we took the ferry at the beginning of September from Alat (Baku) to Kuryk (Aqtau). First we tried to contact ASCO via Telephone, we asked at the reception of our Hotel, if they can call them and ask when the next ferry departs. Meanwhile we successfully booked online tickets for 70 US$ per Person, just passengers, no car, motorbike, bike or whatsoever (https://public.acsc.az/online/
). We also sent a message via WhatsApp, but never got an answer (Telephone numbers are in this thread). Next day the hotel again tried to reach them but no one picked up. So we took a bolt (about 30 manat) to the port in Alat. There was an English speaking guy, he gave us the tickets and told us to be back at 8pm. Side note: we saw our WhatsApp Message on the computer screen, but we didn’t asked why they didn’t answer.
We also got the invitation to stay at one of the port-workers house, but since our luggage was back at the hotel, we needed to take a taxi from Alat to Baku. It was of course more expensive than the Bolt and we did a bad job at bargaining, so we paid 50 manat.
At 19:30 we again took a bolt to Alat. We got some cancellations, since it was Friday night and no one wanted to do the trip to Alat. The poor driver who didn’t cancel was very upset but drove us to Alat anyway.
We arrived a little bit late at 20:30. They scanned our luggage and showed us the way to the waiting room. Two other backpackers were already waiting there. Bring water and some snacks, at the evening there is nothing open, no shops, nothing. After one hour someone showed up and asked us to follow him. With a minibus we were brought to a container for checking luggage (x ray) and the passports and (!) the Azerbaidschan eVisa. We got our stamp and could enter the ship (the Azerbaijan) at about 23:00. We were the first ones entering the ship, the lorries and their drivers weren’t on the ship yet. Since we were four tourists we got a 4 person cabin with 2x2 bunks and a toilet with shower. The cabin was quite good. The ferry departed about 2am.
Breakfast is at 7:30, lunch at 11:30, tea at 15:30 and dinner 19:30. The food was okay, just don’t expect at four course meal. Again, bring some water and snacks.
The sea was calm and quiet as well as she ship. Surprisingly you would almost not hear the ship’s engine.
We arrived the port of Kuryk after about 25 hours. At 4 am someone knocked at the cabin doors and we had to get our things together and put off the bed linen. Customs and immigration took almost 2,5 hours. First there were some problems with my German passport, after scanning it 3 or 4 times it did work. We left the ferry same time with the trucks at about 6:30 am.
They asked us to call a taxi, which should cost 60US$. Kuryk is about 90 kilometers away from Aktau, but still 60$ seems way too much. One of the two other backpackers asked someone in a car if he could take us with him, and so we landed in Aktau at about 9:00.
We were very lucky, that we got the ferry that day. One day later there was a big storm and we probably couldn’t have left the port. Also there was no other ship in the port of Kuryk when we arrived, so the port was not blocked and we wouldn’t need to wait.
So, everything went very smooth and easy.