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A group of friends is travelling to Greece soon and wants to take a ferry from Piraeus, Athens to the island of Naxos.

They've tried to book tickets through http://greeceferries.com/ (which uses Seretis Travel) but it appears that they only allow you to get tickets for a cabin -- you can either book the whole cabin or split by gender into separate cabins. They're a mixed group so this is undesirable, plus they want to be out on the deck anyways (and it's cheaper).

Is there anywhere online where they can book deck tickets? Has anyone else had experience with this or other nearby ferry trips? Is it easy to get tickets on location if they can't book online, or will they sell out days beforehand? Any other concerns?

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2 Answers

up vote 7 down vote accepted

When I traveled to Greece 2 years ago I traveled between Athens/Santorini/Mykonos/Ikaria. We bought our tickets when we arrived in Greece. I had the same problem as you, where there wasn't a really good website to purchase tickets from in the US, but things may have changed since back then. I did end up use this website Greeka.com to find out ferry schedules.

I just found the sites of two ferries we used a couple times when we were over there. Seems like their websites have improved drastically.

Take note that some routes are a lot faster than others. This is usually because the boats make more frequent stops or are just faster boats in general. If you don't book online, there are many travel agencies in Athens and Piraeus that will book tickets for you, you can typically just ask a local where you can buy a ferry ticket. We never ran into a ferry selling out, but of course you may experience something different.

With regards to booking deck tickets, it can be cool the first couple of minutes, but can get old very quickly when the water starts splashing around if the water is particularly choppy that day. Also, some ferry decks do not have seating so you have to make yourself comfortable on the deck itself. Also if the sun is out and beating down on you, it can make for a tough trip.

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Thanks for the info! –  Matthew Read Aug 11 '11 at 20:28
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According to our experience, during July and August, it is better to book in advance, in order to secure a cabin, due to the high demand. Deck places can also be booked in advanced and online (at least from where we book them, there is no limitation regarding the type of places you wish to book). However, especially when travelling the Aegean sea, there may be many alternative ferry routes, to reach your destination, far quicker and most of the times cheaper, so it is better to consult a travel agency in advance and not leave it for the last moment. Last year, some friends booked a ferry that took 8 hours to reach the island we reached in less than three hours.

This is mainly due to the different type of ships i.e. high-speed ferries, but mostly because some ferries call in far too many ports. We used www.onferry.com and booked online and although we booked the "slow ferry" the personnel at the onferry agency explained to us the difference between the other ferries and fortunately we reached our destination the fastest possible way. Me and my wife definitely recommend them

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Thanks for sharing your experience, but you do not answer the question at all. The question focuses on deck versus cabin tickets or online versus onsite ticketing, not high- versus low-speed ferries. –  Vince Nov 12 '13 at 17:46
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