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Norfolk Broads Direct Boat Query


Guest smokesmate

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Hi there.

I'm thinking of taking my wife and daughter on the broads next year.We seem to have narrowed our choice of boat down to two,they are the Fair Consort and the Fair Ambassador from Faircraft Loynes.

Can anyone give me any advice about which one of these two boats i should choose.

Are Faircraft Loynes a good company to hire a boat from,we were looking at Barnes Brinkcraft but after reading some of the reviews about them on the internet we decided against them.

One other question if i may.I see in the NBD brochure that the price drops to band A for the sept 23-oct 13 holiday dates,can anyone tell me why.Is it because this is the time when the shopkeepers and pub owners go on there holidays and a lot of the places are closed.

regards

smokesmate.

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Hi There

Welcome to the forum.

Faircraft Loynes have a good reputation and run a fleet of well maintained boats so I think if you have narrowed them down to having the boats you like that should pose no problems.

It's a little difficult to advise which is 'best' as both have different pros & cons depending on your priorities.

'Consort is single level which can be easier if anyone has mobility issues, toddlers maybe (less steps to fall down!) etc. Also Consort has split sliding canopies so you could just open one side which would give you more protection on windy days, and also you could open one side just a fraction if you wanted some air/sun but you wouldnt have to have it fully open or fully shut as you would on Ambassador. Also Consort has the bathroom in the centre so this can be accessed from either sleeping area without disturbing those in the other cabins, whereas on Ambassador you cannot do this without passing through the centre sleeping area.

Ambassador is a similar age but has the differences of a central steering position giving slightly better views all-round the boat and a higher steering position, so you may see over reeds etc slightly better. The canopy can either be fully up or fully down and is one piece. Another difference is she has a walk-round double bed. This will feel more like being at home (I would expect) as you are not confined between bulkheads and no-one has to sleep up against the hull-side (which is normally no issue but means you cant get out as easily & might not be as good if anyone gets claustrophobic). If anyone is tall this will also be better as your feet can hang over the bed as not restricted by a bulkhead. This said though the type of boat Consort is does not normally have that tight a bed length.

Hopefully those ramblings on pros & consmay be of some use!

All the best

Dan

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Hi SM

Would endorse Dan’s comments re your choice of boat. I’ve been with Faircraft Loynes a couple of times on Fair Regent. The boats are all modern with good facilities although you do pay a bit more for this. Boatyard staff are generally very helpful.

The reason the costs go down in September is more to do with the end of the school holidays, in other words the price shoots up during school holiday times. You will find that all the pubs and shops are open pretty much as normal, some facilities start to close down at the end of October so you should notice very little difference. We seem to have blessed with very good weather at the end of the summer in recent years so you could have picked a good time to go.

Have a good one!

cheersbar

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Thanks for the replies guy's.

Guess what ? the Richardsons brochure just dropped on the mat with a message saying book your 2011 holiday before 19th dec and pay 2010 prices.

Can anyone recommend a good boat from Richardsons for three adults.

I must say though i do like the look of the Faircraft Loynes boats though.

I'm just concerned about what their prices will be for 2011 compared to there prices for 2010 especially with VAT increasing to 20% in january.

Oh decisions decisions :roll:

Regards

Andy

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Hi Andy

It’s pretty much the case you pay a bit more for Faircraft Loynes as many of their boats are just a few years old. With Richardson’s, the majority of the fleet are somewhat older but the boats are very well maintained and regularly updated. On balance (and in my humble opinion) I’d say Richardson’s represent better value for money, they also enjoy a very good reputation.

However Dan is the expert on all things Richardson’s and I’m sure he’ll be along shortly!

cheersbar

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Thanks for the replies guy's.

Guess what ? the Richardsons brochure just dropped on the mat with a message saying book your 2011 holiday before 19th dec and pay 2010 prices.

Can anyone recommend a good boat from Richardsons for three adults.

I must say though i do like the look of the Faircraft Loynes boats though.

I'm just concerned about what their prices will be for 2011 compared to there prices for 2010 especially with VAT increasing to 20% in january.

Oh decisions decisions :roll:

Regards

Andy

Hi Andy

it all depends what you want to pay we hired diamond gem in June to first week in June realy enjoyed it we have booked San Elena & San Sarine for family & friends for two weeks.

Jonny ice sliceice slice

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...& San Sarine for family & friends for two weeks....

Have you been on the sauce Jonny?! :grin: I fink you meant San Marino?!

The Richardson fleet has a bigger cross section of standards where Faircraft have a fleet at a much closer comfort level & pricepoint. Their oldest date back to the early 90s (which includes both Consort & Ambassador).

The Richardson fleet has something for all pockets and all are, in my opinion, good value in relation to their hirefee.

Broads Suncharm would be newer than Consort or Ambassador and have a similar advantage list to Consort, plus a walk-round bed like Ambassador so that may be worth a look at price and is in the category of Platinum/New Boats which are their newest, highest grade of boats.

All the best

Dan

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Dans the Man with the wealth of knowledge with this one :)

As Norfolk Nog says, Richardsons Boats tend to be a bit older, but they are very well kept and are proven to please Holiday makers ( thats why they are the biggest on the broads) Providing great customer satisfaction time and time again.

Faircraft are based in Wroxham and have many new boats, they cost a bit more yes.

Don'T forget the Spitfire range at www.Alphacraft.co.uk my day hires from them them every year now, and i pilot his ship. Im very impressed with Spitfire.

To throw another boat into this search.

I have hired from Richardsons in the past, the service is excellent :)

The same has to be said with Alphacraft.

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Fan is pretty much on the nail with all things hire wise and I admire his indepth knowledge of broads hire fleets. He is a really handy guy to know for these details. It may be worth PMing him. On deals and things as being 'in the know' may also help you attaining the best deal for whoever you choose

elxome to the forum and keep us updated of your travel plans and experiences

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