Brittany Ferries

Brittany Ferries, Santander: Address, Phone Number, Brittany Ferries Reviews: 3.5/5

Brittany Ferries
3.5
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Sail with Brittany Ferries from Portsmouth, Poole or Plymouth direct to France and Spain. Our routes take you closer to popular holiday destinations, saving miles of driving, fuel costs, tolls and overnight stops. Choose either superb comfort of a cruise ferry, no-frills economie service or speed across The Channel on our fast craft.
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3.5
173 reviews
Excellent
51
Very good
56
Average
26
Poor
12
Terrible
28

Alladinsane
Menton, France4 contributions
Couples
I have used all the ships on the Santander route.The Pont Aven on the Santander to Plymouth, the largest in their fleet. No complaints. Losers of areas to relax on board cafe style and full service restaurants as well as bars and entertainment.
On the routes to Portsmouth they have a new ship “Galacia”. A smaller vessel. Lots of modern facilities in cabin..TVs with movies that can also be streamed to tablets.
However, the ship now takes two overnights to reach Spain, leaving late evening and arriving early morning. This appears good timings but does drag out the journey to 33hours some ten hours longer than the previous ship. Because of the extended journey time a breakfast and dinner are included in the fare ( the increased fare reflects this). Don’t forget to take your complimentary breakfast on the first morning.
Dinner is not a pleasant experience. They operate a “rota” with set times according to your cabin number. This causes a massive bottle neck and queues snake down the corridor to the restaurant. The food however, was quite good. There is little option of relaxing areas on deck the bar is tiny. They attempt to get you to upgrade to a “lounge” the only place really for a social drink…more expense. There is also a lack of eateries when the restaurant I’d closed…this makes the 30 hour plus journey seem to take forever.
Written July 18, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

John m
Edinburgh, UK11 contributions
We travel at least once a year with the car so we go from Bilbao - Portsmouth, we returned to Portsmouth from Bilbao 20th July . boarding went well and found our comfortable 2 berth cabin easily , as usual the crew were excellent and helpful at all times , now here comes the problem it’s called the salad bar ( restaurant) it’s terrible unnecessary delays getting food , when it arrives it’s of poor quality and presentation, the actual sitting area is very depressing and very draughty .
On our return August 11th same again we went for a lunch snack as we had booked the a la carte Restaurant for our evening meal it was an absolute shambles , we went at 12.30, 7 customers in front of us and we waited 20 minutes , when we arrived at the counter I can only say what food was available was so poorly presented it just put us off . I will say we had a wonderful Commodore suite and the staff as always were very helpful. Try and sort out The Salad Bar .
Written August 13, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

HubbardSJ
Salisbury, UK3 contributions
Four of us, two motorcycles and one car, travelled out on the Pont Aven, to Santander, having done so for many years and on its predecessors. Undoubtedly the best way to sail to Spain in terms of the speed and facilities on board.

There was one disappointment however - the Flora restaurant buffet 1st course, normally fantastic, was entirely missing.

I know the website says the experience would be different due to Covid, but there was a buffet for breakfast so it must have been a cost saving exercise, not a Covid safety measure, due to the lost revenue during Covid restrictions.

The a la carte first course looked great on the menu but was a let down when it arrived. The "gallette'" turned out to be a wafer about 2 square cm, the smoked salmon some tiny cubes, and the white cheesy main component was bland and watery, so was not eaten. A shame as the visual presentation was good.

Now I know customer services sometimes reply on here saying this should be raised at the time but it would be good if they also said that the feedback on here is actually fed back to the relevant management.

But apart from the food, the experience on the Pont Aven was great, very polite and helpful staff and it's such a great ship.

Our return was on the Salamanca. I had read some reviews on here and was not looking forward to it. But actually I thought it was good. The cabin, an inside 4 berth, was great, roomier, smart and even had English and European plug sockets, and USB charger sockets too.

Two things which could be improved... The food in the restaurant, looks good on the menu, is well presented, but oh dear it's lukewarm on arrival. In taste and texture, more like school dinners. Luckily we had booked the commodore lounge so just had the snacks in there for the rest of our meals.

Which leads to the second area for improvement.

The commodore lounge is very good. But it has very limited capacity. Tough luck if it's sold out. I wonder if Brittany Ferries will see the sense in enlarging it or creating another on board?

But these two matters aside, a good experience.

I'll be back in mid September with a larger group, on the Galicia, let's see how that compares!
Written June 19, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Paul Cracknell
Brighton, UK6 contributions
My wife and I travelled from Santander to Portsmouth on Sunday 10th July on board Galicia, one of the companies newest vessels. It was a very hot day and there was no evidence of air conditioning on board. We later discovered that the only part of the ship which was relatively cool was the C Club lounge.

