Friday, August 19, 2016

Cross Channel RoRo Ferry Truck Freight Trade is Booming Despite Migrant Difficulties

Operator Profits After Taking Control of Prohibited
Shipping News Feature
UK – FRANCE – Cross Channel RoRo and RoPax ferries seem to be the market to be in at the moment despite the ongoing problem with migrants attempting to stowaway on trucks. With P&O Ferries jump in freight traffic reported over the past couple of months now DFDS has announced a 63% hike in freight volumes on the Dover-Dunkirk and Dover-Calais routes in the second quarter of 2016. DFDS of course took over the Calais trade from the ill-fated MyFerryLink service which itself emerged from the corpse of the SNCF owned SeaFrance (see previous stories).

With the introduction of the ex MyFerryLink ships, now refurbished and renamed as the Cotes des Dunes and Cote de Flandres to the Dover-Calais service during the spring, DFDS says it now offers greater flexibility, reliability and choice for its freight customers. The business provides up to 54 daily sailings on its two routes to France and recorded record freight volumes in March 2016, carrying more than 110,000 vehicles on the Dover routes for the first time.

DFDS has also launched a dedicated online booking service for freight, simplifying the booking process and making it possible for operators to track shipments and view real-time departure and arrival information. Freight drivers benefit from their own dedicated services on board when travelling with DFDS, including private lounges, the Road Kings restaurant, and free shower and Wifi facilities, prompting Wayne Bullen, freight sales director for DFDS on the Channel, to comment:

“We’ve invested heavily in improving capacity and enhancing both the booking and travel experience for our freight customers on the English Channel routes. Our new Dover-Calais ships allow us to offer higher frequency and more choice for our customers and we’re delighted to see the significant volume growth achieved as a result.

“We’re also seeing the benefits of our new and improved terminal at Dunkirk. Traffic flow has been improved to allow for faster discharge and loading at the port, which helps us better utilize the ships’ capacity and ensures we keep shipments on track for our customers. This is a strong performance across both routes that reflects the hard work and customer-focused approach of the whole team here.”