Red Funnel out performs the market in a buoyant year for the IoW

12-01-2004 Red Funnel, the original Isle of Wight ferry operator, has announced its market share figures for the year ending 15 December 2003. The figures show that Red Funnel has outperformed a buoyant market, and that the Isle of Wight is an increasingly popular destination with both the general public and the commercial sector.


The car market grew by 3% overall. Red Funnel carried an additional 30,000 cars, on the Southampton to East Cowes route, resulting in a 7% market share growth. The Hi-Speed market grew by 5% overall. Red Funnel grew by 6% and carried an additional 7,000 passengers.

The passenger market grew by 2% overall. Red Funnel grew by 4.6% and carried an additional 126,688 passengers.

The freight market grew by 5% overall. Red Funnel grew its freight market by 8% and carried an additional 7,225 vehicles.

Olive Glass, Red Funnel’s marketing director, comments:

“2003 was a fantastic year for the Isle of Wight and for Red Funnel. We launched our new Red Jet 4 Hi-Speed vessel and stretched the Red Osprey, as part of a long-term investment programme aimed at meeting demand on the Southampton to Cowes routes.

Campaigns such as Activity Island, where we’ve been promoting a range of water-sports and the Island as a walking destination, have driven lots of interest in the Isle of Wight as both a short breaks and a day trip destination. This interest has converted to bookings and we are delighted with the latest market share figures.”

The Red Falcon, one of Red Funnel’s ferries, has left Southampton for Poland where it will undergo stretch and refurbishment work. The finished ferry will have capacity to carry another 80 vehicles and is due to re-enter service by Easter 2004. This will coincide will the start of another busy Island season.

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