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jonno

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Everything posted by jonno

  1. As a protest to rising fuel prices in France major road disruption is planned for November 17th. Below is a link to information relating to all of the routes effected. https://www.linternaute.com/auto/magazine/1750751-blocage-17-novembre-votre-ville-bloquee-par-les-gilets-jaunes-carte-13-11-2018-17-11-2018/
  2. jonno

    Preparing for no deal!

    A bit more on the IDP's. The new 1968 convention IDP will be available from 2500 post offices from February 1st. This is required for 23 of the remaining 27 EU member states plus Norway & Switzerland. The current 1949 convention IDP will no longer be available from the AA & RAC from February 1st, only from the above mentioned 2500 post offices. This will be required for the remaining 4 EU member states. Spain, Cyprus, Malta & Ireland. So as far as direct BF travel is concerned, the new 1968 IDP is needed for France with the current one needed for Spain & Ireland. Green Cards requested prior to 29th March will still remain valid until their 12 month period expires or your insurance renewal, whichever is sooner. Personally I found that having a Green Card was quickly interpreted by overseas officers and sped up my RTA claim as only the internationally recognised issued numbers were required rather than a translation of an insurance document.
  3. jonno

    Brexit effect on BF

    I notice this week that Dieppe is now part of the same port authority as Cherbourg & Caen. I would assume that they would be able to spread some freight movements accordingly. Three French ferry ports based in Normandie have decided to join forces.In fact, Caen-Ouistreham and Cherbourg were already united in ‘Ports Normands Associés’ (PNA).Dieppe (photo) was added to these two ports, to create ‘Ports de Normandie’. Chairman is Hervé Morin, former chairman of PNA.MD is Philippe Deiss, also former MD of PNA. Together, the three ports have six ro-ro berths, and see some 200,000 freight units per year, ferried across by DFDS (Transmanche Ferries), Brittany Ferries and Irish Ferries.
  4. Yep, bonkers isn't it? They also want to go all electronic and digital too...and you know how clever they are at doing things like that, just ask the NHS who didn't even want or need a new electronic platform useless or not. What's that old joke again? The Tories are the cream of Britain... Rich, thick and full of clots..!
  5. jonno

    Preparing for no deal!

    Thing is G4rth the MIB are producing a new green card for release after March so any issued prior to then won't be valid. I've always opted to buy an IDP, It's habit formed since the days of the green licence, now I use it as another form of I.D and it's kept separate from my wallet and passport in case either is lifted or lost. A fiver well spent as far as I'm concerned.
  6. jonno

    Preparing for no deal!

    Yep, our Post Office 5 mins away has them and so does Knaresborough which is 10 mins away. Most are also open on a Sunday now as well. The AA will stop issuing them from the end of January and won't issue any now for use post March. Oh and regardless of a No Deal scenario you won't need one for Ireland. If you have an EU standard licence there is still a fair chance that an IDP won't be required for Italy Portugal or Spain.
  7. jonno

    BF Confirm Charter of 'E-Flexer'

    No the third one, out of shot as the dock is a bit further over to the right, already being built is for Stena too. They'll begin laying the keel for Galicia once Estrid's dock is drained later today.
  8. Bretagne's commodore cabins have been dusty with poorly vacuumed carpets (if at all?), fluffed air con and even hairy showers and sinks for a few years now. I raise the issue every time with on board guest services which usually results in a five minute wipe over and a quick hoover. I've never been offered any form of compensation and have never been contacted by any shore based customer service team. I'm mindful that in the first instance my size and shaved head can be intimidating so I back off, maybe I'm being too friendly? I think one of the problems is that cabins which are only used during peak months, as the accommodation is under used at other times, are ignored. They're never cleaned prior to first occupation. Dust and fluff build up as the air con still operates whether they're occupied or not.
  9. Just booked a hotel break for the end of February beginning of March and on receiving the emailed documents I've noticed that the make, model, exact length & height of my car is printed on it. We usually book for the motorhome and it stays as the generic 6.5m x 4m, it's never specific. Is this a new feature of have BF been doing this for while now?
  10. jonno

