I had been to the Port of Hull before for my previous Bruges mini cruise and for my Amsterdam mini cruise so I knew what to expect.
The Port of Hull consists of two entirely separate passenger terminals. Services to Zeebrugge depart from Terminal 2. From the outside, this dated terminal has a brick façade. The building does not look as impressive, nor as modern, as Terminal 1.
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At the main roundabout at the entrance to the port, take the first exit, passing a wooded area on the left. After the security checkpoint, continue and take the first right (not the one in front of the Cargill factory, the one before that). After a short distance, you have a choice of three open-air car parks - one on your left, one to the right and one outside the terminal.
If you are travelling from London, you will most likely want to use the A1(M). Detour through Lincoln and across the Humber Bridge to save time compared to going via Doncaster.
If you are travelling from the North, use the A1(M) if you are heading down the east of the country or the M6 and M62 if you are driving down the west coast.
Inside the terminal building, it is clear to see this is on old terminal, especially when compared to Terminal 1 used for Amsterdam sailings. While it is clean, tidy and well maintained it does show its age a little.
The departure lounge is basic, and offers plenty of uncomfortable seating. The room overlooks the rear of the ferry.
It has benefited from a refresh with bright colours introduced in line with P&O Ferries' brand colour scheme. The dash of blues, pinks and greens does help brighten up the area. There is also a new canteen area where you can buy snacks from vending machines.
Car parking at the Port of Hull
Car parking is operated by an external company so pay extra care when parking so as to avoid penalty notices and fines. At the time of writing car parking cost £7 per 24 hours or part thereof.
Arriving by train
Hull Railway Station in the centre of the city sits adjacent to the Central Bus Station. Direct rail services run from Hull to York, Bridlington, Doncaster, London via Selby, Sheffield, Scarborough, and Manchester. Plan your journey here.
There's a single bus service running from The Interchange (next to St Stephen's shopping centre) to the terminal. It leaves at 5 pm daily and at the time of writing cost £3.50/€5.00 each way.
Alternatively, a four-mile taxi journey will get you to the terminal.
Arriving by coach
National Express Route 562 serves the city of Hull. The bus departs London and travels northwards to Scarborough via Doncaster, Hull and York. Book your tickets here.
Use the shuttle bus service above to transfer to the port.
Remember to get off at Terminal 2 and not Terminal 1.
Checking-In at Hull And Boarding Pride of Bruges
Check-in was smooth, and the agent gave me a boarding card and a voucher booklet. The booklet contained tickets for my return coach transfers between Zeebrugge port and Bruges, plus a ticket to check-in for my return sailing.
Unlike on the Rotterdam and Amsterdam sailings, don't expect a key card. This ferry still uses old-fashioned technology - yes, that means real keys!
I arrived at 4.30 pm and boarding was underway. After a security check, escalators lead upstairs to the departure lounge. A covered gangway leads up to the rear of Deck 5. Beware, in the rain, the open-air ramp onto the ship at the end becomes very slippery.
Once inside I walked through the entertainment lounge, past the bar and onwards to the stairwell where I descended to Green Deck 4. I found the member of staff tasked with handing out cabin keys on oversized key rings.
The ship departed just after 6 pm and performed a tricky manoeuvre turning into a very narrow lock.
The transit through the lock takes around half an hour. If you can, make sure you are out on the open deck to watch the mesmerising performance. With a toddler in tow I was in the buffet restaurant eating dinner this time.
Read more in this series
- Getting to the Port of Hull (you are here)
- Pride of Bruges Review
- Pride of Bruges Cabins
- Food & Drink on Pride of Bruges
- Entertainment on Pride of Bruges
- Guide to Zeebrugge Port
- What can you do in Bruges in just one day?
- Zeebrugge Mini Cruise Review on P&O Ferries' Pride of Bruges