I’d be surprised if we didn’t also see temporary removals from the list of other countries too, as and when they have their own local spikes. This is going to be the “new normal” for probably the next 9 months or so. I don’t see it as a reason necessarily for BF to withdraw the fleet - as long as enough people still take the gamble and book holidays. The worry for BF will be if enough people are scared off booking holidays that they cannot sustain sailings. But people still have to realise that booking foreign holidays any time over the next 9 or 10 months is a gamble. They have to do so in the knowledge and acceptance that the rules governing crossing borders can change at no notice. And there can be no surprise if and when they do. But it’s one of those situations in which people have to weigh up risk v reward. Whilst booking foreign holidays is a gamble, the chances of the gamble going wrong is probably around 5% or 10%. That means they probably have a 90% or 95% chance of having a nice holiday. Different people will weigh up the acceptability of those odds differently.
  7. I'd be surprised if the sailing is cancelled, because its Monday return to Portsmouth will be needed. But BF may contact you with a view on the wisdom of travelling. You may find you need to make your own decision - so worth thinking about what that would be.
  8. Don't know. A difference between March/April and now is that now there are multitudes of customers out there who will need at some point to come back. I doubt sailings will be cancelled until that number becomes small. If we get to a point in 2 or 3 weeks when the quarantine is still in place, most people who are out there now have come back, and many people have cancelled their upcoming outbound sailings, then we may see some cancellations. But I'd be surprised if they came in immediately.
  9. This unpredictability is going to be the norm until well into next year. It should not be any surprise.
  10. So did I. And Colin. In this forum. On multiple occasions. 😉 (All three of us have in common that we were nothing to do with the decision. (Which was taken by the UK government)).
  11. I read earlier today that France is considering closing its border with Spain, too.
  12. Now being reported on Sky too: https://news.sky.com/story/english-holidaymakers-in-spain-will-have-to-quarantine-on-return-after-surprise-change-of-policy-12036188
  13. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-53540691
  14. It’s a BBC newsflash. Hot off the press, but yes, it’s been announced.
  15. A potential major fly in the ointment for BF’s resumption of “normal service”. The UK has just reintroduced a 14 day quarantine requirement for travellers returning from Spain. The underlines the risks associated with trying to holiday overseas at the moment. Rules governing crossing borders are vulnerable to change at no notice.
  16. The landing looks a little precarious! 🤣
  17. Interesting, thanks for the replies. So....in terms of the analogy, there could be a number of reasons why the Norfolk Line service (which lasted just 2 years) proved to have a shorter longevity than the Superfast service. Lower quality of onboard experience for one, and the one-ship (and therefore not daily in each direction) service for another. But I wonder how much of a role the longer crossing time played in the non-viability of the Norfolk Line route. One thing we know for sure, is that the “be glad the route exists at all” line of thought wasn’t enough to create enough custom to make it viable. The offering has to be an attractive choice - otherwise people will just choose a shorter route and drive further.
  18. Gareth

    2021 Timetables

    Yes I agree, I suspect it was not on the table as an option.
  19. Gareth

    2021 Timetables

    I was thinking that too. And also that it’s interesting they requested Cherbourg ahead of St Malo. St Malo would have been deliverable by BF - probably a similar crossing time or maybe an hour more - and St Malo is probably closer than Cherbourg to almost any destination for onward traffic. (Especially for traffic that previously routed via Roscoff). I guess Cherbourg is where the freight infrastructure is. St Malo not really suitable as a major freight hub. And Cherbourg integrates with the services provided by the other operators too. As far as Le Havre is concerned, it may simply not have been on the table as a practical option. (Especially if BF know secretly that they are going to be pulling out of the port come November). The old ICL route used to have a 21 hour passage time. Ships are, if anything, a little slower than they used to be and passage times tend to be a bit more conservative. So to continue to be able to operate a rotation every 48 hours with a ship, turnarounds at Le Havre would probably have to be scheduled for less than 3 hours, which is probably too tight for ships of modern-day capacity. Especially as longer routes tend to like to have a bit of leeway built for late running these days.
  20. Gareth

    2021 Timetables

    Yes, I can see the attraction to the hauliers in shipping unaccompanied freight. It’s more awkward to handle for the ferry companies of course - Pelican take 6 hours to turn round between each sailing.
  21. Gareth

    2021 Timetables

    Driving through France, to Spain, versus crossing directly to Spain is a direct analogy. Direct crossing to Spain is far more popular, even with the international freight companies.
  22. Rosyth-Zeebrugge could be a good analogy actually. When Scottish Viking took over the route from the Superfasts, was there an increase in passage time?
  23. Gareth

    2021 Timetables

    To be honest, irrespective of the UK withdrawal from the EU, I’m surprised this hasn’t been what the hauliers would have wanted all along. Faced with two ferry journeys totalling (including waiting) probably well over 10 hours coupled with long driving hours within the UK, against a single ferry journey of (including waiting) less than 20 hours coupled with a completely refreshed driver on arrival at destination, I’d have thought the direct ferry would have been more appealing every time (?)
  24. Low passenger numbers hardly surprising given that all entrants to Jersey have to undergo Covid testing and may have to go into quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.
  25. Gareth

    2021 Timetables

    Difficult to conceive why it would take months if they already know in principle that they are going to release a timetable. It could, of course, be another stall. A few months takes us to the end of the current scheduled sailings.....
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