    Booking Document Query

    Yes I knew they were using the database, I just hadn't seen the make or model specifics before although I did notice they were on the 2011 LD examples both @neilcvx& @Cabin-boy posted on the Normandie/Economie thread. I haven't put my car on a BF ship since 2015 and the other four companies I have used since then, or an up and coming late March Fjordline booking aren't as in depth. I wonder if Irish Ferries use it?
  11. jonno

    Normandie not sailing as economie

    Yes I agree plus there's more than enough time until the end of March... Pelican...Her new parent company have publicly stated that they want her back at the end of the charter. BF were very quick to release a presser stating that she's been secured until February 2018 and even quicker to release another soon after saying it's extended to February/March 2019, that was just over two years ago, there's been nothing since. Her timetable also ends at the end of March.
  12. jonno

    P&O To Reflag Entire Fleet

    According to what P&O said to Shippax it's about "fewer inspections and delays" and "favourable tax tonnage arrangements" due to Cyprus being in the EU.
  13. jonno

    P&O To Reflag Entire Fleet

    Good question, she was originally Dutch owned so maybe there's something in the provenance?
  14. jonno

    Normandie not sailing as economie

    When you consider all of the truckstops around the M27, Southampton, Portsmouth and even out toward Winchester there are well over 200 spaces. The approaches into Dover have nothing, I think the nearest is Maidstone.
  15. jonno

    P&O To Reflag Entire Fleet

    I see you're point and in most circumstances it's probably true but in some instances it does have an advantage. When we travelled to Zeebrugge from Hull all of the guest service staff were Filipino. All of them I spoke to said that the ship is so clean and tidy as for 6 months a year it's their home and is treated as such and that they have little financial outlay allowing them to take 90% of their earnings home with them. We had no problem offering tips either as the often used customer service term 'added value' was true to every member of staff who looked after us.
  16. jonno

    P&O To Reflag Entire Fleet

    That's because neither is owned by the carrier, they're both owned by Caronte in Italy. BF didn't have an issue with Etretat as she's been French registered ever since LD had her and had been U.K. registered since her launch. Both Birkenhead Visentini's are Belfast Registered.
  17. jonno

    Normandie not sailing as economie

    First off, no one knows what's happening at Poole. BF maybe more concerned about consolidating their core business before entertaining a 2nd vessel at Le Havre. What takes up the shortfall left by Pelican? The way I see it is that during the next 6 months 2 Visentini's are available. Egeria has returned to Stena and is available now plus Etretat's charter can be extended post Honfleur. In the meantime Barfleur can double her rotations at Cherbourg... @hhvferry, @G4rth is right Cherbourg is one of the three routes earmarked, Roscoff & Le Havre being the other two. One of these (Egeria) replacing Pelican gives BF options, they're faster for a start meaning that two Bilbao rotations are realistic plus one or two rotations to Cherbourg giving Barfleur some respite for crew change, a spot of maintenance or positioning. In the interim Normandie Express can augment Le Havre by targeting pax only traffic which in turn increases freight capacity on Etretat & BDS... again the latter can add an extra PIP rotation on a Friday. From July Etretat just stays where she is partnering Normandie and NEX moves across to Cherbourg. BF can then market the route as having both the full and the no frills service, a first for France. If it comes to it personally I think the majority of the quoted 19 extra sailings will be spread across Cherbourg & Le Havre, both have the infrastructure and both are far closer to the EU hubs.
  18. jonno

    BF Confirm Charter of 'E-Flexer'

    Yes but you know it doesn't work that way, there's always a reason. Why charter out Cotentin only to bring in Etretat or why build a ship for a route which has just had both vessels future proofed when there's another further along the coast in greater need of replacement? I never understood why DFDS made noise to have her back a year early or why they let her go in the first place. They could have just returned Regina Seaways in the first instance and as you say BF may well have chartered her from Grimaldi until whenever, there's not much difference between them. Adria have just proved that charters can be easily cancelled, before the ink had dried on the paperwork to keep Egeria for another 12 months they prepared her to go back to Stena RoRo as they bought California Star.
  19. jonno

    Normandie not sailing as economie

    Same fare for 2019 travelling over the last weekend of July is £279 which could be seen as a normal incremental increase over 8 years.
  20. jonno

    BF Confirm Charter of 'E-Flexer'

