France Passion

Discussion in 'Continental Touring' started by Reallyretired, Sep 8, 2013.

  1. Reallyretired

    Reallyretired Funster

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2008
    Messages:
    5,702
    Likes Received:
    3,207
    Location:
    Eastbourne East Sussex
    We joined this for the first time this year as we had to be away in August and wanted to avoid too many site fees.
    The idea is great and the one place we did stop at was brilliant (Auberge Fleurie in Savoie), parking space was small but we had a great meal, they only open for Lunch daily except Mondays. We were offered water and a mains hookup, both of which were extra to what is required to be offered, and Shirley asked if she could buy a lettuce and was provided with a packed mixed salad, free of charge.
    Our objection is to the way France passion operates. The book of places has no index and is simply broken down into regions. A region is pretty big if you're looking for somewhere to stay. The poi file they provide is full of spurious points, deliberately I understand to avoid non members using it, and this means it cannot be used for our usual 'poi near destination', or 'poi along route' which is so useful for aires.
    Overall the difficulty in finding a site using this was so great that in 6 weeks touring we only stayed at one France Passion site. Owing to the cost of membership this cost us more than staying on an official site for one night.
    As a result we are unlikely to bother joining next year unless they improve the book/poi file. Even a simple index by main town would be better than nothing.
    How do others find it?
     
    • Like Like x 1
  2. PeterCarole29

    PeterCarole29 Read Only Funster

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2013
    Messages:
    51
    Likes Received:
    20
    Location:
    Colchester
    Hi, We have enjoyed using the sites for 1 yr.My wife says she uses a Michelin map to find the village we would then put in the sat nav the village and posibly the church rd as address.When arriving look for the sign.Not sure but i think they do give a longditude and latitude reference but our sat navs dont work with them unless you have a more up market one. Its not ideal but is worth the effort .
     
  3. Phill D

    Phill D

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2011
    Messages:
    4,414
    Likes Received:
    4,632
    Location:
    South Wales
    we also joined this year to try it out. had very mixed feelings, visited three places; stopped at none :Doh:

    a vineyard, we arrived around 2 pm no other vans about then we found out probably why ; we were told to go away until 4 pm when the vineyard shop opened, could not even wait in the " very rough parking area"; i went through the recommended introduction protocol and was not too politely waved away by the owner. so away we went, never to return.

    a farm shop type outlet. very nice people bought a few bits and moved on. there was a very tight area right next to the shop where we could park which was also used by " normal customers" so less than idilic.

    an olive oil place, fantastic olive oil :thumb: mud patch to park on:Doh:

    after these experiences could not convince SWMBO to try another.

    we may just have been unlucky.:Eeek:
     
  4. lowgill

    lowgill Funster

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2013
    Messages:
    55
    Likes Received:
    35
    Location:
    lancashire
    Lowgil

    Hi we are currently at a France passion stop Douvres la Delivrande not using co-ordinates just using sat nav to find town and then location out of France passion book. Free hook up here. Stayed last night at Bretteville du Grand Cayx this was a very clean cider farm, toilet and water available free of charge. Bought two excellent bottles of cider after having tasting. Found location as above, no problem hope this continues through out our two months stay over here.
    Hope this may be of help to someone.

    Kevin and Lynne
     
    • Like Like x 2
  5. Coolbeanz

    Coolbeanz Funster

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2013
    Messages:
    1,369
    Likes Received:
    1,927
    Location:
    Capel St Mary
    We stayed at a fabulous vineyard near Bordeaux, no EHU or anything but there was a water tap. Lovely gravelled area with room for 5 vehicles on the edge of the vineyard. We bought some lovely wine at a very good price after being invited to a wine tasting. They also allow non France Passion motorhomers to stay at a charge of €3 per night. We were asked how long we'd like to stay so they don't expect you to leave after 1 night. We found it easily from the directions in the book. :BigGrin:
     
    • Like Like x 1
  6. Larby

    Larby Funster

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2012
    Messages:
    1,675
    Likes Received:
    3,869
    Location:
    North Essex
    Tried France Passion for the 1st time last month. Seems I must have had a transfer error onto my sat-nav and ended up near an empty field. Tried to compensate but the instructions were too sparse i.e. follow D796 for 2 kms then turn left, site will be found on left some way along this road ! Follow for 2kms starting from where exactly ?? from a main road village with several turnings to the left.
    We found another site nearby and did succesfully find the site using the sparse directions after 3 failed attempts to find the 1st one using the directions!

