Are Brittany ferries the only way of getting from UK to Spain avoiding the drive through France?

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20 Jan 2012 12:00 AM by emjharts Star rating. 33 posts Send private message

 Are Britanny ferries the only ferry company that you can use to get from the UK to Spain or are there other less advertised ones?

We obviously do not want to drive through France and want to make our journey to Southern Spain via car as short as possible. Any ideas?

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20 Jan 2012 6:44 PM by marlowjen Star rating. 73 posts Send private message

Yes. We have a Brittany Ferries Spain membership which will save you 10%, contact me if you want my number.

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20 Jan 2012 7:17 PM by broph Star rating. 147 posts Send private message

Hi Emjharts,

                       yes Brittany Ferries are the only operator from UK to Spain. Obviously look on their website for sailing schedules but basicly it sails Plymouth to Santander or Portsmouth to either Santander or Bilbao. Depends on the route you choose but something between 18 hours and 24 hours crossing time

We have done the Plymouth -  Santander crossing around eight times now and always find it a good ship with good food and cabins. Much better than the long haul down through France . It saves you fuel and hotel costs and you arrive in Spain fully relaxed.

Regards  Broph



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20 Jan 2012 7:28 PM by lorraine56 Star rating in Granada Spain. 51 posts Send private message

 When are you planning to come to Spain ? A lot of companies will not operate in the bay of Biscay during the winter but later in the year you will find they sail to Santander and other ports that are not available in the winter due to weather conditions.

The drive through France is really not a problem, we drove to Granada with a dog and cat in January 6 years ago never having driven on the continent before and armed only with a large up to date map, no sat nav etc , and it was snowing when we arrived in France but the motorways are excellent,  well sign posted, and the motorway service stations all alloiwed dogs and cats in the rooms which was great as we had not pre booked the accomodation. It took us 3 days but we were only meandering and it gave us chance to see the scenery and allow our pets time to do what pets have to do and not get too stressed in the process. It was all part of the adventure.


Life is an adventure so live it.

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20 Jan 2012 7:32 PM by marlowjen Star rating. 73 posts Send private message

Brittany Ferries do sail in January and February as we are sailing out of Santander with them on January 23 into Portsmouth returning Feb 01.

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24 Jan 2012 11:44 AM by Piltonian Star rating in Madrid. 36 posts Send private message

LD Lines have a slower alternative - ferry to France, shortish drive, then ferry from France to Spain.

I hear they're cheaper than Brittany but I've never reckoned the extra inconvenience is worth the saving.

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24 Jan 2012 12:28 PM by Bobi Star rating in La Alpujarra, Granad.... 14 posts Send private message

Bobi´s avatar

I once did the trip from weymouth to St malo, France, near the spanish boarder much faster and cheper, you sail out on a fast cat and have a short stopover in the Channel Isles which was very pleasant the countryside you drive through is stunning so enjoy the trip whichever way you go.          St Malo- Malaga 1800Km

Condor ferries:

By the By if you would like to know what the Bay of Biscay can be like read this article on this site


This message was last edited by Bobi on 24/01/2012.

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08 Jan 2014 10:40 AM by SPANISH DRAGON Star rating in POWYS,WALES,UK. 36 posts Send private message


I know this is an old thread and it's likely a lot of you will already be aware of what I am about to say but for those of you that dont;-

LD Lines Ferry Company are operating a new route from Pool to Santander and have some very good introductory offers.

I have always travelled with Brittany Ferries but their prices are going to be VERY competitive.At this time (JAN 2014) a single trip from Pool to Santander is £199,2 adults and car compared to £275 with Brittany Ferries Portsmouth run,both include cabin.

I did a comparison for 2 weeks in June 2014 8-21st for 2 adults car and cabin Brittany Ferries came out at £735 compared to LD Lines at just over £500,what a difference,that is probably the fuel for your journey paid for.

On the down side LD LInes are not transporting dogs/animals just yet on this route.

Spanish Dragon

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08 Jan 2014 11:25 AM by marlowjen Star rating. 73 posts Send private message

Thank you and interesting!

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08 Jan 2014 4:38 PM by xetog Star rating in Wiltshire/holiday ap.... 514 posts Send private message

We didn't know about LD Lines so will take a look as we travel by Brittany Ferries twice a year. They could certainly do with some competition!

Thanks for the info.

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08 Jan 2014 5:00 PM by SPANISH DRAGON Star rating in POWYS,WALES,UK. 36 posts Send private message


Their opening offer for this month "Xetog" is Return fare,car and 2 passengers with cabin £399* inclusive but check out their web site



Spanish Dragon

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08 Jan 2014 5:32 PM by txakoli Star rating. 18 posts Send private message

LD lines also operate a ferry from St Nazaire to Gijon, but that would probably leave you too far north west in Spain for heading south.

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09 Jan 2014 11:01 AM by Spanishpunter Star rating. 64 posts Send private message

LD Lines also go from UK -look up their web site

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09 Jan 2014 1:51 PM by marlowjen Star rating. 73 posts Send private message

Jerez senior lady may wait for some feedback with this service. I just wonder what their cabins are like as we think Brittany Ferris cabins are very jaded and not that brilliant and expensive, but we have not used their much more expensive ones. I see all their fleet were built in 2008/2009, so could well be an improvement? I would love to hear feedback when people have actually used this service. Of course the Poole or St Nazaire service to Gijon will be great for south and south west Spain and Portugal.

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09 Jan 2014 2:08 PM by SPANISH DRAGON Star rating in POWYS,WALES,UK. 36 posts Send private message



I would be happy to stay in the bar all night so long as their prices are good!

Seriously.I know you are right.I have sailed with LD before from France and had no complaint about their cabins or kennels for that matter !

They will be aware that they are up against a long time contender so they should know they have certain standards to maintain.

If you look at their web site they have pictures of the ship they will be using on that route and it looks fine to me.It seems to be smaller and I dont think their is a swimming pool but then again every time I have travelled,usually in winter,the pool has always been closed!

We can only try.

Spanish Dragon

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09 Jan 2014 2:19 PM by Team GB Star rating. 1245 posts Send private message

Team GB´s avatar

Brittany's MV Pont Avon at 40,859 tons v LD's Norman Asturias at 27,414 tons

I know which one I would prefer on a stormy winters night in the middle of the Bay of Biscay




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09 Jan 2014 2:30 PM by marlowjen Star rating. 73 posts Send private message

Fair point Team GB. We have used every route conceivable and also did when we were in Castellon province also. I am thinking of mid to early June but we all know when the weather is bad in the Bay of Biscay it is dreadful!! Just thought for a change maybe the 16 hour St Nazaire to Gijon might be the lesser of the two evils??????

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09 Jan 2014 2:58 PM by SPANISH DRAGON Star rating in POWYS,WALES,UK. 36 posts Send private message


Bring out the rum me lads,batton the hatches and put yer head under the duvet !!! aarggh

Spanish Dragon

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28 Oct 2016 7:37 AM by I. Star rating. 2 posts Send private message

has been long time since this forum

but just to let the members know about the "apparently" rip off of that company BF, depending which port or who check you in, you pay more or less ,specially in Portsmouth, as they dont have a"rule" for everyone the same , depending who you are or who checks you, you will pay extra or not. Crazy! protecction?? sure??


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28 Oct 2016 12:03 PM by steone Star rating in Santiago de la Riber.... 383 posts Send private message

Please expand more on your gripes about BF. I am about to use them and would like a heads up about any 'problems'.


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