Red Funnel is a ferry company that has been operating for over 160 years, connecting Southampton to the Isle of Wight. The company offers a variety of ferry services, including transport for foot passengers and cars. With easy online bookings and flexible fares, Red Funnel provides award-winning customer service to all its passengers.
Red Funnel has a rich history dating back to 1820 when the company began operating as a coach and horses service. In 1861, the company started offering ferry services, and since then, it has become a trusted and well-known name in the ferry industry. Today, Red Funnel operates a fleet of modern and comfortable vessels that transport over 3 million passengers each year.
- Red Funnel is a ferry company that has been operating for over 160 years, connecting Southampton to the Isle of Wight.
- The company offers a variety of ferry services, including transport for foot passengers and cars, with easy online bookings and flexible fares.
- Red Funnel has a rich history dating back to 1820 and operates a fleet of modern and comfortable vessels that transport over 3 million passengers each year.
History of Red Funnel
Red Funnel is a ferry company that operates between Southampton and the Isle of Wight. The company has a long and distinguished history, dating back to 1820 when the Isle of Wight Royal Mail Steam Packet Company was established by Cowes interests to operate the first steamer service from there to Southampton.
In 1861, the Southampton Isle of Wight and South of England Royal Mail Steam Packet Company Limited (better known as Red Funnel) was formed, the year Prince Albert died. Since then, the company has become the original operator to the Isle of Wight and has a distinguished and colourful history spanning over 160 years.
Over the years, Red Funnel has faced many challenges, including the impact of two world wars, the rise of low-cost airlines, and the increasing popularity of cars. Despite these challenges, the company has continued to innovate and evolve, introducing new vessels and services to meet the changing needs of its customers.
In 1935, the famous red funnel and black top was uniformly adopted to differentiate the Company’s steamers from vessels belonging to James Dredging & Contracting Co. Ltd and the name Red Funnel was born. The vessels themselves had black bottoms and a cream and later white, superstructure. Today, Red Funnel operates a modern fleet of ferries, including the Red Falcon, Red Osprey, and Red Eagle, which are equipped with the latest technology and amenities to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable journey for passengers.
Red Funnel is a ferry company that operates passenger and freight ferries between the English mainland and the Isle of Wight. The company has a fleet of modern and efficient vessels that are designed to provide a comfortable and reliable service to its customers.
Red Funnel has a fleet of three passenger ferries that operate between Southampton and the Isle of Wight. The ferries are designed to provide a comfortable and efficient service to passengers, and are equipped with modern amenities and facilities.
The largest of the passenger ferries is the Red Eagle, which has a capacity of up to 895 passengers and 195 cars. The Red Falcon and the Red Osprey are smaller vessels that have a capacity of up to 866 passengers and 170 cars.
All of the passenger ferries are equipped with comfortable seating areas, onboard cafes and restaurants, and free Wi-Fi. The ferries also have disabled access facilities, including wheelchair ramps and accessible toilets.
Red Funnel operates two freight ferries that transport goods and vehicles between Southampton and the Isle of Wight. The ferries are designed to provide a reliable and efficient service to businesses and individuals that need to transport goods and vehicles to and from the Isle of Wight.
The largest of the freight ferries is the Red Kestrel, which has a capacity of up to 12 articulated lorries or 24 cars. The Red Osprey is a smaller vessel that has a capacity of up to 12 articulated lorries or 16 cars.
Both of the freight ferries are equipped with modern loading and unloading facilities, and are designed to provide a fast and efficient service to their customers. The ferries also have onboard facilities for drivers, including rest areas and toilets.
Red Funnel’s fleet of passenger and freight ferries is designed to provide a reliable and efficient service to its customers. The company is committed to maintaining its high standards of safety and customer service, and invests in the latest technology and equipment to ensure that its vessels are always up-to-date and efficient.
Red Funnel operates ferry services between the English mainland and the Isle of Wight, carrying passengers, vehicles, and freight. The company offers two routes, each with varying schedules and durations:
Southampton to East Cowes
This route connects Southampton on the mainland to East Cowes on the Isle of Wight. The ferry departs from the Red Funnel Terminal in Southampton and arrives at the East Cowes Terminal on the Isle of Wight. The journey takes approximately 55-60 minutes and operates 7 days a week, with a frequent daily service.
Southampton to West Cowes
This route connects Southampton on the mainland to West Cowes on the Isle of Wight. The ferry departs from the Red Funnel Terminal in Southampton and arrives at the West Cowes Terminal on the Isle of Wight. The journey takes approximately 25 minutes and operates 7 days a week, with a frequent daily service.
Red Funnel also offers a high-speed service between Southampton and West Cowes, known as the Red Jet service. The journey takes approximately 23-25 minutes and operates 7 days a week, with a frequent daily service.
Passengers can book their tickets online, by phone, or in person at the terminal. Red Funnel also offers a range of ticket types, including standard and premium fares, as well as discounts for groups, seniors, and children.
Overall, Red Funnel provides reliable and efficient ferry services between the mainland and the Isle of Wight, with a range of options to suit different travel needs and preferences.
Red Funnel takes safety seriously and has implemented several measures to ensure the safety of its passengers, employees, and crew.
One of the measures Red Funnel has taken is the integration of its Quality Management System with the Safety Management System and Environmental Management System. This approach ensures that the company’s objectives of achieving the highest standards of safety, environmental, and quality performance are met.
Red Funnel has also launched a campaign to encourage drivers to switch off their engines while waiting to board or disembark from their ferries. This anti-idling campaign aims to reduce harmful emissions and improve local air quality, with the added benefit of saving drivers money.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Red Funnel has established reasonable measures to safeguard passengers, employees, and crew from the virus. The company has received a COVID-19 Statement of Compliance from DNV GL, certifying that it has implemented measures to prevent the spread of the virus.
