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red jet sensory information

Accessibility & Sensory Guide

Red Jet

Travelling on the Red Jet has a shorter journey time (28 mins) than travelling on the vehicle ferry (60 mins), which can be beneficial for those who may have anxieties surrounding travelling with us. It’s also likely that you’ll encounter less noise and distractions as passengers are required to remain seated, and there aren’t any busy food or retail outlets onboard like there are on the vehicle ferry – instead, refreshments can be brought to your seat. Despite the Red Jet’s faster speed, the crossing is generally smooth - especially in good weather - and large windows allow for visibility of the ship’s surroundings at all times. Priority seats are available, and for extra reassurance, lifejackets are stored under each seat with safety cards stored in the seat back pockets.

See

  • On a busy sailing you may see a lot of people joining the vessel some may have luggage with them.
    The RF Cabin Assistant will be available during the sailing to assist and will also serve food and drinks.
  • There are digital screens on board that will play the Safety Announcement and will show multiple advertisements.
  • It can be busy disembarking and it may be best to wait until everyone has gone.
  • Sunlight can cause a flickering strobe-like effect on the glass of the windows as rays bounces off the sea on certain times during the day.

Hear

  • PA System will make a loud noise before the Safety Announcement begins.
  • The Safety Announcement will be played over the speakers and may be loud as it is designed for everyone on board to hear.
  • Noise from the engine and from the boat moving through the water can be loud at times especially at the rear of the cabin.
  • During busy sailings at peak times the journey can be loud due to groups travelling.

Feel

  • Vibrations from the red jet engine and the vessel moving through the water can be felt more at the rear of the cabin and more so on windy/rough crossings. 

Recommended Seating
The existing Accessible seating should be recommended for Neurodiverse passengers as they provide extra space around them.

Other options could be the 2 set of two seats at the front of the cabin, or for a family they may like the seats that face each other.

Passenger Assistance
If you would like to board the Red Jet first or require any special assistance please let a member of staff in the ticket office know in advance.

Additional Information
Football and other events happening in Southampton or the Isle of Wight can make sailings very busy which can cause extreme sensory overload. Please check the website in advance for information on upcoming events.

vehicle ferry sensory information

vehicle ferry

As the route between Southampton and East Cowes is largely sheltered by land, we don’t tend to encounter the same waves as offshore ferry operators, and you’ll typically only experience a slight rocking motion in the main body of the Solent - which accounts for roughly 20 minutes of the 60-minute crossing. This movement can unfortunately trigger car alarms on the lower decks and while this is normal, you may wish to remain inside during this portion of the crossing. If you find you need assistance during the sailing, please make yourself known to the On-Board Services Officer (OBSO) – they are trained in providing support to passengers and can be found in the ship’s office by the ‘yellow’ staircase.

Boarding the vessel in a car:

  • You will need to leave your car once on board the ship.
    Cars are loaded on a busy car deck, that are darker than other spaces and can have lots of cars and people moving around when busy. 
  • The access to the lounges from the car deck is via narrow stairwells and can be busy, noisy and you may need to stop at certain times whilst those in front make their way up.
  • You can request to be loaded near a lift (on one side this goes from E to B Deck, on the other side it goes from C to A Deck).
  • If you have a neuro-diverse disability you can request to be loaded early by contacting our customer contact centre more than 48hrs in advance of travel.

Onboard for all passengers entering via foot or vehicle:

See

  • The Safety Announcement will be played on digital screens throughout the vessel’s internal areas and will include subtitles and British Sign Language. This is usually followed or preceded with a welcome announcement by the On-Board Services Officer.
  • Digital screens, safety and/ or customer information signage through the vessel’s internal areas may appear bright and will change with different images to display advertising and other information.
  • The food and beverage counters will have machines with lights and digital screens giving off a bright light.
  • You may see people queueing for food and drinks at any of the open outlets on board:
    B Deck: ReFuel is at the centre, Steam Bar is at the Aft end (towards Cowes), Steam Café is at the Fwd end (towards Soton).
    A Deck: North Lounge is at the Fwd end (towards Soton), Signature Lounge is at the Aft end (towards Cowes).
  • Dogs are allowed on board in the North Lounge on A Deck and in the outside spaces.
  • In the Signature Lounge, you will only see people aged 12 years old and over, and no pets are permitted. 
  • People may be walking around during the sailing.

