Tasi Trip, Spirit rip off

Submitted: Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 12:59
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Hi all, new to the forum and thought I would post my experiences on a recent trip to Tasmania. We timed it perfectly to arrive as the fires kicked off. It was sad to hear of the losses suffered. However, further losses were suffered at Bicheno due to exagerated reporting of the fires there. Radio reports claimed the town was under dire threat and that visibility due to smoke was down to a few metres. Many tourists cancelled their stay in the town with serious consequences for the local community. A local business man tipped that some locals would go broke due to incorrect reporting. Freycinet Park was closed, so we missed that, but Bicheno was safe and open for business. As we were leaving a town meeting was being held and the locals claimed that "heads would roll" when it was discovered who was supplying misleading and fals info to the media.

We wanted to take our boat on the Spirit, but the coast was prohibitive at $2500 for 2 people, 4wd and 7 metre trailer. That compared to only 360 for 2 people and car. I asked if we could split the deal and my wife have a space allocated to her ticket, but they said that was no go and that space was a premium. On loading onto the Spirit we found that there were in fact plenty of open spaces and ample space between vehicles.

If I had taken the boat I would have planned longer stays in Caravan parks and motels, instead of cheaper camp stays, bought around 100 litres of fuel each trip plus bait, tackle and sundries required on any boating holiday. So I saved probably around $2000 to $3000 or more importantly $2000 to $3000 didn't go into the Tasi economy.

When I mentioned the prices on the Spirit virtually all the tourism dependant people went ballistic. Not only does the price gouging prevent huge numbers of visitors, including caravanning and camping grey nomads, from going to Tasmania, but the pensioner grey nomads in Tasi are locked on the island by prices they can not afford to pay to go and see the rest of Oz.

The numbers of people who would go if pricing for trailers were cheaper would be a huge boost to the Tasi economy. It is very short sighted of government not to subsidise travel between the two islands.

pete

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Reply By: Candace S. - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 13:34

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 13:34
"$2500 for 2 people, 4wd and 7 metre trailer" !! Holy Toledo!! That will deter nearly everyone, I would think!

Another example of gouging travellers: The base rate for a Britz Bushcamper in July and August is $280 per day, yet in February it is $124. Ridiculous!
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Follow Up By: Member - Bruce C (NSW) - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 19:25

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 19:25
Yes Candace, they subscribe to the old maxim,

"Whatever the traffic will bear"

Cheers, Bruce.
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Reply By: Fab72 - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 14:00

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 14:00
Pete ...the same reason I refuse to got to Kangaroo Island or use the Wallaroo to Cowell ferry service.
Fab.
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Follow Up By: Robyn R4 - Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 21:18

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 21:18
Why? How much is it to go to K.I these days?
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Follow Up By: Fab72 - Friday, Feb 01, 2013 at 17:47

Friday, Feb 01, 2013 at 17:47
Robyn,
$280 each way for 2 adults, a car and trailer. As mentioned on a post below, it's less than 30 minutes sailing time.

I wouldn't take a trailer, but I do have 3 kids, so it's still $260 each way for me. $520 buys me a lot of fuel on the mainland. About 370 litres in fact. 370 litres will get me about 3700 kms in my bus.

Doesn't make very good economic sense in my opinion.

Fab.
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Reply By: rumpig - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 14:12

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 14:12
we have considered driving down to tour Tasmania with the 4wd and camper trailer, but the cost of the ferry has put us off also. obviously it isn't cheap running the ferry from a business point of view, but from my view the cost of that ticket over and back for myself and our family buys a lot of fuel to go elsewhere in the country, and that's what we have done over the past few years instead.
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Reply By: K&FT - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 15:22

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 15:22
G'day everyone,

Peter T14 your post confirms to me that what may be needed here is some stiff competition. It would appear to me that the company that operates the ferry service is a monopoly and as such will charge whatever the market will bear.

