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New deposit price on bookings?

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6 minutes ago, Gareth said:

I think that has been well covered by the discussion in this thread, but in my view, no, for the reasons previously discussed.

 

I’m not aware that the company has stated that.  I have seen them give figures about the decline in bookings, and have ssen them mention the uncertainty surrounding Brexit in connection with them.  But I’ve not seen any statements from the company in which they have attributed the decline in bookings to the deposit.

They're not going to admit that the deposit has had an effect when they can blame Brexit, I think both must have had an effect.  Off topic but this week the growth figures for the economy were released and the Brexit affect was blamed but dig deeper and Germanys figures were worse than ours, Brexit is affecting somethings but it's not to blame for everything on it's own.

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I'd say that it might have backfired on them. If you increase the deposit by 250% at the same time as there is a level of uncertainty regarding driving regulations post-Brexit then people are likely to think twice before taking the plunge. Add in the Yellow Jacket situation which may deter a number of people and you've got the perfect storm. It would be interesting to know which lines have been affected by the downturn in bookings. Ed. 

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1 hour ago, wortley said:

Was the idea of asking for 25% deposit on bookings a bad mistake? Is the company admitting that this plus Brexit has sliced the number of summer tourist bookings? A e mail last night from B/F says in effect Do please book and you now only need pay 10% deposit . 

The email also said that the 10% deposit is for a limited time only.

It's easy to jump on a BF headline but a bit of care needs to taken as the volume of ferry bookings has, so far, been as strong as last year with many sailings to France & Spain for the peak 4 month period showing limited availability... Just because a family hasn't opted for a package holiday from one of the Brittany Ferries brochures you see on board around the reception area doesn't necessarily mean they're not using one of the ferries to travel elsewhere or opting for another company which includes a BF crossing.

As an example Holiday France Direct is wholly owned by Brittany Ferries and also offers Spain too.

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24 minutes ago, Cabin-boy said:

I'd say that it might have backfired on them. If you increase the deposit by 250% at the same time as there is a level of uncertainty regarding driving regulations post-Brexit then people are likely to think twice before taking the plunge. Add in the Yellow Jacket situation which may deter a number of people and you've got the perfect storm. It would be interesting to know which lines have been affected by the downturn in bookings. Ed. 

Agreed, it’s a combination that is not conducive to making a booking.  But of the three factors, Ed, I’d put the deposit issue at the bottom of the list.  It makes no difference to the price of the holiday, and the full price has to be paid 2 months before travel anyway.  So the deposit issue is really a total red herring.  The main issues are the uncertainty over Brexit and the fact that civil unrest and the ever-present threat of no-notice travel disruption makes France an unappealing place to visit at present.

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12 minutes ago, Gareth said:

It makes no difference to the price of the holiday, and the full price has to be paid 2 months before travel anyway.

But think about it. If your holiday is in July you need to pay the balance at the end of April. Imagine you are hoping to book a holiday in France with accommodation and ferry but prepared to take the risk of cancelling if things look bad or complicated nearer the time. In that case 10% of £2,000 is easier to swallow than 25%. I think the deposit worry is is directly linked to (or at least aggravated by) Brexit. Ed. 

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18 minutes ago, Cabin-boy said:

But think about it. If your holiday is in July you need to pay the balance at the end of April. Imagine you are hoping to book a holiday in France with accommodation and ferry but prepared to take the risk of cancelling if things look bad or complicated nearer the time. In that case 10% of £2,000 is easier to swallow than 25%.

Well, having to cancel because of unforeseen personal circumstances is what travel insurance is for.  And as far as people who book with a half-intention of cancelling, they are are surely customers that BF can happily do without, thankyou very much.  We’ve discussed that before in the context of cabins all being taken by prospective bookings, only to be cancelled later.  That’s very selfish behaviour that impacts on genuine customers unfairly.  If any element of the decline in bookings is down to prospective bookings, that are likely to end up getting cancelled anyway, no longer being made because of the deposit, then great.  Good riddance to them, and the space remains available to legitimate customers.  By that reasoning, the increase in deposit has served a useful purpose.

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Oh, I agree, good ridence to such people. So maybe it was a good idea to up the deposit with the risk that people would cancel more this year with Brexit than previously. Ed

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Just now, Cabin-boy said:

Oh, I agree, good ridence to such people. So maybe it was a good idea to up the deposit with the risk that people would cancel more this year with Brexit than previously. Ed

Again, I’m not sure I see the logic.  People who are reluctant to book because of Brexit uncertainty (or the other factors affecting France that we’ve discussed) won’t book anyway.  I don’t think the level of the deposit will have made them any less likely to book than they would have been before.  Whatever the deposit level, the people who will book are those that don’t have these concerns in sufficient magnitide to deter them from booking.

Anyway - we’ll soon see.  If the reduction in deposit to 10% results in a sudden surge of bookings, then I will be proved wrong! 😉

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I imagine that the reduced deposit will tempt some people to book now as opposed to later,

However the BF deposit is still a very good scheme. With a flight 100% of the fare is taken up front and unless you buy an expensive ticket it is non changeable and non refundable.

With BF, as long as you intend to take a crossing (any crossing) at some point in the future it is free to move to another date or crossing & this can be done multiple times - therefore it is unlikely that you ever will lose the deposit.

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Non expensive plane tickets are changeable but become expensive tickets as a consequence of the fees charged(varies depending on airline) to make those changes.

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Don't see the fuss myself..book with any other ferry company and its pay in full up front and that's that..BF are still the best even at 25%..

  I suspect it's the holidays side of the business that's down and that may well be down to changing tastes as much as anything else. 

