(10 November 2020) Following Wightlink’s announcement that their FastCat from Ryde Pier will be suspended from Saturday 14th November until further notice, Hovertravel is re-introducing ticket acceptance for customers.
Neil Chapman, managing director of Hovertravel, said: “For the Solent ferry operators the unique circumstances of this COVID crisis have challenged us all and demonstrated that co-operation is needed now, more than ever. We are proud to be offering Wightlink customers a fast ferry option for this second lockdown. Hovertravel’s commitment to supporting the communities on both sides of the Solent is as strong today in November, as it was in March.”
Hovertravel has added nine extra daily services for Monday to Friday; four more flights in the morning commuter period (Ex Ryde 0700 & 0730 and Ex Southsea 0715 & 0745) and an additional five flights to help customers returning in the evening (Ex Ryde 1600 & 1700 and Ex Southsea 1615, 1715 & 1745).
Operating both craft and offering a 15 minute frequency during commuter times will ensure that people can travel to work, to school, to college or university and for medical appointments.
Those who need to travel and who have pre-booked with Wightlink (including season card holders) will be able to pre-book Hovertravel services from 12 noon on Wednesday 11 November. There will be no additional fare payable and will also include use of the HoverBus for onward connections within Portsmouth.
In the event of adverse weather, Hovertravel is also launching a new disruption plan; a free, dedicated Hoverbus will operate between the Hovertravel terminal in Ryde and the Fishbourne Car Ferry for both Hovertravel & Wightlink customers as an alternative travel option. The Portsmouth Hoverbus will also have an additional service stop at the Portsmouth Gunwharf Terminal.
Neil adds: “The three ferry companies kept the Island connected during the last lockdown and by working together with the Isle of Wight Council we will do it again. Hovertravel is ready and able to serve by continuing to fly people, post and patients across the Solent throughout this pandemic.“