We saw what happened to airfares when competition was introduced maybe the same could happen here.

just a thought, cause we would like to go to tassie too with our caravan but at prices like that it will never happen.

frank
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Follow Up By: Member - Oldbaz. NSW. - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 16:00

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 16:00
While not supporting the high cost of the ferry service, I do have to point out that the service is indeed sponsored by the govt.
If you take a C/t or caravan to Tas it will not cost you $2.5k, more
like half that amount, depending on length. The subsidy does not apply to trailers that dont have a permanent bed attached, hence
the high cost for boat trailers. Unfair ? probably..
If you want a really expensive boat trip with a C/t or caravan...
try the Kangaroo Island Ferry..& it only takes an hour.....oldbaz.
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Follow Up By: Nomadic Navara - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 16:55

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 16:55
It's not a monopoly, others are free to operate a service. SeaCat Tasmania operated a service from Port Welshpool to Georgetown around 12 years ago. The terminal was still at Port Welshpool last time I was there, feel free to make an offer for it and start your own gold mine running across the Bass Straight.
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Follow Up By: K&FT - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 17:39

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 17:39
G'day PeterD,
mate if I had a politicians super instead of mine maybe I could do just that. would love the challenge.

Technically it may not be a monopoly but to me any business that has no competition is in a monopoly situation IE they have no competition.

I wonder if the federal government competition policy applies here? I really know nothing about it.

thanks for the info

frank
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Follow Up By: mikehzz - Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 20:18

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 20:18
The Devil Cat was a horror trip sometimes and trips were cancelled quite often due to the swell being too large. This resulted in stranded passengers. I did it once, never again...the whole boat was throwing up with sea sickness. My wife and I still talk about it. We caught the big boat back to the mainland.
I'd wager that the ferry is borderline losing money even charging those prices.
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Follow Up By: Erad - Friday, Feb 01, 2013 at 08:16

Friday, Feb 01, 2013 at 08:16
The trip across Bass Strait can be very rough at times. So much so that the Devil Cat also had nicknames such as the Vomit Comet or the Sick Cat. We had a few trips on different cats and they were ROUGH. But I would still liek to see the service going - not only as competition for the bigger boats, but also for the convenience of a nominally 3.5 hour trip. ANyway, there simply isn't enough traffic to justify 2 services.
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Follow Up By: garrycol - Friday, Feb 01, 2013 at 11:43

Friday, Feb 01, 2013 at 11:43
Maybe if prices were more reasonable then there would be enough traffic to justify two services.
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Reply By: pop2jocem - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 16:01

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 16:01
This whole 'Tour Tassie' subject was aired recently on another forum. Not only the ferry cost but the fact that apparently certain free or low cost camping alternatives are being closed or prices increased by some sort of "price parity" legislation to allow caravan parks to compete on a more so called "level playing field" with shires or whoever is providing these areas. Feedback seems to indicate that some/many may choose to vote with their feet, or should that be wheels.

Cheers
Pop
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Follow Up By: baz&pud (tassie) - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 16:52

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 16:52
G'day Pop,
We do a lot of camping here, and admittedly most of it is on private property, but at the present i don't know of any free camping sites that have been closed.
Cheers
Baz
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Follow Up By: pop2jocem - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 20:16

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 20:16
Apparently the Batman Bridge camping area is one that has closed already and is now day use only.
This change is being brought about by some supposedly nationally agreed competition policy which goes by the name "competitive neutrality". From what I can make of it the caravan park lobby is instrumental in bringing this into being. Shires and the like will be compelled to charge a rate for previously free or low cost camping areas under their control commensurate with a commercial operation that supplies a similar service.
That's my understanding anyway. Be interesting to see if this is indeed "national".

Cheers
Pop
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Follow Up By: Motherhen - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 22:48

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 22:48
The Batman Bridge was changed to Day Area Only in March 2007. It seems that long term campers (squatters) may have forced the issue being policed.

Motherhen

Tasmania - worth visiting at any price
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Follow Up By: woodie3 - Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 22:47

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 22:47
We spent a couple of days at Batman bridge last year,2012, when there, there was a young bloke with a couple of kids and had been there for a considerable time. A concern of mine before we left in February ,2012 ,was the rumour of impending closure of free camps, when there we found out it was just that, a rumour, spent 3 mths in Tassie and had a great time, Bill
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Follow Up By: Motherhen - Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 23:02

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 23:02
I doubt many will be closing. Those that fall under 'competitive neutrality' following complaints by a caravan park will be charging something like $5. Still a pretty fair deal for a nice patch of land.

Mh
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Reply By: ianbatley - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 16:30

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 16:30
There is a Bass Strait Passenger Vehicle Equalisation Sheme http://www.infrastructure.gov.au/transport/programs/maritime/bass/index.aspx that provides rebates for vehivles including motorcycles, passenger vehicles, buses, motorhomes and passenger vehicles towing caravans. It does not apply to trailers. The total rebate for vehicle and caravan on a round trip is $796.

