Container ship information

Our cargo ship 'Grande Amburgo'

Our marine vessel for a month at sea: The Grande Amburgo

The Grande Amburgo

Related posts: Details of our experience here and also here.

Cost savings of shipping out with the bikes:

So first off, although flying yourself and shipping the bike is often cheaper than shipping you with the bike, it’s still cheaper than air freighting both body and wheels.

Jase loathes flying, so it avoided the cost of him being irrationally nervous for hours on end. And while we were on the ship, we could periodically check on the bikes, a good idea when the external docking staff come aboard to help offload cargo—keeping an eye on our wheels paid dividends as they were stored on a regular deck with all the main cargo. There were strapped down without a cage and left out for anyone to come and have a nosy. They did too, and unscrewed a couple of low value items.

Foremost, if there was a delay with the container ship (and friends of ours were stuck on the ship for six weeks), that would’ve saved us a fortnight’s accommodation in Buenos Aires (had we have flown), while going back and forth in waiting for the bikes come ashore. Glad we bypassed that hassle.

Another stunning cost avoided was the time it took to deal with the bureaucracy of paperwork. By being with your bike on the ship, we simply rolled on and rolled off. It took 30 MINUTES to clear immigration in Monte and we were off. No extra fees in paying someone to unload your crate, no fees for immigration—we were all set in literally no time at all. And no requirement to be semi-fluent in a different language to retrieve the bikes off the ship, which would’ve been nightmarish for folks like us who had zero Spanish two years ago.

So yeah, for us shipping out with bikes was a two wheeled no brainer but it wouldn’t suit everyone—nothing ever does, right?


Agent contact information:

Richard Gavulic, Assistant Voyages Manager
Strand Voyages
Unit 605 The Chandlery
50 Westminster Bridge Road
London SE1 7QY
Tel: +44 (0)20 7953 7607
Fax: +44 (0)20 7953 7618
Emails: or



Going direct!

Alternatively, if you don’t wish to engage the above or another agent, we’ve heard from a very reliable and well-informed source that going direct with Grimaldi (based in Italy) below will save you money and the process is just as easy:



• It is the sole responsibility of the passenger to have all personal and vehicle’s documentation in order for the disembarkation at the port of destination


• All passengers have to carry their own travel insurance, covering accidents, medical assistance and repatriation. Citizens of the European Union travelling on itineraries calling only at UE ports can travel with their European Card for Medical Assistance. The Master has the right to refuse boarding to any passenger not showing this document.

General rules valid on every routes

  • We sell only cabins for exclusive use (No single berth in shared cabin).
  • Children from 2 to 11 years, 50% discount
  • We cannot accept passengers over 85 years old. Passengers 79 years old andover at time of embarkation need a medical certificate stating they are fit totravel on a cargo vessel (no doctor on board)
  • Pets are not allowed on board

Passenger embarkation and disembarkation:

• Passenger’s fares include embarkation/disembarkation taxes. Any additional cost referring immigration and custom clearance as well as expenses for transport in the port area are to be paid by the passenger on-site.

Accompanied vehicle: embarkation and disembarkation

  • Vehicle’s embarkation/disembarkation taxes as well as custom clearance and/or any other documentation’s expense are to be paid by the passenger directly at the port of arrival/departure, if required.
  • In the ports where required, the assistance of a custom broker has to be paid by the passenger on-site.

Transport of accompanied vehicles

  • The fare for accompanied vehicles include exclusively the transport on board from the port of origin to the port of destination
  • Only vehicles accompanied by the legal owner, as per car log book, can be accepted as “accompanied vehicles”. Otherwise they have to be shipped as cargo.
  • Any vehicle carrying commercial goods has to be shipped as cargo
  • Any accompanied vehicle is carried as per the terms of cargo carriage (used vehicle) which establish that the Shipping Company is not responsible for any for damage or item loss occurred. We recommend to subscrive an appropriateinsurance coverage.
  • Accompanied cars with length not exceeding 5 mt and height not exceeding1.90 are considered in V1 category,
  • Accompanied cars with a total dimension (L+H) exceeding 7 mt and other typeof vehicles, even if less 5 mt long, are considered as Camping-Car .(V2, V3, V4,OS category)
  • Any vehicle longer than 8,60 meters, wider than 2,40 meters, higher than 3.40meters has to be shipped as cargo ( Except for South America service)
  • If the measures of the vehicle (over all) are different from what communicated at the time of booking, the client has to pay twice the difference in fare, directly at the port of embarkation, if the fact is noticed at the departure, or beforedisembarkation if it is noticed when the vehicle is already on board the vessel.

Safety and Security

• Each person and his stuff going on board are subject to control

Currency on board

• €uro


• Smoking is NOT allowed inside the vessels

Alcoholic drinks – Tobacco

On board only limited stock and selection of alcoholic beverages is available

  • Alcoholic drinks should be consumed moderately on board. The Master had the faculty to limit the sales of alcoholic drinks.
  • It is not allowed to bring on board alcoholic drinks purchased ashore.
  • Cigarettes purchased ashore can be carried on board without exceeding thequantity of 10 packets (200 cigarettes) or equivalent in cigars or tobacco.


• All the indicated itineraries can be changed at any time, even without previous notice. Calls in some ports can be cancelled.

Circular Voyage fares

• Valid only for circular voyages without interruption.

Information, itineraries and fares are subject to change even without previous notice.

Passengers, luggage and accompanied vehicles are carried as per General Conditions of the Carrier published on



Type of cabin

Cabin code for occupation by

All cabins dispose of shower and WC. Upper berths are folding

1 pax BE1

2 pax BE2

Fides Spes

Outside, one lower & one upper berths, small sitting area



Any modification of the reservation is subject to a fee of € 50


up to 60 days prior to sailing: 10% of the total fare (passengers and vehicle)
from 59 to 30 days prior to sailing: 25% of the total fare (passengers and vehicle)
from 29 to 15 days prior to sailing: 50% of the total fare (passengers and vehicle)
from 14 to 7 days prior to sailing: 75% of the total fare (passengers and vehicle)
from 6 days prior to sailing or no-show: 100% of the total fare (passengers and vehicle)

Cancellation requests must be sent by email to the booking dept of Naples by 07:00 p.m.
Later on, these requests will be considered received on the next working day.
No refund is granted if embarkation is not allowed by the authorities or due to regular documents missing.

Via Marchese Campodisola 13
80133 NAPLES/Italy
Phone: +39 081 496 444 – Fax +39 081 496 551 E-mail:

Cost for us in 2014

In taking a Grimaldi container ship mid-February 2014 for a total cost of 4,800 GBP, we accompanied our bikes for 27 days across the Atlantic from Antwerp, Belgium to Montevideo, Uruguay. Sadly, I understand that it’s no longer possible to ‘roll on, roll off’ with your bike. However, Grimaldi are still freighting vehicles such as motorcycles, 4x4s, campervans, RVs etc.