Daiichi Koutsu high-speed ferry hopes to expand tourism to northern parts of island

Daiichi Koutsu high-speed ferry hopes to expand tourism to northern parts of island

High-speed ferry test launch main routes


July 14, 2018 Ryukyu Shimpo


The Daiichi Koutsu Sangyo Co. Ltd. is participating in a plan to run a high-speed ferry connecting Naha and Motobu Ports.

With the increase of rental cars used by tourists visiting Okinawa, congestion on the roads continue to worsen, and the ferry aims to relieve the burden on the region by making a shift towards travel over the water.

Additionally, establishing routes to Motobu Port via modes of transportation such as highway buses is also expected to expand tourism to the northern parts of the island.


As a test of the ferry’s suitability, the company will be exploring both a direct route between Naha and Motobu, as well as a route that will make local stops at ports such as Chatan, Onna, and Nago.


However, this is not the first attempt at the route connecting Naha and Motobu.

Previously, The joint public-private venture “Okinawa Marine Jet Tourism,” which Okinawa Prefecture invested in, had a high-speed ship dubbed the “Marine” that ran a route between Naha, Motobu, and Iejima, it was shuttered in February of 2000 after experiencing profitability concerns.

Subsequently, profitability has become a focal point of this new endeavor.


Daiichi Koutsu analyzes that the Marine, which had a capacity of over 200 passengers, was too large of a ship for the actual demand for passage oversea, and over time operating costs began to mount.


This time, the plan is to use a smaller high-speed ship with a capacity of around 70 passengers to increase seat occupancy, and aims to secure profitability by adhering to a “low-cost carrier” strategy.


(English translation by T&CT and Sam Grieb)


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