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Irish Ferries Enthusiasts => Discussion Board => Topic started by: Futureskipper on March 17, 2020, 11:43:58 pm

Title: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: Futureskipper on March 17, 2020, 11:43:58 pm
I was thinking today about the current pandemic situation that we are in. This is thought I had today has confused me, you know how Ireland have shut all of their pubs and bars since Sunday, will the ferries with the bars and pubs such as WB Yeats Stena Estrid Ulysses and Stena Adventurer -that operate from ireland have to close the bars onboard the vessle
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: admin on March 18, 2020, 10:21:30 pm
From what I can make out, they are just implementing "social distancing" onboard, but are keeping facilities open.

Irish Ferries have cancelled some events on W.B. Yeats (https://www.irishferries.com/ie-en/frequently-asked-questions/top-10-faqs/coronavirus-covid-19/).
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: A83 on March 21, 2020, 08:39:47 am
With Ulysses coming home in a few days WBY will be freed up and the summer schedule for IF can get underway.

However there will be very few cars/ tourists/ travellers going to the UK and I suspect none to France. I wonder what volume of freight traffic is crossing the Irish Sea or indeed going to France. I saw a report on RTE saying that demand in France for Irish fish [from Castletownbeare] had stopped. However one assumes most freight is continuing.If not then I suppose ships could be mothballed. Anyone have a sense of what is happening?
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: admin on March 21, 2020, 02:23:36 pm
It's hard to tell at the moment, Brittany Ferries have suspended all passenger sailings, only running some sailings to carry freight.

I imagine Irish Sea sailings will remain in operation to bring in food, Ireland France is a bit more difficult to predict at the moment.
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: awaityourreply on March 22, 2020, 06:07:34 pm
 I would NOT be expecting any passenger services to resume anytime soon between Ireland and Spain following the latest announcements today.

Below was reported in The Telegraph online this evening at 16:48hrs

"4:48pm Spain to restrict entry for 30 days over coronavirus" is a sub-headline under it's main headline:
"Live  Coronavirus latest news: Government outlines isolation plans for 1.5m vulnerable people, with food from councils and help from Army"

Spain will restrict entry for most foreigners at air and sea ports for the next 30 days to help stem its coronavirus epidemic, the Interior Ministry said.

The ban - starting at midnight - comes a few days after Spain imposed restrictions on its land borders with France and Portugal, after European Union leaders agreed to close the bloc's external borders for 30 days.

Spanish nationals, foreigners living in Spain, air crew, cargo and health workers and diplomats will be allowed to travel as normal, the ministry said in its statement."

Source: The Telegraph

This will likely result in further delays to the resumption of Brittany Ferries direct link between Rosslare and Bilbao in Spain  which had only launched towards the end of February when it replaced it's previous ferry link between Cork and Santander.
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: ccs on March 25, 2020, 09:09:15 pm
Brittany Ferries stops Plymouth passenger service and asks for coronavirus aid UK Chamber of Shipping 'demands an immediate multi-million pound government support package'


https://www.cornwalllive.com/news/local-news/brittany-ferries-stops-plymouth-passenger-3975755?fbclid=IwAR29hkbv20W9AyOt9m5ma0KLwA20CAFDnFEPZuhAiu_Pl6Muoe4hiRVgGNs (https://www.cornwalllive.com/news/local-news/brittany-ferries-stops-plymouth-passenger-3975755?fbclid=IwAR29hkbv20W9AyOt9m5ma0KLwA20CAFDnFEPZuhAiu_Pl6Muoe4hiRVgGNs)
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: A83 on April 16, 2020, 09:31:40 am
Alan G makes the point over on the News Board that the Dublin Swift may not operate this year. He set me thinking about what type of services we are likely to see in 2020.

The airlines are considering restarting with reduced seating [middle row of a 3 row seating left empty, use of masks, social distanced queuing etc]. Surely social distancing would be easier to manage on ferries? Cars by definition are enclosed boxes, transfer from the car to the passenger decks could be managed on a phased basis. Numbers on ships could be limited, cabins could be used for at risk travellers. It seems to me properly managed social distancing on a car ferry may be safer and more attractive than travelling by plane. To come back to the question of Dublin Swift, I would not rule it out quite yet. However the ferry companies need to think through how social distancing will operate until a vaccine comes along hopefully next year.
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: jgf on April 16, 2020, 09:26:10 pm
Something Kicked off in Liverpool due to the cash flow squeeze

from rte.ie

'A key supply line linking Liverpool and Dublin has been indefinitely delayed after Peel Ports prevented a P&O Ferries vessel from sailing.

