Getting the Grimaldi ferry from Igoumenitsa, Greece to Brindisi, Italy.
When approaching the port your first destination needs to be the passenger terminal. There is fairly limited parking here and most people seem to double or triple park here.
You’ll need to take your ticket confirmation/email and your chosen form of ID. This can be a passport or residency card, you’ll have selected this at the time of booking. Inside the terminal, you’ll then be provided paper tickets which you’ll need to enter the port.
Entry to the port:
One thing that is slightly strange is that if you’re travelling as more than one person, the driver takes the vehicle (and dogs) through into the port alone and any passengers have to go via the passenger terminal on foot. As the driver goes through customs you then pick your passengers up on the other side. They just need to take their ticket and passport in case anything is checked.
If you’ve purchased a cabin at the time of booking, your cabin number is printed on the bottom of the ticket, and that ticket should also work as the door entry card. When you board the ferry you should be able to check yourself in and enter the cabin straight away. Unfortunately, for us our card didn’t work to enter the cabin so we had to get a physical room key from reception.
We paid for a 2 person cabin and also had to pay a small surcharge for the dogs to be with us. The cabin comprised of a single bed, with another single fold-down bunk above it. It’s not the most comfy mattress you’ll ever sleep on but the cabin was quiet and we both managed to get about 5 hours sleep in. The cabin includes a small en-suite with a toilet and shower. The shower was hot and shampoo and soap were provided, as well as a towel for each person. We’d set an alarm for an hour before the boat docked but they woke you up and wanted you out of the cabins 2 hours before which was quite frustrating. There wasn’t really anywhere comfy to sit with the dogs for that last couple of hours and we could have got some more sleep in.
Remember to turn off roaming on your phones so you don’t connect to maritime roaming and risk getting a hefty data bill.
On arrival, you’ll be called to go back to your vehicle depending on which deck you are on. We were parked on the top deck and it took us an hour after docking to get off the ferry. Exiting the port is very straightforward, a quick stop at customs if they pull you and you’re back on your way. Warning - The roads leaving the port are pretty rough and full of potholes, some of the worst we’ve driven in Europe.
Header image from Alice Butenko