Kent to Calais Day Return Ticket Options

Discussion in 'Fares Advice & Policy' started by BluePenguin, 21 Jul 2018.

  1. BluePenguin

    BluePenguin On Moderation

    Messages:
    819
    Joined:
    26 Sep 2016
    Location:
    Kent
    I have copied parts of my post which are relevant from my post here: https://www.railforums.co.uk/threads/calais-to-boulogne-day-return.167392/#post-3558468

    My friend has come to visit me from Liverpool. Whilst he is down we are planning to spend the day in France one day next week. As neither of us drive and due to the Eurostar from Ashford being ridiculously expensive, we will be getting the ferry over to Calais from Dover.

    Having been to France many times over the years with my family, I know there is not a lot to do in Calais although Boulogne is much better and there is a lot more to see and do. We went there on a day trip for my birthday last year and had a very nice day out. However I have never been across as a foot passenger before as in the past we have always been by car/coach either by taking the ferry or Eurotunnel over so this will be my first time. @InterCity:125 gave some good advice about onward travel to Boulogne from Calais but I have not sorted out tickets for getting to Calais in the first place.

    There appears to some very reasonable fares on the P&O website, the cheapest I found being £16 return. However as we also need to get the train to Dover in the first place, I am wondering whether we could use this ticket which includes the train for price only 10p more than the ferry only ticket: http://www.brfares.com/#!fares?orig=0428&dest=H426&rlc=YNG. It has been mentioned a few times on this forum every now and then in the past so I remembered it and am wondering whether it might be the best option for us.

    I have never bought this integrated ticket before and have no idea how they work. What is the difference in buying this over a standard ferry ticket? Are there any restrictions and is it any less flexible?


    As a side notes does anyone have any suggestions for nice places to visit in Boulogne?

    Thanks everyone
     
  2. Registered users do not see these banners - join or log in today!

    Rail Forums

     
  3. alex17595

    alex17595 Member

    Messages:
    977
    Joined:
    15 Mar 2013
    Location:
    Burton on Trent
    Have a look if any of the newspapers are doing a £1 return to france offer with P+O and combine it with a £6.25 anytime return to Dover.

    You will probably have trouble trying to get an integrated ticket, I tried and they just kept trying to direct me to Eurostar.
     
  4. BluePenguin

    BluePenguin On Moderation

    Messages:
    819
    Joined:
    26 Sep 2016
    Location:
    Kent
    Thanks for the suggestion I have found one online from the Daily Express. It is £1 for Monday and £9 for Tuesday onwards. However it doesn't say anywhere whether these are returns or not
     
  5. Mike395

    Mike395 Administrator Staff Member Administrator

    Messages:
    2,267
    Joined:
    23 May 2009
    Location:
    Bedford
    The Kent ticket offices are pretty good in my experience with issuing the integrated tickets, I've had one issued at Ramsgate, Broadstairs and Canterbury at various times without any problem.
     
  6. paul1609

    paul1609 Established Member

    Messages:
    3,375
    Joined:
    28 Jan 2006
    Location:
    Wittersham Kent
    My experiences second that of Mike 395 no problem at either London Charing Cross or Ashford International.
     
  7. Joe Paxton

    Joe Paxton Established Member

    Messages:
    1,661
    Joined:
    12 Jan 2017
    Worth noting that the Network Railcard's 10am weekday restriction does not apply to the integrated tickets from London/Kent to Calais, though how a passenger is supposed to have a clue about the existence of these tickets let alone the lack of the 10am restriction is another matter!
     
  8. ashworth

    ashworth Established Member

    Messages:
    1,230
    Joined:
    10 Sep 2008
    Location:
    Nottinghamshire
    I seriously considered doing a day trip to Calais when staying in Rochester a couple of years ago. It’s actually very good value especially as I now have a railcard. However, finding information about the ticket was very difficult. After reading about sailing vouchers which have to be exchanged for boarding cards etc and problems people have had when these not been issued with the ticket I decided not to bother. It’s probably quite simple, but I just couldn’t be bothered at the time.
     
  9. BluePenguin

    BluePenguin On Moderation

    Messages:
    819
    Joined:
    26 Sep 2016
    Location:
    Kent
    Thanks to you both, I feel more confident about being able to get hold of this ticket now
     
  10. BluePenguin

    BluePenguin On Moderation

    Messages:
    819
    Joined:
    26 Sep 2016
    Location:
    Kent
    Success! My friend and I popped in to Deal station whilst we were in town and managed to buy ourselves tickets to Calais so off we go to France tomorrow.

