Blue Star ferries is the most popular ferry company in Greece, covering mainly the Cyclades Islands (Paros, Naxos, Mykonos, Santorini, Amorgos, Ios, Koufonisi etc). Here is our review of what to expect in the company’s ferries.
Blue star ferries owns around forty ferries. Some are High Speed and the others travel pretty fast but at least 30% slower than the high speeds. The Blue star ferries have a characteristic blue color with yellow stripes. The ferries have 7 decks. There are also five garages for cars, which you will tecignize as G1, G2 etc. If you are traveling with a car it is important to remember the exact garage that you leave your car, otherwise it will be very hard to find it and the temperature in the garages is pretty high.
There are three types of seats you can get at a Blue Star Ferry. The cheapest one, is the standard seat. This means that you dont have a designated and numbered seat. So, where will you sit? You will have to find a chair either in the outside, open deck areas or inside the ship, where there is aircondition and random seating. The seating at the open deck is not that comfortable as there are plastic chairs or plastic bends.
There are open decks on the two sides of the ferry, on the back and on the terrace. Some open decks offer shadow, so make sure you arrive early, so that you can get a seat of your preference.
The second type of seats, are the Air Seats. These are designated, numbered seats at chairs that look like the ones of an airplane. However they are larger and softer.
The third type of seats is inside the First Class area. Here, there is an area only for first class customers.
Moreover, you can get a cabin for two, three or four persons.
Tip: if you enter the ferry and you dont like your seat (or lack of one) you can go to the reception and ask to buy an upgrade for the forst class, an air seat or even a cabin.
Where and what to eat in the Blue Star Ferries
The ferries have a coffee bar of the popular Flocafe chain and a burger house of the popukar, Greek chain called Goody’s. You can get pies, burgers, water, beers, ice-cream, sweets, orange juice etc. The prices are usually fifty percent more expensive than what you would find in Greece. Eg a spinach pie costs 3.1 euro on the ferry, while you get it for 2.3 euros on the land. Half a liter of water is half a euro. A cold coffee costs 3.8 euros. You can also bring your own food on board, so if tou have a nice bakery close to the place you live, you could load up before in boarding.
Is there wifi on the ferry?
There is a wifi hotspot on board but you have to pay to access it. Make sure you download netflix movies before getting on the ferry.
How early should you plan to arrive to the ferry?
The peak period is 25th of July to 20th of August. In that period there is a lot of traffic to the port of Piraeus. Especially during the weekends. As an example if it is Sunday in the first week of August and your ferry is leaving from Piraeus port at 06:45 in the morning, there might be a forty minutes traffic jan, 3 kms outside the port of Piraeus. Remember that the portbof Piraeus is one of the biggest in Europe and there are many ferries leaving at the same time towards the greek islands.
Plan to be sixty minutes before the departure time on the ferry. This will allow you to find a nice seat. If you have a designated and numbered seat you can arrive twenty or thirty minutes before. Ferries leave on time usually and will not be waiting for you, so dont risk with time.
Where to buy tickets for the Blue Star Ferries?
You can buy them inline from the company website and pick them up from a box ticket office opposite of the departure of the ships. Or via the viva.gr website and pick them up from designated places. There is no eticket for ferries unfortunately.
Where to leave your luggages on the ferry
On the ground floor of the ferry, which is also a garage, there is a storage area for luggages. It is an open area and it is not locked, so don’t leave anything expensive inside your suitcase. It is not common to have your whole suitcase stolen. If you dont want to leave them on the storage area, you can get them with you.
Can I sleep on the floor of the ferry, with a sleeping bag?
Some people do it..usually no one will disturb you. It is part of the fun and the experience for younger people.
Can i bring my dog on board?
Yes you can. But you should take care that it doesn’t bite anyone. In Greece, if your dog bites someone and the police comes, your dog will have to get euthanized.
Can i smoke inside the ferry?
No, smoking or vaping is not allowed inside the ferry. You can smoke or vape at the open air decks.
Will i feel sea sick?
Well, the ferries are pretty big and it is not common for people to get sea sick when there are not really strong winds. In the summer time you should be fine.
Does the crew speak English?
Yes, everyone speaks English on the ferry, at the bars, cafes, at the reception etc. Dont expect much for other languages, such as french, italian, german or spanish.
From which gate of piraeus port do they leave from?
Piraeus port is huge. And it is split in Gates. There are nine gates and usually the ships to cyclades from Blue star ferries leave from Gate 7 or Gate 8. Dont take this for granted. Check and ask what is your gate and let the taxi driver know.
Can i onboard my rent a car?
Yes, you will have to declare the number of the car plate when you issue the ticket and then you can bring it on the ferry with you.
How is the whole experience?
Pretty good we should say. The greek ferry companies are very experienced with transferring passengers. Probably the most experienced in Europe. So, everyone knows his job pretty well and even when the weather is not good, you will see that the crew is well organised to onboard cars, passengers. Not typical of the organization of the country, though.
Tip: you can find the real time location of each ferry on the sea via various greek websites. Eg try the https://www.ferriesingreece.com/live-boat-traffic.htm?imo=9241774#select-ferry-anchor
Tip about the weather forecast: the best website for checking the weather forecast is www.meteo.gr. It usually has pretty accirate predictions for the greek islands and the mainland.