Taking the car across to Europe is a great idea, either for a weekend away or some longer time in the sun.
There are two basic options for doing this nowadays, hopping on the ferry from a variety of ports, or driving onto the Euroshuttle and taking the tunnel option into the EU.
Eurotunnel is quick to advertise its most key advantage, namely that of travel time. The shuttle also claims that its prices run from £23 per car, each way, and that there are no fuel supplements or credit card fees.
And of as May this year, if you take the shuttle, ‘Passengers would be able to make calls throughout their crossing at a quality similar to a wireless call made in major European cities.
‘Also, from now, customers who wish will be able to use their mobile phone or tablet anywhere in the Channel Tunnel. Beyond the initial 2G and 3G services, Vodafone, EE and O2 UK envisage offering 4G in the future.’
Of course, in theory one should also be able to make a mobile call from the deck of a ferry, or from the cabin for that matter. What does the overall choice come down to?
Probably the biggest factor is the sheer variety of destinations that ferries operate from. The shuttle is convenient but it’s actually rather limited in terms of the cities that it services. One can take a ferry from virtually every EU country, to almost every other, as long as it has a coastline.
Ferries are for most people a more relaxing option too. The journey takes longer, but this just allows more time for winding down, sleeping, having a drink or dinner and checking out the various forms of onboard entertainment.
So of course the travel is longer, but it’s perhaps more comfortable. People can take a walk on the deck, catch up with old friends or make some new ones too. For some people the whole experience of being on a boat can be relaxing.
On balance, the choice is going to come down to price, speed and where it is that one actually needs to get to. Weigh up these pros and cons, and be well on the way to picking the best option.
In realistic terms, it might be best to consider whether one is taking a quick hop to Brussels for business, or a leisurely stroll down to Spain with the family. In these scenarios, the advantages of both shuttle and ferry suit the differing demographics of today’s traveller.