Dover-Dunkirk FAQs

Please find below our most frequently asked questions (FAQs). If this list does not provide you with the information you need then please contact us .

  1. When will I receive my tickets?
  2. How can I change my booking prior to travel?
  3. I have lost my booking details - what should I do?
  4. Can I buy a ticket on the day of departure at the port?
  5. Can foot passengers travel on DFDS Seaways Dover-Dunkirk's ferries?
  6. What is the procedure for traveling with pets?
  7. How long before the departure time should I check-in?
  8. Can I have a roof box or bicycles attached to my car?
  9. Are there car parking facilities at the port?
  10. How long is the crossing?
  11. Do you have currency exchange facilities onboard the vessel?
  12. Is duty free shopping still available onboard?
  13. Can I smoke onboard?
  14. What documentation do I need to travel?
  15. Where can I obtain a visa?
  16. Is travel insurance recommended?
  17. Are there any legal requirements needed for my car to drive overseas?
  18. Do your ships accept vehicles which run on Liquified Petroleum Gas LPG?
  19. Which of your ships are suitable for disabled passengers of wheel chairs?
  20. What is a commercial vehicle?
  21. What if I have concerns regarding the service?
  22. Where are the ports located?
  23. Which is the closest petrol station to Dunkirk terminal?
  24. What shall I do if the number of passengers is different between the two crossings of a return journey?
  25. Is there any surcharge on bookings made by phone?
  26. Can I take my shotgun, rifle or weapon with me in my car?
  27. How can I access the centre of Dunkirk and Auchan Hypermarket?
  28. What if I am traveling with Children who do not have their Parent or Legal Guardian traveling with me?
  29. Can I travel with medical oxygen?
  30. Can I amend my booking at the port?   
  31. Can I transport my Hot Air Balloon with DFDS Seaways?
  32. Where can I find out more about Premium and Economy fare types?

1. When will I receive my tickets?

DFDS Seaways Dover - Dunkirk route operates as a ticketless company. When you make an online reservation you will be sent an email confirmation containing the booking reference and travel details. Alternatively, if you make a phone reservation, you will be asked to make a note of your booking reference number. On the day of travel you will need to quote your booking reference at the DFDS Seaways check-in booth.

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2. How can I change my booking prior to travel?

DFDS Seaways’ system does not at present allow changes to be made to your booking online.

All amendments to Dover-Dunkirk bookings that have been made directly with DFDS Seaways (i.e. not through a third party) need to be made via our contact centres:

Telephone UK call centre: 0871 574 7223 (Calls may cost up to 10p per minute plus network extras)
Telephone

Outside the UK:   +44 (0) 208 127 8303

 

An amendment fee of £10/ €15 per crossing applies and you will also need to pay any difference in fare between what you have already paid and the price of the new sailing.

Our email facility is not designed to receive confidential information such as credit / debit cards and as such, payment must be finalised over the telephone. This procedure only applies to amendments made prior to arrival at the port.

Note:  DFDS Seaways can only process amendments to bookings made directly with us. If you have made your booking with a travel agent, or online via another website, please contact the relevant agent/website to process any amendments required.

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3. I have lost my booking details - what should I do?

DFDS Seaways Dover-Dunkirk ferries do not issue tickets, but to travel you will need your booking reference number. If you have mislaid this or any other piece of information related to your booking (e.g. departure times and dates) please contact our call centre on 0871 574 7223 ( Calls may cost up to 10p per minute plus network extras).

Note: in order that we can trace your booking as quickly as possible please have as many relevant details as possible to hand - booking reference, vehicle registration, names of those travelling, dates, credit card etc.
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4. Can I buy a ticket on the day of departure at the port?

The Travel Centre at Dover port is now closed. This is due to the significant development work taking place to improve traffic management at port.

If you would like to purchase tickets at port, or if you have a ticket enquiry, please make your way to one of the DFDS Seaways check-in booths where we will be happy to help.

Alternatively pre-purchase your tickets online or telephone our contact centre on 0871 574 7235. Calls cost up to 10p a min plus network charges.

For further information on the work taking place and how this will benefit customers long term, visit the Port of Dover website.

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5. Can foot passengers travel on DFDS Seaways Dover - Dunkirk ferries?

Our cross channel ferries are designed for passengers travelling with their own vehicles. As such foot passengers cannot travel on DFDS Seaways Dover - Dunkirk route.

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6. What is the procedure for travelling with pets?

DFDS Seaways Dover - Dunkirk vessels are able to carry pets as long as we are advised at the time of the booking and provided a pet passport number. Pet tickets are charged at £30 per animal. 

If you need any assistance please call 0871 574 7223 (calls may cost up to 10p per minute plus network extras)and speak to one of our Passenger Sales and Service Team

In case of travelling with horses/ponies due to the nature of the vehicle type bookings must be created through our freight reservation's department dover.freightsales@dfds.com .

