Handovers in mobile packet networks commonly produce packet loss, delay and jitter, thereby significantly degrading network performance. Mobile IPv6 handover performance is strongly topology dependent and results in inferior service quality in wide area scenarios. To approach seamless mobility in IPv6 networks predictive, reactive and proxy schemes have been proposed for improvement. In this article we analyse and compare handover performance and frequencies for the corresponding protocols, as they are an immediate measure on service quality. Using analytical methods as well as stochastic simulations, we calculate the performance decreases originating from different handover schemes, the expected number of handovers as functions of mobility and proxy ratios, as well as the mean correctness of predictions. In detail we treat the more delicate case of these rates in mobile multicast communication. It is obtained that performance benefits, expected from simple analysis of predictive schemes, do not hold in practice. Reactive and predictive handovers rather admit comparable performance. Hierarchical proxy environments --- foremost in regions of high mobility --- can significantly reduce the processing of inter--network changes. Reliability of handover predictions is found on average at about 50%.