TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A new ferry that will ply the route between the southern port city of Kaohsiung and the Penghu islands in the middle of the Taiwan Strait will be able to transport 80 cars and four buses when it starts operations in August 2023, reports said Thursday (May 27).
The new ship will also carry up to 10 containers and include 300 sleeping berths, 100 more than the Tai Hwa ferry which has been operating the route for 32 years, CNA reported. However the maximum number of passengers will be cut almost in half, from 1,150 to fewer than 700, according to the Ministry of Transportation's Maritime and Port Bureau (MPB).
The shipping operator will build, operate, and repair the ship under a central government contract valued at NT$2.78 billion (US$100.28 million) and valid for 20 years.
Despite the lower maximum number of passengers, people traveling to and from Magong, the capital of Penghu County, will be able to enjoy a new range of services on board, such as Wi-Fi, simple meals, and a family entertainment area, according to the MPB.