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Khaines

Stena to install sleeping pods.

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After spending 6months in Tokyo, The pods are generally only ever used by drunken workmen that have missed the last train home.   For the novelty factor, I stayed in one & it was surprisingly comfy.

I doubt any deserning passenger would want to stay in one, although a possible substitute for a (semi) reclining seat ūüíļ¬†

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I like the luxury of a cabin for an overnight crossing now, as I like to be able to have a shower and change.  But I think they could have their uses, would guess they offer a lie down and a bit of shut eye for day crossing with an added bit of privacy.

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An improvement on the overnight reclining [?] seats, I'm sure. But if BF were seriously looking for an "economie-cal" option, why not mini-cabins with shower & WC ‚Äď as in a motor yacht I saw recently. One end¬†of the bunk has standing / dressing room¬†with the other in a sort of alcove alongside the bathroom. Hanging space behind the door and storage under the berth. The skipper told me that they were fitted because the owner's¬†kids now want / need private spaces rather than sharing. "It means Dad doesn't have to ask his daughter the embarrassing question about where her¬†boyfriend will sleep," the skipper told me.¬†

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I've been hoping, and on occasion encouraging, European operators to give this a go for years. And the two Rostock ships are the absolute dogs of Stena's passenger fleet with reclining seats squeezed into corridors and into obviously converted video games areas, so if any vessels would benefit from an interim option between seats and full cabins its them.

What makes them work in Japanese ferries is that most passengers, no matter what their accommodation, use the communal baths and historically even most proper cabins wouldn't be equipped with en-suite facilities. Clearly this isn't the case in Europe so presumably Stena will install suitable public showers for people to use.

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8 hours ago, hhvferry said:

What makes them work in Japanese ferries is that most passengers, no matter what their accommodation, use the communal baths and historically even most proper cabins wouldn't be equipped with en-suite facilities. Clearly this isn't the case in Europe so presumably Stena will install suitable public showers for people to use.

I dunno about communal baths - I could see a new use for the swimming pools on the Pont and the Cap...ūüėĄ ¬†

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Out of curiosity, who mainly uses reclining seats and why these days? Even back in the early 90s on a very tight budget when we needed cheap Gite familiy holidays we either had a 4 berth inside cabin or took a day crossing. Tried the recliners once and never again as we arrived exhausted with a long drive ahead.

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1 hour ago, cvabishop said:

Out of curiosity, who mainly uses reclining seats and why these days? Even back in the early 90s on a very tight budget when we needed cheap Gite familiy holidays we either had a 4 berth inside cabin or took a day crossing. Tried the recliners once and never again as we arrived exhausted with a long drive ahead.

Um.. I do :$

£5 for a chair compared to £60+ for a cabin, as a single footie/cyclist traveller, a cabin makes a trip a lot more expensive, usually more than doubling the fare, especially fora day trip. 

For example this year I am planning to go to Grenoble, via LH ang TGV, which I can get cheaper than a plane (and less hassle with a bike and luggage), but If I then add on cabins, it works out more than the plane.

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1 hour ago, cvabishop said:

Out of curiosity, who mainly uses reclining seats and why these days? Even back in the early 90s on a very tight budget when we needed cheap Gite familiy holidays we either had a 4 berth inside cabin or took a day crossing. Tried the recliners once and never again as we arrived exhausted with a long drive ahead.

Aside from the pop up zoos in the summer, I suspect there are my people out there who like the price of the reclining seats, regardless of how affordable the other options may be. My Father certainly was attracted to it, although a combination of age and gentle encouragement away (couchettes were a very handy gateway drug!). These day's he's got accustomed to the luxury of a proper cabin.

 

I suspect many property owners may value the option, whilst the extra for a cabin isn't much in isolation, I can imagine it soon adds up when taking a lot of trips.

Edited by penguin

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I was just curious, that's all. I suppose that a family of 4 in a cabin brings the cost per head down and gives you privacy, comfort and your own facilities and an acceptable balance but I can see that a single person travelling frequently might view things differently and accept the discomfort, disturbance and lack of privacy. Also BFE offer cabins at half price are a good option if you can travel outside peak times.

As we have got older, travelling comfort has assumed greater importance, as one might expect. We have three short/medium haul flights booked this year and they are by no means the cheapest options but they are daytime flights so we don't have to get up at 1am to get to the airport and become jetlagged before we even get on the plane which always seems to be at least 30-40 minutes late in departing followed by up to another half hour trundling around the taxi ways before it even reaches the runway and takes off.

Although some of our flights will be relatively expensive, we have got very good deals on accommodation and car hire delivering exactly what we wanted so we look at it in terms of the overall cost and holiday experience rather than zero in on specific elements.

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As an addendum to the above, I think it is unfortunate that many people's general  willingness to put up with low standards in the interest of 'getting a bargain' is  responsible for the overall lowering of conditions in most forms of travel, particularly 'sardine tin' aircraft and trains. It's not really a bargain, you simply get what you pay for. The introduction of various forms of enhanced economy by some airlines, such as TUI and Thomas Cook on long haul holiday routes is proving to be increasingly popular.

Same thing is happening in other areas of the economy. Many new houses are so much smaller than older ones that they are fitted with reduced size furniture to disguise it but the builders still insist on top dollar for their brick faced cardboard boxes. The equivalent to my 1960s built house today has only 80% of the floor space.

