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'fast ferry' crossings to France: bad weather/sea-sickness question

12 replies

hedghog · 24/04/2004 00:28

We have recently returned from a fantastic holiday in Mexico where we took a Fast Ferry to the island of Cozumel for a day trip. Boy was that a mistake! The voyage was very turbulent and one of the most unenjoyable experiences of my life! I've never known sea sickness like it. My poor ds1 spent the whole crossing in the bathroom. He was so sick poor guy. NOW I'm worried about the Fast Ferry crossing we have booked via Keycamp from Portsmouth to Cherbourg later in the year. Please reassure me that these craft are large enough to 'weather' the wind and we won't even know we are on a boat Has anyone experienced a windy crossing? How bad did it get? Thanks.


just wondering whether anyone has experienced a turbulent fast ferry crossing to France or can reassure me that the size of the ferry

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mummysurfer · 24/04/2004 06:36

we did P&O fast cat portsmouth to cherboug in august and it was absolutely fine. however,there was plenty of evidence that this wasn't always the case!! there were LOADS of trollies everywhere with nothing but sick bags on. there was a faint underlying smell of vomit.
plus the ferry itself was quite small,play area so small it should have been removed (10X10). no deck.
we'd booked fastcat for the way back too but it was very delayed and we ended up on the normal ferry and thought it so much better. more space, big play area,choice of eateries,big deck, no sick bags, more loos. but of course it took twice as long but tbh we didn't notice.

keycamp this year FREE - thanks Mumsnet - we've booked the normal ferry.

i'm sure it's not too late to change tbh i would.

sorry that's probably not what you wanted to hear.

ps. it's known as the 'vomit vessel'!!

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emkana · 24/04/2004 09:11

Last Sunday I went on Seacat from Calais to Dover and it was HORRIBLE!!! Never again, I felt so sick and I was terrified. Also you worry about something happening to your car. Next time we will definitely go Eurotunnel or 'proper' ferry!

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mummysurfer · 24/04/2004 17:50

bump

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scoobysnax · 24/04/2004 18:13

I have done this crossing twice - no problems to date, it's so much faster that it's worth the risk of bad weather IMO!

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Slinky · 24/04/2004 18:17

We did the FastCraft from Poole to Cherbourg (Aug 2002) and it was an awful crossing. DD2 was the first to be ill, then looking around everyone started to feel rough. The Steward/esses were walking around with buckets and mops.

Then last year, we did the same crossing I watched all the other people loading up their breakfast trays full of greasy food/stodgy stuff and I thought "you wait!!". However, were VERY relieved to find that this crossing was completely different - it was lovely and smooth and no-one appeared to be suffering.

Also have to add - Brittany Ferries request that you don't be ill in the toilets and instead use their "sick bags".

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Marina · 24/04/2004 23:21

We've had a bad child + vomit experience on the Newhaven-Dieppe crossing, sorry Hedgehog. I quite like these fast ferries, but then I never get seasick. I think they are not at their best on the English Channel, frankly.

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mummytojames · 24/04/2004 23:26

for sea sickness put a bit of crushed ginger on a plaster on all of you preferbly on a pulse point works best it help settle the tummy and stops or at worse lessens the sea sickness was told this by a sailor as i suffer badly even on the calmest of crossings and it works
hth

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buzzybee · 25/04/2004 05:01

I hate ferries - the Chunnel is fab!! Only good thing about fast ferries is the journey is over fairly quickly but just as susceptible to bumpiness as the normal ferries. My advice if you have to - take the pills then sit as still as possible somewhere outside, preferably at the back.

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tatcity · 26/04/2004 21:27

When are you travelling?

I think the Fastcraft doesn't sail if its rough anyway so you should be ok. We were booked on it last July and it was cancelled due to "bad weather" even though the normal ferries were still running.

We did go Portsmouth to Cherbourg on fastcraft - I am a bad traveller generally and it was fine - didn't feel sick at all even though it was slightly choppy. Also such a joy as its so short.

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hedghog · 26/04/2004 23:20

Thanks for all the replies. We have used the Weymouth to St Malo Fast Ferry a couple of years ago and also the hovercraft crossing and have been fortunate to have had reasonable crossings both times. We have also used Eurotunnel 4 or 5 times - but it's a long drive from Calais to the Vendee so I didn't consider the tunnel this time. It's just that now we have experienced sea sickness I'm uncharacteristically anxious (well, in truth, fearful) that we might have a choppy crossing. We are travelling late August. I'm just checking out the additional cost of flying and hiring a car but any other thoughts or advice welcome in the meantime. What about travel sickness pills? Do they really work?

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tatcity · 26/04/2004 23:23

Late August I'm sure will be fine! My sister travels across the channel all the time on the 6 hour crossing ! she lives in France.... she reckons Motillium is good as is an anti-queezy pill but also can calm down a nervous tummy too.

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littlemissbossy · 26/04/2004 23:53

we've done the seacat crossing twice from portsmouth and poole ... first year great, last year crossing to france fine but return awful!!!very rough, we were warned by the staff before we set off, everyone throwing up all over etc plus there was something wrong with the boat and it was only working to 75% capacity ... so the journey took longer than normal !!! we're going on regular dover - calais run this year

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