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HoverCare & Concessionary Travel Scheme

Hovercare... Helping you travel with ease"

Crossing the Solent with Hovertravel is not only fast and fun but an enjoyable experience for all our passengers. Our experienced staff are there to ensure your journey is comfortable and safe. Hovercare is a free service for those passengers requiring extra help.. 

HoverCare customers benefit from priority assistance, to ensure you receive this we advise customers to contact us on info@hovertravel.com or 01983 717700 at least 48 hours in advance of your travel, to ensure we can provide the best possible assistance and care for your journey. 

Please download our Hovercare guide for full information about our terminals and on board facilities as well as helpful information on our Travel partners and mobility concessions. Hovercare Accessibility Guide

HoverCare

Hovercare is a service for any passengers requiring assistance with their travel whether they have reduced mobility requirements or just need a little extra help with their journey.

Our aspiration is to offer the very best service to all our passengers, with HoverCare we're here to help and assist those who may need a little extra help.  We are committed to ensure access and travel on our Hovercraft, our terminals and all elements of your journey from start to finish is as comfortable and safe as possible.

We work closely with our industry partners, including and not limited to the MCA (Maritime and Coastguard Agency) to ensure that we meet our obligations, but at Hovertravel our staff aspire to exceed these and ensure all can travel with ease.  In addition we work with local and national advisor groups & charities to ensure we keep abreast of the wishes and obligations of our customers and we always welcome your feedback to allow us to further improve our services.

Please download our HoverCare Accessibility Guide to find out how we can help make your journey as comfortable and easy as possible.  The guide provides information on our commitment to you, about our terminal and on-board facilities and information on our travel partners and mobility concessions. 

To make sure we offer the best possible assistance for all our customers who require additional help, we recommend that you contact us 48 hours before you travel to book your HoverCare service and that you arrive at our terminal at least 15 minutes before you intended departure time and make yourself known to our staff.  

A snapshot of our Accessibility Guide:

Terminals

  • Ramps into terminal and onto pad
  • Disabled toilet & baby changing facilities
  • Digital screens
  • Staff communication of information
  • Wide corridors and dedicated Hovercare seating

Hovercraft

  • Wheelchair ramp
  • Dedicated seating area
  • Digital screens with signing, subtitles & audio safety message
  • Wide aisles
  • On embarking & disembarking crew members are on hand to guide passengers safely

Travel Partners

  • Hoverbus
  • Free Minibus to QA Hospital
  • Easy access to National Express
  • Blue Badge Parking

Concessions

  • Carers - Free of charge travel if traveling with someone in their care - please see guide for more information
  • For NHS & Concessionary Discounted Travel see the NHS tab at the top of this page. 

We politely ask passengers with reduced mobility and those requiring a little extra help to contact us on info@hovertravel.com or 01983 717700 at least 48 hours in advance of your travel, to ensure we can provide the best possible assistance and care for your journey. 

Please download our Hovercare guide for full information about our terminals and on board facilities as well as helpful information on our Travel partners and mobility concessions. Hovercare Accessibility Guide


 Unlimited Island offer accessible reivews and guides for the Isle of       Wight - Find our more here

Wheelchairs & Mobility Scooters

Wheelchairs and mobility aids, which includes mobility scooters, can be accepted for travel, subject to size and weight limitations in and around the craft (Maximum size 72cm w x 122cm h).   We can accommodate one wheelchair on each hovercraft crossing. Batteries must be dry or gel, non-spillable sealed types.

Hovertravel regrettably cannot carry people movers however Hovertravel are able to provide free of charge a wheelchair for use of travel between our ports. Please advise staff on arrival if you wish to travel in a wheelchair.

Please ensure you arrive at the Terminal at least 15 minutes before departure of the craft. 