This rebate can be claimed by the operator, who presumably passes it on to the passenger, or the passenger. What is not clear is if the Spirit of Tasmania applies the rebate at the time of booking. Although digging down through their site, it would seem that they do.

However, I also agree that they charge like the perverbial wounded bull. I have certainly found it cheaper to take my vehicle and buy a bunch of cabin coupons to stay at the many cabin parks around Tas.
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Follow Up By: Keith Q - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 18:40

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 18:40
Hello Ian,
My ears pricked up at the mention of cabin coupons. How do they work? Where do you get them from?We would also like to go to Tassie and anything that would be easy to organise would be a great incentive.
I would appreciate your ideas.
Keith
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Follow Up By: ianbatley - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 19:42

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 19:42
Hi Keith,

I got the coupons through the NRMA. They were part of a package, accomodation, Spirit fares, etc.

Ian
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Reply By: baz&pud (tassie) - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 16:45

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 16:45
Agree with what has been said above, it has been a bitch with a lot of us Grey Nomads and others who live in Tassie, the cost of getting off the island and also returning (maybe one day some of us won't).

If you drive anywhere near the good old Murray River (and other places) there is a ferry there 24/7/52 and the cost is zilch to cross, because it's part of the Federal Highway System, so why isn't from Devonport to Melbourne and return the same.

I have to admit that i would be prepared to pay the equivalent amount for a fare, that was costed for the amount of fuel i would spend to drive the same distance, plus accommodation.

Having said all the above we have just booked for our next trip with cruiser and van with a total length of 13+ meters, and the cost was $1718 return, this excludes a Govt. rebate of $796, and the trip takes ten and a half hours.

A friend of our was recently on Kangaroo Island, and with van the trip cost $750, so in comparison the Bass Strait crossing isn't bad, but it's still too expensive.

But hey, if you want to come to Gods little acre and enjoy the food, wine, scenery and the friendly Tassie people, isn't it worth the cost.
Cheers
Baz

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Follow Up By: baz&pud (tassie) - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 16:57

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 16:57
Ooops, should have said includes Govt. rebate.
Baz
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Follow Up By: Ginny R - Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 14:42

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 14:42
We too live in Tasmania and have just booked to take our van, cruiser with dingy on the roof, dog (accommodated in the caravan for both trips) and a 2 berth cabin exclusive occupancy and got an industry discount as we both work in the tourist industry and it cost $1700+ - I have emailed to find out a breakdown of the actual costs as I am not sure what happens about the rebate.

Maybe another suggestion would be to set up some sort of 'caravan exchange' with people from interstate who might be interested in renting (for a nominal fee) a caravan already located in Tasmania.
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Follow Up By: Member - Duke (TAS) - Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 21:06

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 21:06
Wife and myself on the Ferry on Wed 6-2-2013. Drive a 100 series Cruiser towing a 23ft. 6inch Van. Accommodation on board is a two bed Cabin. The cheapest Pensioner fare we could get was $1117.00 one way.This is our 27th crossing on the Ferries and I don't know how much longer we can afford to do it but it too far to swim.
The fare should not cost any more than driving a simular distance on the mainland (240kil) and staying in Motel accommodation for a night. Supposed to be part of Hwy.1. I have spoken to a few Van Park owners in the last 2weeks and they are all saying the same thing, Tourist travellers in Vans and Motorhome are well down on numbers compared to previous years.
I believe that the freight dollar gets priority and that is not what they were designed for.
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Reply By: SDG - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 17:19

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 17:19
I was throwing around the idea of a trip to Tassie, or a ten day cruise up the Queensland coast a couple of years ago.
The P&O Cruise won as it was cheaper.
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Reply By: Member - Boo Boo (NSW) - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 17:46

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 17:46
G'day all

Not having a clue about prices are you talking about one way or return?

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Follow Up By: baz&pud (tassie) - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 19:10

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 19:10
Boo Boo
See above, $1718 return for 13= meters.
Baz
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Follow Up By: Member - Bruce C (NSW) - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 19:22

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 19:22
Hi Boo Boo,

Baz was saying it is $1718 return with caravan, and 2 adults I guess.

Bruce.
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Reply By: Member - Frank P (NSW) - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 18:29

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 18:29
In 2009 I took my Prado and a Kimberley Karavan. Off-peak return fare, over in an airline seat for the night time passage, return as a day fare was under $1000. $980 or something like that.

I don't know if that has changed much, but what HAS changed is availability.

