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Useful General Scottish Irish Ferry Information

You will find lots of Scottish Irish Ferry information and resources here at ferryireland. Ferries come in all shapes and sizes, from small cable ferries all the way up to almost cruise boat size proportions. Ferry crossings from the mainland UK to Europe are as popular as ever due to the increasing demand for European travel.

The Channel Tunnel has only served to make the ferry boat operators more competitive and real fare bargains are now regularly offered.

Stranraer is the largest settlement in south west Scotland. It lies at the head of Loch Ryan, on the north side of the neck of land that prevents the Rhins of Galloway becoming an island. Just over the Border from England and less than two hours drive from Glasgow, the ferry port of Stranraer is Scotlands gateway to Ireland - only 90 minutes away by fast ferry Stena Line operates two types of ferry between Stranraer and Belfast: - The "Stena Voyager" is a high speed catamaran which travels at 40 knots. It is 127 metres long and is propelled by waterjets. Stena Voyager carries up to 1,500 passengers and 350 cars from Stranraer port to Belfast port in only 105 minutes. - The "Stena Caledonia" and "Stena Galloway" are multi-purpose propeller driven ferries, carrying 1,000 passengers and 285 cars each, at around 19 knots making the Stranraer to Belfast ferry crossing in about 3 hours.

SeaFrance was launched on 1 January 1996 following the end of an agreement between Sealink and SNAT. That same year, SeaFrance Ltd. was established and was responsible for the sales and marketing of the new service in the UK as well as port operations in Dover. SeaFrance has since extended its sales operations throughout Europe with representatives in Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain and Italy.

When does a ferry become a cruise ship? There is often a fine line between the two and is usually a matter of where the ship docks and for how long. Put another way, the purpose of journey plays more of a part than the ship itself. The Baltic Sea has many such ships that sail between Sweden and Finland.

Cities that are surrounded by waterways such as Venice use ferries extensively as part of their public transport system. In such cases ferries are employed to do the work of bridges and tunnels as their relative capital cost is much lower. These foot passenger only ferries are sometimes called waterbuses or even water taxis.

P&O Ferries was formed after the Stena Line sold its 40% share in P&O Stena Line in 2002. P&O Portsmouth and P&O North Sea Ferries merged into the P&O Ferries operation and managed from Dover. Prior to the P&O Stena joint venture, operations from Dover, Felixstowe, Portsmouth and Cairnryan were all conducted under the P&O European Ferries name. P&O European Ferries was the name given to the operations of Townsend Thoresen after the P&O group purchased them in 1987. Townsend Thoresen was formed in 1968 after Townsend Brothers Ferries combined forces with Thoresen Car Ferries.

Waterjet powered Catamarans that can carry over 350 cars and more than 1000 foot passengers are also used in the English Channel and Irish Sea crossings. Stena Line own and operate one of the largest Catamarans in the world.

Ferries that carry cars across a large waterway are sometimes referred to as "RORO" ferries (roll-on and roll-off) for the ease by which vehicles can board them and then leave. Roll on roll off ferries are usually quite large, conventional ferries named for the ease by which vehicles can board and leave.

In designing ferries the route length, the number of likely passengers or vehicle capacity required, speed requirements and the water conditions the craft must deal with are all taken into consideration.

Superfast Ferries an Attica Group company was formed in 1995 and is based in Athens, Greece, together with Blue Star Ferries. Superfast Ferries operates lines in the: Adriatic Sea: Ancona and Bari, Italy - Igoumenitsa and Patras, Greece; Baltic Sea: Rostock, Germany - Hanko, Finland; North Sea: Zeebrugge, Flanders - Rosyth, Scotland.

At Dover all ferries, apart from Hoverspeed services, arrive and depart from the Ferry Terminal at the Eastern Docks. Hoverspeed's fast SeaCat ferry service operates from the Hoverport at the Western Docks. P and O ferries have up to 35 return crossings per day from Dover to Calais, with a crossing time of around 75 minutes. Sea France have up to 20 return crossings per day with a crossing time of around 70 minutes. Hoverspeed have up to 15 crossings per day with a crossing time of just 60 minutes. Services are available 364 days a year.

A boat or a ship carrying passengers and sometimes their vehicles, on scheduled services is often reffered to as a ferry. Certain ferries are even able to transport railroad cars and other large cargo depending on their size.

Sea ferries dock at specialised facilities designed to position the boat for loading and unloading. These areas are called the ferry slip. If the ferry is carrying vehicles or railroad cars an adjustable ramp called an apron may form part of the ship and is used for loading and unloading.

Useful Ferry Information

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