DFDS cancels ferry service Amsterdam-Newcastle

Due to the Covid-19 situation, DFDS will temporarily suspend the Amsterdam-Newcastle ferry route until at least 13 April. DFDS is in consultation with crews on board and staff ashore about the temporary effects on employment.

Latest sailings will be on 21 March from Amsterdam and 22 March from Newcastle. The company initially said the service would continue for now, but the decision was made following the introduction of new national measures intended to delay the spread of the coronavirus.

‘Customers with a booking are being informed individually about this, and we have decided to continue sailing for a few days more to give travelers a chance to get home,’ says Kasper Moos, Head of DFDS’ short routes and passenger business.

‘We had hoped to be able to continue the route on the basis of a reduced operation. However, the situation has developed fast, and the recent national measures to slow down the virus spread, including travel restrictions, give us no alternative but to suspend sailings until 13 April as a minimum.’

Crews and staff sent home

Unfortunately, this also means crews and staff in Newcastle and IJmuiden will be sent home until the route can be re-opened. Crew members will be on board for some days to get the ships ready to be laid up in IJmuiden. The company has informed everyone working at the route about the situation and is currently in talks with union representatives and national authorities in the Netherlands, the UK, Denmark and Germany about this and possible schemes to mitigate the consequences on staff. The company hopes to provide their personnel with more clarity next week.

Author: Mariska Buitendijk

Mariska Buitendijk is one of SWZ|Maritime's journalists as well as the magazine's copy editor.