First trip abroad

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by malandee, Dec 29, 2011.

  1. malandee

    malandee Read Only Funster

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    Hi MH friends
    Hope you all had a good christmas. We are planning to go abroad for the first time this year, intrepid "middle aged" explorer's, and are hoping we can access your wide experience of motor home travels .As we live in Yorkshire we first thought the best /easiest option would be from Hull to Ziebrugger/ Rotterdam. We were surprised by the cost of ferries and thought maybe a trip down to a southerly port and a shorter crossing may be less expensive ( we have deep pockets in Yorkshire). We don't know anything about sites or ferries as by now you may be aware.
    We would appreciate any advice anyone could offer. :Smile:
     
  2. darklord

    darklord Read Only Funster

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    Hi, its part of any travelling, to sit at the dinner table with maps, calculator and dreams all in front of you:BigGrin:
    To travel down to dover and catch a ferry to calais or dunkirk, may be cheaper.....depending on when you want to cross, you can get some very good deals. Against this, the cost of fuel and overnight stop on the way (if you pay of course:Wink:) may make the ferry from up your way not too dear, never done it so i dont know.

    Before I had a MH, I used to travel to europe with friends from all over the country. One of the small things that trips you up, is the travelling time, plus the overnight, the M25, and the time of your ferry...you dont want to be driving from oop north, and then into europe with only a couple of hours kip...takes the fun out of it. We live 1.5 hrs from the ferries/tunnel, so not a problem for us, but the M1 is loaded with roadworks, most of the M25 is being widened, amd the Dartford crossing is its usual abortion,.......at certain times (friday afternoons) from J10 of the M1 to the dartford crossing can take several hours, have fun planning it and doing the sums.......I,m starting in the next few days for our trip.:thumb:
     
  3. Munchie

    Munchie Funster Life Member

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    We live in Yorkshire, just outside Stokesley.
    This year we ventured to France for the first time. My manager was having hissy fits. Overnighted at Peterborough then Folkestone then onto the ferry Dover/Calais.
    Within two days she was in her element. it is so relaxing. We stayed mainly on Aires with 4 campsites thrown in to do the washing etc.
    We were there May and June, the roads are unbelievaby quiet. Three cars within 20 miles is a traffic jam and 4 people in a supermarket is a crowd!!!
    We came back over in November and are currently at Parc Verger (campsite run by an English couple) and are staying till mid Feb. Have a look at my French blog. :thumb:

    http://www.motorhomefun.co.uk/blogs/ksebruce/ (this trip)

    http://www.motorhomefun.co.uk/blogs/ksebruce/france/ (May/June)
     
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  4. Southampton

    Southampton Funster Life Member

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    Hi Malandee,
    For the past two years I have used the Tunnel, much more convenient and only takes 35 minutes, quite cost effective depending on travel dates. The other thing I like about it is you are straight out onto the motorway at the other side.

    Although I don't need them (only a 2-3 hours from home) there are a few sites local to the tunnel if you travel down the night before.

    Derek
     
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  5. malandee

    malandee Read Only Funster

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    Thanks

    Thankyou for your pearls of wisdom Darklord, much appreciated, Scotland's looking very good right now.Half the fun seems to be in the planning so we will take your advice re- all the pitfalls when traveling south, hopefully we will manage that first time abroad with our own vehicle this year. Hope you don't read about a couple spending their holiday circling the M25 in a motor home. Regards and thankyou Mal and Dee :Eeek:
     
  6. ShiftZZ

    ShiftZZ Funster Life Member

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    You can get some 'cheap' tunnel tickets if you use your Tesco vouchers, I dont understand it myself, far too complex for me, there are far better people to explain it. Mrs ShiftZZ does all for us.

    The experience of going to France is a lot easier than you think, just do it and enjoy. The people here will give you all the help that you need,
     
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  7. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    Port of hull/zeebrugee is very convenient for us 'northerners' (only 50 miles for us) but the cost far outweighs the benefits.

    from Scarborough, the distance to Dover is 305mls, maybe 50 mls less for you,....and around 12 gallons (53lts) of diesel.

    marry this to far cheaper ferry fares and you are on a winner.

    time to Dover is around 7 hours and the difference in fares, inc fuel to Dover, leaves a lot for fuel in Europe.
     
  8. slobadoberbob

    slobadoberbob Read Only Funster

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    We live in Kent

    We live in Kent and it takes us about 50 minutes to the tunnel.. which is a great way to cross and you can get some great deals if you book early.. great also if you have a dog.

