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By far the busiest ferry routes out of the UK are the short Dover cross­ings, but you don’t seem to en­joy them as much as the longer ser­vices to Nor­mandy and Brit­tany and down to San­tander and Bil­bao in Spain.

Brit­tany Fer­ries, which op­er­ates most of these routes, is once again the clear win­ner. In­deed, it has, with re­mark­able con­sis­tency, won this award ev­ery year since 2013.

Some of this suc­cess, I think, stems from the fact that these longer cross­ings are a chance to re­lax and en­joy the jour­ney – you feel as though the hol­i­day has started. The Dover routes feel much more per­func­tory – you are back on the car deck an hour or so af­ter set­ting sail.

That said, Brit­tany Fer­ries clearly knows how to look af­ter cus­tomers, with fer­ries that feel more like cruise ships, ex­cel­lent cui­sine and an en­tic­ing choice of des­ti­na­tions.

Red Fun­nel will be par­tic­u­larly re­lieved at your vote of con­fi­dence. The oper­a­tor of the Southamp­ton-Isle of Wight route made head­lines in Oc­to­ber when one of its fer­ries col­lided with moored yachts in Cowes har­bour, sink­ing one.

Stena Line, which crosses the Ir­ish

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