Brittany Ferries will be chartering an additional ship in time for the 2020 season. The planned operation spans from November 2019 to November 2020. The purpose of this additional ship is to add more sailings onto their route network connecting France, the UK, Spain and Ireland.
The ship is to be chartered from Stena Ro-Ro and currently sails between Ancona and Trieste in Italy. The Vistentini-class vessel will be the third of its kind on the Brittany Ferries fleet, joining Etretat and Connemara in November.
Christophe Mathieu, the CEO of Brittany Ferries has stated;
"This charter is an important step in our 2020 season planning, we know that our flagship Pont-Aven will be out of service for at least ten weeks in the winter for the replacement of one of her four engines. This will leave a significant gap in capacity across our network."
The operation window will be extended as the new charter will take over Brittany Ferries sailings from Cork to Santander. The route, which represents the first time Spain and Ireland have been connected by ferry in their history, was opened in May 2018 for an initial two-year trial.
Operating between Cork and Santander today, Connemara will be brought under the French Flag. This demonstrates Brittany Ferries' intentions for the employment of French seafarers as it is six months earlier than originally planned.
After she has been re-flagged, Connemara will be free to cover scheduled dry-dock periods for other vessels over the winter and to release Etretat (currently operating Portsmouth to Le Havre) to cover services from the UK to Spain in April.