    I can go with the view of the M1 /M25 /M20 as I have done a few trips to and from Leicester area on Fridays and Saturdays.. 150 miles and about 80 of them under 50 mph in road works. But if you leave enough time it is doable.... there are plenty of camp sites in Kent all within 30 minutes of the tunnel or Dover. In Canterbury they even have an aires for over night for campers on the New Dover Road site... look on Canterbury City site (there is no height barriers) great pub / food across the road, toilets and water etc.,

    We take our American RV over a couple times a year and have done it for many a year.. France is much easier to drive in than the UK.. you do not need to pay tolls as the N roads are very good. The tunnel comes out on to the motorway direct from where you unload North or South and heading South towards Rouen the motorway is free until you get to exit 29 then just hop of the motorway on to the N route... Plenty of fuel stations.
    Would suggest you consider ADAC (breakdown assistance... hunt it down on this site for details) and also a prepaid credit card in euros... i.e something like Caxton FX card .. saves a lot on exchange rates for fuel and it does work on the town petrol stations in the middle of the night (based on Mastercard)... no good for toll payments... again check it out on the Caxton FX site.. been using it for a few years and it does what it says on the tin.

    Suggest also you get a copy of the ACIS book.. should still be able to get it from the UK agent in Folkstone or the C&CC club.. saves a fortune on site fees.

    Good luck.. any questions do ask

    Bob
     
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  9. malandee

    malandee Read Only Funster

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    Sounds Good

    Hi Derek and thanks for your message, could you advise us where you catch the euro star and where it drops you off. Anything south of Watford is foreign to us. (do oh).:Eeek:
     
  10. Munchie

    Munchie Funster Life Member

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    We are thinking of coming home via the chunnel.
    You can board at Folkestone and it takes you to just outside Calais where you are straight on to the motorway South. We will probably book it via the Caravan Club. easy peasy. :thumb:
     
  11. ShiftZZ

    ShiftZZ Funster Life Member

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  12. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    no need to venture onto the M1 and the A1 is pretty much roadwork free at the moment......

    A1 > A14 > M11 > M25 (for 16mls) > A282 (Dartford tunnel/Xing) > M25 (for 2mls) > A2 > M2 > A2 Dover
     
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  13. Jaws

    Jaws Funster Life Member

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    We always use DFDS ( Norfolk Line as was ) as it is always consistently cheaper than any other channel crossing ( though it takes a bit longer )

    For us, the time spent on the boat is time to relax, have a bit of grub and maybe a wee kip too...
     
  14. malandee

    malandee Read Only Funster

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    Brilliant

    Thanks so much for your advice, much appeiciated.We have learnt so much in the last 30 mins. Regards Mal and Dee.:BigGrin:
     
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  15. highwayman

    highwayman Funster Life Member

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    Shop at Tesco, use your club card, when they send your vouchers send them back in exchange for Eurotunnel deal tokens. You get four times the face value and if you get enough your Eurotunnel crossing will be free.
    Now your only expense is derv and time. :thumb:


    cheers nige
     
  16. lorger

    lorger Funster

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    Hi and welcome we live in the south west Scotland we have used dover to calais both with DFDS and PandO not much between them so would go with best offer. We have also used the tunnel on several occasions useing tesco vouchers to pay for it. We have also done the hull to Zeebrugge and Rotterdam and must admit it was a lot better than the drive home but lot more expensive we have thought of going via dover and returning via hull as hate the drive home round the M25.

    As been said good part is planning it and depends what you want when your there do you want all singing all dancing sites or just quiet wee site or you could use aire's or even join france passion.

    Feel free to ask loads of questions on the above
     
  17. sedge

    sedge Funster

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    You only get 3 x face value now - starting sometime last year.
     
  18. motorhomelover

    motorhomelover

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    where ever you decide to go in Europe add on a extra day for the journey out and again back road works both side of the channel will tax your driving
    better sleep and drive refreshed than risk pushing on to make up lost time :Eeek:
     
  19. motorhomelover

    motorhomelover

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    can not use the train if your MH is lpg converted
    i was thinking of not telling them :Doh::Doh:
     
  20. JOHNSTEY

    JOHNSTEY Read Only Funster

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    Hi Malandee...
    We live in Scotland and find the easiest way is to go Portsmouth/Le Havre thus avoiding the M25. If you book through the Caravan Club you can get this for £94 one way.It also saves a few hundred miles of travel if you are heading to Spain or SW France. :thumb:

    John and Carole
     
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