Apparently there used to be a freight service for all the trucks etc servicing the island. Someone told me that has been cancelled relatively recently and all the trucks are now using the Spirit. This means availability of long and/or high deck space for caravans and motorhomes is restricted. You have to book way, way ahead and availability might not suit your schedule.

Another great leap forward if it is true.


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Follow Up By: Member - Boo Boo (NSW) - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 19:26

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 19:26
Thanks Baz and Bruce.

I should read them with my glasses on.LOL

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Follow Up By: Member - John (Vic) - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 22:21

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 22:21
Not the case, still several commercial vessels servicing Tassie from Melbourne everyday.
If anything the Spirit is losing heavy cargo business to the other operators based on price.
The Spirit cannot deal with bulk hazardous cargos either.

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Reply By: Andrew & Jen - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 19:28

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 19:28
Hullo PeterT14
With planning any trip, I take into consideration the total transport cost, not just one segment.
For example, for a 10 week trip from Adelaide up to the Kimberley and down the west cost, I would probably allow roughly $4500 for fuel. If I was going to Tas for 10 weeks, fuel would probably amount to $1500. Allowing $2200 for the Bass Strait crossing, I am still $800 ahead.
If I took into account the total transport cost @ $1.50/km - that is fuel, servicing, tyres, depreciation, etc - I would be about $9000 ahead
So while you have to pay $2200 in one hit, overall the cost is very reasonable
Cheers
Andrew
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Follow Up By: pop2jocem - Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 22:46

Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013 at 22:46
Another way of looking at it, the distance from Melbourne to Devonport is what...a bit over 500 k's. How much fuel in dollars to drive that distance.

Just saying (;-))

Cheers
Pop
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Reply By: Kris and Kev - Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 08:45

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 08:45
We took our cruiser and camper trailer over in January 2011, returned in March, had to pay extra for high vehicle as we had roof racks on, we did the overnight trip in a cabin, total cost was $1,258.00, 2 people. Did heaps of free camping which covered most of the cost of the boat. We loved the place and would take a van again. Kevin
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Follow Up By: Member-Heather MG NSW - Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 10:54

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 10:54
Hi Kevin,

Totally agree with you about loving the place and going back there.
We also took our van across, and our tinny on top of the 4WD, in January 2011 and had 8 wonderful weeks there. Cost us ( 2 people) around $1700.00 return with a cabin both ways and was worth every bit of that. We indulged in a three course dinner each way in the restaurant to make it more special....love the boat ride bit too.

There is wonderful fresh produce, the National parks, campgrounds and walks are fantastic, people are friendly, distances are so short that if the weather was bad in one area we went somewhere else....We are intending going back there within a few years with a now (longer) caravan.

regards,

Heather

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Follow Up By: Kris and Kev - Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 11:08

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 11:08
Hello Heather. I forgot about the food! Best ever stone fruit I have tasted. And the potatoes, yum, not to mention the hot chips! Kevin
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Follow Up By: Member-Heather MG NSW - Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 12:01

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 12:01
Yep..those cherries, and the berries! We had an icecream a day, sometimes two, when we were within diriving or walking distance of the Cherry shed at Latrobe. Luckily we also did lots of very energetic walks as those burned up all the calories or I may have returned resembling a teletubby!
We also gorged on raspberries, and picked blackberries along the road side in many parts of the state.
We also had snow fall on us at the summit of Mt Roland, a blizzard with a white out up on one of the alpine walks in Mt Field, wind so strong on the top of Mt Rufus near Lake St Claire even my husband though we must have been mad to walk there, and we turned around only metres from the summit.
Just thinking about it all makes me long to return. As we are off to WA and NT this year for 6 months I can't see us getting there in the near future.
cheers Heather
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Reply By: Maisie K - Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 13:17

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 13:17
Hi All, This is my first time with the forum, and have found the information given by fellow travellers to be very helpful. We are travelling to Tassie in Feb. I found when I was booking the Spirit the fares changed day to day,total length car and van 12mtrs Day in Premium seats going over, no concession seat available but an On special day rate for adults worked out to be cheaper, return night trip with a cabin $1340.00.when I started looking it went from $1876,depending on the date and time of departure, you save $50 by booking on line and can change date any time without a fee, I found this great as I checked every day for cancellations and changed my date to suit. We have been told there are lots of free camp stays but after reading some of these messages it will be interesting to see.I don,t mind paying a fee providing it is a reasonable amount and the money goes back into the upkeep of the parks.If anyone has a favourite camping spot let me know. Maisie from Wet Qld
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Follow Up By: Krooznalong - Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 14:17

