British ferry passenger numbers up by 5.6 percent

British ferry passenger numbers up by 5.6 percent

A rising number of nearly 35 million passengers, eight million cars and more than 140,000 coaches were carried by Britain’s ferries in 2010. Figures released by industry body, the Passenger Shipping Association (PSA), show coach numbers were up 5.6 percent over the previous year to 142,660. Ferry passengers were also up 0.4 percent to 34.94 million while cars carried by ferries rose 0.3 percent to 7.95 million. The figures cover all of Britain’s 50-plus ferry routes including domestic, continental, and Irish journeys, but exclude Scottish CalMac routes. “Ferry operators have come to the rescue to serve both their, and others’ customers in this freak weather year,” said PSA director Bill Gibbons “and even when road and rail connecting links were struggling in the December snow, ferry services were operating for all those who could get to the ports. With overall ferry traffic rising, we will see significant capital investment and new ships in 2011 along with new routes. The reliability, flexibility and value of ferry travel is now hitting home.” In 2010, continental ferry services carried more passengers than Eurotunnel and Eurostar combined (18.4 million compared with 18.3 million), and nearly double the number of cars and coaches carried through Eurotunnel. Irish ferry routes were the fastest growing sector in 2010 with passengers up by 3.1 per cent, cars by 1.7 percent and coaches 9.7 percent as total ferry sailings between Ireland and the UK grew 2.5 percent to 26,342.

Gary Marshall
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Gary Marshall
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