DFDS welcomes new ferry to the Channel

DFDS welcomes its newest ferry, Côte d’Opale, to the Dover-Calais route today on 4 August when it makes its maiden voyage to Dover.

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The Côte d’Opale can carry 3,100 lane metres of freight, making it the longest ferry on the Channel, and has space for up to 1,000 passengers and crew. It replaces Calais Seaways.

The new ferry offers the largest duty-free shopping experience on any cross-Channel ferry. The shop stretches across 1,100 square metres. It features separate ‘wings’ for each product category on offer, including perfume and cosmetics, wine and spirits, and electronics. The return of duty-free means that passengers will be able to make huge savings on premium products sold in the onboard shop.

In addition, the ferry has a Premium Lounge, which offers an exclusive, laid-back space for passengers to enjoy a peaceful crossing, and three dining areas. The 7 Seas restaurant and Lighthouse Café are for leisure travellers. Commercial drivers have their own dedicated area in the Road Kings lounge and restaurant, with showers and rest areas specially designed for drivers.

Côte d’Opale will be highly efficient and environmentally friendly with an expected reduction in fuel consumption of around 25 per cent compared to the current fleet. With two engines instead of four, she will offer improvements in fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions and give a service speed of 20-22 knots.

Peder Gellert, EVP & Head of DFDS’ Ferry Division, says: “As we return to a new and changed world, we are seeing a gradual return of normality within our ferry business – and we welcome Côte D’Opale to it. Her arrival is a signal. A signal that people can start to think about moving again. Moving is vital to a ferry and logistics company like DFDS. We do so, with people and planet in mind. With more capacity, greater operational efficiency, and a dedicated crew, we will ensure safe travel for passengers, reliable delivery of goods and a reduced impact to the environment.”

Filip Hermann, Vice President and Head of BU Channel for DFDS, said: “The outbound ferry journey sets the scene for a traveller’s whole holiday experience. Customers today have higher expectations and the Côte d’Opale will exceed anything they have experienced before on this route. With excellent passenger and driver facilities, improved environmental impact and increased capacity, we are excited to welcome Côte d’Opale to Dover to launch a new era of cross channel ferry travel.”

Côte d’Opale was ordered by DFDS in April 2018 (on a charter from Stena RoRo) and has been built at the CMI Jinling Weihei shipyard in China. DFDS will operate the ship for an initial ten years with an option to buy it after that. It has the capacity to handle growth in both freight and leisure customers post-Brexit and Covid-19.

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