Driving up through France to Caen. Gilets Jaunes. (1 Viewer)

Aug 31, 2009
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Hi All

We are driving up from SW France to Ouistreham (Caen) early next week and wonder what are the current best travel times (? at night) to avoid the gilets jaunes (french motorists who are protesting against recent fuel tax increases and blocking many roads). I know the situation is fluid.

Our ferry is at 8.30 am so we thought we would either park up about 50 km south of Caen the night before, and set off early, or maybe spend the night on the ferry terminal if secure???. We have previously stopped overnight at the Ouistreham aire but the Missus is nervous about migrants rattling at the windows overnight. And so am I...

So that is two bits of advice needed if anyone has been that way recently.

Thanks in advance

Peter
 
May 7, 2011
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Not been that way recently, but we always use the aire at Hermanville sur mer , free aire with water etc no ehu.
its behind a small parade of shops ,
gps 49.286322, -0.312100
Rue Verte .
 
May 7, 2011
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Hi again , I forgot to say it's about 10 mins drive from Ouistreham ferry , we've stopped several times never seen any migrants & def no problems , not been there for the last year , just around the corner from boulangerie.
 

Khizzie

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My daughter drove from my place near Périgueux via Angoulême , then on toll roads the rest of the way to Ouistreham with no major issues last Friday.
 

cbrown1360

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Stay at the aire in Hermanville. Quiet village about 20 min drive from ferry port. Visit the WW2 cemetery - very interesting
 

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May 7, 2011
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Stay at the aire in Hermanville. Quiet village about 20 min drive from ferry port. Visit the WW2 cemetery - very interesting

We were there 2017 june 6th , lovely ceremony
small company of british soldiers in attendance
with a Piper & a couple of buglers
local children placed a flower (gerbera ) on every grave.
 

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peter21
Aug 31, 2009
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Thanks to all for your comments...Hermanville looks like a good stopover.
I have the satnav app Waze on my phone which gives a real time picture of blockages on the french roads. It has been very useful already in avoiding the gilets jaunes hereabouts.
Macron is due to make an announcement today at 10.30 french time..it will be very interesting to see what he comes up with as the gilets jaunes are now well entrenched and have a lot of popular support.
 

spitfire

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Thanks to all for your comments...Hermanville looks like a good stopover.
I have the satnav app Waze on my phone which gives a real time picture of blockages on the french roads. It has been very useful already in avoiding the gilets jaunes hereabouts.
Macron is due to make an announcement today at 10.30 french time..it will be very interesting to see what he comes up with as the gilets jaunes are now well entrenched and have a lot of popular support.
Not sure about the popular support . Not with my neighbours and when out in the car yesterday there were more cars without gilet than with . In the major towns you get the anarchists who love a riot . There are certainly lots who have gripes with the government but don’t think this is the way to voice them .
 

Lot lover

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As per normal, demonstrators like union members are in the minority yet their action or inaction make life difficult for the rest. Unfortunately you can't have freedom of speech etc without breaking a few eggs.

I will be returning to our bit of heaven on Sunday next so will probably take the A roads from Calais to Brive and just hope that the gilets jaunes stay out of the fast lanes.

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peter21
Aug 31, 2009
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Not sure about the popular support . Not with my neighbours and when out in the car yesterday there were more cars without gilet than with . In the major towns you get the anarchists who love a riot . There are certainly lots who have gripes with the government but don’t think this is the way to voice them .

Yes....our friends in the village are also generally hacked off with the gilets jaunes but franceinfo (French news feed) this morning stated that 2 out of 3 French supported the gj’s.

The demonstrators can certainly be aggressive and unpleasant. Another riot (aka demonstration) is planned for the Champs Élysées this Saturday.

La grève...the strike...is a national sport in France. A Ukrainian friend tells me that grève was the first French word she learned. She is just impressed that you can demonstrate here without being shot.
 
Apr 27, 2008
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Went over on a booze cruise to Calais yesterday. By tunnel as there is a special offer on. Heavy police presence and scorch marks on the road but no protesters seen. Increased security at the tunnel which was not busy.
 
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peter21
Aug 31, 2009
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Does anyone know how long these protests are likely to go on for? Is there a website or other source of information?
Basically I want to know if we will be affected during our prospective trip at the end of December ...