    I agree that it is difficult to pin-point the sites from the book as the place names are quite meaningless. To be fair, the sat-nav does show the nearest "coded" site but as I said, there was a transfer error and none were accurate?
    I tried to re-load but couldn't.
    I'm sure it can work well but found "All the Aires" to be the chosen book and that doesn't have to be renewed each year either.
     
  7. brynric

    brynric Funster

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2009
    Messages:
    328
    Likes Received:
    310
    Location:
    Worcestershire
    We've read some great reviews of FP sites but we haven't had much luck. Some have been very difficult to find and some places locked and obviously closed off season. Others have had unsuitable or unsightly parking spots. We have found a couple of attractive ones but its a small percentage. Maybe we've been unlucky so far.
    We visited one in Alsace which was beautifully situated on a vineyard. The owner gave us a free bottle of wine and invited us to an extensive tasting with some others. Despite the lack of common language it was quite clear that sales were expected and we ended up spending quite a lot. .
    With the excellent range of aires available I don't think we'll join FP next year.
    I think the Germans had a system called the Green Onion(?) which appears to have folded
    On a different note, so far we've found Britstops to be excellent. Maybe site-owners are trying harder as its relatively new in the Uk.
     
  8. Mr Colpot

    Mr Colpot Funster

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2009
    Messages:
    686
    Likes Received:
    240
    Location:
    West Sussex
    We used it in 2008 and again a couple of years ago and I would use it again. We had fun finding some sites, found some that were unsuitable (Building Site, No room to park) but we also stayed on some stunning sites and brought some great wines/fruit and veg etc)
    We never had anything less than a warm welcome, got very tipsy at one vineyard where the owner thought we should drink whole glasses when tasting various bottles of his Muscadet, and similarly sitting in one lady's kitchen trying her home made liquers made the walk back to the Van a wobbly one.
    I found the map and the book ok tended to put the village in and then follow the directions.
     
  9. hoot007

    hoot007 Funster

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2010
    Messages:
    260
    Likes Received:
    266
    Location:
    trawden lancs
    We are on the ferry and hopefully trying our first FP tonight, if we can find it.

    Joyce :Smile:
     
  10. Heyupluv

    Heyupluv Read Only Funster

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2008
    Messages:
    3,862
    Likes Received:
    1,585
    Location:
    France,
    We purchased it for two years running and was given our third year free when we purchased our Rapido....We would never use it, or buy it, or accept it free again ...a lot of the french motorhomers ...complain about it.....:Doh:
     
  11. Coolbeanz

    Coolbeanz Funster

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2013
    Messages:
    1,369
    Likes Received:
    1,927
    Location:
    Capel St Mary
    perhaps what we need is to gather reviews of FP sites that people would recommend (or not as the case may be), in the same vein as the Funsters Favourite Aires. It could be done without giving away the exact address so wouldn't compromise anything :BigGrin:
     
    • Like Like x 1
  12. The Wino

    The Wino Funster

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2012
    Messages:
    1,114
    Likes Received:
    1,996
    Location:
    leicester
    We tried France Passion and All The Aires this year for our first motorhome trip to France.

    France Passion was useless first one full with 3 motorhomes (said in the book could take 4 to 5) next one owner out two more couldn't find them.:Sad:

    Aires brilliant stayed 10 nights in France cost 11 euros total (couldn't find a free one in Le Touquet):Smile:

    Are the aires as good in Germany?
     
