P&O Ferries to reopen ferry service from the UK to Scandinavia?

The last ferry link between the UK and Scandinavia ended in 2014. News is that the Scottish Government has called for a summit with ferry operators to explore the potential for a new service between Scotland and Scandinavia. And apparently P&O Ferries are willing to consider it.

P&O Ferries is a British-based company that operates ferries from the United Kingdom to Ireland, France, Belgium and the Netherlands. Throughout its history since the late 60s, P&O Ferries has operated in five main areas, centred around Dover, Portsmouth, Southampton, the Irish Sea and the North Sea.

The company has, as many other ferry companies, closed several of its services due to a strong competition with cheap air fares and the Channel tunnel. But the company has announced they’d like to consider the Scottish Government’s initiative.

“We are always looking for new opportunities and would be happy to sit down with the relevant parties to discuss a route between Scotland and Scandinavia.” said a spokesperson from P&O Ferries.

It will be interesting to follow the development from this discussion. Our previous post on how to travel from the UK to Scandinavia by car and ferry is one of the most read posts on this blog. We believe it’s beyond doubt that there’s a great demand on both sides of the North Sea for a direct passenger ferry link.

To open talks about a new service between the UK and Scandinavia is a smart move by Scotland. It could be significant post-brexit for the country’s economy if the ferry service is being brought back.

Why it matters to us

You might wonder what it means to us, having the ferry service brought back. Many would wonder why we wouldn’t choose to fly. As I’ve read in your comments we all have our reasons to prefer the ferry. It could be the convenience of bringing your own car or the less hassle associated with a ferry vs driving for endless hours. Anyway, aren’t road trips back in vogue?

We travel several times a year to our Norwegian house renovation project. For us, the best route is to get to Fredrikshavn where we can jump on the ferry to Gothenburg and drive straight north, to Trysil in Norway.

London to Fredrikshavn is a 900+ miles drive through France, Belgium, The Netherlands and Germany before we reach Fredrikshavn in Denmark. If P&O Ferries decide to open a new service between, let’s say Aberdeen and Esbjerg, this means we’ll be saving 200 miles on our drive.

But imagine how many miles would be saved on our journey to Scandinavia, for all of us living in England, if only P&O Ferries would consider reopening the passenger ferry Newcastle or Harwich to Esbjerg…

You might also like:

How to travel from the UK to Scandinavia by car and ferry.
Sign the petition – Reopen the Harwich to Esbjerg ferry!

You might also like:

This is how we travel from the UK to Scandinavia by car and ferry
Sign the petition – Reopen Harwich to Esbjerg!


  1. Most motorcyclists would love a direct ferry from UK to Norway. The alternatives are a huge detour from the preferred route and destination via Rotterdam or Channel. I’m looking to visit Norway again this year on my bike and I hope a ferry is available otherwise it’s a long slog through the EU again.

  2. Yes yes yes! I sincerely hope this does happen. The convoluted way to do things now just doesn’t suit us, and it’s not quite the same flying and hiring a car there. Our Denmark-Norway road trip was quite possibly one of my fave trips ever but there’s so much more to see. Plus I feel the need to head to Sweden and see beyond Stockholm.

  3. I hope if this really happens that p&o consider a second east coast pick up lower down i.e Hull or Harwich

  4. I much prefer taking the car too, if I’m staying 10 days or longer. And I agree with you that flying is stressful. It takes up at least half a day and with the airport security. Combined with the horrendous boarding arrangements (we tend to fly budget) where you are treated like cattle you’ll need at least a day to recover. Bring back the ferry I say! x

  5. from edinburgh halfway down scotland to tromso in norway is a 6000 mil round trip
    a ferry from aberdeen or rosyth would be amazing and we scots could then travek forth to scandinavia and vis versa
    can only be good for tourism and trade
    flying limits you to where you go and car hire makes for expensive holiday if you want to trip about .having the luxury of taking your own is much better .also flying is a faff trying to get to airport on time re traffic then getting dropped of or parking then all the other rituals beofre actually getting on the plane is exhusting lets go back to viking times and cross the north sea once again ……….

  6. Please consider any profitable route to Scandinavia from the UK. Newcastle was a good departure point.

  7. I travel from Ireland (south) and don’t want to have to drive to Scotland to get the ferry!
    Please consider the Harwich to Esbjerg route again!

  8. Ever since the beginning of the1970s we have spent some summer weeks on the east coast of Yorkshire. We have needed our car for transport of various items we can’t be without i.e violin, painting gear, computer, books as well as what’s needed for a complete holiday. These trips came to an abrupt halt in 2014 when the ferries stopped running from Scandinavia. As I have no wish to undergo the hassle of plane, train and bus to get to our place I welcome with open arms any plan for a car ferry from the UK to Scandinavia. I’m 83 so please don’t wait too long to gel the plans!!

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