Airport delays boost ferry travel

Cruise holidays

[7th April 2008]

The Port of Dover has benefited from problems at UK airports to record an increase in passengers using ferries to travel on holiday.

The Port says that tourist car journeys were up 7.2% last year to almost 2.84 million, the highest figure since 1999. In addition four million coach passengers travelling on 105,000 coaches used the Port of Dover.

"Motoring tourists returned in their thousands to ferries, as continued consolidation of the low cost airlines and increasing airport taxes and delays reduced the appeal of short haul flights in favour of drive-and-sail holidays," the Port says in a press statement.

The Port of Dover is one of the world's busiest international ferry ports and is used by a number of ferry operators including P&O, SeaFrance, Norfolk Line and Speedferries offering sailings to Calais or Boulogne in France.

Dover is also the second busiest cruise port in the UK after the port of Southampton. Last year 132 cruise ships carrying almost 212,000 passengers used the port, generating £3.8 million of income. Cruise lines sailing from Dover include Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL), MSC Cruises, Hurtigruten, Swan Hellenic, Crystal, Fred Olsen, Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Saga.

“With significant projected growth in the freight business and increases in tourist markets, we need to look to expanding the Port’s capacity. We finished 2007 in a strong financial position, and are poised to realise our longer-term investment aspirations to develop the Port to capitalise on this growth,” says Port of Dover chief executive, Bob Goldfield.

Written by: Nick Purdom


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Airport Delays Boost Ferry Travel