A new direct passenger car ferry service linking Dublin with the French port of Cherbourg is being introduced by Irish Ferries.
The company will offer an economy ferry service linking the capital with France by ferry once a week, with the first sailing departing on Saturday, January 18, 2014.
The once-weekly, year round service on the MV Epsilon will depart from Dublin every Saturday (3.30pm) arriving into Cherbourg next morning (11.30am).
Return sailings will depart Cherbourg each Sunday (5pm) with early arrival back in Dublin on Monday morning (11am).
Tourism Minister and Tourism Ireland welcomed the announcement - saying it will provide a boost to the already-strong French market.
"This weekly ferry route from Cherbourg to Dublin will provide tourists from France and mainland Europe with a direct car link into the capital," said Minister for Transport, Tourism & Sport Leo Varadkar
"It will help us to build on the success of The Gathering in promoting Ireland as a visitor destination.
"Ireland is well catered for in terms of aviation access, and new aviation routes are announced on a regular basis.
"But as an island it’s important that we give visitors plenty of options to bring their cars as well. Tourists on driving holidays tend to stay longer than those who fly, and are more likely to travel around the country."
Built in 2011, the Epsilon has capacity for 500 passengers.
Economy-style facilities on board include a bar, cafeteria, self-service restaurant, two- and four-berth cabins, free wi-fi service and 2,860 lane metres of vehicle deck parking space.
The company’s head of passenger sales Dermot Merrigan said the service “will bring the European motorways directly into the heart of our capital city.
"Our new Dublin to Cherbourg direct service will appeal to those living within and beyond our capital city. Fast access straight through the city or via the Dublin Port Tunnel ensures that our new Ireland – France service will be more accessible to all."
Fares for this new Dublin to Cherbourg car ferry service, from €99 for car & driver, can be booked at www.irishferries.com.