Irish Ferries revenues and passenger numbers have increased significantly in the year to-date, with the ferry operator saying “some normality” has returned to its markets.
Irish Ferries generated revenues of €338m in the first 10 months of this year; up by 134% on the Covid-impacted last year, but also up by over 83% on pre-pandemic 2019.
The easing of travel restrictions, increased fuel surcharges and the company’s new Dover-Calais route drove the growth.
Irish Ferries also saw a near 200% year-on-year boost in passenger numbers in the year to November 19, with 525,600 cars carried.
On a group-wide basis, Irish Continental Group (ICG) – which owns Irish Ferries and freight and container businesses – saw a 79% year-on-year rise in revenues, to €500.5m, for the 10 months to the end of October.
In a trading update, ICG said both of its divisions have performed strongly this year, but warned of the twin challenges of rising inflation and higher interest rates as it enters 2023.
“Our record of substantial investment in people, ships and terminal facilities and the strength of our balance sheet means we are well placed to compete in this emerging tougher environment and to tap into whatever interesting opportunities might emerge,” the company said.
“While we assume the worst of the Covid-19 pandemic has passed and some normality to our markets has returned, the level of inflation faced by the business and our customers is concerning. While fuel prices may ease versus earlier in the year with the expected slowdown in economic activity, other costs in the business have increased. The business has so far been successful in passing through most of these increases.”