Allianz and Afloat - Supporting Irish Boating

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Ferries and Ferry News from Ireland
Irish Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan
According to the Justice Minister reports of hundreds of cars arriving into Ireland at ferry ports last week "don't stack up". There has been some concern after photos emerged online appearing to show British-registered cars driving off ferries at Irish…
The Isle of Man Steam Packet's fast-ferry Manannan to take over key daytime services from AFLOAT adds the conventional ropax Ben-My-Chree in response to Covid-19. Above AFLOAT adds is the Manannan seen arriving yesterday afternoon in Douglas Harbour from Heysham with Manx residents repatriated in response to Covid-19.
Isle of Man sailings on a daily basis to and from the island will be carried out by the (fast-ferry) Manannan, while the Ben-my-Chree is out of service for two weeks. The latest changes to the Isle of Man Steam…
Rosslare Europort in this photo for AFLOAT which adds in these challenging times the Co. Wexford ferryport is now the nearest to West Cork. As according to EchoLive, Brittany Ferries have suspended all passenger services until further notice on the Cork-Roscoff route and Rosslare-Bilbao. AFLOAT adds however a 'freight' service is maintained to Spain and a new Rosslare-Roscoff route was to have launched last month. This leaves the 'south' of the country with only one Ireland-mainland Europe route, Stena Line's Rosslare-Cherbourg service. As for Rosslare's short-sea services linking the UK, Irish Ferries connect to Pembroke operated by Isle of Inishmore (on left) while Stena Line also serves south Wales to Fishguard using Stena Europe also berthed at the harbour.
Among communities of West Cork towns there are growing concerns as people make their way to holiday homes and caravan parks this week, despite the 2km radius travel restriction put in place by the government. Locals took to social media,…
In the UK the Transport Salaried Staffs' Association, is a trade union representing workers in the transport and travel industries, has called on the British Government to follow the Irish Government which is funding key strategic ferry routes during the Covid-19 crisis. AFLOAT adds TSSA has 30,000 members in the UK and Ireland. ABOVE: Afloat also adds freight arrival booths at the Port of Holyhead, north Wales.
In the UK the Transport Salaried Staffs' Association (TSSA) Gen. Sec., Manuel Cortes, has called for Britain to follow the example of the Irish Government after Dublin stepped in to provide major funding to keep sea routes running during the Covid-19 crisis.  …
Stena announced it was to furlough 600 employees and make 150 redundant in the UK and Ireland. Above AFLOAT adds is Belfast Harbour's VT4 (Stena Line) terminal used only for their Scottish service to Cairnryan operate by sisters Stena Superfast VII (above) VIII.
Ferry operator Stena is reducing its Belfast Harbour services as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. The firm, which normally operates seven ships on 138 sailings a week from Belfast, has temporarily berthed one ship (Afloat tracked to ro-ro freighter…
The emergency measure will last up for a period of up to three months and apply to three companies, Irish Ferries, Stena Line and Brittany Ferries
The Government has approved an emergency incentive to three ferry companies to keep five strategic maritime corridors between Ireland, Britain and Europe open during the COVID-19 pandemic writes  Lorna Siggins  Minister for Transport Shane Ross says the government has approved…
P&O is struggling to convince UK ministers to agree to put in £150m from taxpayers. The ferry firm delivers around 15pc of all the goods imported into Britain. Above AFLOAT adds in this file photo is underway on the Irish Sea P&O's Dublin-Liverpool freight/passenger (ropax) ferry Norbay. Note astern of the freight trailers on the upper deck is an Irish Coast Guard helicopter on a training exercise.
According to The Telegraph, the jobs of almost 4,000 at P&O Ferries are under threat as the 180-year-old firm teeters on the brink of collapse. The ferry company's Dubai owner is scrambling to agree a £250m rescue deal that will…
Stena employs 2,500 people in the UK and Ireland. Above AFLOAT adds is the new E-Flexer class leadship Stena Estrid arriving in Dublin Port from Holyhead, north Wales.
Ferry firm Stena Line, based in Sweden, will furlough 600 employees and make 150 redundant across the UK and Ireland, it said (yesterday), as a result of the impact of the new coronavirus on the volume of traffic on its…
Industry leader said (ferry) ships 'days away' from being laid up in ports. ABOVE Stena Estrid departing the Port of Holyhead and bound for Dublin Port
Laid up ferries, reports NorthWalesLive, could be in port and Irish Sea routes suspended unless the UK Government steps in to help, industry sources say. Ferry firms are lobbying the UK and Irish governments for support as passenger numbers between…
The RMT union says it is a 'kick in the teeth' for members but Stena says coronavirus has changed situation. Afloat adds above is the new Stena Estrid berthed at the Port of Holyhead, north Wales from where the ropax ferry operates the core Irish Sea route to Dublin Port.
Operator Stena Line and the Rail, Maritime & Transport Workers (RMT) union have engaged in a war of words after the ferry giant withdrew its previous pay offer due to the coronavirus crisis. The ferry firm had offered staff a…
Leadship of the new E-Flexer ropax class AFLOAT adds is Stena Estrid in Dublin Port from where the ferry operates on the Holyhead route as part of keeping Irish & UK supply lines stay open across the Irish Sea. Afloat also adds as for the Ireland-north Wales service is also operated by Stena Adventurer.
Ferry operator Stena Line in response to the impact of the Coronavirus as it tightens its grip on everyday life across Europe, has moved to reassure freight and travel customers. The operator is taking every precaution possible to help ensure…
Unaccompanied freight trailer units in this AFLOAT photo seen on board P&O Ferries freight ropax Norbay (see sister Norbank also in the Irish capital in yesterday's 'Dublin Port' news) along with Clipper Pennant on charter from Seatruck, operate on the central Irish Sea route to Liverpool, England. P&O also operate on the North Channel between Larne-Cairnryan in Scotland
Operator P&O Ferries has announced “a significant strategic shift to reprioritise its efforts on its freight operations and maintain the flow of goods, including medical supplies, between the UK and Europe”. The moves involve the ferry company “furloughing” 1,100 staff…
Brittany Ferries have been forced to 'cease' all services for the time being, across their route network including Ireland-France/Spain due to Covid-19 advise from governments among them Ireland. Above flagship Pont-Aven which otherwise operates the seasonal Cork-Roscoff route is seen last year arriving in Cork Harbour where on the left is Cobh Cruise Terminal (see blue pontoon) on to the right is the Irish Naval Service Base on Haulbowline Island.
Due to the Coronavirus pandemic and following advice given by governments in all countries in which Brittany Ferries operate the company have been forced to temporarily suspend passenger services connecting the UK, Ireland, France and Spain. All passenger sailings between…
Ferrying Freight: Trucks on board a ferry NOTE AFLOAT adds for up to date travel incl FAQ on Covid-19 and information for passengers in general is listed below from ferry operators websites and Irish & UK government travel & health advise.
A call from Irish hauliers to ferry operators to shut all bars and restaurants at sea and to provide room service to individual drivers in their own cabins to keep them shielded from Covid-19, reported The Freight Transport Association…
Due to COVID-19 there is further widespread travel disruption and cancellations with changes to Brittany Ferries schedules on Ireland-France and Ireland-Spain routes and notably that the new Rosslare-Roscoff route will not open on 23 March, which Irish Ferries withdrew the seasonal service last year. AFLOAT also adds the ropax ferry Kerry berthed at Rosslare Europort for the first time (as when seen last month) prior to its maiden voyage to Spain and from the ferry returned this afternoon to the Wexford port with the last 'passengers' to use the service before it becomes freight-only.
There is further suspension of Brittany Ferries passenger services as a consequence of the on-going Coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis which Afloat adds the French ferry operator has posted on its website, so click for updates.  According to Brittany Ferries this is in…
COVID-19 has led to immediate changes for Brittany Ferries Ireland services to France and Spain as detailed below. Above the ropax ferry Kerry berthed on first day of arrival in Rosslare Europort from where the chartered ferry last month made its maiden voyage to Bilbao, northern Spain..
Ferry operator Brittany Ferries has outlined a series of immediate changes to its schedules, in response to the on-going Coronavirus crisis. On 12 March, the French government announced steps to protect its citizens. According to the company employing all-French crew,…

