Irish Sea ferry operator Stena Line now offering dedicated pet-friendly cabins on its twice-daily Birkenhead to Belfast ferry route. Tony McDonough reports
Passengers on the Stena Line ferry route between Birkenhead and Belfast will now be able to take their furry friends into their cabins.
In March 2022 Stena announced the introduction of pet-friendly cabins on its Harwich to Hoek van Holland in the Netherlands route. Pets travelling on the Birkenhead to Belfast service had to store their pets in a different part of the cabin.
Now Stena is offering 70 pet-friendly cabins on its Irish Sea routes which also includes Holyhead to Dublin and Fishguard to Rosslare.
It calls its twice-daily service, operating out of the Mersey, Liverpool to Belfast. However, the two vessels on the route, Stena Edda and Stena Embla, berth at the 12 Quays terminal in Birkenhead, close to the Woodside Mersey Ferry berth.
Announcing the extension of its pet-friendly cabin policy to the Irish Sea routes, Swedish company Stena cited research showing 32% would actually prefer to travel with their dog instead of their partner. 17% admitted they won’t travel at all without their pet.
Commercial manager Irish Sea, Orla Noonan, said: “Requests for pet-friendly cabins and pet lounges are some of the most frequent we receive from our customers.
“We recognise pets are considered family members to many of our passengers. And we wanted to really enhance our customer experience and become the best choice for pet travel.
“Our aim was to broaden our offering for those travelling with pets and we’re now in a position to offer pet-friendly cabins. These are alongside our existing options of pet kennels and pets remaining in vehicles.
“Our new policy has been carefully considered and we sought advice from experts in pet welfare, pet behaviour and pet health.”