Driving to Bilbao

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axarquian
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Driving to Bilbao

Postby axarquian » Fri Nov 13, 2020 12:38 pm

Hi,
My main family/habitual residence is in the U.K. and I have a ferry ticket Bilbao to Portsmouth booked for 20th November in order to return. I would be driving my UK regitered car to Bilbao to catch the ferry, I have a U.K. passport, the vehicle V5C document, U.K. vehicle insurance, driving licence and other items showing my U.K. habitual/family residence.

At present I am confined to my Municipality however the Junta de Andalucia BOJA Extraordinary Bulletin number 77 dated 08 November2020 states that movement between municipal boundaries is allowed for the following (amongst many other) reasons:

Article 2. Limitation of entry and exit in the Autonomous Community of Andalusia
d) Return to the place of habitual or family residence
Article 4. Circulation in transit
Movement in transit through the territorial areas in which the limitations provided for in articles 2 and 3 are applicable will not be subject
to any restriction, stays or stops when traveling through such areas are not allowed

Based on this information I think that I will be allowed to leave Andalusia. Unfortunately I also have to travel through Castilla - La Mancha, Comunidad de Madrid, Castilla Y Leon and the Basque Country. I have also booked a hotel for the night near Bilbao, the hotel is open and has confirmed my booking so I assume no restriction on stopping overnight.

I could spend much time researching and trying to find the 'rules' for each of the areas I pass through but I am hoping that someone out there already knows the rules for this type of travel. Can anyone help ?

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costakid
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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby costakid » Fri Nov 13, 2020 12:49 pm

You are allowed to travel to your place of permanent residence. I drove from Rincon to Bilbao on Tuesday and there was no police or any controls as you exited each municipality. Really nice drive up in the fog LOL but still did it in under 10 hours with a fuel and a coffee stop. There are not many places serving food on the way and the ferry is very limited on what you can get. No bars are open so I suggest you take enough food for the journey and ferry. The breakfast bar was open for a full English, it is in the truck drivers bar. The crossing was really nice. Hope all goes well.

markwilding
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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby markwilding » Fri Nov 13, 2020 6:13 pm

For the moment all bars restaurants are closed here but it might be possible to get something to takeaway.

There are a couple of shopping centres close the ferry port where you should be able to pick up something.

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costakid
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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby costakid » Sat Nov 14, 2020 11:10 am

Santurtzi which is actually the nearest town to Bilbao port was like a ghost town. Nothing open cafe/restaurant wise. Bar in port was open and very cheap, serving food and drink.

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gerryh
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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby gerryh » Sat Nov 14, 2020 1:12 pm

Download the SocialDrive app and click the "Especial Covid-19" button and irt will show you all the places open for food and fuel.
Most of them are fuel stations open 24 hours.
Cheers
Gerry
Corrected spelling mistake in app name
Last edited by gerryh on Sat Nov 14, 2020 1:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Gerry Harris

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costakid
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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby costakid » Sat Nov 14, 2020 1:21 pm

Fuel is not a problem, food and drink is. Lots of places closed even ones showing as open.

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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby zanuck » Mon Nov 16, 2020 12:28 pm

On Saturday we set off for our overnight stay at Aranda de Duero, before going on to Santander on Sunday for the ferry to Portsmouth.

We stopped as we usually do at Cafe Bar La Frontera, adjacent to a Repsol service station at about km68 on the A-44. for breakfast.
Normally at 1100 it's very busy, this time around 10 customers only, but it was open which was good.

About 30 minutes later further up the autovia, got a text from Brittany Ferries apologising but our ferry on Sunday was now cancelled "due to a technical problem".
Phoned BF in Santander straightaway and rebooked "on the next available ferry", which is Friday 20th from Bilbao.

Swore a lot and then turned round and came back to Caleta for a few more days.

There was only one car parked outside La Frontera on our southbound journey.

Didn't see any police or GC checkpoints on either our north or southbound journeys.

I did wonder what the truckers do when en route to Santander and receive the same text telling them that their sailing is cancelled. What do they do with their load of foodstuffs or whatever?

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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby olive » Mon Nov 16, 2020 1:12 pm

Bit of a problem for you - the ferry cancellation.

Does that happen a lot? The lorries, I guess would be told to drive on through France.

We have a voucher for a Ferry from Northern Spain that expires in June 2021. That will soon come round. Realistically , I can see us having another lockdown in February after R rate rockets due to Christmas and New Year frolics.

