Brittany Ferries to run 3 new freight sailings per week between Ireland and France

Brittany Ferries has announced that it is introducing three new weekly freight only sailings between Ireland and France.

The sailings will begin this Thursday (February 4) with a sailing between Rosslare and St Malo.

The first of two new sailings out of Cork to Roscoff will begin this Saturday. These sailings are in addition to the current Brittany Ferries sailings out of Cork and Rosslare to both France and Spain.

According to the French firm, the new sailings are in response to demands from both Irish and French hauliers seeking a more direct route.

Normally most lorries travelling between Ireland and France transit via the UK, using ferry services across the Irish Sea and English Channel.

However, since new post-Brexit trade rules were introduced on January 1, increasing numbers of Irish and continental hauliers have been deterred from using this ‘landbridge’ due to increased customs checks and paperwork, a spokesperson for the ferry firm said.

Hugh Bruton, general manager of Brittany Ferries Ireland, said: “It’s clear that Brexit has distorted flows of trade between France and Ireland, there’s now clear and compelling demand both in Brittany and beyond to boost freight capacity direct from the region to Ireland.

And Irish traders too are seeking direct links to western France. We’re always listening to our haulier customers in order to best meet their needs and we look forward to restarting Brittany-Ireland services two months earlier than planned.

The new Brittany-to-Ireland sailings come in addition to an extra weekly Rosslare to Cherbourg round trip which was introduced in mid-January.

This means that from February Brittany Ferries will offer hauliers eight sailings a week in each direction between Ireland and France.

These new freight only routes will operate until the end of March, when scheduled freight and passenger services will resume between Cork and Roscoff.

With two weekly sailings in each direction, frequency has been doubled for 2021, Brittany Ferries concludes.