Ferry From Dover to Calais

ferry dover calais uk france

A ferry crossing from Dover to Calais is a popular way to travel by car between the UK and France. It is one of the shortest ferry routes, lasting about 90 minutes, and avoids the hassle of driving through continental Europe. In this article, we will describe how the car ferry crossing works, where and how to buy tickets, and what you need to know before your journey.

Choosing the Ferry Line

The most important thing to do when planning a car ferry crossing is to choose the right ferry. The three main ferry lines offering the crossing from Dover to Calais are P&O Ferries, DFDS Seaways, and Irish Ferries. All three offer regular services, and tickets can be booked online or purchased on site.

Buying Tickets

It is best to buy tickets online to ensure that you have a place on the ferry at a convenient time. It is advisable to do this well in advance, as ticket prices may increase during the summer or on weekends. During the booking process, you will need to provide details about your car, such as its model, dimensions, and registration number.

Required Documents

Before departing, you will need to gather all the required documents, including your passport, vehicle documents, insurance policy, and ferry ticket. You should arrive at the ferry terminal in Dover at least an hour before the scheduled departure time. You can grab a bite to eat, have a drink or use the restroom before boarding the ferry.

Boarding the Ferry

Upon arrival at the terminal, you will need to pass through the checkpoint and present your tickets (boarding number) and passport. 

You will hear an announcement when your ferry is ready for boarding, so you’ll know when to head back to your car. Simply drive onto the ferry when directed and one of employees will show you where to park.

Don’t forget to take a look at which deck you are parked on, and remember coloured staircase you are parked closest to, as this will make it easy to find your car when it is time to disembark.

On-Board Amenities

On board the ferry, drivers have access to various amenities, such as restaurants, cafes, and souvenir shops. During the crossing, you can enjoy the views of the North Sea and relax before continuing your journey.

Arrival and Crossing the Border

Upon arrival in Calais, passengers head to the exit and cross the French border. You will then head to the designated lane and leave the ferry. It is worth remembering that traffic laws in France are different from those in the UK, so it is important to familiarize yourself with local traffic regulations before continuing your journey.

It is also worth noting that to enter France, you must meet the document requirements, such as having a valid passport or ID card, vehicle documents, insurance policy, and other documents depending on the situation, such as when transporting animals. Therefore, it is advisable to ensure that all documents are in order before departure.

Navigating French Traffic Laws

After leaving the Calais ferry terminal, drivers have access to a well-developed network of roads that provide quick and easy access to various locations in France. However, it is important to remember that in France, there is left-hand traffic, and some roads and highways require payment for tolls.


In summary, a car ferry crossing from Dover to Calais is an easy and convenient way to travel between the UK and France. However, it is important to remember to book your tickets in advance, bring all the necessary documents, and exercise caution on the road. The ferry crossing from Dover to Calais is one of the shortest and most beautiful ferry routes, making it an ideal option for those who want to experience an unforgettable journey.

I have found a video for you if you are traveling this route for the first time. I hope it will be helpful for you.
I am not the author of the video - Source: YouTube
Scroll to Top