Spain: Ferry from Algeciras to Tangier

Old Jul 18th, 2006, 07:37 AM
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Spain: Ferry from Algeciras to Tangier

Does anyone have any reviews/advice on the various ferries that are available from Algeciras (or Tarifa) to Tangier? There are so many that I can't decide which one to choose (e.g., Trasmeditteranea, Balearia, Euroferrys, Comarit, Comanav, Nautus-Alghreb, FRS). I'm looking for the most comfortable, which may mean choosing a fast ferry instead of a hydrofoil, even though it adds another 1/2 hour to the trip, each way. Some lines seem to have Club seating in addition to Tourist class, which is appealing, especially since it doesn't cost much more (only another $7 Euros per person round-trip). Punctuality/dependability is also a concern. There isn't much info on the web that I could find--it doesn't seem like many people make the trip, or perhaps they just don't write about it (maybe that should be a clue NOT to go). Thanks.
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Old Jul 18th, 2006, 07:56 AM
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There are no hydrofoils running across the Straits. There is a variety of fast ferries and ships, and there's probably not much difference between them. The fast ferries are likely to be less reliable than ships. Tanger is on the Atlantic coast, so it can be a lively crossing.
The services are packed at this time of year when Moroccans working in Europe return to their families for the summer holidays. Outside the peak holiday season, you can just turn up and expect o buy a ticket for the next sailing. Schedules are complex, and it is difficult to find in advance what sailings each company is doing.
Nautas Al-Maghreb is actually the same firm as Balearia. They are Spanish, as are Acciona Trasmediterranea and Euroferrys; FRS is German-owned, Comarit is Norwegian-owned, and the others are Moroccan.
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Old Jul 20th, 2006, 06:34 AM
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We're going to use Nautus-Alghreb (Balearia). You can reserve tickets online and use a credit card to purchase electronic tickets. Also, when asked, the private tour guide that we've arranged in Tangier mentioned that catamaran company as being punctual and clean (Abdel-Hamid Idrissi Kaitouni, aka Charif, www.tangiertour.tk, [email protected]).
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Old Aug 23rd, 2006, 07:48 AM
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We tried to take Nautus, but the ferry was cancelled that day. Since we had prepaid (would recommend NOT doing that and NOT making a reservation at all), Nautus put us on the Comarit slow ferry which took forever (on the way over). On the return, again Nautus was cancelled, putting us on IMTC, which was even slower! It seemed that many ferries were cancelled that day, and the terminal in Tangier was chaos. Please, please, please, if the FAST ferry is cancelled on the day you are planning to go, reschedule your trip. Fortunately, we really enjoyed our brief time in Tangier, or the day would have been a total disaster. We would have been better off taking a bus or taxi to Tarifa and then taking the FRS high-speed catamaran from there. They seemed to run like clockwork.
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