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Which UK ports require the use of a tender?


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As much as I love being on a cruise ship, the thought of having to disembark at a port using a tender, really doesn't sit well with me.

I really want to book one of the UK only cruises this summer, so I would love to hear which UK ports can only be accessed using the ships tender's. I know that there is nothing to worry about on these tender's and the crew are obviously experienced in piloting them, but I am quite claustrophobic, and these boats are totally enclosed. Not my idea of fun at all.

By the grace of God, this will never happen, but if the ship was going down, I know I would have to get in one, or swim, but that would be a matter of life and death, not just to get onto a port.

We were supposed to get on a tender when we visited Guernsey in 2018. We arrived at the tender and it was bouncing around all over the place, so I backed out and refused to get on it. I'm sure I would have been fine, but panic took over and won.

Mind you, it was nice to have so much free space on the ship whilst everyone else was spending hours queueing to get off the ship and hours again to get back on. One chap told me, that from the start of queueing to get off until he got back on the ship was 5 hours. He only spent just over an hour ashore, again, not my idea of fun.

Anyway, if any of you have sailed around the UK in the past, could you let me know which ports require a tender. When the cruises do go on sale, it will give me the heads up, so I know which ones to avoid.

If I have the opportunity to book a cruise that only goes into ports where they can dock, I would choose that one over any of the others. Thanks

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12 minutes ago, sidekick180 said:

I really want to book one of the UK only cruises this summer

None of these cruises are calling at ports, they are just ocean cruises, so there is no need to worry about tenders. 

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2 minutes ago, wowzz said:

None of these cruises are calling at ports, they are just ocean cruises, so there is no need to worry about tenders. 

Can I ask where you got this information from please? When I spoke to a lady at P&O the other day, we discussed the potential UK cruises and she seemed to think that they would be visiting UK ports. She even went as far as to say, that if one of them docked in Liverpool it would be lovely because the port is stunning.

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Just now, jeanlyon said:

The doors are usually open on the tenders, plenty of fresh air, in fact sometimes too much!

I didn't realise they kept the doors open. That could make it a little bit easier to cope with. I might even be able to manage that. Thank you

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2 minutes ago, sidekick180 said:

Can I ask where you got this information from please? When I spoke to a lady at P&O the other day, we discussed the potential UK cruises and she seemed to think that they would be visiting UK ports. She even went as far as to say, that if one of them docked in Liverpool it would be lovely because the port is stunning.

Taken from the P&O website:

"These sailings will leave from our home port in Southampton and sail around UK coastal waters

enjoying the summer sunshine"

Fairly obvious that there will be no ports.

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1 minute ago, wowzz said:

Taken from the P&O website:

"These sailings will leave from our home port in Southampton and sail around UK coastal waters

enjoying the summer sunshine"

Fairly obvious that there will be no ports.

Don't think I will be going on one of those then. Not unless they are no longer than 3 nights and at a very reasonable price.

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7 minutes ago, sidekick180 said:

Don't think I will be going on one of those then. Not unless they are no longer than 3 nights and at a very reasonable price.

Some will,  supposedly,  be 7 nights long. Some will be shorter.

Not sure about the prices being reasonable (although obviously the definition of reasonable varies depending on the individual). There is considerable interest in these cruises,  staycations are expensive, lots of people have had their cruises cancelled this summer, and there is a an enormous amount of FCC out there.

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Posted (edited)

FWIW, I also believe that cruising in UK coastal waters means exactly that, but to bring back to the OP's question about UK ports requiring a tender ..

 

Edinburgh

Anything over 50,000t or restricted by size (259 x 31.5m) cannot enter the lock gates at Leith and anything too tall cannot limbo under the three bridges to Rosyth (air draft 49.2m) in the Firth of Forth, so will anchor at either Newhaven Harbour (next to Leith) or at South Queensferry.   Both anchorages involve a 20 minute tender journey to Newhaven Harbour / Hawes Pier respectively.   This would apply to any of P&O, Princess (aside from the recently sold Pacific Princess), NCL, Celebrity, RCI or Cunard's fleet.

 

However, with the larger ships, we use two local port excursion ships (Maid of the Forth and Forth Belle) to help get volumes of passengers on / off the ships - both are large, comfortable ships, come alongside the cruise ship, and can take around 200 passengers at a time (in normal circumstances).  I have assisted numerous passengers wait for one of those two rather than a ship tender if they feel nervous.

 

Edited by showingdiva
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I’ve been in many a tender and I can definitely say that not once have I been in a totally enclosed one because I’m not keen either on enclosed spaces and so I’m very aware of things like that. 
 

Round Britain - tender Scilly Isles, Tobermory, Lerwick

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1 hour ago, sidekick180 said:

I didn't realise they kept the doors open. That could make it a little bit easier to cope with. I might even be able to manage that. Thank you

Not all tenders are enclosed.

IMG_20170606_105825.jpg

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1 hour ago, sidekick180 said:

As much as I love being on a cruise ship, the thought of having to disembark at a port using a tender, really doesn't sit well with me.

