Home African Caribbean St Kitts businessman provides inter-island ferry service

St Kitts businessman provides inter-island ferry service

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In Caribbean news. CITIZENS and residents of St. Kitts and Nevis, Montserrat and Antigua and Barbuda will soon have something new to rave about – a bigger, faster ferryboat named MV Caribe Sun that will traverse their territorial waters.

Caribe Sun1

This vessel was recently acquired by Captain Prince Mills of M&M Transportation, who, in an exclusive interview, told SKNVibes that the 31.7-metre long and 9.44-metre wide boat was built in Norway in 2002 by a Norwegian shipyard and that at maximum capacity accommodates 194 passengers.
Mills said that the MV Caribe Sun, which has increased M&M Transportation’s fleet to three, is 16 feet longer and three feet wider than Caribe Surf which is much bigger than Caribe Breeze.
The vessel has an upper and lower deck to accommodate passengers on seats similar to those on aeroplanes, but there is none on the outside. Both decks are equipped with air conditioning units for passengers’ comfort and a television set on the lower one.
It is fitted with a small area for children to play, which is cordoned off with glass so that they would not disturb other passengers, and their parents could look in on them.
This area is also fitted with a television set and will be equipped with toys for the children’s enjoyment.
A small cafeteria sits at the back of the lower deck and will have for sale tea, coffee, hot dogs, grilled and regular sandwiches, non-alcoholic drinks, snacks and cake, among a host of other food items.
Mills stated that the vessel runs at 35 knots with 4 000 horsepower and that travelling from St. Kitts to Nevis and vice versa “at moderate speed” would take just 20 minutes.
He also stated that the Caribe Sun would, “with ease”, take only one hour and 25 minutes from St. Kitts to St. Maarten.
Mills informed that the ferryboat would sail among the islands of St. Kitts-Nevis, Montserrat and Antigua, and that it would also be available for chartered services to and from whichever island it is needed.
Asked about maintenance cost, Mills said that he could not yet put a figure to that because the vessel was “just acquired and I have not yet put it to the test financially”.
He however indicated that the cost of travelling on the Caribe Sun would be higher than the other vessels that ply the route between St. Kitts and Nevis.
“It would not operate between St. Kitts and Nevis for the same fare which has been in place for the last five years. That low fare cannot support this ferry!”
He said that the vessel would operate on a regular schedule between Antigua and Montserrat but it would only sail on specific occasions to and from St. Kitts and Nevis.
“Between St. Kitts and Nevis we will also make trips with [Caribe] Surf and [Caribe] Breeze, so I can’t say exactly which day it will run between St. Kitts and Nevis. But we will have a regular schedule between Montserrat and Antigua.”
He disclosed that the reason for focusing on operating between Montserrat and Antigua is due to the fact that there is no ferry service to and from those islands, adding that he wants to provide that service for the people, hence his investment in MV Caribe Sun.
Mills also disclosed that he is the captain of the new vessel.
He said that the vessel has not yet made its inaugural run, which would be from St. Kitts to Montserrat sometime this week. He also said that the necessary measures are currently being taken to ensure it is ready for sailing.
Mills indicated early last week that “we are still doing all the necessary paperwork. We are waiting now on two inspectors to come in. After that, everything should be evened out and ready by the end of the week”.
by Jenise Ferlance-Isaac, SKNVibes.com



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