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Important Holiday Information

Frequently Asked Questions

What time should you check-in at the seaport?

We recommend that passengers should check-in at Poole or Portsmouth at least 90 minutes before the departure time shown on your ticket. Foot passengers should allow at least 45 minutes. Allow extra time for disabled clients or anyone with special requirements, and use your hazard lights in the queue to bring Condor Ferries staff to your attention. See Condor Ferries’ disabled facilities.

What documents do I need when taking my car?

Please ensure that you take a full driving licence, registration document and insurance certificate (which should include cover for Jersey and Guernsey).

What is the luggage allowance?

There is no luggage weight restriction on the catamaran service from Poole (if taking your car) or on any ship service. For adults and children (4 years +) travelling on the catamaran without a car there is a “reasonable luggage allowance” per person, and no item should weigh more than 25kg. NB: Foot passengers should ensure their luggage is labelled.

Do I need to take my passport or any form of ID?

Passports are not required in the Channel Islands for citizens of the UK or Eire, please note that photo ID is required. NB: However, don’t forget that for day excursions to France you will need to take your passport.

Visitors to the Channel Islands must take photo ID when travelling with Condor Ferries. This should be one of the following: passport, student ID card, Armed Forces ID card, Citizen Card, photographic disabled badge, firearms certificate, or driving licence with photograph and the ID should be readily accessible at the port. Visitors who cannot identify themselves will be denied boarding and we regret no refund will be possible.

Am I guaranteed a seat?

Yes, a guaranteed seat is automatically included on all Condor Ferries services. If you have paid a supplement for upgraded seating, or a cabin (ship service only) please ensure these are detailed on your Condor ticket.

Is there a car park at the port?

Poole Port

A secure car park is run by Poole Harbour Commission. Passengers collect a ticket on entry and pay on return at the machine located by the pedestrian gate. Payment is made by cash or credit card and the ticket is validated to allow exit. Car park tariff: £10 per day or part thereof (correct as of Nov 2019).

Portsmouth Port

The multi-storey car park is just metres from the ferry terminal and open 24 hours a day. There are also parking spaces for people with disabilities and/or reduced mobility inside and outside the car park as well as additional bays adjacent to the main terminal building. Car parking enquires can be made on via the APCOA booking system. Car Park Tariff:- Approximately £13 per day, or part thereof. Please note that ANPR (automatic number plate recognition) cameras are now in operation and this is a ‘barrier-less’ car park. Payment for parking must be paid upon arrival at the car park (not at exit) using either the pay machines located on the ground floor or via the APCOA connect mobile app.

Will there be a customs examination?

Yes, and this will take place on arrival at the UK port on the return journey.

Will the catamaran/ferry operate in severe weather?

The catamaran may not operate if the weather is bad (e.g. if the wind strength in the Channel is force 6 or more). Condor Ferries will do their utmost to assist and will offer alternative arrangements where possible.

What happens if adverse weather cases delays or cancellations?

The catamaran may not operate if the weather is bad (e.g. if the wind strength in the Channel is force 6 or more). Condor Ferries will send you a SMS text message advising if a sailing is cancelled. We will do our utmost to assist and where possible, offer alternative arrangements. These arrangements may involve additional costs which will be your responsibility and may be covered under the terms of your insurance policy.

Prior to travel outbound and homeward bound, we advise that you telephone the CONDOR FERRIES HOTLINE – 24 hour recorded information. Please note that catamaran sailings may be cancelled, delayed or brought forward, in line with meteorological advice, as passengers’ safety is paramount:

For all UK departure ports and Guernsey Tel: 01202 207216
JERSEY: Tel: 01534 872240.
GUERNSEY (local calls only) 12023.

Please provide a mobile telephone contact number in order that Condor Ferries and/or Condorbreaks can send a text message in the event of a reschedule or amendment to your sailings.

In addition, in cases of emergency, our Burnham-on-Crouch office is manned daily (except 25 – 26 December & 1 January) Mon – Sat: 09:00 – 17:30, Sun and Bank holidays: 10:00 – 16:00. The telephone number is 01621 784666.