Red Funnel has not made any immediate changes to passenger capacity on board its vessels. However, the company is committed to ensuring the steady flow of goods to and from the Isle of Wight while keeping the island connected and supplied.
Overall, Red Funnel’s safety measures demonstrate the company’s commitment to ensuring the safety and well-being of its passengers, employees, and crew.
Red Funnel takes its environmental responsibility seriously and is committed to reducing its impact on the environment. The company has launched various campaigns to encourage its customers to adopt greener practices and reduce their carbon footprint.
One of the campaigns is the “Anti-idling” campaign, which encourages drivers to switch off their engines while waiting to board or disembark from the ferries. This initiative aims to reduce harmful emissions and improve local air quality. In addition, it helps drivers save money by reducing fuel consumption.
Red Funnel has also implemented a three-year environment strategy called “Red Goes Green,” which outlines a range of initiatives to help improve and conserve the environment. The company has already implemented many of the changes set out in its strategy, and it is committed to continuing to make progress towards its environmental goals.
The company’s commitment to environmental responsibility is reflected in its corporate sustainability policy. This policy outlines the company’s approach to minimising its impact on the environment, supporting local communities, and operating responsibly. The policy is based on the principles of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG), which guide the company’s decision-making processes.
Red Funnel’s Quality, Safety, and Environment Management Systems are fully integrated to ensure the company achieves the highest standards of safety, environmental, and quality performance. This approach demonstrates the company’s commitment to achieving its environmental objectives while maintaining the highest standards of safety and quality.
Overall, Red Funnel is committed to reducing its impact on the environment and promoting sustainable practices. The company’s initiatives and policies demonstrate its commitment to environmental responsibility and its dedication to making a positive impact on the environment.
Red Funnel has a strong commitment to supporting the local community and charitable causes. They operate various programmes and schemes to help voluntary and community groups based on the Isle of Wight and in Hampshire.
Red Funnel supports various charities, including Sailor’s Society, an international Christian charity working in ports across the world. Sailor’s Society chaplains help seafarers and their families from all faiths and none with welfare and practical support. Red Funnel teams have been fundraising for the charity through the 3 Peaks Challenge for over 15 years.
Red Funnel operates a community grant programme and transport support scheme to help voluntary and community groups based on the Isle of Wight and in Hampshire. The funds available can help groups by providing small grants for their local projects and core running costs and by contributing towards travel across the Solent.
Charity of the Year
Every year, Red Funnel selects a Charity of the Year. In 2023, the chosen charity is Aspire, voted for by Red Funnel colleagues, customers, and the Isle of Wight community. Aspire is a growing Island charity that operates services across the island and in partnership with the IW county council and other voluntary sector partners. They provide support to people with learning disabilities and autism.
Applications for Charity of the Year 2024
Charities wishing to apply for the Charity of the Year 2024 must meet the following criteria:
- Be a registered charity.
- Have been in operation on the Isle of Wight for at least 12 months.
- Support the Isle of Wight community – helping to improve quality of life or create opportunities for residents.
Red Funnel Sales Team can be contacted for more information.
Red Funnel has ambitious plans for the future of their East Cowes ferry terminal. The company has proposed a large-scale redevelopment that includes moving the marshalling yard, building a hotel, homes, and waterfront retail. The plans are currently in public consultation, and the company is open to feedback from the community.
The proposed development aims to improve the overall experience for passengers and create a more attractive destination for visitors. The new terminal will be able to accommodate larger vessels, which will improve the efficiency of the service and reduce waiting times. The marshalling yard will be relocated to a more convenient location, which will reduce traffic congestion in the area.
The new hotel will provide accommodation for passengers and visitors, and the waterfront retail will offer a range of shops and restaurants. The development will also include new homes, which will help to address the housing shortage on the Isle of Wight.
Red Funnel is committed to sustainability and has included plans to incorporate eco-friendly features into the new development. The company aims to reduce its carbon footprint and promote sustainable travel options.
Overall, the proposed redevelopment of the East Cowes ferry terminal is an exciting prospect for the Isle of Wight. If approved, it will create new jobs, boost the local economy, and improve the travel experience for passengers.
Frequently Asked Questions
What destinations does Red Funnel sail to?
Red Funnel operates ferries between Southampton and the Isle of Wight. The two main ports on the Isle of Wight are East Cowes and West Cowes. The ferry service provides a convenient way to travel to and from the island.
How long does the car ferry journey with Red Funnel take?
The duration of the car ferry journey with Red Funnel depends on the route and the time of day. The typical journey time between Southampton and East Cowes is around 55-60 minutes. The journey time between Southampton and West Cowes is around 25-30 minutes.
What are the prices for Red Funnel ferry tickets?
The cost of Red Funnel ferry tickets varies depending on the route, the time of day, and the type of vehicle. Prices start from around £15 for a single foot passenger and from around £50 for a car and up to 7 passengers. It is advisable to book in advance to secure the best prices.
What is the booking process for Red Funnel?
The booking process for Red Funnel is straightforward. Customers can book online, over the phone, or in person at the terminal. Payment can be made by credit or debit card. Customers are advised to check the terms and conditions of their booking before making a reservation.
Can foot passengers travel with Red Funnel?
Yes, foot passengers can travel with Red Funnel. There are regular passenger ferries between Southampton and both East Cowes and West Cowes. Foot passengers can also travel on the car ferry, subject to availability.
Why are Red Funnel ferry tickets more expensive than other options?
Red Funnel ferry tickets may be more expensive than other options due to the convenience and quality of service provided. Red Funnel offers a reliable and efficient ferry service, with modern and comfortable vessels. The company also invests in ongoing improvements to its facilities and services.