The Channel is ready for Brexit

“We now know that we can move goods from the UK into the continent, end to end from Dover to Calais. This week’s internal test of all Channel processes, signage and infrastructure proved that we have all the necessary systems in place, and we know how to operate them,” says Vice President and Head of DFDS’ BU Channel Filip Hermann.“ 

Practicing, step by step 

At the check-in booth in the UK portwe scan customer documents and share these digitally with the French customs authorities. 

When the French customs authorities notice trucks that require a customs check upon entering France– for instance ones carrying phytosanitary sanitary goods like live animals, plants and animal products – these trucks get an orange dot in our system. On board, we show a list of the trucks customs status: 

If the trucks get a green dot, no checks are needed 

Trucks with orange dots need to follow the signage to parking lots when they leave the vessel, where their documents and goods are checked. 

It works and it has to 

The test showed that if customers have their documents in order, and their goods aren’t phytosanitary, things shouldn’t take much longer than they do todayWe have put immense efforts into getting every step of this new process tried and tested. Every week, around 30,000 freight units cross the Channel with us, and a vessel’s delay can clog up the entire system and create negative ripple effects for the DFDS staff and customers alike,” Filip says.  

I can assure our customers and staff that DFDS is ready. It’s important for customers to know that ithey don’t have their papers in order, we quite simply can’t ship for them. But if they need help with Customs, we can assist with that,” Filip says. 

Counting down 

Personally, I’d like to thank everyone involved in this final testing, Filip says. One team cannot do this alone. The test succeeded because of the wellorchestrated collaboration between all parties. So many parts of DFDS deserve credit for making our new processes on the Channel work and I’m impressed with how my colleagues deal with all the challenges thrown at them – not just related to Brexit, but also Covid-19. It’s true that when we see a problem in DFDS, we fix it, and this testing and the strong process we now have in place just goes to prove that.” 


Thank you, Eastern Channel test team: 

IT in Copenhagen, Dover and Immingham: 

  • Attila Gulyas 
  • Alex Hoyle 
  • Bent Christensen 
  • Billy Burman 
  • Daniel Capes 
  • Liam Richardson 

DFDS in Dover: 

  • Gary Whitling 
  • Helene Hivart 
  • Bradley Ellison 
  • Laura Charlton 
  • Louis Stroud 
  • Adam McCarthy 

Onboard crew 

  • Crew of Cote de Flanders  

DFDS in France: 

  • Hubert Saussereau 
  • Stephanie Thomas 
  • Clarisse Castel 
  • Caroline Hayat 
  • Melanie Marchand
  • Bertrand Demester
  • Vanessa Pereira
  • Catherine Vandevyvere

Go to DFDS pages on Brexit 



November 13, 2020