Aire de stationnement etiquette/rules

Discussion in 'Continental Touring' started by Ridgeway, Aug 22, 2013.

  1. Ridgeway

    Ridgeway Funster

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    We decided this year to use more Aires, France Passion and wild camping, mainly for last minute flexibility, cost saving and also getting full use out of our investment.

    Having spent the last week in some very nice Aires I started to notice the habits of more experienced users and after asking some of the old boys I was genuinely surprised (perhaps ignorant) to the rules.

    No cooking outside
    No chairs or tables outside
    Basically nothing outside at all

    This was pretty evident with nearly all people's satellite dishes electronically swinging into to action by 8pm after a salad had been consumed inside the van.....

    Obviously there are rules and obviously people do flex them as we've all seen, tables and chairs being the most common but what do you guys do when you're using an Aire de stationnement, bugger it and do as you do or hide away all evening inside your van ?
     
  2. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    its eu rules nothing outside your parking .
    use things outside it camping . camping can only be done on a campsite .aires arent campsites . some do have bbq areas and tables and benches but these are to be tret as picnic type use . many dont abide by the rules but again nobody cares so long as its not a too busy aire . but police will tell you off sometimes .
     
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  3. Ridgeway

    Ridgeway Funster

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    Yep this is pretty much what the guys said too me last week whilst they were sipping down their Pastis, sitting at their tables...

    It does kinda make sense but just so many people don't seem to abide by it, they mainly had plates with an "I" in the left hand corner.....
     
  4. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    italians . there are loads of them around . dont think there can be much crisis there they have been multiplying in the last ten years . get more every years .
     
  5. Spottycatz

    Spottycatz Read Only Funster

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    Scary:Eek!:
    Away on Monday for three months. We are not Hobbits. Outside is where we are. I dumped the satellite system and have spent on a gas BBQ, so it's probably gonna be camp-sites then?
     
  6. DP_JAY

    DP_JAY Funster Life Member

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    Yes, that is the one problem with aires, as you can see on the left, you can't put tables and chairs out.:Rofl1::Rofl1:
     
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  7. ponyboy

    ponyboy Read Only Funster

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    We've been on the go now in France for the last four months and have used loads of aires. In April when when we set out and up to mid July and the start of the french holiday season, there was never a problem with having to be a Hobbit and stay indoors because the aires were generally not crowded and most of them are brilliant. We just don't bother with them now and won't till September until all the "I" and "F" rego plates have gone back to work.
    ponyboy
     
  8. magicsurfbus

    magicsurfbus Funster

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    Can't say I've ever seen those rules imposed on any of the aires we've stopped at, and I've never seen any locals tut-tutting about it. Most seasoned Camping-Caristes try to find a spot with a bit of nearby grass to put the chairs on, and failing that, set up within the parking bay. We don't go mad - usually just a couple of chairs and eat off our laps. If the parking bay's wide enough, awnings get rolled out too, and I've never seen the Police Municipale challenging it.

    In a number of places I've seen French MH owners extending all their junk into a second parking bay, apparently unchallenged. That does piss me off.

    A classic example of regard for the rules is the wooded aire at Biscarrosse-Plage where a big sign at the entrance forbids awnings, chairs, tables, tents, hanging out washing, and unleashed dogs.

    The New Age Traveller colony that seems to set up there each summer ignores all of these restrictions and the Camping-Caristes do the same. The ticket man struggles to get all his fees in on such a big aire without trying to harrass people about a few camping chairs.
     
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  9. Ven

    Ven Funster

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    We've spent probably the equivalent of a year on aires over the last 4 years mostly in France but also in Spain and Portugal.

    Although the written rules are definitely no outside camping (so to speak) in France we have never seen these rules being followed and everyone rubs along nicely and the authorities who monitor the aires be that the Police or local council have no problems with that. Sitting outside, eating outside seems to be the norm but only on a couple of aires have we witnessed cooking outside.

    In Spain however it is a completely different ball game with lots of the more touristy area aires being very stringent with these rules. One aire in Peniscola had the owner of the aire running out regularly to tell people to take their chairs in, remove drying towels etc. These were mostly French vans :Wink:

    We have spent less time on them in Portugal but on the official type aires they seem to be a bit more relaxed and at Manta Rota lots of people cooked outside too.
     
