Brittany Ferries is to return to scheduled passenger services from June 29.
Five of the firm’s 12 ships will carry passengers to France and Spain from next week, with a further three ships covering four routes to reopen in July.
Routes from Portsmouth and Plymouth will travel to Caen, Santander, Roscoff and Bilbao as services resume with St Malo, Cherbourg and Le Havre to be added next month.
Three ships, Étretat, Barfleur and Normandie Express, will not be operated this summer due to “unpredictable demand” and a shortage of cabins. This will affect routes from Portsmouth to Le Havre, Poole to Cherbourg and Portsmouth to Cherbourg.
Passenger capacity will be limited on all vessels, and reviewed as the summer progresses. All services between France and the UK will be limited to 550 passengers from June 29, a reduction of more than 60%, and limits will apply until at least mid-July.
New sanitary and social distancing measures will be imposed on all vessels as Brittany Ferries has drawn-up a 12-point guide for ‘safe travel this summer’. Crew will undergo training and a nurse will be present on all sailings.
“We are very much looking forward to welcoming holiday makers back on board starting on Monday,” said chief executive Christophe Mathieu. “Operationally, we have put in place everything for a safe return to service and we have practised these measures daily.
“Our job now is to reassure passengers that ferries are open for business and that travel by sea is the safest way to enjoy an international holiday. It won’t be quite the same Brittany Ferries experience on board of course, at least to start with. However, it will still be a relaxing sea bridge to take you to the beautiful destinations you have been dreaming of during lockdown.”