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API (Advance Passenger Information)


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I’m planning to take a Portsmouth-Caen crossing next week, returning 10 days later.

When I happened to look at the details of my booking I found the following message near the bottom

To comply with UK Home Office requirements please fill in your API (Advance Passenger Information)

When I clicked on the embedded link, a ‘window’ popped up

https://www.brittany-ferries.co.uk/advance-passenger-information/access?state=f5162c31-b760-4d3e-b4da-ac25054111bb&session_state=828fe859-f70c-46a7-866e-9e1d79ebe22d&code=2dcec810-cff9-489f-adf2-d1733e354e02.828fe859-f70c-46a7-866e-9e1d79ebe22d.eac706a5-a02b-4b40-8bcd-4e8a94d48b90 

that led to another ‘form’ that - in addition to showing the details I provided when I originally bought the ticket - asked for passport numbers and passport expiry dates for the people travelling on the return crossing to the UK. I duly filled in those details and the ‘form’ now shows “CONFIRMED” (in green) for the two adults (my wife and I) who will be coming back to the UK.

I haven’t travelled with Brittany Ferries since late 2019 and I know that providing API was not necessary in the past. 

It would seem from the FAQ section of Brittany Ferries website

https://www.brittany-ferries.co.uk/information/faqs/booking-information/what-you-need-to-know-about-advance-passenger-information-api?state=eb64e333-d653-4bd4-88e1-0a994fe3d840&session_state=828fe859-f70c-46a7-866e-9e1d79ebe22d&code=3c08e530-a23b-4dfc-80de-4660c5889229.828fe859-f70c-46a7-866e-9e1d79ebe22d.eac706a5-a02b-4b40-8bcd-4e8a94d48b90

that providing API is mandatory and perhaps when one books a ticket nowadays this is made clear, but my ticket is ‘old’ (amended 8 times) and - if I had not chanced to look at my booking - I would not have been aware of the requirement.

Comments would be appreciated...

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In theory it is needed at least 24 hours before sailing these days, however BF now remind you on the pre sailing emails and I have seen tweets that imply that they sort it out at the port of you haven't done it.

It is basically the UK government wanting advanced information on who is coming and going.

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For foreign nationals fair enough but for your own citizens? It smacks of big brother. Why does HM Gov need to know my movements?  

If they really need to know why don't they ask Mark Zuckerberg

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It's shared with the country of destination, in this case France but it's primarily an anti terrorist measure. Certainly all our details will be checked by the British and the host countries to see if you are on any of the 'at risk' registers..If you aren't, as all of us here, it's nfa.... otherwise it's a useful tool to track those who need to be tracked.

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I THINK I misunderstood the purpose of the API ‘form’ when I filled it in, as I was under the impression it was like the Passenger Locator Form and only applicable for people entering the UK, whereas it seems to be 'bi-directional’.

So I THINK the information I've provided so far relates only to my outgoing crossing from Portsmouth to Ouistreham and - once that has been completed - I assume I must repeat the procedure and the ‘form’ will then indicate that it applies to the Ouistreham to Portsmouth return trip. (That would make sense, as there’s no guarantee that the same people that will be leaving the UK for France will be returning from France to the UK.)

Is that correct, please?

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20 minutes ago, Rapido640 said:

I assume I must repeat the procedure

You shouldn't have to, it should be linked to the booking if it is a return booking. Some carriers will link the standard api stuff to a customer reference, however that is more difficult for a ferry.

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1 hour ago, Paully said:

It's shared with the country of destination, in this case France but it's primarily an anti terrorist measure. Certainly all our details will be checked by the British and the host countries to see if you are on any of the 'at risk' registers..If you aren't, as all of us here, it's nfa.... otherwise it's a useful tool to track those who need to be tracked.

 

1 hour ago, Paully said:

It's shared with the country of destination, in this case France but it's primarily an anti terrorist measure. Certainly all our details will be checked by the British and the host countries to see if you are on any of the 'at risk' registers..If you aren't, as all of us here, it's nfa.... otherwise it's a useful tool to track those who need to be tracked.

And those that don't  😄

Edited by IanN
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1 hour ago, David Williams said:

You shouldn't have to, it should be linked to the booking if it is a return booking. Some carriers will link the standard api stuff to a customer reference, however that is more difficult for a ferry.

Thanks - the API 'form' has "Return trip" alongside the start of each of the two people identified on my booking, but no advice on what "Return trip" signifies as far as the API is concerned. Perhaps explanatory advice of that type is too much to hope for...

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I'm travelling to St Malo on Wednesday, coming straight back on Thursday ( can't wait.....first ferry trip in approx. 18 months ). In the email that BF sent me for the Outward sailing a few days ago there was the link to complete the API forma ( which I did ), in the email regarding the return sailing that came this morning from BF there is no mention of the API form, just the passenger locator form ( can't fill that in until Tuesday evening at the earliest ) and the Covid pass requirement to show at check-in in St Malo.......so no need to worry about the API From Rapido640 if you have already filled it in.

 

Andy

Edited by ac_freeman
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