The Spirit of Tasmania ferries have been given a luxury makeover, yet caravan owners continue to pay through to nose.
Despite promises from the Hodgman Liberal government to reduce fares on the Spirit of Tasmania, RV owners have thus far been overlooked in reductions.
Announced in 2014, the government’s fare reduction target of 15 per cent was part of a wider plan to increase annual visitors to Tasmania to 1.5 million by 2020.
Minister for Infrastructure Rene Hidding recently gave a progress update, saying fares on the Spirits have fallen an average of eight per cent in the past two years.
But while fares have dropped for passengers, the same can’t be said for caravans.
The cost to transport an 11-metre car and caravan combination across the strait has actually increased from $401 to $412 each way in the last 12 months, leading us to wonder if RV travellers may have been overlooked as tourism prospects.
Recent estimates have suggested RV travellers contribute millions to the domestic economy, supporting not only the caravan industry but also whole communities.
While it’s unfortunate the prices for transporting caravans haven’t come down, it isn’t surprising given the recent infrastructure improvements for the ferries.
State-owned operators TT Line recently completed the refurbishment of both Spirit vessels, paving the way for an additional 33 day-sailings in 2015/16.
The refurbishment has seen both Spirit of Tasmania vessels equipped with a new décor, a self-service restaurant, refurbished cabins, and latest release cinemas.