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Does the Cook Strait catamaran still operate?

Travel Forums Australia / New Zealand & The Pacific Does the Cook Strait catamaran still operate?

1. Posted by dmeketa (Budding Member 3 posts) 10y

dmeketa has indicated that this thread is about New Zealand

Hello all -

I'll be needing passage from NZ's north island to south island in December. Many friends and guides have mentioned the existence of both the 3-hour ferry and the 2-hour catamaran, but I'm having trouble finding any current information about the catamaran, and I'm beginning to wonder if the catamaran service has been discontinued.

Everything I've found so far points to Interislander as the sole operator of Cook Strait ferries. And Interislander even has a picture on their site that includes a catamaran. But the site presently makes no mention of the catamaran - not for timetables, reservations, or list of ships.

Many thanks for any information!

Best,
Deneb Meketa,
left coast, U.S.

2. Posted by kiwisteve (Budding Member 24 posts) 10y

Hi There ,
I'm pretty sure that the fast service was scrapped by the operator ! The greenies want a speed restriction into the channel into Picton ( South Island )) terminal . This apparently made it un-economic to continue the service with the Fast Ferry !

cheers
Steve

3. Posted by swiss33 (Inactive 22 posts) 10y

Steve has it right.
When I recently enquired with Interislander, they advised that the Fast Ferry was removed when they introduced their new ship, the Kaitaki (I think).

Also, a note of interest. I booked a ferry crossing via Interislander a few weeks ago, and also booked from outside of NZ. The website states, correctly, that if you book online (internationally) that you can only get the full rate.
I called the call centre in NZ, and booked at the cheapest rates, saving a few dollars in the process. As long as you can convince them that your ferry dates will not change, all will be OK.
The ticket is still flexible, but if you change dates, or times, the price will go up to the full rate.

As a side not: The single hull crossings have always proven more comfortable, and at less than 40 minutes difference, I would only ever travel like that now anyway.

Have a great trip.

Greg