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Ponta Delgada ,  July 14, 2015

New public service obligations for maritime transport promote greater accessibility while maintaining reduced costs for passengers

The new Public Service Obligations for maritime transport, presented Monday in Horta, aim to improve mobility of the Azorean population through the maritime transport of passengers and vehicles and meet the growing demand. They take into account the seasonal variation in this type of transport and, simultaneously, provide affordable fares for passengers.

As for the number of links on the Blue Line, which connects Horta and Madalena, the concessionaire is required to establish four daily round trips from September 16 to June 14, a minimum of five daily round trips between June 15 and 30 and between September 1 and 15, and a minimum of six daily round trips from July 1 to August 31.

Regarding the Green Line, which connects Horta, Madalena, São Roque do Pico and Velas, the concessionaire must carry out two daily round calls three times a week and one daily round trip on the remaining days in the period between September 16 and June 14. From June 15 to September 15, there should be a minimum of two daily round trips.

In the Western Group, the links between Flores and Corvo, the concessionaire is required to establish a minimum of two daily round trips twice a week in period from October 1 to April 30, a minimum of two daily round trips three times a week in May, June and September, and a minimum of two daily round trips six times a week in July and August.

In regard to the Purple Line, which connects Horta, Pico, São Jorge (Velas and Calheta) and Terceira, the concessionaire should carry out two round trips between Calheta and Angra do Heroísmo twice a week in the period between June 15 and September 15. The remaining part of the "Triangle islands" (Pico, Faial and S. Jorge) is also covered by this route.

The impositions on the concessionaire regarding seasonal transport will vary whether the operation is carried out by one or two vessels.

When the operation is carried out by a single vessel, the concessionaire is require to establish a call to Santa Maria every two weeks, a weekly call to São Miguel, Terceira, São Jorge, Pico, Faial and Graciosa. The new Public Service Obligations also impose six calls to the island of Flores from June to September.

When the operation is carried out by two vessels in the months of July and August, the concessionaire is required to stipulate two weekly calls to Santa Maria, four to São Miguel, four to Terceira, two to Graciosa, three to São Jorge, three to Pico and three to Faial.

In the remaining months of the year, the public service obligations stipulate a weekly call to Santa Maria, two to S. Miguel, three to Terceira, one to Graciosa, two to São Jorge, two to Pico and two to Faial.

 With regard to fare prices, these will remain within the prices currently in force for seasonal transport, while there will be some adjustments to the fares for travels to the "Triangle islands."

Moreover, there will be also some adjustments to the fare price in force in the calls between Horta and Madalena, seeing that it had not changed since 2010; the price will increase from 3.40 to 3.60 Euros.

In the calls between Faial, Pico and São Jorge, the prices will be also updated at 50 cents as they had not changed since 2011.

The fares on the transport of vehicles will be maintained.

Under these public service obligations, the concessionaire is require to define special fares, namely for infants aged up to two years, who will be exempt from travel costs, for children aged between 3 and 12, with a reduction of at least 50%, and for people over 65 years, with a reduction of at least 30%. In this context, large families, composed of at least five members travelling together, will benefit from a 10% reduction in maritime travel fares, being also entitled to special discounts for infants and children.

Furthermore, there will be a special fare for groups of the more than 10 elements, with a reduction of a least 10%. In turn, social fares as well as weekly and monthly fares will also benefit from a reduction of at least 20%.

Social passes and the 22 Pass will maintain the same price.

During the implementation of contract, the concessionaire may apply other fares, upon authorisation of the awarding entity, the Autonomous Region of the Azores.


Official government press-releases presented in all foreign languages interfaces of the Azorean Government Portal (Portal do Governo dos Açores) are a sub-set of the government's official press-releases daily output and are chosen for translation and publication on the foreign language interfaces based on audience segmentation criteria. The entire collection of the Azorean government press-releases is available in portuguese, here, from the GACS Press Office site.

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