Am I missing something?

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peteroldracer
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Am I missing something?

Postby peteroldracer » Wed Jul 20, 2016 5:07 pm

We have treated ourselves to a new car, and I am tempted to do a road trip from home to the UK - possibly dropping in on brother in Paignton but ultimately ending up in Yorkshire. I have found advice on route to ferry ports up in the Basque country, a good overnight hotel two hours short, but am gobsmacked at the horrendous ferry costs for a car plus two!
Are people seriously forking out over £500 return? I have been to the UK 3 times in the 11 years I have lived here and it has never cost more than 2 or 3 hundred quid for both to fly and hire a car for a week! Add fuel costs and hotel/food and driving looks to be over a grand, and this in late autumn (younger granddaughter due to sprog early November)......or am I missing a trick?
OH is ex-Customs, and have no intention of filling the car with illicit booze or baccy to sell!
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El Cid
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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby El Cid » Wed Jul 20, 2016 5:22 pm

The ferries to and from Spain have always been expensive. When I used to go back regularly I preferred to use the Channel ports and have an extra night in France.

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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby patricia » Wed Jul 20, 2016 5:34 pm

They have always been very very expensive! Thankfully when I bought my car over years ago the company paid for the fare. Since then when I have driven back I drive though France and catch the ferry from Cherbourg. In reality it is now cheaper to fly and hire a car at the airport.
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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby Enrique » Wed Jul 20, 2016 5:39 pm

Hi peteroldracer,
If you use Brittany-Ferries regularly then take out Club membership and get up to 30% off, go out of season and the base price is also lower.
Use the économie service and the prices are even cheaper, did a price comparison and it was £100 less than the Cruise crossing.

Saves driving up through France if you use the Northern Spanish ports, and you get 22hrs to chill out, turn your phone off, get a good book.........bliss.............. :D
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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby patricia » Wed Jul 20, 2016 5:57 pm

Well I have looked at the ferries from Santander to Portsmouth and there is one for 309 pounds, equally I looked at ferries from Cherbourg to Portsmouth and they are over 200 pounds! add hotels and petrol and it is a lot cheaper to fly and hire a car. A return flight for me would be less than 150 euros, hire car about 150 for two weeks.

I was about to look at ferries myself thinking I would drive back but I have changed my mind.
Torrox Costa "El mejor clima de Europa"

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Enrique
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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby Enrique » Wed Jul 20, 2016 6:35 pm

Should add you can travel with your Dogs............ :D
UNIX is basically a simple operating system, but you have to be a genius to understand the simplicity.

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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby Manchesteral » Wed Jul 20, 2016 9:22 pm

You've just bought a new car and you're whining about spending a grand on travel, old Yorkshire proverb "hear all see all say nowt; eat all sup all pay nowt, an if that ever does owt for nowt do it for thisself.
Tykes are officially "tight" although they did give us Fiery Fred and Geoffrey " I'll stand at this wicket all day if necessary but you won't get me out" Boycott ! They also gave us "cats eyes" (Percy Shaw) and Theakstons old peculiar !

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peteroldracer
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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby peteroldracer » Thu Jul 21, 2016 8:33 am

Al is doing that well-known sport "jumping to conclusions"....I was born in Carshalton, Surrey and lived in Croydon until 1972.
Buying a new car has meant being careful on other expenses, at least until the stupidity of Brexit ceases to screw our income by some hundreds of Euro a month!
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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby RichardCoeurdeLion » Thu Jul 21, 2016 10:23 am

Yes they are costly. When we first bought our house on CDS we sailed to Bilbao and Santander a couple of times so we could bring stuff over. Didn't rush, made a holiday of the trip. Stayed about four weeks so saved on the car hire. We've also sailed to the Channel ports. I would always fly/hire a car now as we haven't got the house.
Worst experience of the drive. .... Left Estepona at lunch time heading for Santander. After 100 miles, stopped for coffee. Wife realised she hadn't got her handbag which contained passports/ tickets etc. Found a phone ( no mobiles then) Rang the reception at our development. No they hadn't found it. Drove 100 mile back. no sign. Rang the consulate in Malaga. They said you have to go to Madrid for replacement passports. Drove thru the night. Got replacements. Drove on to Santander and just made the ferry. It only went twice a week.
We divorced not long after.

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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby patricia » Thu Jul 21, 2016 10:59 am

I shouldnt laugh but that is funny :D

It is expensive and anyway if you buy a new car obviously you are a bit low on savings. But in anycase what business is it of anyone else if you do not do something because of the cost, it is up to the individual/s to make up their own mind what is affordable or what they are prepared to pay it. I found it interesting because i was thinking of driving over on the ferry myself - and no I have not purchased a new car! - but it is too costly and not only that quite exhausting.
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peteroldracer
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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby peteroldracer » Thu Jul 21, 2016 11:10 am

I made the wrong assumption - I thought all those UK registered cars that regularly disappear for a few weeks then pop up again must belong to people too poor to legalise them here, so take the cheapest option on return trips.....
Compared to fly and hire, that is.
Last edited by peteroldracer on Thu Jul 21, 2016 2:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby TorreDelAguila » Thu Jul 21, 2016 1:10 pm

No, I think they belong to folk with a different sort of mindset altogether...