Peel Ports is the owner of The Mersey Docks and Harbour Company, which operates the docks at the Port of Liverpool.

The Norbay, a ropax vessel, is a ship carrying food, medicine and other supplies between the port of Liverpool and the port of Dublin.

However, it was stopped in Liverpool this morning after P&O was presented with what the company described as "a sudden demand for payment of almost £600,000".'
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: admin on April 16, 2020, 09:42:34 pm
Liverpool Echo has a bit more on this - P&O claiming they own far less than what Peel Ports are asking for.
Quote
P&O 'key supplies' ferry detained in Liverpool over port fees row
A major row has broken out between Peel Ports and P&O Ferries
A heavyweight financial row has broken out at Liverpool docks today which has left a ship sending key supplies back and forth to Ireland and England stranded.

A P&O Ferries vessel is currently moored at the city but is detained at the waterfront and cannot leave because of a dispute over outstanding payments.

The ship arrived in Seaforth this morning, loaded with food, medicine and other cargo, as part of a trip it is making every day during the Covid-19 pandemic.

But not long after getting to Merseyside, a disagreement broke out with Peel Ports, which owns and administers the dock facilities of the Port of Liverpool at Seaforth, asking for an unpaid sum of money.

P&O said a request was made for nearly £600,000 and then accused Peel of preventing them from sailing without the bill being settled.

The shipping company believe the amount they owe is substantially less for use of the port facilities - about two-thirds that figure.

And P&O claimed they'd been in ongoing discussion with The Mersey Docks and Harbour Company about the fees that were outstanding.

The firm said they had asked for flexibility to pay the money, due to the coronavirus financial meltdown, and have always remained committed to pay in full.

Their statement also added their point of contact at Mersey Docks and Harbour Company had been furloughed, without their knowledge, meaning communications had suddenly broken down.

This afternoon, the Norbay remained stuck at Peel Ports with no sign of a resolution near.

The company believes Peel Ports' stance will affect the flow of key supplies going to Ireland but also to the north of England, including Merseyside.

A spokesman said: "We have been in open discussions since this crisis began with all of our ports and network to ensure that we can manage payments while everyone deals with this unprecedented situation.

Peel Ports said some of P&O's claims were "factually inaccurate."

It described their detention of the Norbay as a "last-resort" and urged the ferry company to make use of the government's recent financial interventions to help pay their bill.

Other operators between Liverpool and Ireland were operating without similar problems, they added.

A Peel Ports spokeswoman said: "The Port of Liverpool plays a vital role in many critical supply chains from all over the world, handling products needed in the medical & healthcare sector, food industry and energy generation.

“Customers who refuse to pay their bills put these other supply chains at risk.

"Any decision to detain a vessel is always taken as a last-resort and only when there is a significant debt to repay.

“While we understand that we are in unprecedented times, the UK government has announced multiple financial interventions that will support companies with short-term funding issues as a result of Covid-19.

"These should be used as opposed to passing the cash-flow risk along the supply chain.

“Other ferry services from Liverpool to both Dublin and Belfast continue to operate, with multiple departures per day and spare capacity.”
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: A83 on May 29, 2020, 12:52:40 pm
Thinking of booking a trip to France on WBY seeing as we might be let in later in June/ July. However the fares on WBY are horrendous. Going out end of June and back mid July is 675 euro for 2 people without a cabin each way. I cannot remember paying fares like that. Anybody know what's going on?
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: ccs on May 29, 2020, 03:43:58 pm
Thinking of booking a trip to France on WBY seeing as we might be let in later in June/ July. However the fares on WBY are horrendous. Going out end of June and back mid July is 675 euro for 2 people without a cabin each way. I cannot remember paying fares like that. Anybody know what's going on?

