Frequently asked questions

Sailing Check-in

Please note Irish Ferries use the 24 hour clock. Check-in times differ depending on the route etc. You must ensure that you are through the check-in point before the times advised below:

Great Britain / Ireland Routes – latest check-in time

  • Travelling with coach – 1 hours before departure
  • Travelling with any other vehicle type - 30 minutes before departure
  • Travelling on foot or cycling – 30 minutes before departure

France / Ireland Routes
– latest check-in time

  • Travelling with coach – 2 hours before departure
  • Travelling with Motorcycle - 1 hour 30 minutes before departure
  • Travelling with any other vehicle type - 1 hour before departure
  • Travelling on foot or cycling– 1 hour before departure

Passengers travelling with guide dogs or any domestic animal on the Ireland France route must check in 2 hours before departure. Please allow a little extra time if you need to collect tickets at the port.

Great Britain / France Routes – latest check-in time

  • Travelling with coach – 1 hour 30 mins before departure
  • Travelling with motorcycle- 1 hour before departure
  • Travelling with any other vehicle type- 1 hour before departure


Mobile Phones / Data Roaming

It is possible to use your mobile phone while at sea, to make calls, send texts and use data.

While close to land, you phone will connect to a terrestrial mobile network, and EU roaming rules apply.  The EU binding price cap does not apply if you use your mobile phone onboard via the ferry’s satellite connection, provided by Telenor Maritime.

Brexit: Governments are working with mobile operators to prevent the reintroduction of roaming charges after Brexit for people travelling to the UK, including Northern Ireland, in relation to data roaming while connected to a terrestrial mobile network. This is not relevant for data roaming while at sea.



Please remember the following:

  • This satellite service is more expensive than your normal tariff.
  • Irish Ferries / Telenor Maritime do not set the tariffs.
  • Your own mobile operator sets the rates and is obliged to advise you of these by text message, when your phone switches to the onboard satellite network.
  • Connection over a satellite network is not a terrestrial network and is not covered by the EU regulations on data roaming introduced in June 2017.
  • Passengers from the USA, Canada and other countries may have to contact their home operator to activate the satellite service.
  • Further clarification on the EU rules around data roaming can be found here:
  • If you are concerned over data roaming charges, please SWITCH OFF your mobile data and use the onboard WiFi instead.
Health Card / EHIC / GHIC

Ordinary residents of Ireland, UK and other EU member states can access necessary healthcare from the state healthcare systems in Ireland, UK and EU member states on presentation of a currently valid EHIC (European Health Insurance) card.

For UK residents, once your current EHIC card expires, you can apply for a new UK issued GHIC (Global Health Insurance Card). This entitles UK residents travelling in Ireland to access medically necessary state health services on the same basis as an Irish resident. You may still need to pay a fee for some services, like an Irish resident. You will not need to pay for hospital care including A&E or inpatient treatment, although you will pay in full for private healthcare.

More information for Irish & EU Residents: HERE

More information for UK Residents: HERE

'Necessary healthcare’ mean healthcare which becomes medically necessary during your stay, and you cannot reasonably wait until you’re back home to get it. This is not a replacement for travel insurance. We advise that you take out travel insurance and breakdown assistance before your trip. Not all state healthcare is free and free services may differ between countries.

Lost Property

All personal belongings found on our ships or in the ports are sent to our shore based lost property offices for collection. Passengers who have put their names or telephone numbers on any piece of personal property sent to our lost property offices will be contacted.

Property recovered on board is held for 1 month before being donated to charity. 

If you have a Lost Property query, please contact us by emailing

Luggage Storing Onboard

Dublin and Holyhead routes
We have luggage handling facilities for foot passengers. In Dublin and Holyhead you simply put your bags on a carousel at the check-in stage and then you collect them in the terminal building when you arrive. The luggage is stowed on the car deck so you will have no access to it during the voyage. For your comfort and security, all luggage put through this system is ticketed.