Included in the price of the cabin is the provision of an evening meal and a breakfast. You later discover is that you are required to stand in a queue for anything up to 30 minutes (reminiscent of queueing for school dinners) to receive the evening meal that is provided at a time allotted when boarding. I kept seeing signs indicating what was available in the ‘a la carte’ restaurant but it appears not to be a restaurant at all, but instead a self service cafeteria where you collect a tray and walk through selecting the food you wish to eat, If you can find waiter service on ferries running between Dover to Calais, it must surely be both possible and desirable on a service with passage time exceeding 24hrs.

There is a Tapas bar which was adequate, no more or less.
The C club lounge is a comfortable peaceful place to sit and has complimentary drinks and snacks.

Having done some research I find the company flagship does provide improved facilities, including a proper restaurant and even a swimming pool and cinema, but only operates between Ireland and France. The Galicia is a cruise ferry in name only. It is no better than any ferry operating in the English Channel. Indeed in some respects it is not as good. It is just bigger.

When making a booking, you are not given the option of selecting a ferry. You can only select dates and then you are informed which vessel you will travel on.

Personally, I feel cheated. I read through the website but clearly not in sufficient detail. I did not get the service I thought I was paying for. I will not use the service again.
Written July 18, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Choke dee
1 contribution
I had tried for weeks to book a pet friendly cabin and in fact tied right up to the day before sailing but couldn't get one, so my dog had to go into the 'kennels'. Horrible, horrible. horrible experience for her and us. There were no happy dogs in there, continual crying and barking and my dog was clearly traumatised by being in there. The 'kennels' are no more than metal cages with holes in the floors. Two levels and in a very dark little room. The room was hosed out in the evening but that's all so it is smelly as well. The area where you can walk your dog is very small with no seating or anywhere to shelter if it is rainy or cold. Most customers cleaned up the poo after their dogs but many just left the pee although there were two hoses there. The area was open to everyone on the ship and popular with the 'smokers' so many times you had to walk through a fug of smoke while walking your dog. Not the healthiest of walks at all. We spent most of our time on this trip in the dog walking area, taking our dog out of her kennel as much as possible. It actually took her weeks to recover from being in the 'kennels' and I would never ever put any dog through that again.
On to the food. Dire, just awful. For dinner I had pasta which actually was cold so not nice at all. My son had some kind of stew and although he said it tasted ok it too was cold. In the morning we paid for a hot breakfast rather than eat the continental as it consisted only of jam to put on your roll. The 'hot' breakfast was also cold! There seems to be a major problem with keeping food hot! I had my own kettle so managed to have coffee in our cabin and had also taken stuff for sandwiches with us so at least we had some kind of food.
Never used the wifi because refused to pay the exorbitant price for it.
This was our first time using Brittany ferries and never again. It is all about money with them and definitely not about customer or animal care.
Written August 22, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Good Afternoon volks30 I am sorry to hear that you were unable to book a pet friendly cabin on your recent sailing. They are always very popular and do get booked up very quickly once our schedules are available.We do get cancellations from time to time and our agents will always be able to check availability for you and look at alternative sailings should you be flexible with your dates and routes. We do provide the facilities for owners to clean up after their pets and would ask that they are respectful of this for the comfort of other passengers travelling with their much loved pets. If ever you are left disappointed with any aspect of your travel, be it the accommodation. pet facilities or the standard of food onboard, please feel that you can report it to the crew onboard as this gives them the opportunity to put things right for you, as we do not want you to be left unhappy. We thank you for choosing to travel with us and hope that despite your recent disappointment we can look forward to welcoming you onboard again at some point. Kind regards Alison Brittany Ferries
Written August 26, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Odefrt
Stockport, UK55 contributions
We booked a return ferry trip with Brittany ferries to Spain for a 70th birthday treat, a motorcycle tour of the Picos, this has been amended & amended, now until next year when I'll be almost 73, getting on a bit for riding mountain passes, so it'll not happen now. If we cancel, BF have said they keep our £1100, all thanks to Covid.

When the Government tell us it's not safe to go, we don't go. BF say it's in our T&C that our economy (£1100 ticket for 2 of us overnight in a cabin) booking is non-refundable, if we had booked a flexi ticket that was an extra £190, we may have got some of it refunded.

We have also toured by car for the past 10 years & would have continued doing so in the future, but silly to risk this level of loss again. Rather shortsighted of BF.