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 14:17
Maisie - unless the camping situation has changed significantly since Sept last year you'll find heaps of free camping. Just buy the little book on free camping in Tassie (not the Camps book - there's a dedicated one for Tassie which is better).
Whatever you do make sure you do the cruise on Bruny Island.
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Reply By: baz&pud (tassie) - Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 17:04

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 17:04
Have just found the piece of paper with the fare break-up on it for those interested,
We are two pensioners, cruiser and van 13+ meters, internal cabin and the fare is the "Spirit Fare".
Devonport to Melbourne;
Twin Cabin $312.00
Cruiser and Van $547.00
Total $859.00
Return Fare;
Same as above
Giving a total of $1718.00

It should be noted that the fare will differ depending on your total length, and if carrying something on top of the tug, for some unknown reason you cop an extra charge.
It will also differ if you travel during the peak season.
Cheers
Baz
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Follow Up By: garrycol - Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 17:58

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 17:58
By way of comparison I just got a quote for a return trip from Hull in the UK to Rotterdam in the Netherlands - about the same distance.

Vehicle a 2008 Landcruiser V8 with a roof rack load .5m high. A 6m caravan between 2 and 3m high. In a two berth basic cabin. There is better accommodation if required.

Quote was £745 which on todays exchange rate is $1133.

This would indicate that the Aussie costs are considerably greater than those overseas.

Garry
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Follow Up By: Peter T14 - Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 18:10

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 18:10
Yep you cop it for anything on top of vehicle, you cop it if you have a bull bar and you cop it if you have a tow bar. When you get on the boat you expect to be parked like sardines given they ask if you have a tow bar or bull bar and charge extra. Reality is that you park with at least 4ft of space between cars. If my wife and I had travelled separately with two 4wd's it would have been a quarter of the cost of taking the same room with a 4wd and boat.

Point is that Tasi economy is missing out on valuable dollars. See above list of people who wont go due to cost. And comparing a trip to Kimberley with Tasi does not justify gouging. I agree with the view that free, or close to free travel within the Commonwealth is or should be a constitutional right and that includes travel to Kangaroo Island, which I have done, and felt ripped off.

By the same argument I could have travelled to NZ ,hired a car for half the cost of a trip to Apple Land. But I want to see MY country and help the economy of my brothers and sisters across the Strait.

In Oz its the land of rip and be ripped. Banks, Fuel, health, gas, electricity; get yourself a monopoly and gouge, gouge, gouge.

pete



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Follow Up By: Andrew & Jen - Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 19:25

Thursday, Jan 31, 2013 at 19:25
Peter T14

On what evidence due you make the accusation of "gouging"?

A quick look at the company annual statement would seem to indicate that it is making a return on investment of about 5% pa and all the profits are going to debt retirement and a sinking fund for the replacement of their 2 vessels.

As to the cost of fuel, in real terms it is about the same as it was in 1965. And vehicles now are much more fuel efficient - probably use about 65% of what they used back then.

Cheers
Andrew
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Follow Up By: Peter T14 - Friday, Feb 01, 2013 at 08:00

Friday, Feb 01, 2013 at 08:00
I would call a boost in price of 50% over peak periods when families with kids travel gouging any day. As for fuel, A boost in the price before long weekends and holiday periods is recognised by most Australians including motorist representative bodies as gouging.

I think you miss the thrust of what my complaint is; the government needs to implement some form of subsidy if it wants tourism as one of the major planks under the Tasmanian economy, and lets face it Tasmania aint got many planks. Which brings me to another point altogether separate from the issue; the more planks they make, or in this case wood chips, the less reason there is to go to Tasmania.

I am also complaining that the fare charges show a lack of flexibility. Perhaps the total length of your vehicle and trailer could be divided by the number of passengers you are carrying in said vehicle.

Its very glib to point back at the past and say how good it is today, the fact is there are far more costs around today and a pay check doesn't stretch any further than it did back in 65.

pete
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Follow Up By: Andrew & Jen - Friday, Feb 01, 2013 at 09:28

Friday, Feb 01, 2013 at 09:28
Peter T14

You say that "the government needs to implement some form of subsidy". Well, it does: in 2011–12, the Australian Government spent $34.5 million under the Bass Strait Passenger Equalisation Scheme.