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Lots of people advertising small deposits this year quite loudly on TV and in the press etc... I would imagine it's only temporary due to the uncertain times

 

(Lucky Seaborne got axed... they'd have probably taken 100% 😉 ).

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5 hours ago, David Williams said:

I imagine that the reduced deposit will tempt some people to book now as opposed to later,

However the BF deposit is still a very good scheme. With a flight 100% of the fare is taken up front and unless you buy an expensive ticket it is non changeable and non refundable.

With BF, as long as you intend to take a crossing (any crossing) at some point in the future it is free to move to another date or crossing & this can be done multiple times - therefore it is unlikely that you ever will lose the deposit.

OK have to admit... I have booked a trip now (rather than later) because of the 10% deposit (I was going anyway, but probably wouldn't have booked it yet, considering its for Sept.)

Nice to know it's free to change/amend. I didn't know that! Now to see if it actually is the Normandie I am going to Le Havre on!

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1 minute ago, The Ferry Man said:

OK have to admit... I have booked a trip now (rather than later) because of the 10% deposit (I was going anyway, but probably wouldn't have booked it yet, considering its for Sept.)

Nice to know it's free to change/amend. I didn't know that! Now to see if it actually is the Normandie I am going to Le Havre on!

At the moment Normandie is double booked in the timetable so should be interesting - BF are still selling Le Havre as a Cruise Ferry !

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When I booked I thought it unlikely to actually be Normandie. Only got a reclining seat, not sure if Etretat has recliners? I know BdS doesn't, which could be interesting if she replaces Normandie.

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1 hour ago, The Ferry Man said:

Nice to know it's free to change/amend. I didn't know that!

It is free if you make the amendment yourself on line up to 5 days before the outward journey. If you ask BF to make the amendment you will be charged a £15 amendment fee.  Within 5 days of the outward journey you will be charged £25 regardless of whether you make the amendment yourself or ask BF to do it.

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I have bought this subject many times regarding deposits,before the new deposit scheme came in.i was ranting about pet owners who booked pet friendly cabins. Just in case they decided to travel with there pets but near the time of paying for crossing changed there minds and cancelled.so to me it is a much better idea of paying a large deposit and it stops the time wasters from abusing the system.so to me it is good riddence to these time wasters.

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Oh dear, I might be one of your time wasters.

My health might not be good enough for me to travel, the uproar in Paris may have started up again and put me off going there, my old car may not pass its MOT,  travel insurance for someone my age may prove out of the question, my wife's knee replacement may be brought forward. 

I do admire those of you whose only problem is having a cabin for a dog. 

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 But Wortley, your wife’s knee operation possibly aside, all of those are factors that will come into play within 2 months of the travel date.  None if them will be causes of cancellation more than two months in advance.  So by the time any of them become real factors, the full fee will already have been paid.  I accept that they are risks associated with making a booking (we all have risks associated with our bookings), but I just can’t see how the size of the initial deposit is relevant to any of them.

There is a world of difference between having to cancel at the last minute for unforseen circumstances (which only travel insurance can protect you against), and making a booking with half an intention of cancelling at the time of making the booking.  Those are the people who will be deterred by the higher deposit, and quite right too.

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Thank you for your reassurance Gareth.  

A return crossing from Plymouth to Santander and back with car and caravan in June is coming up as £1230 - hard to believe, but there it is. The original 25% deposit would have been over £300, but the Caravan Club is offering to match that fare and is only asking for a £75 deposit if I make the booking with them. No wonder B/F is currently reducing its deposits to 10% - still higher, but a step in the right direction.

But with this Brexit thing happening I shall wait and see whether I still have a valid EHIC card when the debacle ends. Health insurance at my age might yet beat me. 

Best regards. 

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46 minutes ago, wortley said:

Thank you for your reassurance Gareth.  

A return crossing from Plymouth to Santander and back with car and caravan in June is coming up as £1230 - hard to believe, but there it is. The original 25% deposit would have been over £300, but the Caravan Club is offering to match that fare and is only asking for a £75 deposit if I make the booking with them. No wonder B/F is currently reducing its deposits to 10% - still higher, but a step in the right direction.

But with this Brexit thing happening I shall wait and see whether I still have a valid EHIC card when the debacle ends. Health insurance at my age might yet beat me. 

Best regards. 

Hope you have health insurance and car breakdown insurance because your last comments both of you and the car was ready for the knackers yard.hope it all goes well with your trip.

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On 17/02/2019 at 15:54, nodwad said:

I have bought this subject many times regarding deposits,before the new deposit scheme came in.i was ranting about pet owners who booked pet friendly cabins. Just in case they decided to travel with there pets but near the time of paying for crossing changed there minds and cancelled.so to me it is a much better idea of paying a large deposit and it stops the time wasters from abusing the system.so to me it is good riddence to these time wasters.

As mentioned most airlines and ferry companies charge the full value of travel at time of booking. It could be many months before the travel date but you are settled knowing there will be nothing more to pay and you will be more confident of booking the cabin of choice.

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Interesting strategy! They get all the money upfront but their prices are often so low that it's equivalent to BF's 25% deposit, which you can't get back but can transfer if you change your booking. It will be intriguing to see if this backfires on them or not. Ed. 

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I understand the Tunnel did it first a few days ago and this is a reaction to that, no doubt..Be interesting to see if P and O follow suit..

  On a personal note, we are happy with our booking, looking forward to our trip in 4 months time and barring any ill health can`t see any reason to cancel..If we have to get more paperwork than usual, so be it, its doable and we are goable. Dunkirk spirit and all that...although these days its more Calvados and St Malo

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