Hear

  • The audible Announcements will be played and can be loud as it is designed for everyone on board to hear. These are played as soon as the vessel departs.
  • Sometimes it is necessary for announcements to be made during the crossing.
  • Noise from other passengers especially on busy sailings. The decks are big open spaces and they can be quite noisy.
  • The North Lounge is a smaller room and can be noisy when busy as it is a pet lounge.
  • Phones and electronic devices may be in use by other passengers.
    The toilet facilities may be busy and all have hand dryers over the sinks, which can be noisy.
  • Noise from the vessel’s engines.
  • Noise from car alarms.
  • During Isle of Wight Festival the vehicle ferry can be very noisy due to a high volume of passengers travelling.

Feel

  • Vibration from the vessel’s engines
    Movement in the water especially when the weather is bad and the sea is a bit more choppy

Recommended Seating
The existing Accessible seating should be recommended for Neurodiverse passengers as they provide extra space around them.

Other options could be for a family that may like the seats that face each other. There are plentyof seating to accomodate this.

East Cowes terminal sensory information

East Cowes terminal

Our East Cowes vehicle ferry terminal offers a comfortable ticket office and waiting area for passengers along with toilet facilities, while luggage or wheelchair assistance can be arranged by speaking to our staff, who will be happy to help. There is signage to guide you when boarding, and the passenger decks of the vessels can be accessed by stairs or lift. Onboard there is plenty of seating and space to allow passengers to move freely, both inside and out, avoiding potential stressors. The larger and more stable vessels may be a better option for those who are nervous to travel on the Red Jet service or find it restrictive to remain seated. In addition, passengers aged 12 and over can upgrade to our Signature Lounge for a more peaceful crossing.

See

  • Please make sure that you are paying full attention while crossing in the yard into the terminal, use the designated pedestrian green walkways at all times.
  • On a busy sailing you may see a lot of people in the terminal or in the yard.
  • You will see Customer Advisors and Loaders in and around the terminal.
  •  There are digital screens in the terminal that will show adverts and important information.
  • The yard may be busy with cars and trucks when they are unloading or loading the boat.

Hear

  • There will be higher noise levels during busy and peak times. 
    • Monday, Friday & Saturday 09:00 & 10:30 sailing are the busiest sailings during the week. Coaches and groups are likely to travel on Mondays. 
    • Friday & Saturday evenings 18:00 & 21:00 sailings are the busiest evening sailings.
  • During the Isle of Wight Festival or any big events happening on the Isle of Wight the terminal is busy with foot passengers. 
  • Large and heavy trailers coming in and out of the yard can be loud. 

Feel

  • There will be more vibrations near the linkspan while boarding with a car. 
  • You may also feel some slight vibrations outside the front of the terminal when a heavy trailer is being driven across the yard.

Facilities in the terminal

  • There are toilets located in the terminal, a separate disabled toilet and a baby changing in the women’s toilet. 
  • Vending machines for food and drink including hot drinks.
  • There is also a food hut in the summer
Terminal 1 sensory information

Terminal 1 (Southampton)

Our Southampton vehicle ferry terminal offers a comfortable ticket office and waiting area for passengers along with toilet facilities, while luggage or wheelchair assistance can be arranged by speaking to our staff, who will be happy to help. There is signage to guide you when boarding, and the passenger decks of the vessels can be accessed by stairs or lift. Onboard there is plenty of seating and space to allow passengers to move freely, both inside and out, avoiding potential stressors. The larger and more stable vessels may be a better option for those who are nervous to travel on the Red Jet service or find it restrictive to remain seated. In addition, passengers aged 12 and over can upgrade to our Signature Lounge for a more peaceful crossing.

See

  • Please make sure that you are paying full attention while crossing in the yard into the terminal, use the designated pedestrian green walkways at all times.
  • On a busy sailing you may see a lot of people in the terminal or in the yard.
  • You will see Customer Advisors, Services Assistants and Loaders in and around the terminal.
  • There are digital screens in the terminal that will show adverts and important information.
  • The yard may be busy with cars and trucks when they are unloading or loading the boat.

Hear

  • There will be higher noise levels during busy and peak times. 
    • Monday 09:00 until 16:30 can be noisy with coaches and groups travelling. 
    • Friday & Saturday 09:00 & 10:30 / 19:30 & 21:00 sailing are the busiest sailings. 
  • During the Isle of Wight Festival or any big events happening on the Isle of Wight or Southampton the terminal is busy with foot passengers and car drivers.
  • The Shunter can be coming in and out of the yard with heavy trailers which can be loud.