Ferry & Car Ferry News The ferry industry on the Irish Sea, is just like any other sector of the shipping industry, in that it is made up of a myriad of ship operators, owners, managers, charterers all contributing to providing a network of routes carried out by a variety of ships designed for different albeit similar purposes.

All this ferry activity involves conventional ferry tonnage, 'ro-pax', where the vessel's primary design is to carry more freight capacity rather than passengers. This is in some cases though, is in complete variance to the fast ferry craft where they carry many more passengers and charging a premium.

In reporting the ferry scene, we examine the constantly changing trends of this sector, as rival ferry operators are competing in an intensive environment, battling out for market share following the fallout of the economic crisis. All this has consequences some immediately felt, while at times, the effects can be drawn out over time, leading to the expense of others, through reduced competition or takeover or even face complete removal from the marketplace, as witnessed in recent years.

Arising from these challenging times, there are of course winners and losers, as exemplified in the trend to run high-speed ferry craft only during the peak-season summer months and on shorter distance routes. In addition, where fastcraft had once dominated the ferry scene, during the heady days from the mid-90's onwards, they have been replaced by recent newcomers in the form of the 'fast ferry' and with increased levels of luxury, yet seeming to form as a cost-effective alternative.

Irish Sea Ferry Routes

Irrespective of the type of vessel deployed on Irish Sea routes (between 2-9 hours), it is the ferry companies that keep the wheels of industry moving as freight vehicles literally (roll-on and roll-off) ships coupled with motoring tourists and the humble 'foot' passenger transported 363 days a year.

As such the exclusive freight-only operators provide important trading routes between Ireland and the UK, where the freight haulage customer is 'king' to generating year-round revenue to the ferry operator. However, custom built tonnage entering service in recent years has exceeded the level of capacity of the Irish Sea in certain quarters of the freight market.

A prime example of the necessity for trade in which we consumers often expect daily, though arguably question how it reached our shores, is the delivery of just in time perishable products to fill our supermarket shelves.

A visual manifestation of this is the arrival every morning and evening into our main ports, where a combination of ferries, ro-pax vessels and fast-craft all descend at the same time. In essence this a marine version to our road-based rush hour traffic going in and out along the commuter belts.

Across the Celtic Sea, the ferry scene coverage is also about those overnight direct ferry routes from Ireland connecting the north-western French ports in Brittany and Normandy.

Due to the seasonality of these routes to Europe, the ferry scene may be in the majority running between February to November, however by no means does this lessen operator competition.

Noting there have been plans over the years to run a direct Irish –Iberian ferry service, which would open up existing and develop new freight markets. Should a direct service open, it would bring new opportunities also for holidaymakers, where Spain is the most visited country in the EU visited by Irish holidaymakers ... heading for the sun!

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