It has been a difficult time for the ferry industry after it was announced that the Swansea-Cork Fastnet ferry service would close with the loss of 60 jobs. However, there are still some exciting deals available on ferry travel elsewhere.
The West Cork Tourism Co-Operative Society made the decision to close the ferry service on February 2 after failing to raise sufficient funds to keep the service moving – the route had been placed into intern examinership back in November.
According to the owners, high world oil prices were the reason why finances had been hampered. Now the closure of the line will mean around €30million is lost in the Munster area; with a further €20million lost to the South Wales area. Around seven people lost their jobs in Cork; with 53 people losing their jobs on the MV Julia – the ferry that had been in operation since 2010.
Cruising with offers
While the closure of the Fastnet ferry service is a blow to consumers, there are some fantastic ferry- and cruise-related deals currently available from Stena Line Ireland.
Through voucher code website Moneysaver.ie, Stena Line Ireland has issued a number of special deals and offers. For example, you can travel from Belfast to Liverpool with Stena Line from €95 for both car and driver. Alternatively if you’re heading to Liverpool, you could enjoy a two-night stay with breakfast and one dinner at the Adelphi Hotel from €55 per adult. Other offers available through Stena Line include a stay at the Vale Hotel & Golf Resort in South Wales with ferry travel from just €70 per adult per night; or simply the chance to take your car to Britain from €79.
Of course voucher codes and offers are just one way to bring the price of ferry travel down. If you want to save more money consider your sailing times carefully as sailing at the most convenient time usually means paying more. Remember to check alternative ports and look to book in advance wherever possible – those who book around 28 days ahead of time usually have access to the best deals.
Another idea is to split the cost. Remember that most ferry companies will charge you for a car with up to five passengers. So if you’re travelling as part of a group, why not try and fit as many people into one car as possible? Also remember to laboriously check the details of any booking you make – because charges for any changes can be astronomical.