Stena Line will cancel all sailings for a week from one Welsh port as a ferry moves to the Holyhead-Dublin route for a temporary period.
The routes between Wales and Ireland have been hit by reduced demand due to post-Brexit trade distortion and national lockdowns.
Now Stena will take the opportunity to undertake its dry-docking programme for annual maintenance.
This will result in a new session of musical ferries on the Irish Sea.
The Superfast 7 is going into dry dock and Stena Edda moves to cover the Belfast – Cairnryan route.
Stena Horizon switches from Anglesey to cover Edda on the Birkenhead route and Europe heads from Fishguard to Holyhead to keep two ships on that route.
It will mean sailings between Fishguard-Rosslare are cancelled for just over a week.
But it could mean extra dockers brought back from furlough at Holyhead. They had been placed back on the UK Government scheme due to the impact of Brexit and Covid lockdowns.
A Stena Line spokesman said: “As a result of the reduced demand on its Welsh routes, caused by national lockdowns and post-Brexit trade distortion, Stena Line has to continue to be flexible in deploying its fleet capacity where the demand is strongest.
“The company is using this quiet period to undertake its dry-docking programme and will need to temporarily switch Stena Europe to cover its Holyhead-Dublin service for a short period, in order to maintain two vessels on this key route.
“From the 15 – 23 February inclusive, this will result in the short-term cancellation of sailings between Fishguard-Rosslare.
“This route has been impacted significantly from both COVID-19 and Brexit. Traditionally it relies on a combination of both tourism travel and freight to be viable.
“So far this year passenger volumes are down -80% and freight volumes are down -50% year-on-year.”
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They added: “Stena Line remains fully committed in the long-term to its Fishguard route and the port itself, which the company owns. The Stena Europe will resume service from Fishguard on the 24 February.”
Eluned Morgan MS said: “Usually, Stena Line provides cover for the service between Fishguard and Rosslare when the normal ferry is not in service.
“This latest decision on the back of cancelled sailings last month is very concerning.
“We’ve seen as a result of the pandemic and the massive impact of Brexit slashing trade between Wales and Ireland that our ferry services have been left in a vulnerable position.”
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