Note: All animals must remain in the vehicle during the crossing and are subject to the necessary documentation, vaccinations etc. For any more additional information we advise you to visit the  DEFRA website.

When travelling with pets from Dunkirk you are required to check-in 60 minutes prior to departure to allow time for the pet procedures to be carried out. 

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7. How long before the departure time should I check-in?

Vehicles need to be at the port to complete the check-in process a minimum of 45 minutes prior to the sailing departure,  during busy periods please allow up to 1 hour and 30 mins.Please note that port security and immigration checks occur prior to check-in at Dover Port, while after check-in at Dunkirk Port.

When traveling with pets from Dunkirk you are required to check-in 60 minutes prior to departure to allow time for the pet procedures to be carried out. 

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8. Can I have a roof box or bicycles attached to my car?

We do not have any problems if the combined height of the vehicle does not exceed 2.35 meters and the length of 5 meters.

For vehicles over this height, please contact the call centre on 0871 574 7223 ( Calls may cost up to 10p per minute plus network extras).

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9. Are there car parking facilities at the port?

Yes. Dover port offers short and long-stay parking in the main multi-storey car park located at the entrance to the Eastern docks ferry terminal. For prices please contact Dover Harbour Board on 01304 240400 .

Free parking in front of the Travel Centre is restricted to 15 minutes.

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10. How long is the crossing?

The duration of the crossing is approximately 2 hours

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11. Do you have currency exchange facilities onboard the vessel?

All ferries within our fleet offer a bureau de change service onboard carried out by a third party agent 

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12. Is duty free shopping still available onboard?

Duty free shopping was abolished within the European Union in 1999.

We now offer passengers the opportunity to purchase great value products such as wines, spirits, tobacco, confectionery, gifts and perfume. These are at French duty paid prices and offer great value when compared to prices in the UK.

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13. Can I smoke onboard?

Smoking, which includes e-cigarettes, is not permitted in passenger cabins and public areas, including corridors, halls, staircases and arcades. Smoking onboard the ship's is permitted in designated areas only, which are appropriately marked including the relevant signs. An additional €200 minimum surcharge shall be applied for smoking in other than designated areas (which corresponds to the value of the cleaning services to be ordered by us).

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14. What documentation do I need to travel?

All persons traveling need to have in their possession a valid passport. French passport control takes place prior to check-in. For more information on passports or travel documentation you can call the French Consulate on 020 7073 1200.

Note: Not all British passports are valid for travel to France.
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15. Where can I obtain a visa?

Visas for travel to France must be requested from the French Consulate in London or Edinburgh. For more information, please contact the Consulate visa line on 09065 540 700

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16. Is travel insurance recommended?

We recommend that all passengers travelling to France take out a travel insurance policy.

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17. Are there any legal requirements needed for my car to drive overseas?

Vehicles travelling in France are legally required to have certain breakdown and emergency equipment stored in the vehicle and a visible GB sticker if your registration plate does not already display this. Please check with your insurer before travelling if you are coverd to drive overseas. 

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18. Do your ships accept vehicles which run on Liquified Petroleum Gas LPG?

Yes, vehicles converted to LPG or motor homes carrying LPG cylinders are accepted onboard our ferries. Please note however, vehicles are limited to carrying one LPG cylinder. We also ask that you advise the staff at the check in booth before you check in.

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19. Which of your ships are suitable for disabled passengers with wheel chairs?

All our vessels are equipped to carry disabled passengers however please advise us at the time of booking, the staff can allow for the car to be situated nearer to the lifts on the car deck. Staff will also accommodate as much as they can if you have any further requirements.

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20. What is a commercial vehicle?

Description of commercial vehicles: any vehicle carrying commercial goods for hire & reward on any leg of the journey must book at freight rates, irrespective of the vehicle's dimensions.
i. All, passenger vehicle fares advertised do not apply to any vehicles over 7 metres in length and/or over 4.35 metres in height and to those carrying commercial goods subject to customs documentation.
ii. All, commercial cargo carried in cars, luggage trailers etc. will be charged according to freight tariff.
iii. All, maximum weight private vehicles permitted as passenger unit for private purposes - 3.5 tonne box van, typical (L) 6-8m, category B – UK driving license.
iv. For Short Sea routes, vehicles with a seating capacity of 15 or more persons, coach rates apply regardless of the vehicle’s dimensions. Details of charges for such vehicles are available on request.
v. For Long Sea routes, vehicles with a seating capacity of 12 or more persons, coach rates apply regardless of the vehicle’s dimensions. Details of charges for such vehicles are available on request. Freight rates are subject to VAT. To contact our freight department call +44 (0) 1304 874001.

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21. What if I have concerns regarding the service?

If you have any concerns regarding the services provided by DFDS Seaways Dover-Dunkirk ferries, you should bring them to the immediate attention of one of our staff.

If your concerns remain unresolved, please contact us in writing by post or by email ( customerservices.dover@dfds.com ) within 28 days of your return, quoting the booking reference and giving details of how we may contact you.

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22. Where are the ports located?