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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby zanuck » Mon Nov 16, 2020 1:26 pm

It was definitely a PITA, but fortunately we have a house to return to, albeit we had given away the contents of the freezer to friends and had nothing fresh in the house to eat, plus a wasted half tank of fuel and 6 hours, plus unloading the carefully loaded car.

I've never experienced a cancellation before (notwithstanding ones cancelled due to Covid), but the last two trips have been delayed by 4 hours (Santander) and 6 hours (Portsmouth) respectively.

Our next trip (rebooked from earlier in 2020) is February, hopefully...........

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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby markwilding » Mon Nov 16, 2020 2:31 pm

There are currently less restrictions in Santander than The Basque Country so bars and restaurant are open but only with terrace service. I 've heard there are some but not many controls to enter The Basque Country from Cantabria on the motorway.
It might be worth coming up through Cantabria to be able to stop off for a drink and something to eat close to the border, which is only about 10KMS from the port.

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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby zanuck » Mon Nov 16, 2020 3:16 pm

Thanks for that tip, are there the same rules in Cantabria and Basque Country as we have in Andalucia - non-essential shops and businesses must close at 6pm - so no bars or cafes open in the evening, plus of course the night time curfew?

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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby markwilding » Mon Nov 16, 2020 3:38 pm

Bars and cafes are closed here in the Basque Country but can stay open until 9;00 in Cantabria. I've just had a chat with someone who lives in Cantabria but works here and he told me that there is a curfew at 10;00pm there, which is the same as here.

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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby zanuck » Mon Nov 16, 2020 4:29 pm

Thanks for the update.

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costakid
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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby costakid » Mon Nov 16, 2020 10:17 pm

Santurtzi is like a ghost town even in the day so avoid if looking for food or drink.

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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby zanuck » Thu Nov 19, 2020 7:41 am

This falls into the "you couldn't make it up category".

Last Sunday the Santander to Portsmouth ferry was cancelled whilst we were en route north on Saturday. So we rebooked to sail from Bilbao on Friday 20th with an hotel on Thursday night near Bilbao.

At 1645 Wednesday, a text and email from Brittany Ferries:
"Sailing Modification
We are sorry to advise that due to industrial action by dock workers, your sailing to Portsmouth on Friday 20 November will now be departing from SANTANDER rather than Bilbao. The departure time remains unchanged at 10:30 with latest check-in at 09:00. An onward travel contribution of £15.00 will be automatically refunded to your booking after travel. Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience caused."

Grrr!!!!

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costakid
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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby costakid » Thu Nov 19, 2020 11:45 am

Hi N, You will be glad when they drop the ropes and your finally on your way.

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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby markwilding » Thu Nov 19, 2020 12:47 pm

I don't know if it's still necessary to stay in a hotel, Portugalete to Santander will take around 45 minutes.
Last edited by markwilding on Thu Nov 19, 2020 7:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby zanuck » Thu Nov 19, 2020 6:53 pm

costakid, I won't believe it until I see us moving away from the quayside :clap:

markwilding, we rebooked an hotel in Torrelavega west of Santander, as I know the route from their to the port and it saves driving past Santander to get to Portugalete and then driving back again. Many thanks for all of your behind the scenes help. :thumbup:

We've got to our hotel, didn't see a single police car on the entire journey from Caleta to Torrelavega; we did see four or five Guardia Civil vehicles and occupants, but that was in a car park at a service area near to La Carolina on the E5/A4 at 1100, so we figured they had stopped for breakfast. :wink:

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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby markwilding » Thu Nov 19, 2020 7:26 pm

zanuck wrote:
Thu Nov 19, 2020 6:53 pm
costakid, I won't believe it until I see us moving away from the quayside :clap:

markwilding, we rebooked an hotel in Torrelavega west of Santander, as I know the route from their to the port and it saves driving past Santander to get to Portugalete and then driving back again. Many thanks for all of your behind the scenes help. :thumbup:

Especially as it’s a bit of a pain driving from Torrelavega to Bilbao. The direct route isn’t motorway for about 20 KMs It’s much easier from there to Santander, which is all Motorway

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Re: Driving to Bilbao

Postby costakid » Thu Nov 19, 2020 8:25 pm

Just a quick mention for anyone doing the journey, Miranda de Ebro north of Burgos to Bilbao on the toll road is about 80KMs. The toll was 10.30 euros. I was on there for an hour thinking this is going to be expensive and was shocked how cheap that toll was.


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