TransportNI is considering an amendment to the Strangford Lough ferry service timetable to provide an additional early morning sailing from Portaferry on weekday mornings.
Over recent years TransportNI has received several requests for a permanent early morning sailing from Portaferry. The first sailing from Portaferry on weekdays is at 7.45 am and is generally at full vehicle capacity.
Since 2011, an additional sailing at 7.15 am from Portaferry has been provided during the annual refit of the MV Portaferry II. During the refit the smaller ferry, the MV Strangford, is in service and does not have the capacity to cope with the demand for the normal first sailing at 7.45 am. The early sailing is welcomed by many commuters from Portaferry who either have to travel by road to get to work on time or get to work later than they would prefer.
Passenger count records show that, on weekdays, the early morning demand exceeds the demand for the last sailings in the evening. In response to this demand and requests from the public and public representatives, TransportNI has decided to explore the possibility of making the early sailing permanent.