Services are operating on time

Disruption Contingency Plan

In the event of a disruption

Hovertravel has an ongoing agreement with the other cross-Solent operators to offer a replacement travel option in the event of cancellations, due to adverse weather or technical issues, on any services. 


Hovertravel customers will be offered a replacement travel service and their Hovertravel ticket can be used to travel on Wightlink, in the unlikely event that our services are disrupted. 


If our services are cancelled the service status on website, on social media, on service status hotline (01983  717717) and app (with push notifications too) will inform customers which Wightlink service to use. Hovertravel customers will only be accepted on the named service and only when Hovertravel staff are onsite at that service to scan your ticket. Please note that Hovertravel staff will only be in attendance during Hovertravel’s operational hours. Travel outside those hours will not be permitted.


This ticket acceptance is a crucial element of our weather contingency plan, which gives customers confidence that they will be kept up-to-date with the latest service information and be offered alternative transport to travel.


Temporary actions  for customers with reduced mobility during Wightlink’s Gunwharf Quays terminal building works

Please note that if Hovertravel services are cancelled while the major structural repairs and maintenance are underway at Wightlink’s FastCat Portsmouth terminal, all customers with reduced mobility will be taken in taxis to and from the Wightlink Fishbourne terminal on the Isle of Wight and the Hoverbus will take customers to and from the Wightlink car ferry in Portsmouth.

Please make yourself known to a Hovertravel member of staff at our terminals or at the FastCat terminals who will be able to arrange your journey.

Advance Warning

Our pilots team will be reviewing the weather forecasts* in advance and Hovertravel will issue a service status message at 1400 the day before any cancellations due to adverse weather are anticipated.

Customers will then be better informed to make their travel plans; including preparing to make their way directly to the Fast Cat or car ferry as directed or deciding to work from home. We would advise regular checking of our service status before starting your journey.


Customers can also easily change their booking to another date or time at no additional cost using Hover Flexibility.


Hovertravel’s service status can be found on our website, on push notifications sent to a smartphone from our app, on Facebook and Twitter pages and by calling our Service Status hotline (01983 717717).



When cancelled due to weather and when the FastCat is not operating, Hovertravel will operate a free dedicated bus from the terminal at Ryde to the car ferry terminal at Fishbourne during Hovertravel’s normal operating times. Please note that this bus will have a limited capacity of 35 passengers to maintain the appropriate social distancing and will not carry bikes.

The Hoverbus in Portsmouth will include an additional stop at the Gunwharf Quays terminal, allowing for onwards connections across the city


Please view the Weather Contingency timetable here.



Hovertravel staff will be on duty at the Wightlink FastCat terminals in Ryde and Portsmouth to welcome passengers, scan your tickets and get you on board as quickly as possible. Staff will only be in attendance during Hovertravel’s normal operating hours. Customers can not travel on the FastCat without being scanned by Hovertravel staff.


Car Ferry:

If the FastCat is not operating Hovertravel staff will be on duty at the Wightlink terminals at Fishbourne and Gunwharf Quays to welcome passengers, scan your tickets and get you on board as quickly as possible. Staff will only be in attendance during Hovertravel’s normal operating hours. Customers can not travel on the FastCat without being scanned by Hovertravel staff.


Additional Information

  • The current ticket acceptance arrangement means Hovertravel customers can use their tickets to travel on Wightlink ferries at no extra cost when our services are cancelled.

  • Customers must only use the alternative service as directed by Hovertravel’s staff or service status. Customers can not make their own choice of which Wightlink service to use.

  • Customers must have their ticket scanned by Hovertravel staff at the nominated alternative travel service.

  • Customers must travel within Hovertravel’s normal operational hours (0545 to 2045)

  • If you are a HoverCare customer please check which service is nominated however if you need assistance let us know in advance and we’ll aim to help.

  • There will be no Apology, Extra day or Wightlink Vouchers issued while alternative transport is on offer.  This includes if you decide to work from home. 

  • No bikes can be carried on the buses.

  • The operators of the buses on the Isle of Wight and in Portsmouth are both fully COVID-compliant, following all the current Government regulations including limiting the capacity on their vehicles to facilitate social distancing.

*Hovertravel’s pilot team uses several weather forecasts, alongside tide height and wind direction measurements to make its weather cancellation decisions consistent with the current MCA regulations. However, the science which underlies meteorological forecasts and climate projections is constantly evolving and weather forecasts can change quickly. Therefore, customers should continue to check our service status, even after an advance warning of adverse weather cancellations has been issued.