Seems about par. Just had a quick look on Stena site and ex Rosslare to Cherbourg is 621euro going out on Sat 27 June and returning 15th July is 591euro so total 1212euro without cabins :-X 
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: 12345teacher on May 31, 2020, 05:57:53 pm
i booked roslare/bilbao return for august 2 cars 4 adults with cabin €828 x2 €1656.full total  ...with brittany ferries
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: ccs on June 05, 2020, 03:55:31 pm
Coronavirus: EU wants all borders re-opened by the end of the month
Commission to propose end of internal travel restrictions by 1 July All EU member states should lift their temporary coronavirus travel restrictions on each other by the end of the month, Brussels has said. The EU’s home affairs commissioner, Ylva Johansson, was speaking ahead of a virtual meeting of national home affairs ministers on Friday.
The 27 member states will discuss how to restore freedom of movement as the pandemic abates across the continent, with many EU countries no longer reporting daily coronavirus deaths.
“I think we’re coming very close to a situation where we should lift all the internal border restrictions and border checks,” Ms Johansson told the channel Euronews.“I’m going to propose that the member states should lift all the internal border checks as soon as possible. And I think a good date should be the end of June.”


https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/coronavirus-eu-travel-border-reopen-quarantine-restrictions-a9550611.html (https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/coronavirus-eu-travel-border-reopen-quarantine-restrictions-a9550611.html)

Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: ccs on June 08, 2020, 11:31:44 am
WB Yeats back on the Dublin-Cherbourg run from tomorrow. I'd assume that Irish Ferries expect some form of tourist travel to be allowed in the near future.
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: ferryfan on June 08, 2020, 11:46:45 am
WB Yeats back on the Dublin-Cherbourg run from tomorrow. I'd assume that Irish Ferries expect some form of tourist travel to be allowed in the near future.
Summer season is underway if people choose not to travel they probably will not be entitled to a refund as the full service is now being offered.
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: ccs on June 08, 2020, 12:08:13 pm
Summer season is underway if people choose not to travel they probably will not be entitled to a refund as the full service is now being offered.

Even if the government advice is currently not to travel?

Anyway it looks like the EU want countries to open borders by the end of June
https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/coronavirus-eu-travel-border-reopen-quarantine-restrictions-a9550611.html (https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/coronavirus-eu-travel-border-reopen-quarantine-restrictions-a9550611.html)
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: ferryfan on June 08, 2020, 03:31:55 pm
I think the key word is "advice" it is not a ban on travel.
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: A83 on June 08, 2020, 05:38:15 pm
WB Yeats may be back on the Cherbourg run but the prices remain very high through to early July, they come in around 1300 euro return for 2 with a car without cabins. They reduce as the month goes on. That suggests to me that they are set at a price to discourage car travel for the next few weeks.
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: ccs on June 08, 2020, 05:54:46 pm
WB Yeats may be back on the Cherbourg run but the prices remain very high through to early July, they come in around 1300 euro return for 2 with a car without cabins. They reduce as the month goes on. That suggests to me that they are set at a price to discourage car travel for the next few weeks.

It may discourage new bookings but wont matter to those already booked.
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: Chris2016 on June 08, 2020, 06:20:47 pm
I Totally agree the prices for the WB yeats to france for even a quick day trip are very expensive for 2 adults & children without cabins . I thought irish ferries would want a good few bookings to get some revenue in . I usually do the trip to france with Irish ferries two times between June and August but with the prices sky high dont think I will . They should adopt the Ryanair policy seat sales to boost bookings.
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: admin on June 08, 2020, 08:48:15 pm
WB Yeats back on the Dublin-Cherbourg run from tomorrow. I'd assume that Irish Ferries expect some form of tourist travel to be allowed in the near future.
Summer season is underway if people choose not to travel they probably will not be entitled to a refund as the full service is now being offered.

This is where things get complicated. The Department of Foreign (http://"https://www.dfa.ie/travel/travel-advice/a-z-list-of-countries/france/") affairs is still advising against non-essential travel to France, yet the service is being offered so Irish Ferries would be fulfilling the Sales of Goods act.
I imagine if you choose not to travel, your only option would be to claim under Travel Insurance (usually if the DFA advise not to travel, it's covered).

