Charging points for mobile/laptops part of £200k ‘luxurious accommodation’ refurb of Wightlink car ferry

An onboard Business Centre with charging points and luxurious accommodation planned in refurbishment of ferry on Portsmouth to Fishbourne route. OnTheWight‘s got the full-sized drawing of what they hope it will look like.

Wightlink May 2014 refirb visualisation - Blu Marine

This in from Wightlink. Happily they say the works on the craft shouldn’t impact the timetable. In their words – Ed.


The ferry, which sails on the Portsmouth to Fishbourne route, is undergoing £200,000 of refurbishments with specialist marine company BluMarine during May.

It will mean spacious and luxurious accommodation on deck 5 with comfortable new chairs and sofas with great views. Lighting will be improved to save energy and create a relaxing environment and there will be better access to the outside decks for disabled customers who use wheelchairs.

Onboard Business Centre
An onboard Business Centre will include tables where commuters and other business people can work easily, equipped with charging points for mobile phones and laptops. There will also be more charging points near the popular Costa coffee shop.

“We are sure our customers will appreciate the increased luxury on board St Clare,” says Operations Director Elwyn Dop. “This investment is good news for commuters, regular passengers and holidaymakers alike as they travel across the Solent in style.”

BluMarine
Ross Welham, Design Director of BluMarine adds: “We are excited to be working with Wightlink on creating a luxurious modern environment. It will be cosy on chilly winter crossings but fresh for hot summer days, with unrivalled views of the Solent from every seat.”

St Clare will be taken out of service between 6-8 May for the bulk of the preparation work to be completed; the fit-out will be completed over the following two weeks when she returns to the route.

The images
(Click on these to see full sized versions)
Wightlink May 2014 refirb visualisation - Blu Marine

Wightlink May 2014 refirb visualisation - Blu Marine

Friday, 2nd May, 2014 12:48pm

By

ShortURL: http://wig.ht/2bTb

Filed under: Ferry, Island-wide, Isle of Wight News, Motoring, Ryde, Isle of Wight, Top story, Tourism

Any views or opinions presented in the comments below must comply with the Commenting 'House Rules' and are solely those of the author and do not represent those of OnTheWight.

Leave your Reply

47 Comments on "Charging points for mobile/laptops part of £200k ‘luxurious accommodation’ refurb of Wightlink car ferry"

newest oldest most voted
Tim

I shall not be able to benefit from this, at £ 170 for a return trip I can no longer afford to travel with them

martin william wareham

Sunday 4th May return Yarmouth Lymington Thirty Three Pounds and a bit.

Tim

Martin William Wareham, the current fare for a 5.3m long Nissan Navarra kingcab, Sunday May 4th £ 165.60 return with some sailings N/A on Yarmuth Lymington route.
How long is your vehicle?

martin william wareham

Peugeot 207 SW.

Tim

Martin, at 4.1m your vehicle is around 30% shorter than mine, yet mine costs the roughly the same as transporting 5 of yours. I have questioned Wightlink about this on several occasions, they appear to be lost for words!!!

The Sciolist
Hot on the heels of Red Funnel’s upgrade. Please sing-along: Anything you can do I can do better? Or should that be, anything they can do we can do too – it’ll cost you a lot more thou? I won’t be able to charge my phone as they won’t have enough staff or will cancel sailings for operational reasons. Hang on, didn’t they recently tell us these… Read more »
JohnR

It is about a 45min crossing, when they run.
How are you meant to use a laptop or charge your phone when you can barely queue to get a coffee and drink it before getting off again.
I’m sure that most business people treat this ‘short’ journey more as a break than as essential work time.

Patrick Mckay

So this means,with summer coming , a price hike is on the way?

Richard

I am currently on a Portsmouth bound ferry and I can count 5 people in my vicinity on lap tops and tablets – so it will get used. Welcome to 21st century

martin william wareham

Tim I can only sympathise the price they expect you to pay is outrageous.

Tim

Martin, thanks for your comment. It is difficult to see how Wightlink benefit from this, I used to do around 20 journeys a year with them but now none at all

Ian

The dull rendered ‘sketchup’ drawings themselves are poorly judged and offer perspectives from impossible and yes implausible angles.

