Ferry to link Portugal with UK? It’s a way of beating airline prices!

With the cost of plane tickets apparently rising as much as 600%, Brittany Ferries is considering opening a link between the UK and Portugal, starting this month.

The Sun reports today that the route isn’t ‘properly decided yet’. But it is being seriously pondered.

Brittany Ferries already runs services to Spain (Santander) and France (Roscoff). But neither of these are yet on the UK’s ‘green list’ for quarantine free travel, and thus for the time being they have been suspended.

Thanks to Portugal’s ‘pole position’ when it comes for ‘safe and easy-to-reach sunshine destinations’, the ferry idea is gaining force.

Says the Sun, it would depart from either Portsmouth or Plymouth, and arrive in Porto. The trip would take roughly 30 hours, and would cost a minimum of £150 (around €174).

The ferry would almost certainly only be available to people travelling with their cars (ie it won’t take pedestrian passengers).

The plan has developed totally as a result of the ‘charging fest’ undertaken by airlines.

Both EasyJet and Ryanair are leading the number of flights into Portugal – having increased seats to Faro by over 250,000. Jet2 is also witnessing the ‘stampede’ of interest from Brits and may well up its schedules too, says the Sun.

The story has been confirmed in Portsmouth by The News (local paper) which refers to Brittany Ferries keeping mum for the moment, “but an official source said the company was keen to start services, using either the Pont-Aven (ferry) or Cap Finistere”.

The News believes Portsmouth will be the start point for the service. The city’s ports director Mike Sellers told the paper: “Ferry travel provides one of most comfortable ways to travel, while managing Covid-19 protection measures.

“We would happily support Brittany Ferries as we are in great position to welcome passengers.

“We were the first port to have our health protocols verified and install a thermal camera, and are concentrating our efforts on creating a safe and pleasant environment for when holidays can return.”

Brittany Ferries has held its prices for 2021 to encourage people to travel with them.

CEO Christophe Mathieu said: ‘We want to remind people that there are attractive alternatives to air travel this summer.

“Taking the ferry means there’s no need to mingle in a busy terminal building, or arrivals hall, alongside passengers from multiple destinations”.

natasha.donn@algarveresident.com