Is it worth it???

Discussion in 'Continental Touring' started by BreweryDave, Mar 13, 2014.

  1. BreweryDave

    BreweryDave Funster Life Member

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    We will be off to France (maybe popping into Belgium for some cheap smokes!) for 2 weeks in early June. (straight after the Kent show:thumb:)

    I plan to 'roam' aimlessly, use aires when I find them (easy apparently!) and maybe stay on a site or two depending on what takes our fancy - in Brittany probably.

    Will only be this 2 weeks this year, and probably the same again next.

    My first question is - is it worth buying the ACSI card for just this period, and would it even be valid in June? (my understanding is its a low season discount card) Dont intend being on a site for more than a week in the middle of this 2 weeks period, and don't want to restrict my choice!

    Secondly - the highly reccomended All The Aires book - again, is it worth it for just a short break? I believe I am right in saying aires are easy to find at just about every town you come accross !!!

    When we retire in 2 years and spend most of our time touring, I reckon both of these are a must - but for a short trip once a year????
    .....would rather spend the dosh on vino:BigGrin:

    Thoughts from you more experienced eurohoppers appreciated:thanks2:
     
  2. scousebird

    scousebird Funster

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    We've been going out of season for the last 2 years - 3 times a year. We have the aires book as it is handy for reference but we have also found aires not listed in the book. Not bothered with ACSI as mainly used municipal sites, which are reasonably priced anyway and for the odd couple of nights on a commercial site it's not worth it.

    Just our view on it.

    Enjoy, whatever you do.
     
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  3. campingcar9

    campingcar9 Funster

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    I think it is worth it

    Dear Brewery Dave :Smile: I say yes you will have info.that is always handy ,enjoy Bormy
     
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  4. gozomike

    gozomike Funster Life Member Life Member

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    I find the Aires book worthwhile, I am not sure I would find the aires that easily without it, also you can get a good idea of the various Aires before going to them. If I find additional ones I do send them in.

    For what you are planning I agree with the comments on the Municipal Sites, they are usually good and cheap.

    I have also booked for the Kent Show and a ferry for the 2nd with the initial plan of the Rhine and ending at the Amateur Radio show in Friedrichshafen 27-29 June.
     
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  5. BreweryDave

    BreweryDave Funster Life Member

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    We are on the 12.15 DFDS Dover Calais on the 2nd:thumb:

    Looked at the municipal sites - quite fancy one at concarneau, les sables blancs - right on the beach!:BigGrin: See what the weather does - if its crap could end up going inland - might even follow you to Germany:Wink:
     
  6. Sheddy

    Sheddy Funster

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    The ACSI card will almost certainly be Ok to use in June sites tend to restrict access on the card in July and August however we have found sites available into the second week of July and from the last week in August.
    Finding aires without knowing their location would not be very easy for most locations.
    There are lots of options open to you we do use the municipal sites which can be very cheap and tidy. Try these links you may be able to plan a route.
    http://www.camping-municipal.org/index.htm
    http://www.i-campingcar.fr/accueilcartes.htm
    http://www.aire-service-camping-car-panoramique.fr/
     
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  7. JeanLuc

    JeanLuc Funster

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    If you want to find aires in France (and in many other countries too) my strong recommendation is to use this website.
    http://www.campingcar-infos.com/index1.htm

    You can buy a downloadable version for the laptop or tablet if you wish, and / or download a POI set free for your SatNav -if you use one.

    CC-Infos is our 'bible' for touring, supplemented by the book 'Camperstop' and other website POIs, notably NKC.
    http://www.nkc.nl/index.php?cms[categoryID]=27

    In the left hand menu under 'camperplaatsen' you will see POI Campercontact'
     
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  8. gozomike

    gozomike Funster Life Member Life Member

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    I am booked on the 16:00 Dover Dunquirk and aim to stay on the aires at Bergues :Smile:
     
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  9. chaser

    chaser Funster

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    I would go for the All the aires book and maybe France passion, both £25 I think but you will find plenty free spots in them and you can use them next year as well.
     