Hovertravel cannot accepted any wheelchairs wider than - 720mm

Accessible Parking

Southsea

There is a large council run car park just across the road from our Southsea terminal. There are approximately 8 designated disabled spaces in the car park, however Blue Badge holders may park anywhere in the car park providing they display their valid Blue Badge.

Ryde

There is a large council run car park just behind our Ryde terminal (next to the Ice Rink & Bowling Alley). There are approximately 8 designated disabled spaces in the car park, however Blue Badge holders may park anywhere in the car park providing they display their valid Blue Badge.

 

FAQ

  • Q. Can you carry wheelchairs/mobility scooters?
  • A. We can accommodate one wheelchair on each hovercraft crossing. Motorised wheelchairs must have a sealed battery. Hovertravel can carry motorised scooters however they cannot be any bigger than - 72cm x 122 cm 
  • Q. What is the maximum width of the Hovercraft access for a wheelchair?
  • A.The ramp to board the Hovercraft is 72cm x 122 cm
  • Q. What is the maximum weight of the Hovercraft access for a wheelchair?
  • A. 250kg
  • Q. How many wheelchairs can travel per crossing?
  • A. We can carry one wheelchair per crossing. We offer a booked service, please contact us 48 hours before travel to pre-book the dedicated wheelchair space. 
  • Q. Can I request pre-boarding/board first or assitance?
  • A. Yes, please contact us 48 hours before you travel to arrange this.
  • Q. I have a carer, can they travel free? 
  • A. Carers - Free of charge travel if traveling with someone in their care - please see guide for more information

 

 

We realise not all impairments are visible. We rely on our craft’s public address system to communicate important safety information. We also provide Safety and Emergency card on all seats and disabled seating area. Additionally, our crew are always on hand to offer assistance during your journey.

We provide a short 10 minute crossing between Southsea, Portsmouth and Ryde, Isle of Wight and our crossings are every 30 minutes. See our timetable for further information.

HoverCare Card 

We've introduced a new HoverCare customer card so customers can receive any extra assistance they may need without even having to ask.

Our customers will be able to request a HoverCare card which will indicate whether they require help with luggage, are a lip reader, whether they need to be seated, or would like help boarding the hovercraft. The HoverCare card can also, if the customer wishes, show that the holder has reduced mobility, autism, dementia, reduced vision or impaired hearing.

How To Apply

Pop into our Ryde our Southsea terminal with your NHS number

 

We politely ask passengers with reduced mobility and those requiring a little extra help to contact us on info@hovertravel.com or 01983 717700 at least 48 hours in advance of your travel, to ensure we can provide the best possible assistance and care for your journey. 

Please download our Hovercare guide for full information about our terminals and on board facilities as well as helpful information on our Travel partners and mobility concessions.  Hovercare Accessibility Guide

 

Concessionary Fares 

 Concession Adult
(16yrs+)
Concession Child
(5-15 yrs)
Single £13.40 £6.70
Period Return
(valid for 90 days)
£24.10 £12.20
Day Return £16.50 £8.80
  • Concessionary Fares are available for students with a valid NUS card, seniors aged 60 years+ & persons with reduced mobility with valid proof.
    Valid proof for reduced persons can be found by  clicking here
  • Not applicable for Blue Card Holders

NHS Appointment Travel Scheme

stagecoash

NHS Patient Fares

Price (Adult & Child)

Return fare from Ryde to Southsea (valid for 90 days & includes FREE Hoverbus)

OR

Wessex Cancer Trust Daisy Bus Return fare from Ryde - Southsea (valid for 90 days & includes £2.00 to Wessex Cancer Trust - Daisy Bus
£10.30
Through ticket to St Mary's Hospital with Stagecoach £12.65
Through ticket to Queen Alexandra Hospital with Stagecoach £13.90

