Irish Ferries has issued a statement to the trade over recent sailing cancellations, saying that three-quarters of affected passengers have been rebooked on alternative sailings.
The company’s Dermot Merrigan said in a statement: “As you are aware, we were contacted late last week by the shipyard in Germany commissioned with the building of ‘W.B. Yeats’, to be advised of a delay in the delivery of the vessel to Irish Ferries. This resulted in the cancellation of sailings on our Dublin – Cherbourg route over the period of 12th to 29th July next.
“Faced with the prospect of disrupting the holiday plans of many of our customers, we took the decision to immediately communicate with those impacted and our reservations teams have been working very hard since Saturday to contact and reroute our customers.
He added: “Mindful of the difficulties these cancellations posed to customers of our friends within the trade, throughout the weekend and by close of business on Monday, a dedicated team made direct contact with all those who had affected bookings and alternative travel arrangements were swiftly put in place. It was somewhat of a comfort to know, albeit far from ideal, that all affected bookings via the travel trade had been addressed or rescheduled.
“Given the extraordinary circumstances causing these cancellations, which are unfortunately outside of our control, we of course remain committed to continuing to assist in making alternative travel arrangements to France as best as we can. We have allocated all necessary resources to help our remaining passengers, so as to ensure that their travel arrangements to and from France can still proceed.”
Mr Merrigan said he “would like to thank all of our partners for their kind words, patience and understanding over these last few days. Unfortunately the late delivery of ‘W.B. Yeats’ has caused much grievance at a time that we would all have not preferred and I fully respect and appreciate that it’s your direct customers’ holiday plans that must now be discussed and managed very carefully.
“On behalf of all the team at Irish Ferries, I sincerely apologise for the inconvenience caused to all of our passengers and trade colleagues who had bookings on these sailings. For anyone needing further assistance or guidance, our Trade Support team are available to help via the normal channels.