A fast ferry service between Galway and Clare will run during the first two weeks of September.
Sailings are scheduled daily from Monday to Friday, 2-13 September, and passengers can now reserve seats for sailings on Ballyvaughan Bay Hop’s website, www.ballyvaughanbayhop.com.
Liam O’Brien of O’Brien Line will be running the service on behalf of the community in a 12 passenger hard-cabin rib.
The aim of Ballyvaughan Bay Hop is to establish a rural commuter fast ferry service from North Clare to Galway. “A fast and frequent ferry service to Galway could improve the quality of life of individuals living in North Clare by offering an alternative means of transport to the bus or private car and it will improve the accessibility of the Burren for tourists based in Galway City,” according to a representative.
The objective of running a two-week trial in September is to assess the potential social, environmental and economic impacts a marine passenger service would have on Ballyvaughan and the Burren, and to demonstrate an innovative transport service that could potentially serve rural tourism and provide economic and social sustainability to Ballyvaughan and its environs a service that integrates with existing local bus, bike rental and hackney services a healthier, more eco-friendly way of commuting and travelling.
The trial will demonstrate the feasibility of the service and it is the expectation of Ballyvaughan Bay Hop that it would attract the attention of a suitable private operator who would be interested in establishing a permanent ferry service.
“Sailing times should suit students and people working in or near Galway City Centre as the harbour is surprisingly central and accessible to pedestrians,” according to a Ballyvaughan Bay Hop representative.
Commuters considering trying the service as a means of commuting to work can avail of an early bird discount if they purchase a ten-journey commuter ticket before 23 August. To avail of this discount, commuters should email firstname.lastname@example.org for the discount code, stating which part of the city they will be commuting to.
The Burren and Cliffs of Moher Geopark will be supporting the Ballyvaughan Bay Hop trial service. Financial assistance is being provided under the TransTourism Project.