NHS Visitor Day Return Fares

Adult

Child

NHS Patient Visitor  £16.00 £8.30
Earl Mountbatten Hospice Visitor  £16.00 £8.30

Terms and Conditions

  • Patient fares are eligible for in, out & radiotherapy patients on production of appointment letter or card for hospital only
  • Patient fares available for the patient + 1 (carer, friend, family, etc) therefore £10.30 per person.
  • Patient fares are only available to purchase on the date of appointment only
  • To obtain visitor fares, the passenger must show a letter from the hospital they are visiting as proof. 
  • Visitor fares can only be puchased on the day of travel and on the date shown the hospital written letter. 
  • Patient fares include free travel on the Hoverbus - simply show your ticket to the Hoverbus driver to receive free travel
  • The scheme cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer or promotion and is not available to account customers
  • Tickets cannot be purchased online
  • Hovertravel & Local PCT and NHS trusts will audit applications to guard against fraudulent use
  • Customers found misusing discounted tickets will incur a surcharge to the equivalent standard return fare and will be excluded from purchasing tickets under the scheme in future.
  • Hovertravel reserves the right to review fares periodically and amend or withdraw this scheme at any time without prior notice.
  • Travel is subject to availability and standard terms and conditions apply

 

Download Hospital Bus Guide

NHS Professional Fare



These discounted fares are designed with NHS professionals in mind and are open to all NHS and primary care works who wish to commute across the Solent

Day Return Travel Fares

Price (Adult)

NHS Support Staff £19.20
  • Discount is only available on the day of travel from Ryde or Southsea Terminals
  • NHS Staff Key card must be shown at the time of purchase
  • Discount cannot not used in conjunction with any other offer or promotion and is not available to account customers

 

Unlimited Travel Cards 

Price (Adult)

1 Month Season Card £188.10
3 Month Season Card  £499.10
6 Month Season Card (inc HoverBus) £895.50
12 Month Season Card (inc HoverBus) £1,566.00
12 Month Season (inc HoverBus) Via Direct Debit £1,620.00
  • Proof of NHS employment must be shown at the time of purchase.
  • The above travel cards are for the exclusive use of the person named on the card.
  • A photograph will need to be assigned to every travel/season card. Hovertravel can take your photo in the terminal.
  • Download our NHS Professionals Season card application form here

                      Flexible Travel Cards 

                                 Price (Adult)

                Travel 10 Card (£6.80 per journey)                                       £67.50
                Travel 20 Card (£5.99 per journey)                                       £119.70
                Travel 100 Card (£4.96 per journey)                                       £486.00
 Travel 250 Card - inc free Hoverbus (£3.78 per journey)                                       £945.00
  • Proof of NHS employment must be shown at the time of purchase. 
  • The above travel cards are for the exclusive use of the person named on the card.
  • A photograph will need to be assigned to every travel/season card. Hovertravel can take your photo in the terminal.

  • Download our NHS Professionals Season card application form here

Free Minibus to QA Hospital


wessex cancer trust

Island patients travelling across to Portsmouth for cancer treatment can now benefit from a dedicated bus service which runs between the Hovertravel terminal at Southsea and Portsmouth Queen Alexandra Hospital, Cosham.

The 15 seat mini bus service is free and available for all cancer patients to use and replaces the existing taxi service that runs between the Hovercraft and the hospital. It operates weekdays from Monday to Friday and picks up from the Hovertravel Terminal, Southsea and drops off at the Queen Alexandra (QA) Hospital, Cosham. A collection/drop off from the Marriott Hotel can also be arranged.

The Isle of Wight Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has funded the purchase of the minibus and the on-going running costs will be provided by Wessex Cancer Trust. 

Minibus Timetable

Southsea Pick Up Times QA Hospital Pick Up Times
10:30 11:00
11:30 12.00
Lunch Break 13.00
13:30 14.00

 

Isle of Wight Accessible Days Out

The Island is full of amazing things to see & do, we've listed some of the best attractions and museums with handy accessibility guides. 