I really want to book one of the UK only cruises this summer, so I would love to hear which UK ports can only be accessed using the ships tender's. I know that there is nothing to worry about on these tender's and the crew are obviously experienced in piloting them, but I am quite claustrophobic, and these boats are totally enclosed. Not my idea of fun at all.

By the grace of God, this will never happen, but if the ship was going down, I know I would have to get in one, or swim, but that would be a matter of life and death, not just to get onto a port.

We were supposed to get on a tender when we visited Guernsey in 2018. We arrived at the tender and it was bouncing around all over the place, so I backed out and refused to get on it. I'm sure I would have been fine, but panic took over and won.

Mind you, it was nice to have so much free space on the ship whilst everyone else was spending hours queueing to get off the ship and hours again to get back on. One chap told me, that from the start of queueing to get off until he got back on the ship was 5 hours. He only spent just over an hour ashore, again, not my idea of fun.

Anyway, if any of you have sailed around the UK in the past, could you let me know which ports require a tender. When the cruises do go on sale, it will give me the heads up, so I know which ones to avoid.

If I have the opportunity to book a cruise that only goes into ports where they can dock, I would choose that one over any of the others. Thanks


As Wowzz has said, these cruises were announced as just being at sea i.e. no port calls, but I hope that they reconsider that decision as, like you, I would like to cruise into Liverpool and also Belfast. 3 or 7 days at sea has no appeal for us whatsoever.
 

However, I know what you mean about tenders as I dislike them also. I don’t suffer from claustrophobia but hate the rigmarole involved. Queues to disembark and queues to return to the ship are just the start of it. I don’t like the way that P&O let the tenders depart the harbour immediately that they are full, without first checking that they can get the tender alongside the ship to get passengers off. As a result, rather than sit alongside motionless in the harbour, you can end up bobbing around for ages in choppy waters waiting for your tenders turn to come alongside. This makes me (and many other people) as sick as a dog. This has happened to us quite a few times and it annoys me as it is unnecessary with better organisation. The added problem that we have is that my wife cannot leave the ship in tender ports as she is a full time wheelchair user, so we try to avoid cruises that include them. 

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10 hours ago, sidekick180 said:

Don't think I will be going on one of those then. Not unless they are no longer than 3 nights and at a very reasonable price.

You could always sit on top deck of tender, then you are outside!!!!

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10 hours ago, wowzz said:

None of these cruises are calling at ports, they are just ocean cruises, so there is no need to worry about tenders. 

We were told last week that P&O are organising some British Isles cruises for this year and will be announced soon!!!!!!!

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4 minutes ago, yamanid said:

You could always sit on top deck of tender, then you are outside!!!!

The trouble is that not all tenders are the same. I've been in some that are totally enclosed, and some, as in Graham's picture, where you can enjoy the sunshine.

When you think about it, tenders are, first and foremost, liferafts, and if I had to abandon ship in a Force 10 gale, I would prefer to be in an enclosed vessel, rather than being exposed to the elements.   

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4 minutes ago, yamanid said:

We were told last week that P&O are organising some British Isles cruises for this year and will be announced soon!!!!!!!

Yes, they are the ones I mentioned, which will not have any ports.

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We were on holiday in Whitby a few years ago when one of the former Renaissance Cruises small  'R' ships anchored offshore and they tendered the passangers in. Not sure that several thousand pax descending on Whitby would be a good thing though!

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Just now, Adammara said:

We were on holiday in Whitby a few years ago when one of the former Renaissance Cruises small  'R' ships anchored offshore and they tendered the passangers in. Not sure that several thousand pax descending on Whitby would be a good thing though!

It's crowded enough at the best of times!

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6 hours ago, wowzz said:

Yes, they are the ones I mentioned, which will not have any ports.

We might consider a sea only cruise if the price was right. I must admit, we are not that bothered about cruising to places like Bristol , or Liverpool. If we had the urge to travel there we can jump in the car and book a nice hotel. Going round the end of Cornwall, or the top of Scotland and taking a couple of days to get to Liverpool doesn't excite.

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Posted (edited)

That would be one of the Azamara ships, with a capacity of 686 passengers.

The attached photo is of the tender in St Peter Port, Guernsey.

3143A40E-4D14-4B22-B5A3-4EE425437325.jpeg

Edited by upwarduk
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They aren't as bad as I expected. This was taken from inside the tender at Ajaccio. They are filled up but if you can manage to get a seat near to the door it would be better for you.

IMG_1603.JPG

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, upwarduk said:

That would be one of the Azamara ships, with a capacity of 686 passengers.

The attached photo is of the tender in St Peter Port, Guernsey.

3143A40E-4D14-4B22-B5A3-4EE425437325.jpeg

 

Very unlikely, to the best of my knowledge Azamara have never visited Whitby.

More likely a Oceania ship or even Princess in earlier days.

The R Ships have also had several other owners.

Edited by Bloodaxe
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