Dover-Calais - with bikes

Martin bikeradar
Martin bikeradar Posts: 28
edited October 2012 in Road general
I'm riding with half a dozen lads to the Gent 6 Days end of Nov, via a Dover-Calais ferry.

We can't really be precise on when we'll get to Dover, though it will likely be early evening time. We were thinking of jumping on a P&O ferry - but can't find adequate info on their website or on a bike forum about how easy/flexible this is to do.

Just turn up? Book a time and see how flexible they are [if we are late]?

Any tips on recentish experience most welcome - thanks.


  • There is a ticket office at Dover... otherwise book a time and jump whenever you arrive... I expect them to be very flexible with bikes... as they typically are flexible with cars.
    Wouldn't it be easier to get a ferry to Dunkirk?
    left the forum March 2023
  • Thanks ugo. You make it sound reassuringly easy. I expect they don't do a 'Virgin Trains' turn-up on the day and get charged a fortune?

    Does anyone know if there's no cut-off for non-car passengers? Anyone arrived very late?
  • NewTTer
    NewTTer Posts: 463
    Dont wish to sound offish, but why dont you just send an email or make a telephone call to the ACTUAL people providing the service and they can accurately answer all of your questions

    Just a thought
  • Appreciate that NewTTer - it's just that using a forum like this often brings up good ideas that a ferry co jobsworth won't do. Like going to Dunkirk.

    And I save on their ridiculous standard call charge rates.

  • Does anyone know if there's no cut-off for non-car passengers? Anyone arrived very late?

    Yeah, I was late turning up when going to Roubaix this year. I believe there isn't a charge if you are within 2 hours of your check in time (with P&O). And then they just put you on the next ferry if there is space. There wasn't space on the next ferry, so I had to wait for the one after that. But I'm guessing that's down to space for cars. I don't think you would have the same problem if your on bikes.

    *Edit* just noticed you said non-car passengers. Please ignore everything I've just said... :oops:
  • chaos75
    chaos75 Posts: 72
    We did this in September. You can book online as a foot passenger and there is an option to say you have a bike. We weren't sure of our arrival so we booked a bit later than we thought we'd need just in case. When we arrived early we were offered the option of an early ferry and were also put on first before the freight, (you have to go to the vehicle loading bit as bikes are stored on a rack on the freight deck). We locked our bikes up as well as not sure if the decks were accessible during the crossing. All in all it was pretty easy.

  • GeeSpot
    GeeSpot Posts: 17
    We had the exact same situation last year! My advice is not to pre-book for a specific time with a ferry operator that has big time gaps between sailings (as I think currently would be MyFerryLink or DFDS). The most frequent sailings are with P&O and I think it's roughly every hour or 50 minutes. If you are going at a busy period you should deifnately pre-book as the worst thing would be showing up and not having spaces for you for hours, or even the same day. Plus if you just turn up at the port you are running the risk of paying excess ticket prices as it's the 'on-the day rate' and they always seem to be higher. Give these guys a go for a quote as we booked through them last year and they gave us discounted rate as a 'group booking'.
  • +1 to Ferrysavers. Book in advance and it's dead cheap. If you get to Dover early/later it's no drama - crossings are frequent (although they stung me an extra tenner for an earlier ferry). You're on before everyone else and in the bar before the first car gets on. The interesting bit is cycling amongst the HGVs and up the ramp. In my case I was towing the trailer. It's well worth shopping around as when I went P&O were not allowing day-tripper foot passengers, for reasons unknown.
    Ecrasez l’infame
  • Mikey23
    Mikey23 Posts: 5,306
    Brittany ferries have a passenger link to bike option. Their bike rack is a bit of string and a bulkhead...

    For my group it was dead easy and we got on first