Feature, Freight News, Sea

Irish Ferries to launch Dover-Calais service

[ March 26, 2021   //   ]

Irish Continental Group’s Irish Ferries, arm is to launch services on the Dover-Calais route in June with the transfer of the Isle of Inishmore from the Irish Sea. Additional capacity will be added in the coming months.

The operator said the move would help movement of freight between Ireland and Europe via the UK landbridge and significantly strengthen capacity and reliability of the route. Hauliers will now have one operator providing an inclusive service on the Dublin – Holyhead, Rosslare – Pembroke and Dover – Calais routes, giving traders easier, cheaper, and quicker access to European markets through the Common Transit Convention.

Passenger services will also be offered, although the initial level will depend on the easing of Covid-19 travel restrictions.

Port of Dover chief executive Doug Bannister, said: “We are delighted to welcome Irish Ferries to Dover. This announcement gives the millions of customers across the UK and the Republic of Ireland who value the intrinsic benefits of the shortest sea crossing to Europe, the prospect of even more choice. We believe the inclusive landbridge product will be popular with Irish exporters and will strengthen the just in time supply chain into the European Union. This is a clear signal of market confidence in the Dover route and will complement the resilient services currently provided. We wish Irish Ferries every success and look forward to having them on the route in the summer and working together as part of the Dover team building the future success of the Short Straits.”

Port of Calais chairman Jean-Marc Puissesseau, added: “The commencement of the service operated by Irish Ferries emphasises the strategic position of the port of Calais in the trade between Ireland, the United Kingdom and the continent. It is a clear sign of confidence just a few weeks before the opening of the new port of Calais”.