Latest addition to Stena fleet to service Liverpool route this month
Ferry giant Stena Line has welcomed the Chinese-built Stena Embla passenger and vehicle vessel to its fleet.
Stena Embla is the third ‘E-Flexer’ ferry to be commissioned for the group’s Irish Sea routes in the past 12 months, three of the most modern ferries in the world, and offers 20% more capacity.
She will join her sister ship, Stena Edda, on the popular Belfast-Liverpool route later this month.
Stena Embla has the capacity to carry 1,000 passengers, 120 cars and 3,100 lane metres of freight. This will provide a significant 20% increase in freight capacity for the route, which is expected to see an increase in demand post-Brexit.
Paul Grant, Stena Line’s Irish Sea trade director, said: “The arrival in Belfast of our newly-built Stena Embla is yet another important milestone in the ongoing enhancement programme of our Irish Sea services. We have now invested over £400m in our ferries and port facilities on the Irish Sea in recent years.”
He added: “The Belfast-Liverpool route is one of the most popular Irish Sea crossings for both freight and leisure traffic, so having a second vessel of the calibre of Stena Embla, with a host of high-quality passenger facilities, will further increase its appeal and expand our capacity.”
In March last year Stena launched its new build Stena Edda onto the Belfast-Liverpool service and the feedback from freight and leisure customers was extremely positive, said Mr Grant.
“Now, we will have two ships offering identical services and facilities which will help take our service levels on the route to new heights. We have real confidence in the future of our Belfast services and our Irish Sea routes in general, which is why this region has attracted three brand new ships in the last 12 months alone.”
He said 2020 has been a difficult year for the business, however, despite this, Stena Line remains resolute in its ongoing commitment to driving the freight and travel business forward in the region.
Stena Embla will make one daily return trip between Belfast and Liverpool.
Stena Line is the largest ferry operator on the Irish Sea, with the biggest fleet offering the widest choice of routes including, combined passenger and freight services from Belfast to Cairnryan and Liverpool, Dublin to Holyhead, and Rosslare to Fishguard routes, as well as a freight-only route from Belfast to Heysham, in Lancashire, a total of up to 238 weekly sailing options between Britain and Ireland.