Trimble ‘retch-up’ screen grabs from a designer calling themselves professional… really? However much Wightlink were invoiced for this service it was still too much!

Jane Edmunds

What I require from a ferry service is an affordable price. All the hype of the refit for a 45 min journey will not compensate for some of the prices now being charge.

davidwalter

They can’t win, can they?

Tim

Wightlink can’t win? Not whilst they believe that around £ 170 return for a 5.3m long kingcab represents fairer pricing. Red Funnel charge around £ 50 return for the same vehicle.

Cynic

Ferry companies win every time they take money from travellers.

(As Orwell might have said “All ferry companies are equal, some more are equal than others”,.)

davidwalter
Different pricing policies – it is surely good news that competition is working like this? At that price difference surely you just go C-S rather than F-P or Y-L? In any case I can’t see how letting the fleet become dilapidated helps! Indeed, spending on the ships shows long-term commitment. If you’ve ever sailed on ships that are at end-of-lease or end-of-route you’ll know what lack of… Read more »
Tim

David, I am not looking to pay “practically nothing”, just a fare that accurately reflects the cost of transporting the vehicle which is not 5 x the cost of a vehicle which is only slightly shorter!

davidwalter
Tim, I realise that but they have to have a pricing policy to match their product offer. That’ll include technical factors such as the loading of ships but also the marketing mix to make a fair profit. As we all know, many of the ferries are almost empty off-season (except the commuter pax ferries) so they have a complex balance. I’m not associated in any way with… Read more »
Tim
David, I had in depth discussions with Wightlink about this in 2008/9. Their then CEO acknowledged that apart from a possible VAT issue there was no extra cost to Wightlink in transporting this class of vehicle. Under their new pricing structure it is not clear why a vehicle 4.1m length costs £ 33 return whilst a vehicle 5.3m in length costs £ 170 return.I have asked for… Read more »
Let it go!

Tim, why are you even bothering about Wightlink?

Red Funnel are offering you a great deal, yet you still spend over 5 years moaning about Wightlink! Just ignore them and use RF, problem solved and you live a happy life

Tim

Well that I can’t argue with that advice.
Red Funnel charge a very reasonable £ 50 for the return trip. I suppose having traveled with Wightlink over the past 30 odd years it has rather become a habit. But you are quite right Red Funnel deserve my custom and in future I shall travel with them instead.

Island Monkey

Published figures indicate Wightlink boss Russell Kew earned over £400,000 last year. Plus pension contributions and expenses.

Inevitably a lot of that came from pick-up drivers, I had thought it was high fares and cuts.

Island Monkey

PS That’s around one thousand one hundred pounds for every single day of the year. But who cares, it’s just part of Island life. I wonder what a tunnel boss would earn?

Cynic

Even more if the tunnel/bridge were to be built with PFI money (e.g. VINCI/Macquarie) because the profits would be higher.

Cynic
I am not sure whether the Island should be renamed The Isle of Lotus-Eaters” or “Ostrich Isle” when reading comment promoting a fixed link. The first title would be suitable for those who live in a dream-world that Solent crossing would be cheaper: the second more appropriate for those who want to ignore that they would be more expensive if the fixed link was NOT built by… Read more »
Cynic

“Luxurious Accommodation refurbishment”? Were not the deckchairs rearranged on the Titanic as it was sinking? :-))

peaceful_life

A solent crossing has been replaced with a trip up De-nile and the rhetoric becomes ever more grandiose.

Cynic

In pursuit of the health of Gaia, perhaps all diesel powered ferries should be banned and replaced by galleys (job opportunities for JSA claimants?) or wind-powered craft? (Cue: Tennyson’s “Crossing the Bar”) :-)

happy daze

Still no mention of Free Wifi.