Feel

  • There will be more vibrations near the linkspan while boarding with a car

Facilities in the terminal

  • There are toilets located in the terminal next to the ticket office. 
  • Vending machines for food and drink including hot drinks. 
  • There is also a café on site which is located in the terminal serving food and drinks. 
  • Indoor waiting area.
West Cowes Sensory Information

West Cowes Terminal

In our West Cowes Red Jet terminal, you’ll find ticket vending machines, toilet facilities, and a staffed ticket office with friendly advisors. If you require extra assistance, please make yourself known to the ticket office staff. They can help with things like luggage or priority boarding and will be able to answer any questions, as well as provide wheelchair assistance if required. One thing to be mindful of when waiting for the Red Jet is the potential for a lot of people to be disembarking, so if crowds are a worry, you might want to wait outside of the terminal entrance for this to clear before heading towards the passenger gangway.

West Cowes - Hi-Speed Ferry

See

  • On a busy sailing you may see alot of people in the terminal.
  • You will see Customer Advisors in and around the terminal. 
  • There are digital screens in the terminal that will show adverts and important information. 

Hear

  • During busy sailing you may see plenty of cars outside waiting to pick up passengers.
    • The 10:55 sailing is always likely to be busy.
    • Friday evening 17:20 & 18:30 sailings can be busy with pick-up and drop-offs
    • Friday & Saturday evening 17:20 until 20:15 sailings can be busy with people going out drinking and coming to and from events such as football.
    • Sunday 17:20 - 18:30 sailing can be busy with people during the weekend

Feel

  • You might feel vibrations towards the front of the boarding tunnel when the Red Jet is approaching
    the berth.

Facilities in the terminal

  • There are toilets located in the terminal next to the ticket office.
  • Vending machines for food and drink including hot drinks.
  • Indoor waiting area.
  • There are restaurants and coffee shops available outside the terminal for food and drinks.
  • There is also a taxi rank outside the terminal.

Passenger Assistance

  • If you require any special assistance please let a member of staff in the ticket office know in advance.
     
T2 sensory information

Terminal 2 (Southampton)

In our Southampton Red Jet terminal, you’ll find ticket vending machines, toilet facilities, and a staffed ticket office with friendly advisors. If you require extra assistance, please make yourself known to the ticket office staff. They can help with things like luggage or priority boarding and will be able to answer any questions, as well as provide wheelchair assistance if required. One thing to be mindful of when waiting for the Red Jet is the potential for a lot of people to be disembarking, so if crowds are a worry, you might want to wait outside of the terminal entrance for this to clear before heading towards the passenger gangway.

See

  • On a busy sailing you may see a lot of people in the terminal.
  • You will see Customer Advisors and Services Assistants in and around the terminal.
  • There are digital screens in the terminal that will show adverts and important information.

Hear
There will be higher noise levels during busy and peak times.

  • Friday evening 17:20 & 18:30 sailings can be busy with pick-up and drop-offs
  • Friday & Saturday evenings 17:20 until 20:50 sailings can be busy with people going out drinking and coming to and from events such as football.
  • Sunday 11:30 & 12:40 / 17:20 - 18:30 sailing can be busy with people during the weekend.

Feel

  • You might feel vibrations towards the front of the boarding tunnel when the Red Jet is approaching the berth.
  • You might also feel slight vibrations on the wooden flooring while waiting to board.

Facilities in the Terminal

  • There are toilets located in the terminal next to the ticket office.
  • Vending machines for food and drink including hot drinks.
  • There is also a café on site which is located in the terminal serving food and drinks.
  • Indoor waiting area.

Passenger Assistance

  • If you require any special assistance please let a member of staff in the ticket office know in advance.
Hidden Disability logo

Hidden Disabilities

The Sunflower is there for you as you work, shop, travel, learn and at leisure. Businesses all around the world have joined the global Sunflower network to support you when you wear the Sunflower - anywhere you choose to be discreetly seen. 

The sunflower symbol makes for a simple way for our passengers to communicate that they have a non-visible disability and that they may need extra support. In essence, the sunflower helps make the invisible – visible. 

Red Funnel is committed to the scheme, and you will see colleagues around the business proudly wearing the sunflower pin, this symbolises that when they see the sunflower – they know what it means, and they are happy to help.

National Autistic Society  - Autism Friendly Awards Logo

Autism Friendly Award

The National Autistic Society transforms lives, changes attitudes and creates a society that works for autistic people.

The Autism Friendly Award is a leading accreditation programme set up by the National Autistic Society to help businesses play their part to create more welcoming environments and make a difference to the lives of autistic people throughout the UK.

Red Funnel are proud to have been recognised for providing an autism-friendly environment service and you can read our Accessibility and Sensory Guide here.