Please note that if you decide to cancel your holiday as a result of adverse weather, which is classed as “an act of God”, there will be no refund made and you should make the appropriate claim on your insurance policy.

General Information

I am disabled, will this cause any problems?

We are most anxious to assist wherever possible. It is therefore vitally important that full details are provided to us in good time and to avoid any possible confusion, in writing. If you need any further information or advice at any time, please ask.

Clients who are confined to a wheelchair must advise us well in advance of travel.

If you have requested assisted boarding, please check-in in excess of 90 minutes prior to departure and switch on your hazard lights when in the queue. The Condor Ferries check-in staff will direct you to the correct queue. Click for further details.

The catamaran services from Poole plus the ship service from Portsmouth feature facilities for the disabled. NB: Where wheelchair assistance to board, or disembark from the catamaran has been requested, it is quite likely that the Carrier will require you to be in possession of a medical certificate from your doctor confirming your fitness to travel, plus advice of any medication you are taking. In some instances, this written information is required prior to travel and where applicable we will notify you or your travel agent. Where for medical reasons special services are required (such as special diets, etc) we are always pleased to assist where possible. In such circumstances please advise us of any requirements in writing, and in good time.

Will my blue badge be valid?

If you are hiring a self-drive car in Jersey or Guernsey, please take with you your UK disabled car-driver sticker. In Jersey disabled clients can park in official disabled areas although a Jersey ‘disc’ card is required from the Visitor Centre at Jersey Tourism. In other areas where ‘scratch’ cards are required for parking in authorised areas clients displaying their UK disabled car sticker are entitled to park for double the normally allowed time. Further information for Blue badge holders on Jersey.

In Guernsey, UK parking discs are permissible. However, it is not permitted to park on a yellow line. In any short-term parking areas (30 mins or 1 hour) where the UK disc is displayed, parking is allowed for up to 2 hours.

Important – When taking delivery of your car please seek updated information. Avis in Jersey or Europcar in Guernsey car rental staff will be pleased to assist you.

What do I do if I have a complaint?

It is vitally important that you contact the supplier of the service (e.g. Hotel Manager) and our representatives so that we may have the opportunity to restore holiday satisfaction with a minimum of delay, and in accordance with our booking conditions. Remember too, in extreme cases our Head Office (tel: 01621 784666), is open daily year-round (excluding 25-26 Dec, 1 Jan) and we will be pleased to assist wherever possible.

If, on your return from holiday, you have an unresolved complaint, you must contact the Operations department at Condorbreaks, with full written details, in order that we can carry out a swift investigation.

Are there any hotel extras that I should budget for?

Yes. Examples include laundry costs, additional drinks, telephone calls etc. All such extras should be settled directly with the hotel, prior to departure, and will be subject to 5% Goods and Sales tax in Jersey.

What is my duty-free allowance?

Your duty-free allowance from Condor Ferries. The Channel Islands are outside of the European Union and duty-free allowances still apply.

Do I need holiday insurance?

Holiday insurance cover is considered essential. As a general rule, remember to obtain receipts for any expenses incurred that may be included in a claim. Any loss or damage to your luggage by the shipping company whilst in their custody must be reported immediately and an official report obtained from the Carrier. If you lose any valuables, please report to the police within 24-hours and obtain acknowledgement from them.

Is healthcare free in the Channel Islands?

Whilst emergency treatment will be provided in the A&E departments, it is considered essential that all visitors to the Channel Islands be in possession of appropriate travel insurance which includes cover for all other medical expenses incurred, and possible repatriation.

Most policies do NOT cover medical expenses incurred in the Channel Islands. This is because most travel insurance policies only provide cover for medical expenses incurred outside the UK, but for the purposes of the policy cover, insurers usually include the Channel Islands within their definition of the United Kingdom. This has the effect that the policy would not respond to a claim for any medical expenses incurred during your stay.

Jersey have now reinstated the reciprocal agreement with the NHS, for emergency cover. Further information can be found here.

