There are other modes of transport other than flying, such as taking the ferry! In some situations, the ferry can be cheaper, and a more convenient method of travel! We give you an insight into what it would be like to travel with DFDS (Det Forenede Dampskibs-Selskab) in our review.
There a number of ferry providers that connect England with Europe, which include DFDS. DFDS have many routes covering northern Europe, the English Chanel, the Baltics, and Scandinavia. The two main ferry services from Dover to France, are DFDS and P&O Ferries. DFDS route is between Dover and Dunkirk or Calais in France, whilst P&O Ferries only route is between Dover and Calais.
Our trip took us to Dunkirk in France via DFDS from Dover England, and this is what we thought about them:
The service on the DFDS was very pleasant. The staff helped us with boarding the boat, and parking the car quickly and smoothly, both in Dover and in Dunkirk. There was clear direction on how to exit the car deck and gain access to the rest of the ferry, including staff to point you in the right direction. The staff at the small café and fast food restaurants were always polite and friendly.
On the journey out to Dunkirk we had access to all areas on the ferry, except for the car park whilst the boat is moving, the premier lounge, and the trucker’s area. On the return journey we had purchased the additional option for the premier lounge.
We were provided with exceptional service within the premier lounge. The member of staff that managed the area was very helpful, and polite.
We could not fault any aspect of the service.
Food and drink:
On our journey out to Dunkirk, we purchased refreshments from one of the very small cafes on the boat. The food and drink were pleasant with a small selection of cakes, biscuits and savory food.
On our return journey, we had access to the premier lounge which provided free refreshments such as a glass of wine, tea and coffee, soft drinks e.g. Coke, Sprite, Fanta etc. Sweet and savory snacks, such as croissants, pain au chocolat, crisps, chocolate bars and fruit accompanied the free refreshments. We felt there was a good selection of food and drinks to keep you going during the couple of hours journey on the ferry.
For a small price per person to have access to the premier lounge it is certainly worth it.
We felt the price was quite reasonable for when we travelled, we also felt the additional £12 per person one way for the premier lounge was very good, considering the space and the refreshments provided.
When booking your tickets with DFDS, you will need to be flexible with your dates for the best possible price. During peak times, such as school holidays, the prices are far too expensive and would be completely unreasonable for what you get.
The moment we entered the ferry, we noticed it was very clean, tidy and in a good condition, including the car parking area. The staff do the best they can to keep the tables and chairs clean and wiped down after use.
DFDS are very reliable, we seemed to leave both Dover and Dunkirk on time, we didn’t encounter any problems on either the outward or return journey.
The facilities on board the ferry are good, there is a large food and drinks area, and a small selection of restaurants to order a bite to eat.
There is a small soft play area for little children to be kept entertained, along with a small games room, consisting of arcade games for the older child or adult. There are some adult gambling machines dotted around the ferry.
There is an area at the rear of the DFDS Ferry, for passengers to have some fresh air, watch the scenery, or for smokers.
If there are truck drivers travelling across the water with freight, there is a designated area for them to rest, and relax before continuing their journey to the next destination.
We would say the highlight of DFDS is the premier lounge, this can be purchased either during your booking, or whilst you are on the ferry. Once you have purchased the premier lounge benefit, you are given a door code allowing you entry and exit as you please.
Inside this lovely little area are two rooms. The first room is quite large, but there are only a small number of comfortable chairs to sit back and relax on your journey. The second room, has dining tables and chairs, to eat, and relax. The complimentary wine is provided on entry to the Premier Lounge, whilst the small selection of cold food and drinks are found in the second room. There are plenty of charging points on the ferry for your mobile, tablet, laptop, or electronic device.
During off season, the premier lounge can often be quiet with very few people, this is how we found it on our return journey. There were only a few guests in this area, which was lovely, quiet, and relaxing allowing us to be prepared to continue our drive back home.
DFDS do not just operate ferries between the UK and France, they also provide a ferry service between other European destinations as well as ferries in Scandinavia and the Baltics. Our day trip to Dunkirk was made easy, because DFDS provided us with a cheap and flexible service connecting us with Europe without any hassle.