Discover Ferries members want all passengers to enjoy a relaxing and stress-free journey on board and is committed to making services accessible and easy to use. We partnered with 50+ model, fashion and beauty influencer and mental health and disability advocate: Sandie Roberts from Search for Silver Linings to show her experience of sailing to Normandy in France with Brittany Ferries.
We understand that the more information you have about your journey, the more confident you will feel when travelling. With this mind, we have put together this overview of the accessible facilities that are available on board ferries and ensure you have a great ferry experience.
Prepare and book ahead to ensure you get the best assistance
What assistance ferry operators offer on board
Facilities vary depending on the vessel you sail on, so check with the operator what facilities are available on board before you book.
Most ferries have either lifts from the car decks or passenger ramps suitable for wheelchair users. Space on the car deck may be limited close to the lifts at busy periods. If a passenger needs to use the lift they can let operators know at the time of booking and their vehicle will be loaded in the lift lane.
Ferries which have private cabins have a range of wheelchair accessible cabins on most vessels, with wider doors and step-free en suite facilities. Some have bunk beds and your travelling companion/s may need to use an upper bunk.
There are accessible toilets available on most member ferries, however this varies by vessel. Please check before booking.
Loan of a wheelchair
Not all ferries can accommodate motorised wheelchairs or buggies in passenger areas; however, they can usually be loaded as freight or left on the car deck and a standard wheelchair will be made available for use during the journey on most crossings.
Some ferries have priority seating areas. Seats in this area can be used by anyone but should be made available if they are needed for passengers with disabilities, expectant mothers or the elderly.
Ferries have some Braille signage on board but not all services have information available in Braille. If you or a member of your travelling party has a visual impairment, we recommend visiting the information desk on board or speaking to a member of crew for assistance with orientation.
If you or a member of your travelling party has a hearing impairment, please report to the Information Desk on board or speak to a member of the crew. Some operators have an induction loop and others will arrange for you to receive all important messages being made over the onboard speaker system.
Assistance Dogs are carried free of charge and can access all passenger areas of the ferry. They must be kept on a lead at all times. You may need to show your assistance animal has been certified and, if you are travelling to the EU or Northern Ireland, that they have a valid health certificate.
Carrying medical oxygen
Please notify the ferry operator of any need to bring mobility and/or medical equipment at the time of the booking. You can travel with medical oxygen with written permission from a GP advising that medical oxygen is required. Ferry operators need to be informed that medical oxygen will potentially be used on the voyage at the time of booking.
Ferry operators are not able to help with personal care matters such as feeding, breathing, lifting or using the toilet.
Sunflower Lanyard Scheme
The Sunflower Lanyard Scheme for hidden disabilities is recognised by Condor Ferries, Hovertravel, Irish Ferries, P&O Ferries and Red Funnel.
Concessionary fares are available with some ferry operators, please check with the individual operators to see which discounts are available.
Where to find out more information
|Ferry Company||Access information online||Telephone||Email / Contact us web form|
|Brittany Ferries||https://www.brittany-ferries.co.uk/information/travel-advice/disabled-passengers||0330 159 5015 |
Mon-Fri 09:00 – 18:00 Sat-Sun 9:00 – 16:30
|Caledonian MacBrayne||https://www.calmac.co.uk/on-board/passenger-assistance||0800 066 5000 or|
+44 1475 650397 (for international customers) Mon-Sun: 08:00 – 17:00
|Condor Ferries||https://www.condorferries.co.uk/ferry-routes-ports/plan-your-journey/travel-advice/disabled-facilities||0345 609 1024 |
Mon– Sat: 10:00 – 14:00
|DFDS||https://www.dfds.com/en-gb/passenger-ferries/passenger-information/information-for-disabled-passengers||Dover to France: |
0871 574 7235
Mon – Fri: 09:00 – 15:00
Newhaven to Dieppe:
0800 917 1201
*Calls cost 13p per minute plus your telephone companies access charge.
|Hovertravel||https://www.hovertravel.co.uk/hovercare-travel-scheme/||0345 222 0461 |
Mon – Fri: 09:00 – 17:00
|Irish Ferries||https://www.irishferries.com/uk-en/frequently-asked-questions/top-10-faqs/reduced-mobility-and-special-needs/||03717 300 400 |
Mon-Fri: 08:00- 18:00
|Isle of Man Steam Packet Company||https://www.steam-packet.com/information/specialassistance||01624 661661 |
|Isles of Scilly Travel||https://www.islesofscilly-travel.co.uk/plan-your-trip/special-assistance-and-accessibility/||01736 334220 |
|P&O Ferries||https://www.poferries.com/en/accessibility||01304 44 88 88 |
|Red Funnel||https://www.redfunnel.co.uk/en/isle-of-wight-ferry/passenger-assistance/||02380 019192|
|Stena Line||https://www.stenaline.co.uk/faqs/customers-with-assistance-requirements/i-require-special-assistance-can-you-help||03447 707070 |
Mon-Fri: 08:00-22:00 Sat–Sun: 09:00-22:00
*Calls cost 7p per minute plus your phone company’s access charge
|Uber Boat by Thames Clippers||https://www.thamesclippers.com/plan-your-journey/accessibility||Contact us: |
|Wightlink||https://www.wightlink.co.uk/tickets/accessible-travel||0800 093 8236 |
Mon-Fri 09:00- 18:00 Sat-Sun 09:00-17:00
|Contact us: |