  10. Roryboys Dad

    Roryboys Dad Read Only Funster

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    We spent a month in France in June/July and used Aires every night.

    At every Aire we, and everyone else, had table and chairs out, awning extended and many cooked outside because it was too warm to cook inside the MH.

    Even at Honfleur, one of the most crowded Aires in France, most people were outside drinking and eating until it went dark around 10.30 – 11 at night.

    Municipal Police regularly visit many of the Aires to check up everything is ok and not once did they have cause to ask anyone to move anything.

    Aires are for relaxing - not getting your stress levels up.

    :france::france::france:
     
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  11. MikeandCarolyn

    MikeandCarolyn Read Only Funster

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    We use aires a lot when 'touring' usually for just one night,maybe 2 if there's a few things we want to see in the town.
    We do whatever everyone else is doing with regard to tables,chairs,cooking etc.have never had a problem.
    However one of the attractions of aires,for us,is that they are often close to local restaurants and bars,so we will go off and sample local cuisine,drink some wine,play petanque at the local boulodrome-that's 'our' France :BigGrin:

    Mike.
     
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  12. Welsh girl

    Welsh girl Funster Life Member

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    We were afraid to put anything out when we used aires this spring but they all put chairs, steps, tables everything I fact so we put our steps out and even used the satellite on a tripod , nothing was said on any Aire.
    Many times he fitted it to the bike rack though as he is a bit of a worrier but succumbed in the end.
    Do as the locals, we did
     
  13. Whatton

    Whatton Read Only Funster

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    This sums it up. Only ever stopped on French aires and did what the French did, which was usually awning out when sunny then in as soon as the sun went down, sit, eat and cook outside and then take everything in at night.

    We don't stop in city centre aires only small villages, so that may be the difference?
     
  14. Roryboys Dad

    Roryboys Dad Read Only Funster

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    The only time we've seen a problem, a few years ago, was this French MH who seemed to like a bit more room than everyone else.

    There were at least six bikes, dinghy, table and chairs, BBQ, water and beer bottles, tent, awning and more items round the other side of the MH.

    The women who came round to check if we'd all paid took one look at the MH and was straight on her mobile.

    Less than five minutes later the Municipal Police arrived, the MH owner and family were out, had a walk round the MH and left.

    The moment the MH owner returned the Police arrived two seconds later.

    There was a lot of gesturing and gallic shrugs between them and the Police departed again.

    It seemed as if the Police had told him to clear up or clear off.

    The family made a half hearted attempt to tidy up, rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic came to mind, and sat down to have a drink or two.

    Half an hour later the Police returned once more.

    There were even more gestures and shrugs as the Police gave him a right rollocking and stood by as the MH was loaded up and within twenty minutes the MH had gone – you don't argue with the Police in France.

    :france::france::france:
     

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  15. Ridgeway

    Ridgeway Funster

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    That's a great example and thanks for sharing.

    Do as the locals do, seems a good approach.

    Soon I'll be tarmacking drives:Rofl1:
     
  16. Hollyberry

    Hollyberry Funster

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    I stayed at an Aire near Bordeaux in May. Large French motorhome, awning with -- is it called a safari room? ---attached. Flooring down in awning, table, chairs, storage unit. Outside several flower tubs, all prettily planted, anchoring the canvas. Washing line strung between 2 trees. At first I though they must be officialdom, collecting the money, but no. They obviously weren't counting on making a fast getaway.

    In France everyone eats outside so would be very surprised if you were ever told not to eat & drink outside ( and everyone including children sits at a table!)
     
  17. Pilote87

    Pilote87 Funster

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    Aires de stationnement etiquette

    I was on that wooded Biscarosse aire earlier this month and it is now ticketed access for anything bigger than, I think, 1.9 m. Cars take a slightly different route in and pass under a height bar. For overheight vehicles it is necessary to take a ticket so a barrier will lift and then the fresh water and dumping facilities are free. The "guardien" now spends time going round trying to enforce the rules quoted earlier. To exit the Aire it is necessary to insert the ticket and either pay in cash (espece) or by card.

    J
     
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