    The man in the ticket office initially said he could not sell us the ticket from this station (despite making no effort to look up the fare) and suggested we went to another ticket office. However I pressed further and explained that having looked online, they could be issued from Ashford International and Canterbury. I also showed him a photo on my phone which was fortunately helpful enough for him to acknowledge that the fare could be issued from any train station and that he should sell it to us as requested.

    This worked and prompted him to look it up and within a few taps he found the fare and printed off our tickets. Since validity on HS1 was removed and the restriction code change, the price appears to have been reduced to the same price of the Off Peak Return to London Terminals from most stations in East Kent. Usually I would be fuming at this sort of thing but seeing as I live in Kent anyway, I am pleased not to have paid for an High Speed supplement I do not need to be included in the price and pleased to have paid less.

    Here is a photo of the tickets for those of you who want to have a go at asking for them yourselves somewhere:
     

    Attached Files:

  11. James H

    James H Member

    Messages:
    275
    Joined:
    25 Jun 2014
    I think the ticket office should have given you an extra coupon (control ticket) for P&O
     
  12. BluePenguin

    BluePenguin On Moderation

    Messages:
    819
    Joined:
    26 Sep 2016
    Location:
    Kent
    I did ask for one but the boy working in the ticket office said he had no idea what they were let alone how to issue them. I am calling P&O now to ask for where to get them.

    Does anyone know where exactly we in the port need to go to board as foot passengers using these tickets? I know the ferry terminal very well but have never travelled as a foot passengers before so could do with some helpful advice please!
     
  13. Ediswan

    Ediswan Member

    Messages:
    319
    Joined:
    15 Nov 2012
    Location:
    Stevenage
    They are constantly fiddling with the layout, but I believe the general startegy has stayed the same. Approach via Marine Parade (to the landward/north side of the dual carriageway). Follow signs/nose.
     
  14. Arctic Troll

    Arctic Troll Established Member

    Messages:
    9,609
    Joined:
    12 Sep 2013
    Location:
    Newcastle upon Tyne
    It's in the terminal, you present the ticket at the foot passenger desk and they'll sort out the paperwork. Get a taxi from Priory station, the cab drivers know where they're going, should be about £5-7
     
  15. Arctic Troll

    Arctic Troll Established Member

    Messages:
    9,609
    Joined:
    12 Sep 2013
    Location:
    Newcastle upon Tyne
    When I last used one the ticket office were adamant that there wasn't an easement. That was the only hassle I had; the ticket clerk did know the ticket and how to issue the control ticket, to be fair to him, and did change the origin to Orpington to save me money.
     
  16. AnkleBoots

    AnkleBoots Member

    Messages:
    341
    Joined:
    8 Jan 2017
    I think it's more like £10. But in this weather it's an easy half hour walk.
     
  17. BluePenguin

    BluePenguin On Moderation

    Messages:
    819
    Joined:
    26 Sep 2016
    Location:
    Kent
    Thanks for the helpful instructions they will come in handy tomorrow. Sounds about the same as I remember it. I will make sure to leave time to find the right place using your directions.
     
  18. Bungle965

    Bungle965 Established Member

    Messages:
    2,407
    Joined:
    2 Jul 2014
    Location:
    Blackley and Broughton/ Walsall South
    Please do report back when you have completed the trip! I would be interested to hear how you got on.
    Sam
     
  19. BluePenguin

    BluePenguin On Moderation

    Messages:
    819
    Joined:
    26 Sep 2016
    Location:
    Kent
    I called P&O to ask where to get the control tickets from but she had no idea. She put me on hold whilst she went to ask her manager who didn't know either and advised me to go back to the ticket office to ask for them, which was strange seeing as though it their product. Does anyone know whether they enforce the 1 hour cut off time before departure for foot passengers?
     
  20. danm14

    danm14 Member

    Messages:
    85
    Joined:
    24 Jun 2017
    I recall reading somewhere that if you don't have control tickets it isn't an issue - they'll make their own at the port (by photocopying your ticket)
     
  21. BluePenguin

    BluePenguin On Moderation

    Messages:
    819
    Joined:
    26 Sep 2016
    Location:
    Kent
    It wasn't an issue in the end. When we walked up, presented our tickets and asked to check in, the lady never asked for any control tickets and was none the wiser. We were given a boarding card each and sat down in the waiting area by Costa to wait for the bus to collect us and take us onto the ferry.
     
