Over the last decade or so, the growth in low-cost airlines and the opening of the Channel Tunnel put enormous competitive pressure on the Ferry operators, particularly those operating on the Ireland/Great Britain routes.
But substantial investment in fleets, including high-speed ferries, kept the Ferry operators very much in the all important access mix for Irish tourism. Clever marketing exploited the calm advantages of taking the ferry while avoiding the chaos of over crowded airports.
After an initial and perhaps an inevitable loss of market share to the airlines, the ferry business started to claw back some share in 2008 and 2009. Then came the Ash-clouds in 2010, and more people began to appreciate again the safe, secure and high-quality service offered by Ferry travel. Are we witnessing a renaissance of travel by sea once more, particularly from our biggest source market, Britain?
ITIC spoke with Tony Kelly, Marketing Director of Irish Ferries, the largest Ferry operator between Ireland and Britain, and Ireland and Continental Europe.
Click on the image below to hear what he had to say.
If you would like to comment on anything you’ve heard here, leave a comment below!
May 12th 2010