Slow customs entering france at Caen

Returned via Caen on Tuesday, passport control was taking approx 3 mins per car.

One lane appeared to be moving faster. When we eventually were close to the booths all the French cars were being waved through in the other lane, they were simply holding up an ID card ( not sure which type ) which were all on a lanyard with a blue card holder, the customs official just gave them a thumbs up.

The slow lane we were in the customs official did not allow anyone through without checking them.

When it was our turn the customs official took both passports and handed one to the other customs official looking after the other lane.
Is this a start of discrimination against the British drivers ( I was driving a French registered car ) or were these people issued with some special ID card, I have never seen a French ID card before so i don’t know if it was a standard issue one.

French identity cards do not come with a lanyard.

These may have been some sort of security pass, as sometimes seen at large events, even the tour de France officials have lanyards around their necks.

May even have been a club outing of customs officials :wink:

Could have been staff by the description of the ID.

It was very slow the last time we went through - didn’t note any favouritism though.

But, this is a consequence of voting to leave the EU, little choice but to get used to it.

Can’t see how that would work…
Nothing in a French imatriculation identifies the car as being owned by a Brit (except perhaps where the steering wheel is…)

Where are the British customs on that route? I’ve seen large groups of British customs officers arriving in Calais ready for their shift.


The route doesn’t see the volume that Dover-Calais does so no arrangement for English or French customs on the departure side.

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I’ve had my venerable old Landrover pulled over several times by customs at Portsmouth before embarking on the ferry to Caen, Paul. One customs officer told me it was just nostalgia, he loved looking under the bonnet.

And many cars waiting in the queue to embark at Ouistreham were fouillées by officers with sniffer dogs, although they may have been police, they weren’t in uniform.

Yes, but that is British customs in Portsmouth and French customs in Ouistreham.

At Calais you have British customs/border control doing checks on traffic to the UK - to avoid checks on, and speed up the exit from, the port in Diver and vice versa with French customs officers on the UK side.

Oh, I get it now. Penny eventually dropped :hushed::+1:

I would imagine that passage through the ports will take longer than we’ve got used to. It won’t affect me too much as I rarely head that way. I’m thinking of a short visit next year but if I do, that will be by train.

I shall be interested to hear how you get on David… not thought of the train…:thinking:

They do some good discounts for us older folk! I used the TGV to go up to the north of a France a couple of times this year and it was really good, quick and stress free. I want to visit my children in a London for a few days and the train is really convenient.

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