We had also booked a P&O Hull/Zeebrugge ferry by car for last year on similar basis, we were refunded the full cost, without asking.
Written August 17, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Gary W
Idanha-a-Nova, Portugal279 contributions
Solo
I was very happy with my journey from Bilbao to Portsmouth on Cap Finistere, at odds with some of the other curmudgeonly reviews I read.
The all French staff were superb - very professional and customer focussed. There is lots of fresh food is provided - I managed to have a breakfast, lunch and two dinners on my trip. Food is pretty good in the circumstances of a ferry, there is an attempt at a classy environment at least, (Unfortunately not appreciated by a small minority of my fellow Brits whose attitude and manners were embarrassing). The a la carte restaurant has a very nice set menu for about €30 and an good wine list at a fair price. Cabins are clean and comfortable. The whole experience is pleasurable. It gets 5 stars based on a balance of value and quality.
The wine list is in the a la carte restaurant is actually quite good and goes beyond commercial and is 100% French aside from a small Spanish section.
I asked for a Sancerre to go with my salmon. They didn’t have that but they suggested Menetou-Salon (which was my second choice anyway) and one of 6 Loire whites they have.
There are also plenty of bars to keep you lubricated. One thing to bear in mind is this: Though this is a French ship the vast majority of the customers are British* so the ship defaults to British time but more importantly it defaults paying for anything to pound sterling. Though the prices are available in euros when paying, it has a very poor conversion rate if you buy in euros. So best to use a sterling payment card if possible.

* on my journey the ship was loaded to the gunnels with British retirees returning from their Portuguese and Spanish retreats!
Written August 4, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Smaagris
Guildford, UK20 contributions
We recently travelled with Brittany Ferries from Portsmouth to Caen which we have done regularly for the past 20 years as property owners.
We were travelling with our dog. When we needed to change our booking we could not do this online as their system does not allow bookings with dogs to be change online. Calling to change the booking took nearly a day to get through and then 50 minutes on hold (no info on where you are in the queue), Various "excuses" as to why they do not answer their phones and that they are so busy. The ferry was pretty empty. They told me that they are planning to change their system to enable bookings with dogs to be changed online (but they have been saying this for 20 years so I'm not holding my breath). The crossing was pretty empty both ways and the food awful. Cabins clean. Boarding efficient. No board staff mostly pleasant.
Written May 27, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Good Morning Smaagris I am sorry to hear that you were not able to amend your booking online due to the pets on your booking. Our web developers are developing this and it will happen in due course, to enable you to amend online, so thank you for your patience. I apologise for the wait time in trying to speak to us at this exceptionally busy time. We are doing all we can to improve our service, we are taking on more staff also to assist us with the volume of calls coming in to the contact centre, as we do understand the frustration with this. If ever you are disappointed with the services onboard, please report them at the time as the crew will do all they can to put things right for you, so you are not disappointed. We thank you for your continued custom and hope we can look forward to welcoming you onboard again soon. Kind regards Alison Brittany Ferries
Written May 31, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

David B
3 contributions
We have been travelling frequently UK to Spain on Brittany Ferries for over 20 years mainly on the Pont Aven and the Cap Finistere. We are also Club Voyage members.
We are now returning to Portsmouth from Santander on their new Galicia boat which has been a complete disaster.
Our cabin as with many others on the ship have been receiving exhaust type fumes into them. We have had to try to sleep in a room of what would seem to be toxic air.
We have a cabin on the 7th floor and went to complain to the reception at 11pm.
We were then joined by someone from 9th floor on same side with same issue who said they had complained about this 2 weeks before on their journey out.
We requested to be moved to a clean air cabin but were advised that the ferry was full. The gentleman at the desk was very professional and polite but admitted there is a problem with the Galicia of the fumes from the boat. He says it is particularly bad when the wind is behind the boat . Whilst at the desk a 3td person came to complain and this morning I heard a French lady complaining.
To reduce the fumes in the cabin we had our cabin door into corridor open for some of night and had the shower room door open to allow extractor fan to assist. My wife joined my daughter on lower bunk since the fumes were worse on the upper bunk.
We are glad to see Brittany Ferries respond to comments on trip advisor so can they please confirm that they are aware of these issues with the galicia and that are working to rectify these serious air issues speedily.
Written October 31, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Rob J
Alcossebre, Spain38 contributions
Couples
We crossed from Santander to Portsmouth on Brittanies ferry Galicia on 16th December 2020. The food in the restaurant was dry and inedible and the staff were not interested in our complaint. Watch out for the outrageous onboard data roaming charges 65€ in three hours, I was thankful that my mobile provider put a block on it. When complaining to the company they blame a third party company which runs it on their ship. I have three other crossings booked which I will now cancel.
Written January 12, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Hello Rob, I am sorry to hear of your disappointment with your trip on board Galicia and to hear of the charges on your mobile phone. These charges would have been applied by your network provider in an agreement with the offshore mobile telephone network. There will be an agreement between them for the cost of SMS, telephone calls and data and your mobile phone provider should make you aware of these charges via an SMS when you board. The data roaming charges are not imposed by Brittany Ferries. Because it is your home network which sets the price to roam onto the maritime network and the amount differs for each network we would be unable to advise you of the charges. Kind regards Jane Customer Services Brittany Ferries
Written January 19, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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