A ferry linking HCM City’s outlying districts of Nha Be and Can Gio (Photo: VNA)

HCM City (VNA) - Preparations are underway for the launch of ferry services between Ho Chi Minh City’s outlying Can Gio district and Vung Tau city in the southern province of Ba Ria-Vung Tau.

They are scheduled to start later this year, according to the HCM City Department of Transport.

It will take some 15 minutes for the 43.35m ferries, which can carry 350 passengers, 150 motorbikes and 20 cars, for the 15km trip.

Nguyn Van My, Chairman of Lua Viet Tours, said the ferry service would facilitate cargo transport between the two destinations besides offering commuters another option.

The new service will help boost tourism by bringing travellers to Can Gio, a district with many beautiful sights in HCM City, he said.

Not only highways but even the HCM City – Long Thanh – Dau Giay Expressway is overloaded, especially during weekends and holidays.

The new ferry boats would offer a convenient means of travel for locals and visitors going between HCM City and Vung Tau, My said.

But to make it a success, authorities must connect the service with other services, he said, pointing out there is currently no transport link between HCM City and the Tac Suat Ferry terminal.

Thus it is not accessible to people travelling from HCM City to Vung Tau. There are hydrofoil services between HCM City and Vung Tau, and these would be a competitor to the new ferry service.

Tran Song Hai, CEO of the HCM City-based Greenlines DP Technology Co Ltd, the operator of the hydrofoil services, said the ferry services would be convenient for transporting passengers and cargo between the two cities.

There is huge demand for travelling between HCM City and Vung Tau.

Many people ask the hydrofoil operators to allow them to bring motorbikes while traders want to transport seafood and poultry, but both requests are rejected because the hydrofoils are only meant to serve tourism.

The new ferries can accommodate these demands, Hai said.-VNA