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DFDS Seaways North Sea Ferry good for travel industry

Whilst the travel industry encountered the most challenging of years in 2010, leading cruise ferry operator DFDS Seaways bucked the trend with latest figures showing an increase of 4.3% in passenger numbers on its Newcastle to Amsterdam route compared to 2009. In total 555,000 passengers travelled on the route in 2010. Figures also show an increase on the Harwich to Esbjerg route with 94,000 passengers using the UK’s only ferry route into Scandinanvia.

This is the second consecutive year of record breaking passenger volume growth which has benefited from some freak weather conditions including the volcanic ash cloud which disrupted air travel in April and snow and ice which severely delayed flights in December. However the increase in passenger numbers was sustained over the year and not confined to these months when air travel was restricted.

With daily sailings each way on the Newcastle to Amsterdam route and three to four weekly sailings to Denmark from Harwich, the DFDS Seaways service has provided a vital link for tourism and business on both sides of the North Sea. 2010 saw an overall increase in numbers of people on self drive holidays and short city breaks on the Newcastle to Amsterdam route, particularly Mini Cruise breaks in the run up to Christmas, along with an uplift in the number of people on self drive holidays and those visiting family and friends on the Harwich to Esbjerg route.

John Crummie, Passenger Director for DFDS Seaways comments: “We have seen an increasing trend over the last few years as more and more people are choosing to travel by sea. The ease, flexibility and convenience are second to none, luggage is unrestricted and importantly sea travel offers excellent value for money. It’s easy for customers to pack up the car with everything they need, including their pets, and head off to Europe.


2010 was an exceptional year in terms of unexpected travel delays at airports and many passengers, especially families, switched from air to sea travel. We anticipate this trend will continue in 2011.

“We have noted an increase in Dutch and German customers who use the route to access the UK, in particular North East England and Scotland, and a notable increase in Scandinavian and Northern European visitors visiting South East England. The UK tourism offering is high with a mix of vibrant cities, coast and countryside within easy reach of the DFDS Seaways ports in Newcastle and Harwich and given the value offering the UK provides, this is a trend we expect to see continuing this year.”


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Notes to editors

DFDS A/S has acquired Norfolkline and is now one of Europe’s largest ferry companies, operating both consumer and freight routes from England, Ireland, Scotland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Lithuania.

DFDS Seaways holds the prestigious title of Europe’s Leading Long Sea Ferry Operator 2010 awarded by The World Travel Awards for the fourth year in a row.


Issued on behalf of DFDS Seaways by Robson Brown


For media enquiries contact:
Sally Pearson on 0191 244 6656/ 0798066402
( sally.pearson@robson-brown.co.uk )


Kirsty McNaught on 0191 244 6637/ 07855720343
( kirsty.mcnaught@robson-brown.co.uk )