The following rebates are available from 1 July 2012:

• Up to $199 each way for cars
• Up to $398 each way for motor homes
• Up to $398 each way for eligible vehicles towing a caravan
• Up to $100 each way for motorcycles
• Up to $28 each way for bicycles

Check out the web site below. You might be surprised what you find out when you Google before posting.

http://www.infrastructure.gov.au/transport/programs/maritime/bass/index.aspx

Cheers
Andrew

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Follow Up By: Peter T14 - Friday, Feb 01, 2013 at 12:06

Friday, Feb 01, 2013 at 12:06
Hmm nothing for a boat or trailers in general. Do we apply for the rebate or does the Spirit get it automatically? If the rebate for a vehicle is right I should have been actually been paid to take my car.

"You might be surprised what you find out when you Google before posting."

Are you saying that I should not have posted the complaint? And that the others who have complained along with all the tourism operators I spoke to in Tasi who also complained have got it all wrong? I have a professional interest in tourism, particularly ecotourism and I purposely spoke to tour operators and van park owners, all of whom were unanimously angry that their business is choked by the Spirit.

As a matter of fact I did researched the trip before booking without taking my boat. No subsidy would have got me fishing offshore in Tasi for under $2500. No matter how much I googled, yahooed and even talked on the phone to Spirit, who incidentally never mentioned eligibility for subsidy.

pete
0
FollowupID: 780524

Follow Up By: Andrew & Jen - Friday, Feb 01, 2013 at 12:46

Friday, Feb 01, 2013 at 12:46
Peter T14

In response to your first question, the web site on the Bass Strait Equalisation Scheme states -

"The Bass Strait Passenger Vehicle Equalisation Scheme provides a rebate against the fare charged by a ferry operator for an accompanied passenger vehicle or caravan travelling by sea across Bass Strait.

The rebate is provided to the driver of an eligible passenger vehicle as a direct reduction in the fare charged by the ferry operator."

The bi-annual report on the administration of the Scheme by the Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics - latest one is July 2009/June 2011 - gives heaps of data that you might find useful in your discussions with tourism operators in Tasmania.

If you feel that passengers with vehicles towing boats should also be eligible for a rebate, you, together with likeminded tourism operators in Tas, might like to consider putting in a submission to the Australian Govt to have the rebate extended.

My comment about Googling first was in response to your assertion that, and I quote "the government needs to implement some form of subsidy if it wants tourism". A quick check would have confirmed that there already was a subsidy.

Cheers
Andrew

0
FollowupID: 780526

Follow Up By: Peter T14 - Saturday, Feb 02, 2013 at 12:50

Saturday, Feb 02, 2013 at 12:50
I'm sorry Andrew but you are wrong, there is no subsidy for people like me towing a boat.

Also it is sneaky of government to force travellers to go hunting around for sites to explain what you can get in subsidy. Many people do not have the computer skills to do that.Many would'nt even think about it. That information should be up front when you are purchasing your ticket. It is down right stupid of the Spirit not provide information on this, because it should be obvious that fewer people are travelling due to the apparent cost. Justify it as much as you like, but you are the lone voice who thinks its hunky dory on the Spirit.

pete
0
FollowupID: 780618

Follow Up By: Andrew & Jen - Saturday, Feb 02, 2013 at 14:56

Saturday, Feb 02, 2013 at 14:56
Peter T14

You say that there is no subsidy for people like you towing a boat. Exactly! That is why I suggested in my previous post that you, together with likeminded tourism operators in Tas, might like to make a submission in this regard.

With respect to applying the subsidy, I understand eligible passengers get it without asking. Either that, or there are a lot of computer savvy people crossing the Strait :-)

A final quote from the report. "An estimated 15 000 new leisure visitors travelled by sea due to the Scheme in 2010–11, compared to 14 700 in 2009–10, spending an estimated $36.0 million in Tasmania ($35.3 million in 2009–10)." The report also states that estimates of motor vehicle passengers may be (up to) 30 per cent higher because of the Scheme."

Cheers
Andrew
0
FollowupID: 780637

Reply By: Mogul - Friday, Feb 01, 2013 at 18:59

Friday, Feb 01, 2013 at 18:59
We have just returned, after having done trip the in peak time (left Mel on 27/12 returned on 20/1)

We had a BT50 with bar etc, van and kayaks on the roof. Total length was around 13m.

2 Adults, 2 kids and our dog.

All up cost was $2,250.00 for day tickets.

Not sure but once out of peak times I believe thkey only do night sailings in which you have to get a cabin, adds a little to the cost.
AnswerID: 503804

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