ferries

Overland driving routes and ferries
louisejersey
Posts: 134
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2011 8:41 pm
Location: Jersey/ Neapoli Crete

ferries

Postby louisejersey » Mon Sep 15, 2014 8:47 am

Well we have now found a house to rent, so think the next step will be to book ferries. The dates we want aren't up yet, but was just wondering if people book direct with the companies themselves, or through a company such as "Go Ferries"? Also, is it cheaper to book as soon as the dates are released? Think first leg will be Bari/Patra, as we would like to spend a couple of days In Pompi. Thanks for any advice

Kilkis
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Location: Near Chania

Postby Kilkis » Mon Sep 15, 2014 10:13 am

I have usually booked directly with the ferry company. If you can use the same ferry for both the Italy-Greece and the Mainland-Crete legs there is a significant discount. There are shared routes in some cases but I am not sure if the discount then applies or how you would get it booking directly.

For example Superfast, which does Italy-Greece and Blue Star Ferries, which do domestic routes including Piraeus-Heraklion, are both part of Attica Group but they have their own booking sites. Similarly the Attica group shares Patras-Ancona and Piraeus-Heraklion with Anek.

As far as I know only Anek sails into Chania so it depends where you want to end up which is the best company to use. Minoan, Anek and Attica Group all sail into Heraklion. All of them also have Italy-Greece sailings from either Ancona or Brindisi/Bari.

GTP, http://www.gtp.gr/ , is a good place to get initial information on what is available. Put in destinations and it will list all the available sailings and which company does each sailing. Greek Ferries, http://www.ferries.gr/ is also useful but looks at it more from the company perspective, i.e. pick a company and it will show you where that company sails, when and how much it costs.

Warwick

filippos
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Postby filippos » Mon Sep 15, 2014 11:54 am

I've always booked direct with the ferry lines, too but used the sites Warwick has linked (particularly ferries.gr) for information. Also, if it helps ANEK / Superfast have a joint website as well as their individual ones -
http://booking.anek-superfast.com/html/ ... ooking.jsp
On this route search make sure you select "Multiple routes"

There's also lots of ferry information here.

If you're sailing from Bari I think your only option is Superfast, which will be OK for "same company on both legs" discount if you're heading for Heraklion but not Chania (Superfast don't operate on the Chania route). If you want the discount, and to arrive at Chania, you'll need to book on the ANEK site from Venice or Ancona. (If you use the joint ANEK/Superfast website the option of Piraeus-Chania with ANEK isn't offered).

jet
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Postby jet » Mon Sep 15, 2014 12:04 pm

I always take MINOAN Lines from Heraklion-Piraeus and Patras-Trieste as
Show your Card, 20% discount, and Bonus Club gives me this time a free trip Patras-Trieste with car and cabin. Bonus Club member gives discount onbord Restaurant-SelfService and Bar. I always buy my tickets complet in Heraklion office in town.

ANEK has SMART card and Bonus, but I dont know how

If you are a lorry driver, you get 50% in Restaurant and free cabin

The price are the same Patras-Ancona/Ravenna and Trieste earn 400 km :-)

filippos
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Postby filippos » Mon Sep 15, 2014 12:13 pm

jet wrote:I always buy my tickets complet in Heraklion office in town.
Difficult if starting from UK.

Kilkis
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Postby Kilkis » Mon Sep 15, 2014 1:10 pm

A minor point but it is worth eating in the full service restaurant on the ferries. The food is the same, as it shares the kitchen with the self service restaurant, but the dining experience is much nicer and it only costs a couple of Euro more.

Depending on which boat you get some of the luxury cabins are worth the extra €9 per person. They are significantly bigger and more comfortable and positioned across the front of the boat under the bridge they give a brilliant view as you approach anything.

Warwick

jet
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Joined: Sun Aug 01, 2010 11:06 pm

Postby jet » Mon Sep 15, 2014 3:25 pm

filippos wrote:
jet wrote:I always buy my tickets complet in Heraklion office in town.
Difficult if starting from UK.


Tickets can be ordered in the same way as plane tickets specify order number upon check-in. Tickets can also be ordered and sent by registered mail. Keep in mind that agents take a commission from the company, thus providing the company a good service for travelers who purchase direct.

