Hovertravel on track for new craft

By a County Press reporter

Friday, January 24, 2014

 

Hovertravel on track for new craft

Hovertravel managing director Neil Chapman. Picture by Robin Crossley.

PLANS to invest £10 million in two new hovercraft at Hovertravel Ltd are progressing, the company told an Isle of Wight Council committee last night (Thursday).

Bosses from Hovertravel, Wightlink and Red Funnel attended a public meeting of the Isle of Wight Council's Cross-Solent Services Scrutiny Task Group.

Hovertravel managing director Neil Chapman told the meeting they were on course to introduce the first of the new craft in autumn 2015.

A second new craft is due to be in operation the following summer.

As reported last August, the craft have been developed with sister company Griffon Hoverworks and should carry around 90 passengers.

The company has said the new hovercraft would allow them to offer more frequent services during the summer.

Reporter: ross.findon@iwcp.co.uk

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by James McAdder

26th January 2014, at 09:46:03

Its more than just the price, Kevan.

Lets compare the two Ryde-Portsmouth passenger services from the point of view of a regular commuter:-

Annual season ticket: Hovertravel £1500, Wightlink: £1659.
Parking per year: Hovercraft: £500: Pier head: £700.
Benefits: Hovertravel: 40 single tickets for friends and family, Free bus transfers to Portsmouth city centre, many special offers. Wightlink: nothing.

Hovertravel also operate every 15 minutes during peak periods.

The real disadvantage of the hovercraft is reliability. It is cancelled frequently due to bad weather and much too often because of mechanical failure.

I believe these new craft are supposed to be more capable of coping with adverse weather, and should be more reliable than the elderly AP1-88s.

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by Keven Ball

24th January 2014, at 13:46:21

Again, it is not about the "frequent services" it is the price. Travel by ferry or hovercraft = £££

Any views or opinions presented in the comments above are solely those of the author and do not represent those of the Isle of Wight County Press.

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