The increase on excise duty in today’s budget puts us in mind of the great holiday jaunts of pre-boom Ireland.
The booze cruise was a strange phenomenon in pre-Ryanair days whereby your mates would nick a shopping trolley from Quinnsworth and £7 foot passenger ticket for the ferry to Holyhead, fill up with duty free tobacco and alcohol and divvy it up on return that night. Great Days.
Our British cousins did a similar thing, especially in the 80’s, their trip involved a ferry to France in the largest van they could find and park up in the massive Hypermarché to stock up on such delicacies as Stella Artois, Blue Nun and cartons of JPS Black.
The wonderful photographer, Martin Parr, a leader in social documentary turned his lens to this phenomenon to great effect. Some of his booze cruise photographs appear in this short clip from Contacts, we love it.