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Yorkshire Times
Voice of the North
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Phil Hopkins
Arts & Travel Editor
9:00 AM 16th July 2020

Isle of Wight Beckons Mainland

As the UK hospitality industry warily re-opens its doors amid continuing ‘hotspot lockdowns’, Wightlink, the leader provider of cross-Solent travel to the Isle of Wight, has announced that it still remains open for business.

The government gave the green light to England’s hospitality sector on July 4th and phased re-opening of hotels and attractions appears to have begun.

“While our ferries have continued to operate throughout the pandemic, providing travel for key workers to and from the Isle of Wight, as well as facilitating the flow of essential goods and services, we are well and truly ready and are launching a campaign to welcome more passengers back on board,” said Keith Greenfield, Wightlink CEO.

“With hotels, B&Bs and campsites on the island also eager to accommodate guests, we’re incredibly keen to receive visitors looking to relax and enjoy a long-wanted break post-lockdown”.

COVID-19 Compliance
Understanding safety will be a high priority for summer staycations. Wightlink has unveiled a robust list of new COVID-compliant protocols to ensure customer and crew safety and comfort. Added safety measures include:

Easy vehicle check-in with Wightlink staff communicating via intercom system and use of automatic number plate recognition
Passenger requirement to wear face coverings on all crossings
Food and beverage outlets open for takeaway only, in addition to vending machine access
Capacity reduction and signage to comply with social distancing measures
Increased cleaning onboard and availability of hand sanitiser
Achievement of the VisitBritain Industry Standard Mark, We’re Good To Go

Island Escape
The Isle of Wight is one of the UK’s most spectacular holiday destinations, boasting breath-taking sea views, award-winning beaches, unspoiled rolling rural landscapes and endless options to be immersed in nature.

Awarded UNESCO Biosphere status in 2019, the Island is recognised for its lush landscape and thriving wildlife, providing a unique haven for both adventurers and those simply looking for an antidote to the stress of modern life.

How to Get There
The Isle of Wight is just a 45-minute ferry ride away. A car ferry crossing from Portsmouth to Fishbourne costs from £56.50* and for foot passengers, Wightlink’s tickets cost £14.40 per person (please check prices)

Wightlink’s Portsmouth-Fishbourne route is currently operating a temporarily reduced timetable, with additional sailings being added from Monday, 13th July. The Lymington-Yarmouth car ferry and Portsmouth Harbour-Ryde Pier Head FastCat services are currently suspended but flexible advance bookings are welcome.

For further information and to book tickets, visit www.wightlink.co.uk.