Eurotunnel : I am a newby, advice please

(15 Posts)
wizzler Mon 09-Sep-13 19:54:45

Am in planning mode for family holiday August 14.
We are planning to go to the Vendee in France, and have previously always gone via the Ferry. This is getting v. expensive and so I am wondering about using the Eurotunnel.
The website does not have prices for peak season next year, so is there anyone out there who used the tunnel this year in August who could give an indication of likely price of a standard car, return ?
Also.. is it loads of hassle and when does it start getting booked up?
TIA

bramblethecow Mon 09-Sep-13 20:03:18

In peak season it's about £60 to £80 each way depending on the time of day. Doesn't really get too booked up, we always book at the last minute, even in August. It's no hassle at all, you just drive through the toll gate, it will print out a slip to hang on your rear view mirror indicating which crossing you're booked on, and then the staff will direct you onto the platform and the train. Crossing takes 35 minutes. They're very flexible too, - if you arrive within 2 hours either side of your booked time, they'll put you on the next train without any extra charge. If you end up not travelling at all for any reason, your ticket is still valid for a year as long as you go online and re-book. Best of all, no seasickness!

LaVitaBellissima Mon 09-Sep-13 20:04:32

It is definitely more expensive than the ferry but so much quicker. You can also swap £10 of Tesco club card vouchers for a £30 ferry voucher.
We went oin August of this year and it was over £100 even with the voucher

wizzler Mon 09-Sep-13 20:07:17

Thanks... both your answers sound way cheaper than the ferry we have been using ( Portsmouth) and as we are travelling from Sheffield the journey to port won't make that much difference

Yika Mon 09-Sep-13 20:08:17

I use it all the time. Can't comment on prices overall as I have a frequent traveller ticket. I find it so totally hassle free, it's great. Just drive up and on, more or less. Great flexibility time wise. The big advantage of the ferry however is that it properly breaks the journey, you can get out of the car, stretch your legs and have a meal.

swlmum Mon 09-Sep-13 20:14:13

The maximum it will ever be (or at least it was this summer) is £199 each way. That is for a fully flexible ticket and always seems available. I booked very last minute this Aug and paid 140 there and 70 back. It's v easy too.

specialsubject Tue 10-Sep-13 11:46:46

surprised the ferry isn't much cheaper.

the tunnel is quick, smelly and you don't see the sea at all.

stringbean Tue 10-Sep-13 20:02:53

We live quite close to Portsmouth (about 25 mins on the m'way) but have started using the tunnel as the ferries just got too expensive. We tow a trailer too (for camping), so that bumps up the price even more. I think the cost for us this August was about £240 in total on the tunnel - with trailer. We also went in April (without trailer) and it cost about £120. In my experience, it's cheaper when booked earlier, but it looks as though others have not found that this is the case, so I couldn't say with certainty. We always book up early anyway...

It is quick and convenient, but you don't get that 'we're on holiday' feeling you get as soon as you're on the ferry, and you don't get a proper break from driving obviously. However, on the plus side, as soon as you get to Calais you're straight off and on the autoroute immediately - no driving through Le Havre or Caen for ages; in this respect, it's much better.

We love it, but can't use it any more sad

They don't allow vehicles powered by LPG to use it.

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 10-Sep-13 21:19:08

One of the cheapest combinations is to go out on an evening shuttle and then stay in the Ibis hotel at Cite Europe. Cost of evening crossing can be as little as £29 if you book early enough Ibis booked online in advance £41.

sittinginthesun Tue 10-Sep-13 21:24:03

What Lonecat said. The ibis has good family rooms too, and is really handy. Then you get a clear run the next day.

I find the return journey so much easier than the ferry. Bit of a queue through passports, but nothing like the two hour wait you can get in Portsmouth. Once you're through, you just drive off!

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 10-Sep-13 21:31:22

Meant to add I have experimented with the Etap - too basic (£29 for night) and Novotel not worth the extra money.

Furball Tue 10-Sep-13 21:50:18

We use our Tesco vouchers - we have a m otorhome and this year in August £201

We also went may/June half term and that was £225

It is a really good way to travel and no sea sickness!

wizzler Wed 11-Sep-13 21:10:11

Thanks everyone!.
The IBIS sounds like a good option. ( cept now it will be full of Mnetters!)

swlmum Fri 13-Sep-13 19:04:14

Ibis Styles are good although some are better than others. (Bourges is fab, Chinon has a good view but not so great rooms).Stayed in a great Novotel this summer which was cheaper than the not so good Ibis styles the next night.

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