Guernsey does not have a reciprocal agreement with the UK; meaning that visitors will have to pay for medical treatment provided, if taken ill during their stay. More information here.

Is the EHIC card valid in the Channel Islands?

The EHIC card is NOT valid in the Channel Islands.

What currency is used in the Channel Islands?

Jersey and Guernsey both trade in sterling, thus British coins and notes mix freely with their own, so there’s no problem. All the big banks have branches in the Islands and cheques and credit cards are widely accepted.

Is it possible for children to eat early in the evening?

Some hotels in the Channel Islands (mainly higher grade), provide earlier evening meals for children, in order to enable adult guests to dine in a more relaxed manner and may insist that families with babies and young children use this facility. Some hotels may make a charge for food consumed by children under two years where Travelsmith have made no charge for the holiday.

Are baby-listening services available?

Those hotels offering this facility normally make arrangements for their reception staff to ‘listen-in’ on a regular, although not permanent, basis. Certain higher-grade establishments may be able to offer full baby-sitting facilities, arranged directly with the hotel on arrival and payable direct. If this service is specifically required, please ask in advance.

Will I be charged VAT in the Channel Islands?

No, the Channel Islands are free of VAT in the shops and restaurants. However, there is a GST (goods and sales tax) of 5% in Jersey.

Will excursions be available to book locally?

There are a wide range of excursions available, all bookable through your local representative. Please note that no refunds are available for unused excursions unless 24-hours prior notice is given (except when bad weather or operational reasons prevent the excursion/s from taking place).

How do you deal with disorderly conduct?

With the support of ABTA (the Association of British Travel Agents) all hotels, airlines, shipping lines, etc, have the right to refuse admission/transportation to any persons behaving in a disorderly manner to the discomfort of fellow holidaymakers. Moreover, any such persons will have no redress regarding refunds on tickets, etc. We are sure that this ruling can only help improve matters for the vast majority of clients.

What happens if I need to change my travel arrangements?

Please notify your Travelsmith representative or contact our head office. If it is possible for us to make a change, higher charges will normally apply as in many cases the special rates upon which your holiday cost has been based, are linked to specific ferry departures and/or days. Obviously, in the case of an emergency (e.g. family illness) such costs may be covered by holiday insurance.

Can I make special requests?

Yes, you can. However, we regret that any requests made are not guaranteed unless confirmed on your service voucher.

Holidays in Jersey

Can I book a transfer from Jersey harbour to my hotel?

Yes. The charge is £12 per person and transfers must be pre-booked.

Which company operates the transfers from Jersey harbour to my hotel?

If you have pre-booked transfers, these are operated by Tantivy Blue Coaches (except if staying at the Norfolk Hotel in St Helier, when the transfers are operated by Waverley Coaches). Details will be shown on your confirmation and you should have transfer vouchers with your travel documents. Be sure to check your return pick-up time 48 hours prior to your return journey. For Tantivy Blue Coach, call 01534 706706. For Waverley Coaches, please check with the Norfolk Hotel Reception desk.

What is GST - Goods and Sales Tax?

The States of Jersey charge a local tax of 5%. This will be added on to the price of any items you purchase in Jersey. This will include any extras purchased at your holiday accommodation such as drinks etc.

Is parking easily available in Jersey?

Where parking at your holiday accommodation is available, details are shown in the individual property description. Some hotels may make a charge for car parking – please ask for details.

For obvious reasons town centre hotels are less likely to have parking facilities but there are a number of public car parks/parking areas, some requiring scratch card payment. These can be purchased from many shops and garages in Jersey. In any event, bear in mind that it may not be possible to obtain public parking adjacent or close to your hotel. For further details on parking in Jersey go to their website.

How do I contact Travelsmith Representatives?

We have local representatives at your service and our local staff will always be pleased to assist if you have a query or problem.

Our Jersey representative can be contacted on 01534 737317 and their local mobile number will be detailed on the Welcome Pack provided upon arrival.