Ferry operators are in a tough place here (as are airlines). It's costing them a fortune with refunds and laying up equipment, but if they don't show passengers some flexibility, they are going to lose a lot of goodwill.
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: ferryfan on June 09, 2020, 11:20:37 am
Customers who have travel booked up to the 12th July can cancel their booking and receive a credit note in lieu for use in 2021 alternatively they can amend their sailing, with no amendment fees but paying any fare difference, for any sailing up to the 18th December (not an offer anyone should consider) These alternatives must be acted upon at least 72 hours before scheduled sailing. They are also advising that people who have insurance should seek refunds that way.
What happens after 12 July? As of now it appears that you either "use it or lose it".
Full terms on the faq section on IF website covid page
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: A83 on June 14, 2020, 11:08:36 am
Brittany ferries restarting Cork-Roscoff on 3rd July. [The prices look to be near normal for high season].
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: A83 on June 22, 2020, 02:20:02 pm
Trying to get through to Irish Ferries to apply a refund from March to a new booking. Can't get through on the phone and they don't answer my emails. Any advice?
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: Futureskipper on June 22, 2020, 04:16:01 pm
This is what was said on their facebook.
Good morning. We are receiving high volumes of queries at this time and are working hard to respond to all as quickly as possible. Thank you for your patience.

If you have a query we can assist with, please send through a direct message and we will respond shortly

They are replying to comments on facebook that are queries and issues to do with sailings
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: A83 on June 23, 2020, 08:24:48 am
Thanks Futureskipper.

Facebook it is so.
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: Futureskipper on June 23, 2020, 11:53:47 am
I hope it works, I've seen them replying to comments, good luck
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: marsav68 on June 24, 2020, 05:31:51 pm
Trying to get through to Irish Ferries to apply a refund from March to a new booking. Can't get through on the phone and they don't answer my emails. Any advice?
I got a response from them on Twitter.
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: giftgrub on December 20, 2020, 04:27:16 pm
Travel restrictions between UK & IRL

https://www.irishtimes.com/news/health/coronavirus-government-imposes-48-hour-travel-ban-from-britain-in-response-to-new-virus-strain-1.4442011

The Government has imposed a 48-hour ban on non-essential travel from Britain from midnight in response to a fast spreading new Covid-19 variant that has emerged in England.
The ban applies to intending passengers on flights and ferries. No ban or travel restrictions will apply to travel between the Republic and Northern Ireland.
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: ferryfan on December 20, 2020, 10:20:56 pm
Situation to be reviewed in 48 hours but will most likely be extended. Could we see WB Yeats being redeployed ?
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: admin on December 21, 2020, 11:26:41 am
Situation to be reviewed in 48 hours but will most likely be extended. Could we see WB Yeats being redeployed ?

Minister for Transport is calling for capacity to be deployed on the direct routes, WB Yeats is the obvious ship to redeploy. There are something like 250 lorries stuck in the UK on their way to France too - the embassy is working to get them home.
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: ferryfan on December 21, 2020, 02:56:08 pm
Amazing that the first communication from Irish Ferries in this latest matter is to tell customers that they are not getting a refund but a credit for future travel, which just goes to show that there is an inherent meanness in this company which permeates from the top down.
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: admin on December 21, 2020, 03:31:38 pm
Posted in the Stena Movements (https://www.irish-ferries-enthusiasts.com/forum/index.php?topic=294.msg19133#new) thread already, but Stena Line is deploying the Stena Foreteller on Rosslare - Cherbourg from tomorrow.
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: admin on December 21, 2020, 03:34:48 pm
Amazing that the first communication from Irish Ferries in this latest matter is to tell customers that they are not getting a refund but a credit for future travel, which just goes to show that there is an inherent meanness in this company which permeates from the top down.

There is a degree of logic there - Irish Ferries wants to preserve cash flow. The ships are sailing (even if there is a travel ban in place for passengers), so Irish Ferries are (contractually) providing the service you paid for.

The morals of it are another story...
Title: Re: COVID-19 and ferry travel
Post by: ferryfan on December 23, 2020, 11:00:51 am
Goods should be transported to and from Europe on direct ferries for the foreseeable future to avoid Covid and Brexit delays according to Simon Coveney minister for Foreign Affairs.