 

1. Isle of Wight Steam Railway

Take a Ride behind one of our vintage steam locomotives for a special journey back in time. Breathe in the evocative smells of a real steam railway, while your eyes and ears thrill to the puffing and hissing of the steam engine. Settle back in beautifully restored Victorian and Edwardian carriages and enjoy a unique view of some of the Island’s unspoilt countryside ... or hop off at one of our stations and just watch the trains go by!

How to get there?

  • Southsea - Ryde Hovercraft service - Wheelchair access, Autism friendly, Helpful staff, Hearing Loop, Guide dogs friendly, Accessible Toilets, Makaton signed saftey video

  • Ryde - Smallbrook Junction Island Line Train Service - Wheelchair access, Folding ramp, Helpful staff, Hearing Loop, Guide dog friendly

  • Steam train from Smallbrook Junction - Some wheelchair access (see guide here), Helpful staff, Hearing Loop, Guide dog friendly, Accessible Toilets

Purchase a combined Hovercraft, attraction transfer and entrance here  for seamless travel!

 


 2. Southern Vectis - Public & Open Top Tour Bus

Whether you’re here on holiday or are lucky enough to live on the Island, we have some great routes taking you to areas across the Island that you’ll want to explore. There are four seasonal routes, two of which are open-top, so you can really catch the refreshing Island air as you Breeze around the Island!

How to get there?

  • Southsea - Ryde Hovercraft service -  Wheelchair access, Autism friendly, Helpful staff, Hearing Loop, Guide dogs friendly, Accessible Toilets, Makaton signed safety video

  • Short walk from our landing pad to Ryde main Bus station - Footbridge or step free access

  • Southern Vectis Buses - Folding ramp, Guide dog friendly, Hearing loop

Purchase a combined Hovercraft & unlimited bus travel combination here for great discounts! 

 


 3. Robin Hill

With some incredible day and night time experiences to be found throughout the season, Robin Hill Country Park is the perfect destination for visitors of all ages. Set in 88 acres of beautiful countryside, the park provides fun, adventure and great family experiences.

Offering a fantastic blend of rides, falconry and adventure play for fun loving families and children, and relaxing woodland gardens, ponds and walks for discerning adults to enjoy, there is something for everyone at Robin Hill.


How to get there?

  • Southsea - Ryde Hovercraft service -  Wheelchair access, Autism friendly, Helpful staff, Hearing Loop, Guide dogs friendly, Accessible Toilets, Makaton signed safety video

  • Southern Vectis bus number 8Folding ramp, Guide dog friendly, Hearing loop, Helpful Staff

  • Robin HillWheelchair access, Autism friendly, Helpful staff, Hearing Loop, Guide dogs friendly, Accessible Toilets, Recharging of Electronic Equipment, Cold storage for Medicines.
    View Robin Hill's accessiblity guide here

    Purchase a combined Hovercraft, attraction transfer and entrance here for seamless travel!

 


 4. Osborne House

Delight in the Victorian splendour of Queen Victoria’s family home where this famous monarch lived with her large family and beloved Prince Albert

Marvel at the magnificence of the Royal Apartments including the sumptuous drawing and dining rooms. Don’t miss the acclaimed DurbarRoom and corridor with its Indian décor and portraits. Imagine life below stairs as you walk through the Table Deckers' Rooms.Take an intimate glimpse into Queen Victoria’s family life as you tour the nursery and private rooms.


How to get there?

  • Southsea - Ryde Hovercraft service Wheelchair access, Autism friendly, Helpful staff, Hearing Loop, Guide dogs friendly, Accessible Toilets, Makaton signed safety video

  • Southern Vectis bus number 4 - Folding ramp, Guide dog friendly, Hearing loop, helpful staff.

  • Osborne House - Wheelchair access, Accessible Toilets, Adult changing area, guide dog friendly, wheelchair loan, Sensory Experiences. View Osborne's accessibilty guide here

    Purchase a combined Hovercraft, attraction transfer and entrance here for seamless travel!