Holidays in Guernsey

Is parking easily available in Guernsey?

Hire cars in Guernsey provide a parking disc free of charge. If you bring your own car, you may buy this disc from garages and other outlets for just £2.50; parking in designated areas is then free. For further details on parking in Guernsey go to their website.

Can I book a transfer from Guernsey harbour to my hotel?

Transfers from Guernsey harbour and vice versa can be pre-booked and if so will be detailed on your holiday confirmation. Your transfer is arranged with Island Coachways, tel: 01481 720120 (07:00 – 17:30) or outside of these hours, please contact the Duty Manager on tel: 07781 120 210. Transfers are not provided unless stated.

NB: Please check your return pick-up time with Island Coachways at least 48 hours prior to your departure.

Can I book a transfer in Alderney?

Yes, but they must be pre-booked. Transfers by taxi from Alderney airport or harbour will be shown on your holiday confirmation. Island Taxis will be waiting for you outside the “Arrivals Terminal.” Should your sea transport arrive early, pick up the Freephone which goes straight through to them. In the event of any queries please contact Island Taxis on 01481 823823.

Disabled clients who are travelling to Alderney must advise us well in advance of travel, as special transfer arrangements may be necessary.

Can I book a transfer in Sark?

No, not in advance. On Sark, luggage is transferred from and to the harbour. Please ensure all bags are clearly labelled. Transfers by horse and carriage are payable direct unless advised by us to the contrary. There is no transfer service available in Sark on Sundays.

Disabled clients who are travelling to Sark must advise us well in advance of travel, as special transfer arrangements may be necessary.

Can I book a transfer in Herm?

This isn’t necessary as porterage is automatically included from the quayside.

Disabled clients who are travelling to Herm must advise us well in advance of travel, as special transfer arrangements may be necessary.

Can I meet with a Travelsmith representative in Alderney, Sark or Herm?

Unfortunately not as we have no resident representatives but please contact the Hotel Manager if you require assistance. In cases of emergency please contact Head Office on 01621 784666 or 01621 734111.

Your Holiday Accommodation in the Channel Islands

Will I get dinner on my first evening when arriving late?

Not necessarily. Even if you’ve pre-booked half board, which normally includes dinner on the first evening, if your arrival is late in the evening, the hotel may have stopped serving. Holidaymakers arrive and depart the Channel Islands at many different times of day and hotels sometimes provide a light meal outside normal mealtimes, but this is purely at their own discretion. For this reason, clients arriving in the evening are advised to eat en-route.

I have booked half board. When will my first meal be?

Half board commences with the evening meal and terminates with breakfast. These arrangements may vary during Christmas & New Year periods and in some guesthouses and hotels on Sundays, where lunch may be substituted in place of an evening meal. Please check on arrival.

Could I be allocated a zip and link twin when I booked a double room?

Yes, as zip and link beds can be made up as a large double.

What time can I check in at the campsite?

Normally clients will be able to occupy their tents by 13:00 (or earlier if possible). Departing clients should vacate their tents by 09:30 so that all equipment is ready for new arrivals. However, those campers with an afternoon departure may request a later departure with the campsite.

Can I park alongside my tent?

In the vast majority of cases, cars cannot be parked alongside tents for safety reasons, However, all the campsites we work with have adequate parking facilities.

What is provided when self-catering?

Linen, towels and tea towels are provided. Basic provisions can be ordered ready for your arrival. Simply send your list direct to your holiday accommodation stating your arrival date and payment can be made on arrival.

What is the address of each departure port?

Poole Port

Portsmouth International Port
George Byng Way
Portsmouth
Hampshire
PO2 8SP
Telephone: 01202 207215

Portsmouth Port

Portsmouth International Port
George Byng Way
Portsmouth
Hampshire
PO2 8SP
Telephone: 02392 865164

Jersey Port

The Elizabeth Terminal
St Helier
Jersey
Telephone: 01534 601000

Guernsey Port

White Rock
St Peter Port
Guernsey
Telephone: 01481 729666