Hi, no sign of backing down on either side this morning. I'm guessing it won't be resolved quickly.
the french v-traffic site gives real time updates:

http://www.v-traffic.com

Also I use the waze smartphone app for sat nav plus traffic updates (free).

We will be coming back to France in late december, Cumbria to Lot-et-Garonne. We will carry some spare diesel in case of fuel shortages then.
 
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peter21
Aug 31, 2009
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"@peter21 you'll be going in the same direction as us, as we're heading down to spend NYE with friends who live just outside Oradour sur Vayres.
Current plan is to take the Poole Cherbourg crossing on 29th."

We are also crossing on the 29th, Portsmouth to Caen in our case, we will get to Portsmouth midnight ish, spend the night on the quayside, get the 8.30 ferry. I'll keep the thread updated on the French traffic, both ways. Apparently many petrol stations north of Rouen are shut at the moment.

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Aug 18, 2011
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Not sure about the popular support . Not with my neighbours and when out in the car yesterday there were more cars without gilet than with . In the major towns you get the anarchists who love a riot . There are certainly lots who have gripes with the government but don’t think this is the way to voice them .

They could do what us Brits do, moan and write a letter to The Times and then just put up with it.BUSBY:LOL::LOL:
 

Lot lover

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One's level of sympathy with the protestors is largely determined by the level of inconvenience suffered due to their actions.

I was delayed a bit on my way to Calais, I don't expect to be delayed on my way home but will suffer a bit cash flow wise as I plan to use all A roads. Once I am back on my hill I don't expect to suffer at all.

Topped up car tank which should be enough for the 625 mile journey and after that will just have to wait and see.

I know that others will suffer far greater inconvenience but I cannot carry the woes of the world on my shoulders.
 
Aug 18, 2014
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She is just impressed that you can demonstrate here without being shot.
Yes it does make you laugh.:LOL:

Does anyone know how long these protests are likely to go on for?
Until the price drops to 45c probably. You have to remember also that things like this drop off the radar as non-news the longer they go on. we are now nearly into our 4th year of weekly French air traffic control strikes. Most people don't realise until they occasionally get a flight cancelled.

I do admire the French getting up and doing something about an injustice. A 23% increase in fuel prices in 12 months and 2 more increases due in 2019 is too much too soon for many who can't afford it.

Thanks for the v traffic link peter21, very detailed
Especially when the price is dropping quickly here. 9% in the last 10 days .(y) 1,12€ in many garages.
 
Aug 18, 2011
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Yes it does make you laugh.:LOL:

Until the price drops to 45c probably. You have to remember also that things like this drop off the radar as non-news the longer they go on. we are now nearly into our 4th year of weekly French air traffic control strikes. Most people don't realise until they occasionally get a flight cancelled.


Especially when the price is dropping quickly here. 9% in the last 10 days .(y) 1,12€ in many garages.
1.30 Gus back here at our local Sainsburys,,,:mad::mad: BUSBY.
 
Feb 29, 2012
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Hello,
There were a few protesters around our town of Surgeres when I went for fuel last week but no real problem
We drove up from the La Rochelle area Last Sunday, Very few yellow gilets about on the route we take,D115, D114 E83 & N137. towards St Malo. On the autoroutes the Protesters have taken over the toll booths, the barriers are open & the yellow gilets are just there to take your toll ticket. No charge & No hassle at all.
There were the odd blockade or 2 around Dinan on Monday & Tuesday but any hold up was minimal.
Barrie.

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peter21
Aug 31, 2009
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We drove to Château Gontier, in Mayenne, today, lovely free aire overlooking the river. No problems with traffic. Just a few groups of gilets jaunes camped on roundabouts, not stopping anyone. The French government has caved in today and frozen fuel tax increases for 6 months, so I guess things may get back to normal now. We head off to Hermanville sur Mer tomorrow.
 

Lot lover

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The gilets jaunes were out and about in Gramat sunshine this lunchtime. Clustered by the StCere roundabout but not stopping the traffic though some drivers chose to stop and chat.

3 gendarmes in attendance but keeping out of the way.
 
Oct 12, 2008
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You can drive any time anywhere as long as it is not a saturday.
The main towns to totally avoid on saturdays are of course Paris, and then Bordeaux and Toulouse.

How long will it last? ... No one knows but I do hope it'll stop quickly, I get fed up with the whole thing
 
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