  13. hoot007

    hoot007 Funster

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2010
    Messages:
    260
    Likes Received:
    266
    Location:
    trawden lancs
    We are having no problem finding the FP sites and now on our third one. All offering free tastings, the one tonight is exceptionally good staggered into the wrong Motorhome lol :Rofl1:

    Joyce
     
    • Like Like x 1
  14. lowgill

    lowgill Funster

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2013
    Messages:
    55
    Likes Received:
    35
    Location:
    lancashire
    Hi, we are presently in France having a great time on France Passion this is the 3rd stop, 2 on different cider farms both excellent with plenty of tastings. We managed to get back to our motorhome and low and behold a knock on the door two other drunksters (funsters ) who had been tasting arrived we invited them in but we did know them. On the 3rd stop they bred angora rabbits for their wool that was very interesting. No problem finding any of them. :Laughing::Smile:
     
  15. DP_JAY

    DP_JAY Funster Life Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    Messages:
    1,797
    Likes Received:
    1,022
    Location:
    Cark, Cumbria
    We tried it without the satnav & found it impossible to use.
    Just had two weeks & each one we found was not suitable so went on to aires each time instead

    We won't bother with it again.
     
  16. BritStops

    BritStops Trader BritStop Owner

    Joined:
    May 31, 2010
    Messages:
    425
    Likes Received:
    540
    Location:
    Cambs
    I'd agree it's maybe not the most intuitive of books to use when trying to locate the stopovers, but we got the hang of it pretty quickly.

    I think we only found one site that we weren't that keen on, as it was a bit industrial and open to the road, but other than that all our FP stopovers were very positive experiences. It was great meeting the locals and tasting the produce (the honey, venison and home-made quiche which the farmer's wife insisted on heating up for us all stand out) and of course tasting the wine. And some of the spots were absolutely beautiful.

    In fact we had such a good time using FP - we came home and copied it! :Laughing:

    Steve :Smile:
     
    • Like Like x 3
  17. Chockswahay

    Chockswahay Funster

    Joined:
    May 29, 2012
    Messages:
    3,095
    Likes Received:
    4,767
    Ere! we're off to France and I bought FP off Ebay for arf price :BigGrin: so gonna give them a bash:Smile:

    Any chance those of you that have had positive experiences could at least list the nearest town or village so that we could have a look in our book?

    :thumb:
     
  18. Coolbeanz

    Coolbeanz Funster

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2013
    Messages:
    1,369
    Likes Received:
    1,927
    Location:
    Capel St Mary
    I can name mine as they advertise that they take camping cars. It's free if you are using FP otherwise it's €3 per night. It is Chateau Saint Ahon at Blanquefort, Bordeaux. www.saintahon.com :thumb: There is a lovely shop on site with lots of goodies to tempt you and they invite you to a wine tasting if you're interested :BigGrin:
     
    • Like Like x 1
  19. Roxie

    Roxie Funster

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Messages:
    126
    Likes Received:
    100
    Location:
    Newbury
    I think we must have been lucky when we travelled through France using a combination of Aires and FP in April.

    In fact the wine from a vineyard we stayed at in the Loire (Drain - P.321 of this years' guide) was so good, we're planning to go back. We also developed a taste for Ostrich steaks; and have wonderful memories of tasting Cognac (and fresh white asparagus) at 10am one sunny morning.

    We had no problem finding any of them using the GPS locator you can download as a member. We always had a 2nd one lined up or an Aire - in case we didn't like the look of one.

    I also did quite a bit of research before travelling, checking for farm/vineyard websites and also using the little "walking man" in Google to check roads/access.

    The beauty of France is that you have so many options ....unlike in the UK. Well done to Steve at BritStops - it's a great initiative, and we'll keep recommending locations as we find them.
     
  20. lowgill

    lowgill Funster

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2013
    Messages:
    55
    Likes Received:
    35
    Location:
    lancashire
    Lowgil

    We are still travelling around using France Passion it's great we are currently in the south of France at a vineyard. Just had a tasting and bought some brill wine yet again at reasonable price. They also grow olives but too soon for olive oil. We continue to find the Passion sites without much bother, just use book and map. Us and friends hoot007 continuing around France for a few weeks yet. I had a fall at the beginning of the week so now have a pot to carry around on my arm. The French hospitals have been brill been three times to two different ones , will have to go again before we go home for X-ray they even let me have the pictures to take home. We will carry on enjoying ourselves, even through hubby has a lot more work to do!!!:Smile::thumb:
     
    • Like Like x 1
Loading...

Share This Page