  10. chaser

    chaser Funster

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    Also have a look at apps, airescampingcars and park4night, first ones 50p the second free, both tell you the nearest aires to wherever you are at the time.:thumb:
     
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  11. Reallyretired

    Reallyretired Funster

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    The ACSI book is worth it for two weeks if you are using sites, as some pretty pricey sites are in it. One we stayed at in Spain was saving us €30 a night. OK it's a bit academic as we wouldn't have stayed there without the discount. You can usually save the cost, just staying a couple of nights on sites so I would say always worthwhile.
    Most towns & many villages have aires, but sometimes the signposting is not great, so an aires book or the free POI files are very useful. The advantage of the books is that you can see what the aire is like before going to it, there are however many aires that are not in the book (including, the last time I looked, the Bergues aire mentioned above)

    We often use the Bergues aire for a night or two before coming back. It is a pleasant town with a brilliant cheese shop. The aire has no water or dumping though, and stay is theoretically limited to 2 nights. Without dumping facilities I couldn't stay longer anyway.
     
  12. TheBig1

    TheBig1 Funster Life Member

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    the satnav POI files are a must as you cant read the book whilst driving
     
  13. WynandJean

    WynandJean Funster

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    You may wish to consider the official French guide to Aires.

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Guide-offic...TF8&qid=1394726792&sr=8-1&keywords=campingcar

    It tends to be more 'complete' and the fact that it is French makes no difference. Street names etc. are the same in any language. Also agree with the online apps as being very useful.
    This one:

    https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=org.tbag.aires

    Will list the aires nearby, wherever you happen to be and list them in order by distance. :thumb:

    Wyn
     
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  14. motorhome42

    motorhome42 Funster

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    All the aires

    I would recommend getting the aires book. You can also go into the nearest tourist info office (in France wherever you are) and ask for a map of the region showing motor home stops. We have found some lovely places this way which have not been marked in the aires book.

    Enjoy your trip

    Mark
     
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  15. BreweryDave

    BreweryDave Funster Life Member

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    Thanks for all your advice:thumb:
    It seems the aires book and sat nav poi is the way to go
    Are these books available at the shows or only online?
    Also - have never used poi. Have a snooper S7000 Ventura. It has acsi and camperstop built in - so can you download aires on to it??? Wouldn't know how!
    And have never input coordinates as have never used it abroad!
     
  16. gozomike

    gozomike Funster Life Member Life Member

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    http://www.all-the-aires.com/

    or they are usually available at Peterborough
     
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  17. magicsurfbus

    magicsurfbus Funster

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    With all due respect to the effort that goes into compiling the aire books I never use them.

    I plan the trip using the CCI website (free).

    I download and install the full CCI SatNav POI a couple of days before setting off (free).

    As a back up I install the CCI phone app but rarely use it because of overseas data charges.
     
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  18. SMB

    SMB Funster

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    I have only been traveling for a year now and bought the All the Aires books, ACSI card etc and save all the websites suggested on the posts to my favorites on my browser. The information out there both free and paid is overwhelming at times, I recently discovered Microsoft Autoroute after playing around with POI downloads for my satnav on my iphone etc. Throw in Google Earth downloads and other apps and you have an unbelievable database of information. Probably the most helpful item in my very limited experience has been the ACSI DVD which gives you a visual display of all the various sites visited by ACSI, as well as letting you filter the information to suit your needs i.e opening times of campsites, when the ACSI card is accepted, site facilities etc as well as co-ordinates for your satnav. You can view a site and save it as a favorite as well. I visit the ACSI eurocampings website ( http://beta.eurocampings.co.uk/ ) to view all the reviews for sites that I was interested in and there is now an app available for smartphones which is working okay on my android phone so far. But, as you can see from the previous posts, there is an unbelievable amount of information out there.
     
  19. TheCaller

    TheCaller Funster

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    Only indirectly. Snooper have a selection of POI files available in their own format that you can download & use to update your unit.

    See https://www.snooperneo.co.uk/POI_list.cfm

    As you will see from that page, if you have a POI file that is not available already, you can send it to them to have it converted. I've no idea how long it takes, as I've never done it. You may also need to show that the file is copyright free or that you have the necessary rights to it. If it's both copyright free & of general use, I think they then add it to the list for anyone else to download.

    You can also update the POI files that came with the unit.
     
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