Rosslare and Pembroke routes
Foot Passengers are brought from the terminal in Rosslare and Pembroke to the ship by bus. Your luggage must remain with you during this transfer. The bus travels with the ship so you may leave your luggage on the bus or bring it with you to the upper decks of the ship. Passengers who leave their luggage on the bus do so entirely at their own risk.

Ireland/France routes
In Dublin foot passengers access the ship via either a pedestrian link span, or a shuttle bus which will bring them from the terminal building to the ship. Passengers must bring their luggage with them. In Cherbourg foot passengers are brought from the terminal to the ship by bus and their luggage must remain with them during this transfer.

Priority Loading

Priority Loading - Irish Sea Routes

Cruise ferry Mv Ulysses (Dublin /Holyhead route)
Motorists who book either club class or a cabin (before travel commences) will receive priority loading

Cruise ferry Mv W.B. Yeats (Dublin /Holyhead route) 
Motorists who book either club class or a cabin (before travel commences) will receive priority loading

Fast craft HSC Dublin Swift  (Dublin /Holyhead route)
Motorists who book club class (before travel commences) will receive priority loading

Speedy Exit

"Speedy Exit" is available to a limited number of cars or motorbikes on our Ireland – France service only from just €10 each way for cars and from €5 each way for motorcycles.

If you book "speedy exit" your vehicle will be placed in a dedicated lane on either deck 7 or deck 5 and we guarantee that your vehicle will be one of the first 20 cars or motorbikes to disembark from the ship on arrival in port.

  • Early booking is advisable
  • You must be through the check-in point at least one hour before the scheduled departure time to avail of "Speedy Exit"
  • For vessel stability and stowage reasons "Speedy Exit" cars may be parked behind freight or other large vehicles
  • Due to operational restrictions "Speedy Exit" is not available to vehicles exceeding 2.25m in height (incl. roof luggage), not available to cars towing trailers / caravans, or indeed to vehicles requiring close access to passenger lifts

If you have already made a booking and would like to add Speedy Exit to this you can do so in: Manage your booking  

Sailing Disrupted

Every effort is made to maintain advertised schedules but sailing times can sometimes be disrupted due to technical, operational or weather related issues.

If your sailing is cancelled we will do everything possible to transfer you onto the next available Irish Ferries sailing. If you would prefer not to travel on the next available sailing please contact us and we will be happy to arrange an alternative date for you.

When making your booking please provide us with a contact number (ideally your mobile phone number) and we will endeavour to make contact with you in the event of any major disruption

Sailing Missed

If you miss your sailing we will do everything possible to transfer you to the next available Irish Ferries sailing. You will be charged an amendment fee plus any difference in fare. There is no refund due for unused tickets.

Driving in France

Driving in France is different from driving in either Ireland or the UK. And not just from the perspective of driving on the right-hand side, rather than the left. Here are a few tips to help you on your way.

Please note that as rules and laws may often change, you should check with official sources before making any arrangements. Here are a few websites to help with this:

France – Official – Transport Advice External site
Ireland – Official - Travel Advice External site
UK – Official - Travel Advice External site
The RAC External site
The AA (UK) External site
AA Ireland External site
French Embassy in Ireland External site
French Embassy – UK External site

Drivers must be aged 18 or over and hold a full, valid driving licence to legally drive in France. Riders of mopeds or motorcycles up to 125cc must be aged 16 or over.

Driving licences issued in the EU, the UK, and EEA countries are accepted. International driving permits are recognised but not required.

What’s Required:

  • You must carry a full valid driving licence. Non-EU licence holders are required to have an International Drivers Permit, while driving in the EU. Check if you need an IDP.
  • Motor insurance certificate
  • Proof of ID (Passport)
  • Vehicle registration document
  • ‘Clean Air’ sticker (Crit’Air vignettes). Certain cities require you to display a Crit'Air sticker on your windscreen.
  • Reflective jackets - One for each car occupant and these must be kept inside the vehicle within easy reach
  • Warning triangle – for each car
  • UK / IRL sticker – if not designated on the vehicle number plate
  • Headlamp beam deflectors – stick-on or manual adjustment depending on your vehicle.