Pagel’s Top 3 Tips for Driving to France POST Lockdown

Even before COVID-19, 50 % of our Clientele Drove from the UK to Pagel EVERY Year!

Even before the pandemic, with Airline prices being variable and inflexible,  it is no wonder that about 50% of our clientele drove from the UK to Pagel during the holidays. Being under your own control, it is a lovely way to see and experience more of France on the way. There are a number of ferry ports available but in the main guests will arrive in either Calais or Dieppe for their journey. 
If you decide to travel on Brittany Ferries, @familycampingeurope have done a fantastic review blog on the safety procedures that are currently in place. 
They were incredibly impressed and we’d love to hear your stories.

Top Three Tips from Mark, Pagel’s Founder

  • Be prepared– Pack hand gel, face masks and gloves for any supermarket shopping you need to do en route.  All supermarkets are open and well set up for ease of distanced shopping.  You can grab a takeaway coffee and petit-dejeuner at any motorway rest stop with increasingly more restaurants opening for table service.  All supermarkets, even the smaller village ones accept credit and debit cards.

Get your Travel-Kit before you travel.

Having made sure your car is in good working order it is also necessary to ensure your insurance is covered in France and sensible to have breakdown cover too which can be quite inexpensive. Have all paperwork with you such as insurance, mot, drivers licence etc. A website such as is always a good reference point. They can also provide a simple all in one travel kit that will contain all of the roadside equipment you are required to carry by French law. . The tolls can now be paid for by card but there is also a dart tag available making it really easy from

  • Plan the route – Sat Nav is a great tool but it can get you into trouble around Paris. It is worth having a paper road map as back up too and often much easier to refer to get a sense of direction whilst on the move. Avoiding Paris and its periphery is always a good idea and Rouen is a great town to head for from both of the ferry ports mentioned and then onto Orleans missing Paris.

  • Be ready for the Children and take regular breaks – After many years doing this journey with 3 children it is well worth planning! Plenty of drinks and snacks, toys and probably a good supply of DVD’S to watch. Make sure all gadgets can be charged on the way. We spent hours on one of our last journeys playing good old fashioned games like, i-spy, number plates and yellow car!  The French Auto routes are very well organised with a great supply of stop areas ‘Aire du Bois’ and service stations, most with a play area. So try and take a regular 20 minute break every couple of hours and get some fresh air! Swop drivers at that some point too if possible. Maybe consider stopping overnight half way down. There are some great roadside hotels like Campanile half way down at Orleans which are great to break up the journey.

Enjoy! – The Autoroutes in France are some of the best roads in Europe making driving easy and scenery can be stunning at times in the beautiful countryside. We will be there to welcome you all at the other end.

COVID-19 Measures at Pagel

At Pagel, we have the following measures in place for your comfort and safety:

  • Hand gel and soaps for guests comfort
  • Family BBQ and kids club observing social distance of 1 metre in France
  • Deep cleaning to all gites prior to your arrival within government guidelines
  • Plenty of outdoor space in fresh air for your children to roam

We look forward to seeing you there and if you have any questions or concerns about your stay, please do not hesitate to contact us.


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