Tangier Ferry Tips
What to expect:
Taking the ferry can be fast, and painless… or it can be an expensive day long waste of time. This guide will help you achieve the former and avoid the latter. In the list below we’ve given the pros and cons of each of the ferry companies, but basically you have two options: fast ferries and slow ferries. The slow ferry is sometimes a little cheaper for cars, but the crossing can take up to 6+ hours. Unfortunately, in rough weather often these are the only boats that will cross the strait at all. This Webcam is a good way to check for heavy waves before you leave for the port.
The ‘fast’ ferries claim between 35 minutes to and hour and a half, but strong currents in the strait and complex rules about ships entering and exiting the Port of Tangier make actual departure and arrival times something of a guessing game. Ideally, a Moroccan Passport agent will be on board the ship to stamp your passport before you arrive into Tangier, and you will need to fill out the information card before your turn at the window. Once you arrive at the port you’ll have to run the gauntlet of unsavory characters, fake guides, greedy baggage handlers, and overpriced taxi drivers. Go straight to the taxi stand and then to your hotel, where a taxi should be around 20 or 30 Dirhams. There are ATMs and money changers at the port.
Our personal favorite ferry service. Service runs from Tangier directly to Algeciras 3 or 4 times a day. They use large teal twin-hulls. Service is timely, prices are low and the interior is generally clean. Note that these ferries won’t be running if there are heavy waves in the strait of Gibraltar. Check out the schedule here.
This service is also consistent, especially between Tangier and Tarifa, but they also have ferries to Algeciras and Gibraltar as well. Find their schedules here. You’ll notice the giant red and yellow ferries. Their service to Tarifa includes a free bus ticket to Algeciras, which makes the combined journey cheaper and about as fast as the direct ferry. In our opinion it might be worth it just for the amazing views
Comanav/Euroferry/IMTC/Comarit (the SLOW ferry)
All of these companies have separate ticket windows, but they sell tickets for each others boats, and they are all the same price. These companies use these older model single hulled boats. Though they are much slower across the strait, they are are apparently harder to capsize and they will continue service in all but the roughest seas.
Acciona -TransMediterranea (Fast and Slow)
This company has one fast and one slow ferry. Their service is fast across the strait, but only on the faster twin hull ship named “Catamaran”. Check here for the schedule.
This new company just started service. They are using a slower type of ship, but we haven’t tried them yet. They might be a subsidiary company along with Euroferry and others that I listed above.
Long Distance Ferry From Tangier
You can also take a ferry to Barcelona, The Grand Canaries, Marseille (France), and even Genoa Italy! The prices listed online are very very high, so flying may a better option if you can give up driving.