Press Release – Fullers360
Waiheke Island and Devonport services continue with alternative timetables
Fullers360 will continue to provide essential ferry services for Waiheke Island and Devonport, with ferry timetables reverting to the previous reduced alternative timetables with Auckland under alert level 3 restrictions.The move will ensure a resilient and regular service is provided for those who need it to travel for essential reasons.
These measures will be in place effective from the first sailing on Tuesday, 16 February, and throughout alert level 3, and will be monitored and reviewed regularly based on passenger volumes and based on updates from the Government with regards to future travel restrictions.
Fullers360 Chief Executive Officer Mike Horne says the Auckland ferry operator recognises the critical role it plays in helping transport essential service passengers during this time, and in providing access to and from Waiheke Island, Auckland’s largest suburb.
Following Auckland moving into alert level 3, and transport being restricted to essential travel only, Mr Horne reports there has already been a significant drop in passenger numbers.
“Across our peak morning services this morning we’ve immediately seen a 90 per cent drop in passenger numbers across the Devonport and Waiheke services. The significant drop in volume is a good indication of high levels of compliance on our services, and it is pleasing to see these communities following the Government guidance around essential travel only messages.
This will be the third time we have provided an essential service under alert level 3 restrictions, and each time we must strike the right balance of providing a regular and resilient service for our customers, whilst also following the Government guidelines. We see reverting our Waiheke and Devonport services to an essential service timetable as striking this balance, based on what we learned from past lockdowns.
We acknowledge our services are imperative for the Waiheke community to travel to and from Auckland in particular, and we will continue to coordinate with Auckland Transport, Waiheke Local Board and other key stakeholders to ensure any major updates are clearly communicated to our customers.”
Fullers360 will be providing an hourly frequency for both Devonport and Waiheke communities while Auckland is at alert level 3. While the sailings will be reduced, there will be adequate frequency to support essential workers and those seeking essential transport. Sailing timetables and travel alerts are kept up to date for customers to access on the Fullers360 website and MyFerry app.
“The alternative alert level 3 timetable in place will give our crew the best opportunity to keep safe while also providing adequate frequency and certainty for those who need to require Fullers360 services for essential travel,” says Mr Horne.
Travelling on Fullers360 services is restricted to essential travel only, however like all public transport services during this time, Fullers360 ferry services are available to those travelling to work in essential services, for medical reasons, to access essential services and to access education providers and safe workplaces.
Fullers360 CEO Mike Horne asks all passengers to play their part, wear a mask, scan the QR codes to record your travel, and only use public transport if necessary, to travel for essential work or services.
In previous alert level 3 settings during 2020, Fullers360 provided an essential service to the Waiheke and Devonport communities on a reduced timetable, in a move to keep these communities connected to the Auckland CBD.
Increasing efforts to keep passengers and crew safe, effective immediately, Fullers360 has made the decision to close its onboard cafés to food and beverage sales while Auckland is under alert level 3 restrictions.
Fullers360 will continue to transport essential items and support St. John with its emergency care transport to Waiheke Island.
“Safety is always our top priority and we have a range of measures in place to ensure those who travel with us feel safe. Our safety measures include the closure of onboard cafes to food and beverage, as well as the increased cleaning, routine fogging of our vessels which will occur again this week, physical distancing onboard and our crew who are following the Government guidelines so expertly and will be wearing a mask onboard services,” says Horne.
For more information on essential travel at alert level 3 and COVID-19, please head to www.covid19.co.nz  and for the Devonport and Waiheke alternative essential service timetables please visit: https://www.fullers.co.nz/covid-19