5. Island Line

Explore the Island's East Coast on unique electric trains. The combined Hover Liner ticket includes a day return on the hovercraft from Southsea, plus unlimited use of the Island Line trains. The Line runs from Ryde to Shanklin stopping at Smallbrook Junction, Brading, Sandown and Lake.

 

How to get there?

 

  • Southsea - Ryde Hovercraft service -  Wheelchair access, Autism friendly, Helpful staff, Hearing Loop, Guide dogs friendly, Accessible Toilets, Makaton signed safety video

  • Short walk from our landing pad to Ryde main train station - Footbridge or step free access

  • Island Line - Folding ramp, guide dog friendly, helpful staff

 

Purchase a combined Hovercraft & unlimited train travel combination here for great discounts! 

 



6. Ryde Castle

The Majestic Ryde Castle is a former Victorian manor ideally located on Ryde seafront overlooking the picturesque marina. The newly refurbished bedrooms are all en-suite with flat screen TV, tea and coffee making facilities and free Wi-Fi. Some of the bedrooms benefit from spectacular sea views across the Solent and beyond. 

How To Get There?

  • Southsea - Ryde Hovercraft service -  Wheelchair access, Autism friendly, Helpful staff, Hearing Loop, Guide dogs friendly, Accessible Toilets, Makaton signed safety video 

  • 2 min walk across the road - Step free

  • Ryde Castle - Wheelchair access, Accessible Toilets, gluten free & vegetarian menus. 

 

Portsmouth & Southsea Accessible Days Out 

Fast becoming Britain's favourite waterfront destination, Portsmouth is packed with things to do from a mix of history and heritage, specialist shopping, restaurants and bars and a programme of year round of events. We've listed some of the best with handy accessibility guides.

  

 

1. Portsmouth Historic Dockyard 

Visit Portsmouth Historic Dockyard for a truly memorable family day out. Explore historic ships, including Lord Nelson’s world famous flagship HMS Victory, Queen Victoria’s HMS Warrior and the only surviving ship from the First World War’s Gallipoli Campaign, HMS M.33. Take the complementary waterbus to Gosport and explore Cold War submarine HMS Alliance.

 

How to get there?

  • Ryde - Southsea Hovercraft service -  Wheelchair access, Autism friendly, Helpful staff, Hearing Loop, Guide dogs friendly, Accessible Toilets, Makaton signed safety video.

  • HoverBus - Wheelchair access, folding ramp, audio descriptive stop calls, helpful staff.

  • Portsmouth Historic Dockyard- Wheelchair access, guide dog friendly, helpful staff, some audio description available. 

View the Historic Dockyards full accessible guide here

 


 

2. Emirates Spinnaker Tower

Soaring 170 metres above Portsmouth Harbour, the iconic Emirates Spinnaker Tower is a must see landmark for visitors worldwide. There is no better introduction to the city and its' world-famous Harbour. With 3 viewing platforms and the largest glass floor to walk for those with a head for heights.

 

How to get there?

  • Ryde - Southsea Hovercraft service -  Wheelchair access, Autism friendly, Helpful staff, Hearing Loop, Guide dogs friendly, Accessible Toilets, Makaton signed safety video.

  • HoverBus - Wheelchair access, folding ramp, audio descriptive stop calls, helpful staff.

  • Emirates Spinnaker Tower - Wheelchair Access, lift, accessible toilets, hearing loop.
                                 View Emirates Spinnaker Tower full accessibility guide here

 


3. Blue Reef Aquarium 


Portsmouth’s award-winning Blue Reef Aquarium offers visitors a dazzling undersea safari through the oceans of the world. With over 45 living displays reveal the sheer variety of life in the deep, from tropical sharks and stingrays to giant lobsters and elegant seahorses. Explore the drama of the British coast, the underwater gardens of the Mediterranean and the dazzling beauty of a spectacular coral reef.