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I would argue that this works on some ships.

For example - Pont Aven has a tiny reclining seats lounge (40 ish seats) and it is very unsociable going to Spain.

If they replaced this relatively small area with say 20 pods, and found another area (rip out 5 or 6 two berth cabins for example, as they always have tons unused) then I reckon people would pay extra and have a FAR more comfortable voyage to Spain - if the cost of a cabin is an issue.

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Reclining seats also solve the problem of travelling with an odd number of people when one of those is no longer considered a baby but a child instead. Ed. 

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Reclining seats also solve the problem of travelling with an odd number of people when one of those is no longer considered a baby but a child instead. Ed

Something you need to tell us Ed? ūüėÄ

Anyway, who gets the recliner? Is it Dad escaping for some peace & quiet in which case he may well consider himself to have got a bargain. Or is is the awkward offspring who will torment the other reclining souls by runnng around all night making aeroplane noises?

One thing's for sure - it won't be Mum!

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11 minutes ago, cvabishop said:

As an addendum to the above, I think it is unfortunate that many people's general  willingness to put up with low standards in the interest of 'getting a bargain' is  responsible for the overall lowering of conditions in most forms of travel, particularly 'sardine tin' aircraft and trains. It's not really a bargain, you simply get what you pay for. The introduction of various forms of enhanced economy by some airlines, such as TUI and Thomas Cook on long haul holiday routes is proving to be increasingly popular.

Same thing is happening in other areas of the economy. Many new houses are so much smaller than older ones that they are fitted with reduced size furniture to disguise it but the builders still insist on top dollar for their brick faced cardboard boxes. The equivalent to my 1960s built house today has only 80% of the floor space.

I know what you mean regarding houses. Like many parts of the country, new estates are springing up literally everywhere in my area but if I compare the equivalent new-build property nearby with my comparatively modern house built in 1994, the plots are so much smaller today with virtually no gardens and allocated parking, as opposed to an actual driveway, apparently considered a luxury!

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Living in Bournemouth/Poole area the amount of beautiful old early 1900s houses being demolished for expensive flats to be built in their place saddens me. ¬†Student blocks aside which are rabbit hutches anyway, there are blocks being built that in my opinion are no patch on their predecessors. ¬†When I go to Sandbanks, I hear other passengers on the bus making swooning comments about the multi million pound pads out there. ¬†I think they are monstrosities, I am always drawn to whatever older houses are there. ¬†I think of high ceilings, nice big bay windows, gardens where I can see and hear birds. ¬†Houses which once the occupants leave will be bulldozed for something dreadful. ¬†Say this though locally and you get called jealous! ¬†Jealous for preferring older¬†built properties over modern designs. ¬†Apparently so. ¬†And against progress and all...ūüôĄ

Edited by Khaines
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1 hour ago, Khaines said:

Living in Bournemouth/Poole area the amount of beautiful old early 1900s houses being demolished for expensive flats to be built in their place saddens me. ¬†Student blocks aside which are rabbit hutches anyway, there are blocks being built that in my opinion are no patch on their predecessors. ¬†When I go to Sandbanks, I hear other passengers on the bus making swooning comments about the multi million pound pads out there. ¬†I think they are monstrosities, I am always drawn to whatever older houses are there. ¬†I think of high ceilings, nice big bay windows, gardens where I can see and hear birds. ¬†Houses which once the occupants leave will be bulldozed for something dreadful. ¬†Say this though locally and you get called jealous! ¬†Jealous for preferring older¬†built properties over modern designs. ¬†Apparently so. ¬†And against progress and all...ūüôĄ

Exactly the same (if not worse) in Plymouth, Khaines! And I agree....

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27 minutes ago, hf_uk said:

Exactly the same (if not worse) in Plymouth, Khaines! And I agree....

Maybe we should get on our respective local councils and stop them making countless more student blocks which will sit empty forever because there aren't enough students, and flats which are made out of a bit of tin sandwiched between two pieces of cardboard?! (I think I must have been out when the memo came through on not using BRICKS any more... have they not seen the Three Little Piggies??" :)

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36 minutes ago, nottingham said:

Just saw the topic title - thinking we have digressed! (again)

It happens, and things needed to be said...

But yes - Pods. I like the pods :)

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Wonder how soundproofed they are.  Can you hear the bloke in the next pod snoring (out of both ends!) and are there charging points for devices. 

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Just saw the topic title - thinking we have digressed! (again)

Up to a point, but there is an underlying principle of declining service standards I think. At a time when cruise ship cabins are spacious with all mod cons I do think overnight ferries (and most are overnight rather than multi night) ought to be upping their game rather than providing nocturnal toothpaste tubes for sleeping in. Given the boxy designs of modern ships there should be plenty of room in the superstructure to incorporate tolerably comfy sleeping quarters with private facilities at a decent cost. All the more important if they are hoping to promote ferry travel  as superior to the airline experience.

After all, there are very few people these days who would be willing to book an onshore hotel or B&B without ensuite facilities. Why should ferries be any different as they are essentially floating hotels?

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The pods are meant as an interim options between reclining seats and cabins and are not downgrading the cabin options (which Stena have recently been at the industry forefront of improving, albeit not on the Rostock route).

Edited by hhvferry

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