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Passenger services to resume on 29 June, Brittany Ferries confirms

(23 June 2020) Brittany Ferries is pleased to confirm a limited return to scheduled passenger services this summer. In all, five ships will carry passengers when services resume from next Monday, 29 June. A further three ships covering four routes will re-open to passengers in July.

The following confirms ships, routes and re-opening dates for passengers next week:

Week beginning 29 June

Ship Route Date of first sailing Time and port of departure
Mont St Michel Portsmouth – Caen 29 June 2020   08:30 departing Caen
Cap Finistère Portsmouth -Santander 29 June 2020 00:30 departing Portsmouth
Armorique Plymouth – Roscoff 29 June 2020 15:00 departing Roscoff
Pont-Aven Portsmouth – Santander – Plymouth – Roscoff –  Cork – Roscoff Plymouth – Santander 30 June 2020   2 July 2020   3 July 2020   5 July 2020 17:45 departing Portsmouth   20:45 departing Plymouth   20:30 departing Roscoff   16:45 departing Plymouth  
Kerry Rosslare – Roscoff   Rosslare – Bilbao 29 June 2020   1 July 2020 23:30 departing Rosslare   11:00 departing Rosslare

Three more ships will resume passenger services in July:

Ship Route Date of first sailing Time and port of departure
Normandie Portsmouth – Caen   12 July 2020   23:00 departing Caen
Bretagne Portsmouth – St Malo 17 July 2020 10:30 departing St Malo
Connemara   (originally scheduled for UK-Spain this summer) Portsmouth – Cherbourg (Thurs – Sunday) Portsmouth – Le Havre (Monday – Weds)   10 July 2020     12 July 2020 09:00 departing Portsmouth (for Cherbourg)   23:45 departing Portsmouth  

With regret and following careful consideration, Brittany Ferries confirms the decision not to operate the following three ships this summer. This is due to a combination of unpredictable demand on these services and shortage of available cabins, based on ship configuration:

Ship Route affected
Etretat Portsmouth – Le Havre*
Barfleur Poole – Cherbourg
Normandie Express Portsmouth – Cherbourg*

*note: Connemara above will serve Portsmouth-Le Havre and Portsmouth-Cherbourg this summer.

The safety of passengers, freight drivers and crew has been the top priority for Brittany Ferries throughout the Covid-19 crisis. As such, passenger capacity will be limited on all vessels. Capacity limits will be ship dependent, and will be reviewed as the summer progresses. However, all services connecting France and the UK for example will be limited to 550 passengers from 29 June. This measure reduces capacity by more than 60%, and will apply until mid-July at the earliest.

A range of new sanitary and social distancing measures will also be imposed on all vessels. These measures go above and beyond compliance with statutory guidance in countries served by the company.

In preparation for the resumption of passenger sailings, Brittany Ferries has drawn-up a 12-point guide to safe travel this summer. Part of the company’s Together & Protected campaign, the guide is based on new safety measures and is designed to inform, reassure and prepare all those thinking about ferry travel, as well as those who are about to embark on holiday.

Brittany Ferries 12-point guide to safe travel this summer

  1. Passengers may be required by national or local authorities to fill-in a health form prior to travel. If you are unwell, please stay at home.
  2. Passengers must check-in at least 90 minutes before departure
  3. Boarding and disembarkation will be staggered, to avoid queues.
  4. Masks must be worn while boarding, disembarking and in public areas on board
  5. Wash hands regularly, use hand sanitisers – and follow all crew instructions
  6. Customers are asked to read onboard signs and to respect physical distancing guidance in all public areas
  7. A cabin or reserved seat is compulsory on all sailings. To minimise contact with others, remain in this personal space as much as possible
  8. Fresh sea air is supplied in all public areas on board, including cabins
  9. Enhanced cleaning with virucidal cleaners will take place during and between sailings
  10. In restaurants and bars, meal choices may be limited and space adapted to comply with new safety protocols
  11. In all public areas, crew will wear masks when interacting with passengers
  12. Medical assistance is available in the event of a suspected COVID-19 case, including a dedicated cabin for isolation

Other measures defined by Brittany Ferries chief doctor are also in place, including full crew training and a dedicated nurse on all sailings.

All measures are already well practised. From late March to May, the company has been carrying only essential freight. This has allowed it to implement, practise and fine-tune measures on board working with lorry drivers. Brittany Ferries would like to thank all crew for adapting quickly and professionally to many new procedures. Thanks also to drivers, carrying cargos such as fresh food and medicines, for their understanding and compliance with strict measures imposed during the worst of the crisis.

“We are very much looking forward to welcoming holiday makers back on board starting on Monday,” said Christophe Mathieu, CEO Brittany Ferries. “Operationally, we have put in place everything for a safe return to service and we have practised these measures daily. Our job now is to reassure passengers that ferries are open for business and that travel by sea is the safest way to enjoy an international holiday. It won’t be quite the same Brittany Ferries experience on board of course, at least to start with. However, it will still be a relaxing sea bridge to take you to the beautiful destinations you have been dreaming of during lockdown.”

Ferry travel lends itself well to social distancing by virtue of open deck areas, wide public spaces and comfortable cabins. Brittany Ferries passengers for example can board and alight in the safety and comfort of their own car. When directed by a member of the crew, they head straight for an en-suite cabin and may choose to spend the entire journey in their own space on board. Crew will let them know when it is time to leave their cabin and re-join their vehicle, with staggered disembarkation to avoid queues in stairwells or lifts.

Relief as links return

Working with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), Brittany Ferries has worked to repatriate limited numbers of British citizens stranded in Spain and Portugal in the last months. Some passengers have therefore already experienced the new normal on board freight services linking Spain and the UK.

However a return to scheduled passenger services will be welcomed by tens of thousands of additional British customers. This includes holiday makers of course, but also thousands who make regular ferry journeys to second homes in regions of Normandy and Brittany. In addition there are many hundreds of businesses in the south and south west that rely on the links by sea from the UK to northwest France and northern Spain.