The Channel is a big and important market, where five million passengers, one million cars and 1.2 million trucks travel between Dover – Calais and Dover – Dunkerque every year on DFDS ferries. And it is extremely important that we continuously meet the demands of our customers. Therefore, we have decided to deploy a new ship specially designed for our services from 2021. The ship will be built in Avic Weihai shipyard in China and our Newbuilding Department will follow the building process closely.
“Since the ship has not yet been built, we have great opportunities to make sure that it is designed to give our guests the best possible experience with a completely new ship. We will charter the ship and operate it for 10 years with an option to buy it after that. And since we are considering replacing the fleet on the Channel in 2031, the timing is really good,” says Peder Gellert, EVP of the Shipping Division.
Four DFDS captains have been testing in simulators how to navigate the future ship to make sure that the new ship is best fitted out for the conditions on the Channel.
“When sailing on the Channel, we need to ensure that the ship is at least as fast in arrival and departure situations as our current ships. Therefore, we have made modifications to increase manoeuvrability,” says Henrik Tidblad, Commercial Fleet Director.
The ship will be able to carry 3,100 lane metres of cargo and 1,000 passengers. With this capacity, it will be the largest of our channel ships.
“I am really looking forward to getting this fantastic ship to boost the business on the Channel. This new ship gives us excellent opportunities to develop our business on the commercial side. A newbuild ship will give us the flexibility to make room for tax-free shopping, depending on the outcome of Brexit. Together with an architect, we will design the interior of the ship to make sure we maximise our opportunities,” says Kasper Moos, VP & Head of BU Channel.
The ship will be delivered in 2021, and market developments will determine whether it will be as an addition to our existing fleet or a replacement.
April 24, 2018