 How to get there?

  • Ryde - Southsea Hovercraft service -  Wheelchair access, Autism friendly, Helpful staff, Hearing Loop, Guide dogs friendly, Accessible Toilets, Makaton signed safety video.

  • Short Walk Along Southsea Seafront - Step free, flat pavements

  • Blue Reef Aquarium

             


     4. Gunwharf Quays  

 At Gunwharf Quays you can shop over 90 famous brands including Polo Ralph Lauren, Michael Kors, Hugo Boss and Nike, all set on Portsmouth’s Historic waterfront. From stylish Women's fashion and Men’s sharp tailoring to beautiful homeware and gifts and high performance sportswear all at up to 60% off, this is outlet shopping…and then some. When it comes to dining out, Gunwharf Quays has something tasty to suit everyone.  With over 30 restaurants, bars and cafés you’ll be spoilt for choice.

 

How to get there?

  • Ryde - Southsea Hovercraft service -  Wheelchair access, Autism friendly, Helpful staff, Hearing Loop, Guide dogs friendly, Accessible Toilets, Makaton signed safety video.

  • HoverBus - Wheelchair access, folding ramp, audio descriptive stop calls, helpful staff.

  • Gunwharf Quays - Wheelchair Access, wheelchair loan, escalators, lifts,  accessible toilets

                                                         View Gunwharf Quays accessibility guide here 

 

5. HoverBus

Hovertravel's Hoverbus is the perfect way to travel around Portsmouth and Southsea for just £1.75 per single journey per child & £2.00 per adult. Not only will the Hoverbus take you to and from the Hoverport at Southsea Seafront for your quick and easy trips to the Isle of Wight, but it will also take you around Portsmouth & Southsea.

The Hoverbus conveniently stops at:

The Hard Interchange which is ideal for:

  • Onward travel by buses, trains at Portsmouth Harbour Station and coaches

  • Gosport Ferry

  • Gunwharf Quays and Spinnaker Tower

  • Historic Dockyard

Then, continuing onto Portsmouth City Centre and Portsmouth & Southsea Station.

How to get there?

  • Ryde - Southsea Hovercraft service -  Wheelchair access, Autism friendly, Helpful staff, Hearing Loop, Guide dogs friendly, Accessible Toilets, Makaton signed safety video.

  • HoverBus - Wheelchair access, folding ramp, audio descriptive stop calls, helpful staff.

'Try Before You Fly' Registration

As part of World Autism Awareness Week and for World Autism Awareness Day itself, Hovertravel is holding a special open day on Tuesday 2nd April when visitors will be able to meet the staff, crew and pilots of Hovertravel, whilst being hosted by the HoverCare team.

Recent specific additions to the HoverCare facilities have been the introduction of a safe haven in both terminals and the opportunity to borrow ear defenders during the Hovertravel experience.

This ‘try before you fly’ approach has been designed to help customers get the best insight for any future visits and Hovertravel is encouraging visitors to bring their friends and family along too, to try out the hovercraft and learn about the HoverCare services.

The hovercraft will be open for visitors at our Southsea (Portsmouth) terminal. Its also a great opportunity to share your experiences with our staff so we can further enhance our services, ensuring we helping all to travel with ease. 

Our Hovercraft will be open for visitors : 
2nd April - 11:00 - 12:30 - Southsea Hoverport.  

All visitors who meet the Hovercare Ambassadors will be issued with our HoverCare card, and given a ticket for 2 to travel on Hovertravel’s services in the future.

Space is limited, please register each person attending below

 


 

 

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Hovertravel Ltd Company registered in England, UK. Company Registration 830401. VAT Registration 107-3428-91. Hovertravel Registered Trade Mark number 2614882 and Hovertravel logo registered trade mark number 2630390. Registered Office: Encombe House, Estate Office, Corfe Castle, Wareham, Dorset, BH20 5LW, England.

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