I have repeatedly received dinner voucher as a gift to use onboard, order what you want :-)

IMPORTANT INFORMATION
We strongly advise our passengers to allow for a two-hour additional driving time to the ports of departure, due to heavy traffic on all European highways during summer-peak season

louisejersey
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Location: Jersey/ Neapoli Crete

Postby louisejersey » Mon Sep 15, 2014 4:58 pm

Thanks all. Lots of good information as usual. Just as an aside, we took Warwicks advice and my Husband hired a 50 cc scooter for a day.It was perfect for getting between the 2 villages we would need it for. :) Louise x

Kilkis
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Postby Kilkis » Mon Sep 15, 2014 5:46 pm

jet wrote:... IMPORTANT INFORMATION
We strongly advise our passengers to allow for a two-hour additional driving time to the ports of departure, due to heavy traffic on all European highways during summer-peak season


For most of the year the ferry from Piraeus to Chania typically departs at 9 pm and arrives a 6 am. It then sits in port until 9 pm and does the same in reverse. It usually allows passengers to start embarking at 5 pm. You can get your cabin, have a shower, go to the bar and have a drink, watch the total chaos at the ramp as 9 pm approaches, watch a couple of taxis racing towards the dock blowing their horns as the boat departs, go to the restaurant for a meal, back to the bar for a coffee and nightcap and off to bed. A very relaxing evening.

Given this I usually work out what is the shortest time I can realistically make it to the dock and aim that for 5 pm. If I make it on time then no problem. If I get delayed I have a four hour buffer which should cover most eventualities. This doesn't work in the peak summer season where they sometimes have two sailings per day and the boat sits in port for a much shorter time. I don't know if it works for other routes but it is worth asking the question.

Warwick

filippos
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Postby filippos » Mon Sep 15, 2014 6:26 pm

jet wrote:Tickets can be ordered in the same way as plane tickets specify order number upon check-in. Tickets can also be ordered and sent by registered mail.
I know that but you wrote, "I always buy my tickets complet in Heraklion office in town." My comment (made tongue in cheek) was that it's difficult to do that if you don't live here.

Maud
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Location: S.W. England/ S.W. Crete.

Postby Maud » Wed Sep 24, 2014 6:53 pm

Hi Louise, give www.viamare.com a ring/email. They are London based and excellent.

They are always our first place to get a quote from. Last time they were cheaper than booking directly with the shipping line and also offered us more flexibility. (We book an 'open' ticket for our return as we never know when we will need to be back in the U.K....our primary base). One of the ferry companies (can't remember which one), would not allow us to do this last April. - Not a problem if you intend to stay on Kriti permanently, but for people like us who share our time between the U.K. and Kriti it is useful.

We have recommended them to friends who have a house on Andros and spend 6 months of the year there. They also found them the cheapest and easiest company to deal with......and have shared the information with other friends who also travel to Andros regularly. - At this rate I should get commission! Seriously though, they are worth a ring.

All the information you have been given is good advice. Warwick's comment about arriving early is useful. We were prevented boarding until 7.00pm in Piraeus on the Blue Star line on one occasion, but ANEK always seems happy to let you board early.

Re Ancona, the ferry crossings from there get very busy, but at Bari you can almost turn up and take a chance of getting on the next ship if you are not travelling at a busy time. As you want to sail from Bari it might be worth thinking about if you are not in a rush. Discounts can then be available....but not guaranteed. We always book ahead as we are travelling with animals, but we have seen others getting a good price reduction.

Good luck.

Maud

louisejersey
Posts: 134
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2011 8:41 pm
Location: Jersey/ Neapoli Crete

Postby louisejersey » Fri Sep 26, 2014 7:51 am

Thank you Maud,I will certainly give them a try before booking anything, it's reading all the advice on here that make things start to come together! x

Phaedra
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Postby Phaedra » Sat Oct 04, 2014 6:14 pm

Maud, you said that you travel with animals. Do they have to stay in the car on board the ferry or can you take them with you in a cabin? We have a small dog and are thinking of driving to Crete next year. Thanks.

Kilkis
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Location: Near Chania

Postby Kilkis » Sat Oct 04, 2014 6:26 pm

Some boats have cabins that allow dogs but I am not sure if they all do. Most also have a cage area, e.g. on the top deck. It's best to plan a particular route and then check what facilities the boats on that route have.

Warwick

Sue B
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Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2007 11:37 am
Location: Kent

Pets in Cabins on Ferries

Postby Sue B » Sat Oct 04, 2014 9:11 pm

We travelled to and from Crete, driving through Europe and taking 2 ferries each way. On each ferry we had our two cats in carriers and they were permitted in the cabins. We understood that dogs should be in the kennels provided on one of the upper decks. However, if your dog is small perhaps you would be permitted to take it in your cabin if you transported it onboard in a carrier.

I wondered if dogs were not permitted in the cabins due to soiling. As generally cats will use a litter tray if provided, whereas a dog would probably need to be walked and would not be permitted to walk through areas where there are large numbers of people - to gain access to outside areas.

Just a thought and may not be accurate.


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