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[PR] BON VOYAGE!!! New Stena Line ferry defies Storm Brendan to start service on Irish Sea


Press release   •   Jan 13, 2020 17:16 GMT

NOT even Storm Brendan could prevent Stena Line’s newest ferry Stena Estrid making its maiden voyage this morning (Monday January 13) on the Holyhead to Dublin route.

After more than six years’ in planning and construction, Estrid braved the challenging sea conditions created by Storm Brendan to set sail from the Port of Holyhead at 10.55am, arriving in Dublin shortly after 2.30pm where it received a traditional maritime water cannon salute.

Described as one of the most modern ferries in the world, Estrid is due to set sail again from Dublin Port at approx. 5.30pm to complete the first-round trip on her new Irish Sea home.

Stena Estrid will make two daily return trips on the route, with scheduled departures as below:

Ex-Holyhead Ex-Dublin
08:55hrs 14:50hrs
20:30hrs 02:15hrs
A crossing time of three hours and 15 minutes is barely enough time for passengers to check out the range of excellent facilities on board, including Estrid’s spectacular Sky Bar, two Happy World children’s play areas, a relaxing Hygge reclining lounge, Stena Plus lounge, two movie lounges, bigger Truckers lounge, Taste restaurant, and a bigger better shopping experience. Ian Davies, Stena Line’s Trade Director (Irish Sea South), said: “Today is a very significant day, not just for Stena Line but for the future of ferry travel on the Irish Sea, as we welcome Stena Estrid to her new home on the Irish Sea. Despite the best efforts of Storm Brendan Stena Estrid was able to fulfil her maiden voyage commitment albeit slightly delayed due to severe weather conditions on the Irish Sea.

“The introduction of Stena Estrid on the Holyhead to Dublin route is the result of a very significant investment that reflects our commitment to this extremely important region – a commitment that will ultimately see three of the world’s most modern ferries operating between Ireland and Britain.

“I’m proud that Stena Line continues to shape the industry for the next generation of freight and travel customers, for whom we are determined to deliver the best possible service. Stena Estrid will enable us to do this with more efficient loading and unloading operations, increased freight capacity and the best Scandinavian quality, style and design in our facilities -in an onboard environment that is spacious and light, with amazing panoramic views,” he added.

“The Captain and crew have all been wowed by the new ship and we are sure that all of our customers travelling between Dublin and Holyhead will be similarly impressed,” concluded Mr Davies.

Stena Estrid arrives in Dublin STENA ESTRID COMPLETES MAIDEN VOYAGE: Pictured is Stena Line’s newest ferry, Stena Estrid as it arrives in to Dublin Port after completing its first journey from Holyhead. Whilst Storm Brendan made weather conditions challenging on the sailing, passengers arrived in good spirits having been amongst the first to experience the luxurious new surroundings of the vessel. They were greeted in Dublin by celebratory water cannons. Stena Estrid is one of the most advanced vessels in operation with space to carry 120 cars and 1,000 passengers. For more information on Stena Line and to book your sailing, go to www.stenaline.co.uk

Stena Estrid is the first of three new next generation ferries that will operate on the Irish Sea as part of a multi-million-pound investment by Stena Line in the region. Sister ship Stena Edda is expected to commence operations from Liverpool to Belfast this spring, with a third vessel Stena Embla to be introduced on the same route in early 2021.

At 215 metres in length, Stena Estrid is one of the most advanced vessels in operation and larger than today’s standard RoPax vessels, with space to carry 120 cars and 1,000 passengers, and a freight capacity of 3,100 lane meters, meaning a 50 per cent increase in freight tonnage.


The name Estrid is connected to Stena Line’s Scandinavian heritage. It is an Old Norse eastern-Nordic version of the name Astrid. Estrid is commonly found on old runestones and means ‘divinely beautiful’.

BuilderAVIC Weihai Shipyard Co (Weihai, China)
TypeRo-Pax ship
Ferry route / homeportsDublin-Holyhead
Speed22 kn / 41 kph / 25 mph
Length (LOA)215 m / 705 ft
Beam (width)28 m / 92 ft
Gross Tonnage41,671 gt
Lane Metres3,100
Freight vehicles210

Stena Line is the largest ferry operator on the Irish Sea, offering the biggest fleet and the widest choice of routes between Britain and Ireland including Holyhead to Dublin, Fishguard to Rosslare, Cairnryan to Belfast, Liverpool to Belfast, and Heysham to Belfast routes, a total of 232 weekly sailing options. Stena Line also offers a direct service between Rosslare to Cherbourg with three return crossings a week.

NIFS Note: NI Ferry Site was onboard STENA ESTRID‘s maiden commercial voyage this morning. A special blog post including deck plans, interior photos, a detailed listing of facilities (and perhaps some observations) will follow within the coming days. STENA ESTRID‘s sister-ship, STENA EDDA, is expected to leave for Europe later this month. ‘Edda’ will enter service on the Belfast – Liverpool route later this year.

Steven Tarbox

Steven is a former retail professional and a ferry writer and photographer. He created NI Ferry Site as a web design project in 2014 to be a news and information source for everyone with an interest in ferries, with a particular focus on Northern Ireland. Steven is the editor of the website and looks after all of the technical aspects.
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