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Red Funnel welcomes Sainsbury’s aboard & unveils expanded menu and retail plans

Thu, Feb 27 2020

Red Funnel today announced that it will welcome Sainsbury’s as a new partner for its food and beverage offering across the business. A range of Sainsbury’s products will be introduced on board Red Funnel’s vehicle ferries and terminals, starting with Red Falcon this March along with the company’s Southampton vehicle ferry terminal. The new supplier partnership will bring passengers a range of fantastic quality Sainsbury’s products, offering improved choice and a more expansive range to those travelling to/from the Isle of Wight as well as a convenient option for those living and working near the terminals. The On the go range has been tailored for passengers and local customers, including ready-to-eat products such as sandwiches, wraps and snacks.

Said Fran Collins, CEO, Red Funnel: “We are delighted to welcome Sainsbury’s into the Red Funnel family and bring their exciting range to our customers. We regularly ask our customers for feedback on what we can do to better their travel experience and improving our food and beverage offer was a key focus. The addition of Sainsbury’s fantastic quality On the go products, alongside a number of other new catering and retail additions, will help us provide customers with the products and ranges they have requested, where and when they want it, and will further enhance our commitment to ensuring great customer service.”

Said Michael Luck, Director of Business Development at Sainsbury’s: “We are pleased to be working with Red Funnel to bring a tailored range of Sainsbury’s On the go products to ferry passengers and local customers, offering them a greater choice of food and drink. This is an exciting new partnership for Sainsbury’s and will help us offer even more customers great quality and choice, whenever and wherever they choose to shop.”

In addition to welcoming Sainsbury’s On the go, Red Funnel will also offer Lavazza Coffee through terminal and on-board self-serve machines, Rollover hot dogs, and Tango Ice Blast slush drinks.

Red Funnel will continue to maintain its barista service via its ‘Steam’ café bars and its on-board hot food service in the ‘ReFuel’ café restaurant, well-known for its signature ‘Red Funnel Breakfast’ and beer-battered fish & chips. Passengers familiar with ReFuel will be pleased with the improved variety of coffee offering, which will now feature Lavazza. Those choosing meals with inclusive coffee will now be able to select any medium coffee beverage with their meal, including specialty coffees such as lattés and cappuccinos.

The addition of Rollover Hot Dogs and Tango Ice Blast slush drinks will come as a welcome new option, particularly for families looking to keep the kids happy with their favourite treats during the summer months and school holidays.

The full range of food, beverage and retail products will be added across the business on a gradual, rolling basis, with an aim for a full-scale roll-out to be completed by June.

On top of enhancing its catering offer, Red Funnel will also expand its line of retail products, balancing the needs of commuters / locals and with those of holidaymakers.

Fran Collins added: “Customer research revealed a demand for more convenience-based and branded retail products, so we’re expanding our product lines across the business to ensure we’re giving our customers what they have told us they want.”

The newly enhanced retail range will include health and beauty goods, travel and digital accessories, confectionary, toys, gifts and souvenirs.

Red Funnel is also developing its range of Island-based products, including stocking more Island-based beers, ales and spirits such as the IOW Distillery’s Mermaid Gin and Goddard’s Ale of Wight. The company will feature a special section for Island-based gifts and products and will seek to work with local producers and suppliers to showcase their products.

Work is due to commence in Southampton in the coming weeks, beginning with the vehicle ferry terminal, and followed by the Red Jet terminal later in the spring. As well as improving the layout for the expanded product lines and Sainsbury’s On the go products, the terminal renovations will be accompanied by upgrades to the ticket office kiosk and general customer seating areas. Passengers can expect a modern new look for the waiting area, complete with comfortable and contemporary lounge-style seats. Those travelling through the Southampton vehicle ferry terminal during off-peak hours will also have greater access to late night / early morning refreshments as more 24-hour vending machines will be installed in the customer waiting area.

Added Fran Collins: “The next few months will be full of activity both on board and at our Southampton terminals, and I’d like to thank our customers in advance for bearing with us as we undergo the necessary renovations to offer them more choice and better value. Once our entire new range is fully rolled-out and all renovations are complete, I hope you’ll agree that the changes will be worth the wait and that it’s going to be a delicious summer around Red Funnel!”




For further information regarding Red Funnel, please contact:

Enya Lumley or Abi Rumney at McKenna Townsend

T: 01425 472330
E: [email protected]


Editor’s note

About Red Funnel

Red Funnel is the original Isle of Wight ferry company with roots tracing back to 1820. Based in the UK port of Southampton, Red Funnel carries 2.3m passengers and over 800,000 vehicles on its ferry route between the UK port of Southampton and East Cowes and 1.1m passengers between Southampton and West Cowes on its Red Jet Hi-Speed service.  In addition to ferry travel, Red Funnel is the only cross-Solent operator to offer ferry inclusive bonded holiday accommodation, attraction tickets, festival and event tickets and activity packages. Sub-brands include ‘Red Jet’ (the Hi-Speed passenger only ferry service serving West Cowes) and two food & beverage brands, ‘Steam Coffee Company’ and ‘ReFuel’.  The Company is a founder member of Visit Isle of Wight Ltd, the Island’s not for profit destination management organisation and Red Funnel sponsors or supports most of the Island’s premier events including the IW Festival, Cowes Week, Rhythm Tree, The Great Wonderfest, Wight Proms, Cowes Classics, and Walk the Wight as well as a range of community and niche interest events. Red Funnel’s Charity of the Year, 2020 is Isle of Wight Independent Lifeboats.

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