On the Santander front, we did there to Portsmouth and return last September, car plus two. Cheapest was Economie tariff, on their ferry Etretat. You can save £100 each way, IIRC, by not having a cabin, and by simply overnighting in one of their quiet lounges. Do not reserve an overnight seat (£10 apiece), as most of them are unoccupied anyway. Keeps cost down, but not the most comfortable. On the leg back, I slept on a huge sorbo mat borrowed from the kiddies' play area. Some crossing times and days also cheaper than others.
Chris

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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby markwilding » Thu Jul 21, 2016 1:29 pm

Even though our final destination was always just a couple of Kms from the ferry port in Bilbao, we tended to use the channel ports before we lived here, cheaper and quicker.
In the thirteen years we have lived in Bilbao I have only gone once via Le Havre. I much prefered doing it that way. Driving up the west side of France can be done in a day quite easily. We even used to have time to spend time having something to eat in Mont St Michel.

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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby Alcala Barry » Sat Aug 27, 2016 1:19 pm

Peteroldracer

The ferry has always being pretty expensive and no big changes over the kast 2/3 years. But now their prices are a bit firmer because, unlike last year, there are no competitors on Bilbao/Portsmouth or Santander/Portsmouth.

Incidentally, you must be on a hell of a good pension if you are losing out to the tune of "hundresd of Euros per month". Present rates are about €1.17, three months ago approx €1.21 and two years ago about €1.28. So if you have such a high pension, I am sure you can affort a little luxury and take the ferry. Maybe even buy your good lady dinner on board too!!

Take your new car and go and enjoy yourselves.

Regards

Barry

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peteroldracer
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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby peteroldracer » Sat Aug 27, 2016 1:29 pm

"you must be on a hell of a good pension"
I wish we were...just state for both, and a government one for herself....far from being well off, but better than in the UK with the slightly lower costs here.
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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby gus » Sat Aug 27, 2016 6:43 pm

Barry,
I don't know where you were changing to euros but the rate in May, 3 months ago was around 1.30 and last October was approaching 1.40.
In fact the exchange never dropped below 1.30 during 2015 and peaked at around 1.44 !

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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby El Cid » Sat Aug 27, 2016 6:57 pm

Those high rates were short lived and very unrepresentative of the reality over the last few years.

If you look at the average rate over the last 9 years, it is 1.22 - not a million miles away from the current rate - about 4% to be exact.

Sid

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peteroldracer
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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby peteroldracer » Sat Aug 27, 2016 7:26 pm

One problem has been the relatively high inflation in the past few tears, with petrol and diesel, and electricity in particular seemingly more expensive, plus the government has started to increase its income with revised catastral values and income tax changes. Many prices in shops are on a never-ending upward creep, with the usual jumps in selling price and/or decreases in pack size. The fall in the exchange rate was sudden, adding to the perception.
The saddest people are those that cannot laugh at themselves

El Cid
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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby El Cid » Sat Aug 27, 2016 7:32 pm

peteroldracer wrote:The fall in the exchange rate was sudden, adding to the perception.


Very true Peter, it's all about perception. One month you get €1000 pension and the next month it's €800. We just have to take a long term attitude on this. I am sure it will get better when the EU start falling apart and the Euro collapses (I hope!).

As for income tax, taking out the increased exchange rate for last year, it has gone down significantly in the last year for most people, due to the lower tax rates and increased allowances. For high earning UK Government pensioners, that may not be the case.

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Re: Am I missing something?

Postby Free at Last » Sun Aug 28, 2016 8:44 am

peteroldracer wrote:One problem has been the relatively high inflation in the past few years, with petrol and diesel, and electricity in particular seemingly more expensive, plus the government has started to increase its income with revised catastral values and income tax changes. Many prices in shops are on a never-ending upward creep, with the usual jumps in selling price and/or decreases in pack size. The fall in the exchange rate was sudden, adding to the perception.


Much depends on personal circumstances, what we buy as individuals and where we live. Haven't petrol and diesel gone down in price because of falling oil prices? Bottled gas has come down over the last year or so from €17.50 to €11.28. My IBI bills have stayed the same for the last 4 years, and as El Cid says, the income tax changes from last year have meant lower tax bills for people who don't receive Government pensions. This year, quite unexpectedly, my annual gym membership was reduced from €528 to €298 with no change in facilites or usage restrictions (largely because of increased competition in the area). Some food items have gone up in price and others have gone down, We still take exactly the same amount out of the bank each week to pay for groceries as we did when we arrived in 2006. Cheaper internet and mobile phone deals are now widely available compared to what we had to pay just a few years ago.


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