  22. BluePenguin

    BluePenguin On Moderation

    Messages:
    819
    Joined:
    26 Sep 2016
    Location:
    Kent
    I will do! We are waiting to get on the ferry at the moment. When we get back tonight I will write about the experience. It is going well so far despite the fact we have been told we will be on the 10:15. I had plannrd for us to travel on the 09:25 which is annoying. Apparently you now need to be here to check in 1 hour before which is very annoying as it used to be only 30 minutes. It was dissappointing to find out that the check in time has doubled for no reason but determined not to let this ruin our day.
     
  23. Mike395

    Mike395 Administrator Staff Member Administrator

    Messages:
    2,267
    Joined:
    23 May 2009
    Location:
    Bedford
    It's to do with the extra exit checks - up until these were introduced a couple of years back the foot passenger shuttle bus only needed to go through French passport control (you'd sometimes be sent through for a random security check, but the port authorities would only normally do this if there was no wait at the security control), all the buses now have to go through the security scanners now and have passports scanned at the same time for UK exit checks, which can take a while if the bus has arrived at the same time as a number of coaches, hence the additional time allowance.
     
  24. Arctic Troll

    Arctic Troll Established Member

    Messages:
    9,609
    Joined:
    12 Sep 2013
    Location:
    Newcastle upon Tyne
    Not surprised they didn't care about the control ticket, I had them and nobody cared either in Dover or in Calais. As you've found they do enforce the 1-hour cut off and it's because of going through security scanners as well as passport control. You seem to spend more time getting on and off the bus than anything else.

    Are they still using the clapped out Optare Excels?
     
  25. paul1609

    paul1609 Established Member

    Messages:
    3,375
    Joined:
    28 Jan 2006
    Location:
    Wittersham Kent
    Its the same if you go on Eurolines buses through both Dover and the Channel Tunnel. I occasionally go from Folkestone Services to Brugge via the Channel Tunnel and its added about 45 mins to the Ashford to Brugge journey time (via Westenhanger station). Its still more convenient than Eurostar to Brussels and then back to Brugge.
     
  26. BluePenguin

    BluePenguin On Moderation

    Messages:
    819
    Joined:
    26 Sep 2016
    Location:
    Kent
    Basically our Calais Day Tripper tickets were accepted both ways. However we were not allowed to check in for a ferry less than 1 hour before the departure time which was a huge pain, especially in the evening when we were tired and wanted to go home and had to sit around waiting because of the delays.

    The shuttle bus collected us from the ferry terminal. The lady checked our passports before boarding the bus who swiped the bar codes on her scanner. The bus took us round on a loop out of the terminal and through a special lane next to the car check in lanes. We got off the bus and were instructed to put all of our personal belongings onto the conveyor belt and to walk through the scanner. As soon as we sat back down on the bus, it was time to get off again! This time we queued to have our passports stamped.

    Moderator note: for the trip report, see the Kent to Calais/Boulogne Day Return thread.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 31 Jul 2018
  27. LondonJohn

    LondonJohn Member

    Messages:
    269
    Joined:
    17 Jul 2011
    Location:
    London
    I have a week off next week and was considering doing one of these tickets again. I’ve done it a couple of times but not for years.

    I still have a note that the way to issue tickets is detailed in The Manual. Shipping Links. France-Calais. Railcards.

    I am aware of the 10am weekday easement and the supplement for HS1 however is the fare from London still discountable by a Gold Card. On BR Fares it no longer comes up with the rail card discounted option.
     
  28. Brucey

    Brucey Member

    Messages:
    670
    Joined:
    7 Jan 2010
    The gold card discount shows for me: http://www.brfares.com/#!fares?orig=1072&dest=H426&rlc=NGC
     
  29. cactustwirly

    cactustwirly Established Member

    Messages:
    4,768
    Joined:
    10 Apr 2013
    Location:
    Sunny Tuscany
    Probably, but if there's space, they'll put you on an earlier ferry.
     
  30. simonm

    simonm Member

    Messages:
    115
    Joined:
    6 Aug 2011
    Here's question. You can't get the Calais ticket from Folkestone (presumably to close). If you get an Ashford to Calais ticket, can you start or end the journey at Folkestone or do you actually have to commence the journey at Ashford?
     
  31. JB_B

    JB_B Member

    Messages:
    734
    Joined:
    27 Dec 2013
    Yes, you can start from (and end at) Folkestone if you wish.

    (I'm assuming you're planning on using this ticket ... http://www.brfares.com/#!fares?orig=AFK&dest=H426)
     

Share This Page