There are generally high levels of satisfaction with the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company over departure times, punctuality and ease of booking, a recent survey has found.
It has also established that a selection of lounges, a dedicated cafe area and more tables alongside standard seating are among the facilities passengers would most like to see on a new Steam Packet Company ferry.
Those findings have been revealed in a detailed analysis undertaken to help the Company prioritise as it develops plans for major investment in its fleet.
Conducted by Island Global Research, a total of 8,470 people responded, just over 5,000 of which were Isle of Man residents.
Members of the public were invited to contribute their views as the Company looks at options to secure a new purpose-built vessel, to be designed and built over the next few years, to replace the services currently provided by conventional ferry, Ben-my-Chree.
Respondents also said a wider choice of food and drink, more charging/plug-in points and improved toilets were among the on-board services considered most important to travellers.
Among the other key factors on their preferences for a new vessel were:
- an increase in the number of standard cabins available
- a larger and more comfortable area for passengers travelling with pets
- a children’s play area suitable for a wider range of ages
- larger lifts from the vehicle deck
A summary of the facilities and services that travellers would most like to see on the Heysham route can be found here.
Isle of Man Steam Packet Company Chief Executive Mark Woodward said: ‘We were very pleased with the positive response to the survey and that so many people took the time to share their personal experiences and preferences.
‘Customer feedback is something we value greatly and I’d like to thank everyone who participated. This has helped us gain a deeper understanding of our passengers’ general travel preferences.
‘Factoring in various technical and logistical considerations for a new ship, we are now assessing the different opinions the survey has provided and, where possible, will endeavour to ensure the needs of our passengers are met when the new vessel is designed.’