For information on the location of our ports, please visit the port information pages which contain address details and downloadable maps for route planning.

Dover port information Dunkirk port information

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23. Which is the closest petrol station to Dunkirk terminal?

The nearest petrol station to the car ferry terminal in Dunkirk is close to the 'Auchan Flandres Littoral' hypermarket. Easy to reach (Motorway A16 - Exit 25A), it is open 24 hours a day.

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24. What shall I do if the number of passengers is different between the two crossings of a return journey?

While making the booking, please state the highest number of passengers travelling in either direction. While checking in, our staff will then update the system according to the effective number. If during peak season this affects the price then please call 0871 574 7223 (calls may cost up to 10p per minute plus network extras) and speak to one of our Passenger Sales and Service Team who will assis you with your booking

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25. Is there any surcharge on bookings made by phone?

Please note that bookings made by phone will be subject to GBP 5 / EUR 7.5 surcharge.

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26. Can I take my shotgun, rifle or weapon with me in the car?

Yes, provided you are fully licensed and can fulfil all the legal requirements.

You must declare this at the time of booking by phoning our call centre at least 24 hours before you intend to travel:

Telephone

Call centre: 0871 574 7223, or

Call centre (outside UK):  +44 (0) 208 127 8303  

You can take ammunition, but this must be kept to a minimum and wherever possible, stored separately from any weapon, e.g. in another compartment.

The weapons(s) must remain inside the vehicle and wherever practicable, the bolt, magazine or other vital operating part should be separated from the gun and either carried on the person, secured or hidden in the vehicle, or kept in a locked container, ideally secured to the vehicle. Any weapon must also be obscured from view, under a cover or inside a container. Once onboard, the ships loading officer will be discretely aware of you and will ask you to surrender your car keys for the duration of the crossing. The vehicle must remain locked and alarmed, if fitted. On arrival, the keys will be given back to you.

Once you have informed us of all the details, we must pass the information to other interested parties. All vehicles are subject to searching at both ports and this will avoid any misunderstanding. However, you should still discretely confirm to the check in operator that you are carrying such.

Even if your gun is only for display, the requirements are exactly the same.

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27. How can I access the centre of Dunkirk and Auchan Hypermarket?

The national road N1, is the most direct road from the DFDS Seaways Terminal to Dunkirk town centre and Auchan Hypermarket. 

An alternative route is available for cyclists; leaving the DFDS Seaways terminal, go straight at the first roundabout in Route des Dunes, then continue on Route de Mardyck and further on route du Fortelet. Follow the signs to 'Dunkerque Centre Ville'.

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28. What if I am travelling with Children who do not have their Parent or Legal Guardian travelling with me?

Children travelling abroad without their Parent or Legal Guardian but with another adult must have a letter of consent or permission to travel maybe refused.

It is the Passengers responsibility to ensure that they have all the documentation needed to comply with the requirements of immigration, customs, health and other relevant regulations.

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29. Can I travel with medical oxygen?

Medical oxygen - UN1072a

The carriage of medical oxygen in a private vehicle is permitted to travel without a dgn under the following circumstances:

  • Only 6 x 10 litre canisters can be carried in one vehicle and only if accompanied by a doctor’s letter confirming that the passenger must carry the oxygen at all times.
  • Passengers must inform DFDS Seaways at the time of booking that they will be carrying the oxygen so that a note can be made in the booking to this effect.
  • Passengers are prohibited from being in designated smoking areas.

Any further information can be found under MGN 340 on the MCA website .

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30. Can I amend my booking at the port?

DFDS Seaways Dover-Dunkirk ferries do allow amendments to be made at the port subject to space availability. Amendments to your booking will be subject to the terms and conditions of the ticket purchased. 

For the cheapest amendment please contact our call centre as soon as your plans change. Bookings made within 24 hours of departure are subject to the payment of a surcharge, therefore prices on the day of travel will be higher than if booked in advance, which may affect your amendment price.

For the cheapest amendment please contact our call centre as soon as your plans change.

Telephone

Call centre: 0871 574 7223 (Calls may cost up to 10p per minute plus network extras)

Call centre (outside UK):  +44 (0) 208 127 8303  

Please note: bookings cannot be amended if more than 24 hours have passed since your original crossing departed. A new booking must be made and the original booking is treated as a cancellation.

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31. Can I transport my Hot Air Balloon with DFDS Seaways?

Vehicles carrying hot air balloon equipment (for private use)  are permitted to carry the following:

  • Up to 47kg of a class 2.1 flammable gas (usually propane or butane).
  • A small canister of class 2.2 non-flammable gas (usually helium – this is used for weather balloons so they can assess the wind conditions before launch).
  • A small jerrycan of fuel for the use in a fan to inflate the balloon envelope.
  • Fire extinguishers for use in the operation of the balloon.

You must inform us you are carrying these items at check-in.

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32. Where can I find out more about Premium and Economy ticket types?

Find out more about our diffeerent ticket types here .

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