If Red Funnel has managed to provide Free Wifi for some time now why can’t Wightlink?

davidwalter
Tim, I’d need to look at it in far more detail to come to an opinion, as I’m sure you understand. Meanwhile it is surely a matter of working with what you have? Any chance of trading the car in for another? Many folk park one on the other side – so a small car on the island takes a trailer over, park the small one and… Read more »
Tim
David, Having bought a new vehicle around a month before the new fare structure was imposed I couldn’t possibly have anticipated that the cost of the return trip would increase from around £ 46 to £ 170. I make around 15 – 20 recreational trips to the mainland a year and none of them justify taking the massive first year depreciation hit on a vehicle that would… Read more »
check again
Tim, where do you get that price? I’ve just been on the Wightlink website and obtained quotes for a 6m [1 Low Passenger Vehicle [max 15m x 2.24m] with 2 passengers and was quoted from less than £52 for a day return and between £53 and £86 for up to a week period return. Also there is a 15% discount code in this weeks County Press therefore… Read more »
Tim
Since the new fare structure was introduced nissan kingcabs have been reclassified as freight, (low commercial) previously they were classified as 4 x 4 pickups. As stated previously in my discussions with Wightlink in 2008/9 they admitted that it costs them no more to transport a p/u than the estate variant of the same vehicle. I think that you will find they now quote around £ 82.80… Read more »
check again

Is your vehicle’s VED “Private & Light Goods” or “commercial”? If it is commercial then your business pays the fare, If it is PLG then you can travel at the rates I obtained.

No need to check again on my behalf.

Tim

Charge recreational trips as a “business expense”? Don’t be ridiculous, HMRC take a very dim view on that sort of thing and often prosecute. But as I said before WL have already acknowledged that to them there is no extra cost involved in transporting a p/u although I can quite understand that it is well beyond the intellect of some people to grasp this.

tryme

I thought it terribly mean of Wightlink that they were to start “charging” for use of mobiles and laptops etc; though not entirely unexpected, when I thought about it. (Darn, putting ideas in their heads …)

dragonfly
I agree with Tim. We were met at the Yarmouth ferry by a man with a measuring stick who said we’d bought the correct ticket for the length of our vehicle, but it was now classed as freight and we had to change our £50 ticket for a £184 one. We purchased the ticket online in good faith but we were told by staff that to buy… Read more »
davidwalter

I suppose we’d expect and hope that commercial vehicles pay their fair whack to keep the costs as affordable as possible for the private traveller?

Dalek
I mix & match with Red Funnel & Wightlink, after all that’s what choice is about. If I’m taking my van or caravan, then RF wins out as it’s cheaper. Plus on that route there’s enough time to have something to eat. Car on it’s own is better by Wightlink. For example £48 return using the multilink pass with anything up to 7 people. The Lymington route… Read more »
davidwalter
Dalek — We do much the same though where possible we leave the car at home and use public transport from leaving the front door, hiring a car on the day(s) we need one — there are some low cost hirers around and if you buy annual car hire insurance you don’t have all those insurance premiums to pay. Your point about stopping for a bite raises… Read more »
Dalek

Oh yes, we use public transport where possible too. Being old enough to qualify for discounts makes that a very attractive option where appropriate. £10 day return on the Red Jet is an example.

tryme
It’s good to have the foot passenger point of view raised. From Ryde to Portsmouth Harbour £13.30 day return; £23.60 period return; £7.90 return ‘evening flyer’ if going out after 4pm. Use of the car ferry means you can return up to 4.30am the next day. There are multilink tickets too. Going from Fishbourne on a period return costs about £5 less – not sure why, unless… Read more »
tryme

Oh yes! Over 60 discount, Ryde to PH:
£10.00 day return; £17.80 period return; £6.00 evening flyer.

always a bargain
I thank both ferry companies for the special discounts they keep offering to us Islanders. Whether by leaflets through our door or codes in local publications we always make good use of them. There always seem to be a cheap way to visit the mainland, in the last month the 4 of us have had a day out in Portsmouth & Southsea for less than £5 each… Read more »
dragonfly
David Walter – I’d like to come back to your point about commercial vehicles. Lots of Island families living in rural communities drive pick-up trucks – they are not necessarily for commercial purposes. Some of us live up dirt tracks, process our own firewood and live rural life beyond the glossy magazines. Secondly I know plenty of self-employed people whose livelihoods have been damaged by this massive… Read more »
Tim
I agree with Dragonfly. I have just had an update from Wightlink. They have been unable to detail for me any increase in cost to them in transporting pickups over and above similar size cars but have merely reaffirmed that they have been reclassified as “freight” vehicles. The problem that myself and others face is that if your trips to the mainland are recreational you have no… Read more »