FERRY ticket staff at Dover called police when a drunken man from Yapton tried to get his car and himself on the next available Channel crossing.
Patrick Murphy, 40, was arrested and, after admitting he driven to the port from his home, he was breathalysed.
He gave a reading of 93 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breach. This is close to three times the legal limit of 35mg.
Murphy appeared before Folkestone magistrates on August 16 where he was banned from driving for two years and ordered to complete 100 hours of unpaid work. He has to pay £85 costs.
He admitted drinking and driving but the court heard he was trying to drive to Bordeaux in France where his estranged wife was threatening to stay with their six-year-old daughter.
Martyn Hewitt, for the defence, said his client had not planned to be on the road drunk. “He is separated from his wife and after a telephone argument he decided to drive,” he said.
“She had told him she was not coming back to Britain and she was intending to stay in southern France with her sister who had lived there for eight years. He just jumped in the car and went.”
Mr Hewitt said Murphy who had lived in Chichester with his wife until they split, was now living in North End Road, Yapton, back with his parents.
Murphy is a building sub-contractor and had been married in 2005. He had been watching the Hungarian GP on TV until he received the call from his wife.
Murphy can cut his sentence by a quarter by paying £192 and taking part in the drink-drive rehabilitation course.