The English Channel is as simple as it gets for shipping. If only the rest of my shipping requirements were going to be as easy as this.

Online you can find a range of shipping companies and options. The ships sail so regularly that you are spoilt for choice. The earlier you book the cheaper the price.

Nathan did the research on the ferries before we left. Here is the process and thinking he went through trying to optimise our departure from the Royal Geographical Society in London to reach Dover in time to catch the right ferry.

Nathan used the following websites for his search:

Initial search results below to give a flavour, my summary is:

RGS to Dover Approx 2hr Journey [in good traffic]

  • RGS Send-Off / Filming scheduled 1200-1400hrs ish
  • Expected Time of Departure latest say 1500hrs
  • If reasonable traffic ETA Dover 1700hrs
  • Earliest Ferry if all according to plan on Weds 10th 1800hrs [Route 1 Options]
  • Alternatively Camp Out in vicinity of Dover and leave following morning Thurs 11th [Route 2 Options]
  • There appears to be no extra cost for an additional passenger in the car on the Dover – Calais / Dunkirk route.

Route Options 1 (leaving Weds 10th Apr at approx 1800-1900hrs)

  • Note: Arrival in Calais between 2030-2200hrs, would then require drive to find campsite / accom, set-up late, but advantage of being in France for start on 11th.
    • UK Dover – France Dunkirk [FERRY] Best Price if booked today – £NOT AVAILABLE IN EVE [2hrs]
    • UK Dover – France Calais [FERRY] 1800hrs sailing – Best Price if booked today – £39 [1hr30min]
    • UK Dover – France Calais [FERRY] 1915hrs sailing – Best Price if booked today – £50 [1hr30min]
    • UK Folkestone – France Calais [TUNNEL] Best Price if booked today – £78.10 [35min]
    • UK Ramsgate – France Ostende [FERRY] Best Price if booked today – £62.40 [4hrs30min]

Route Options 2 (leaving Thurs 11th Apr at approx 1000hrs)

  • Note: Arrival in Dunkirk between 1200-1300hrs, giving 3-5hrs driving time into Belgium / Germany (Dunkirk to Cologne approx 3.5hrs drive time)
    • UK Dover – France Dunkirk [FERRY] Best Price if booked today – £44 [2hrs]
    • UK Dover – France Calais [FERRY] Best Price if booked today – £37 [1hr30min]
    • UK Folkestone – France Calais [TUNNEL] Best Price if booked today – £78.10 [35min]
    • UK Ramsgate – France Ostende [FERRY] Best Price if booked today – £62.40 [4hrs30min]

As you can see from the options above and the map below there are many options to choose from.

English Channel Ferry Routes

English Channel Ferry Routes

Nathan Beard is my Expedition Logistics Technical Adviser. You can find out more about him at: www.nathanbeardventures.co.uk

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