    You'll need to add a link Tony as most of the wiki E-Flexer stuff is wrong, you may have found one which is actually right.
  21. jonno

    BF Confirm Charter of 'E-Flexer'

    DFDS wanted to cut a year off her charter and take her back in April this year. In August I posted on the Baie de Seine thread that DFDS had extended the charter of the Grimaldi owned Regina Seaways until 2020 which paved the way for BF to keep BDS for the full term. BDS will replace Regina in 2020, she's going back. As it looks there's no replacement...
  22. jonno

    BF Confirm Charter of 'E-Flexer'

    Brittany Ferries 2019 press pack seems to confirm the date for the both Galicia and Salamanca. Forget 2020 & 2021. "However, Honfleur isn’t the only new Brittany Ferries ship on the horizon, Brittany Ferries’ €450 million fleet renewal programme will continue with delivery of two brand new ships, Galicia in 2021 and Salamanca in 2022. The 220m-long LNG ready ships are being chartered from Swedish ship-owner Stena RoRo. Both ferries will enter service on the Portsmouth to Spain routes. Stay tuned to brittanyferriesnewsroom.com for the latest updates on both new ships"
  23. jonno

    Normandie not sailing as economie

    Looking back that's very true. Is it a standards argument again as the alternative was a full fat cruise ferry two hours down the road in Rosslare. Would they have done that if there was no Oscar Wilde? Again though have BF branded Connemara Economie because she's BF's alternative on the Cork-Roscoff run or is it due to Spain? Stena haven't changed anything regarding their sailing to Cherbourg where up until recently she was competing with the same above mentioned cruise ferry, It's I.F who have pulled the plug on that route. Stena did the same with Celtic Horizon at Rosslare as what BF did with Norman Voyager at Le Havre.
  24. jonno

    Normandie not sailing as economie

    Good point, well made... BF's standard classification is a fair degree higher than many others... and maybe in there lies the problem. In terms of sailing experience and the much used phrase "luxury cruise ferry" I'd rate Armorique higher than both Stena's from Harwich which many rave about. Barfleur for instance was built with a similar ethos to the Visentini's... truck & freight carrier first, passengers second, they're maybe 20 odd years between them but I think I know which vessel has aged the better. Plus I suppose BF would have removed the Economie brand from the hull of Etretat once full time on the Le Havre route if they felt she was of the standard of arguably the least endowed conventional vessel in the fleet. Another thought... Stena spent a considerable amount of money refitting both Stena Mersey and Stena Lagan, having travelled on them both since 2015 in my mind they are the two Visentini's which I'd compare closely to Armorique.
  25. jonno

    Normandie not sailing as economie

    Does anyone have a fare comparison from when BF took over the route from LDLines/DFDS... It's the same ship doing the same thing offering the same level of service and arguably used in the majority by the same passengers? Apart from some of the flamboyant styling of Armorique or the lighter atmosphere of Barfleur, Etretat is no different and offers just as much comfort in her cabins, some say they're comfier and more spacious. Neither Stena or I.F feel there is a need to justify a lack of service by lowering customer expectation with an alternative brand. It's fair to say that Epsilon pioneered the Dublin-Cherbourg route, proving to be so popular that there is a need for purpose build cruise ferry. Passengers flocked in droves rather than turn their noses up at the prospect of nearly 18 hours on a Visentini. I wonder whether Economie was brought in as at the time Etretat also sailed to Spain. Was it this route rather than Le Havre which prompted the rebranding? UK-Spain is unique in terms of voyage distance from the U.K. Public space, onboard facilities and a feeling of light and air are paramount as is the ease in which passengers can move around over a 24-28 hour crossing. Pont Aven and to a lesser extent Cap Finistere both offer this, for instance no matter where you are onboard you're never too far from a window or the outside world. In contrast Both Etretat and BDS can feel closed in..Etretat is full of dark furniture and aboard BDS passenger footfall is internal, you don't see a window when moving from your cabin to the bar or self service, in the Le Petit Marche you fell like you're in the bowels of the ship when infact you're at the bow. If both vessels had been chartered solely for short sea crossings to France, offering the same level of service as over 25% of the fleet at the time... the Arm', Barfy & NEx, I wonder whether BF would have bothered with the brand at all.
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