Running a French Holiday Gite in Rural Brittany

Friday, April 11, 2008

LD Lines splashes the cash on a new boat, more sailings and a new route

LD Lines announced today that they're purchasing a new boat, currently under construction in Italy, and due to come into service in November 2008.

The as yet unnamed boat is similar to LD's M/V Sorrento which operates between Italy (Rome) and France (Cote d’Azur) and will be able to 800 passengers with 110 cabins plus reclining seats, sleeper seats and the usual bars, restaurants and lounges.

Once the boat comes into service it will be used to add a second crossing on the existing Portsmouth/Le Havre route, leaving at lunchtime from Portsmouth and in the evening from Le Havre; complementing the existing crossing which currently runs overnight from Portsmouth and in the evening returns from Le Havre, but will probably be re-timetabled to balance the new service.

On the weekends LD Lines will operate their new boat on a completely new route from Rosslare in Southern Ireland to Le Havre, leaving France Friday evening, arriving in Ireland just 20 hours later on Saturday, and then returning back to Le Havre for Sunday.

This'll provide some competition for Irish Ferries who currently operate unchallenged two routes from Rosslare to Roscoff (Brittany) and Cherbourg (Normandy peninsular).

LD Lines is spending $110M on the new boat so they're clearly serious about growing their share of the French ferry market.

Further details of the new LD Lines ferry are on their website as are details of current summer sailing offers.

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