Shipping firm opens new route linking Medellin, Bantayan

·3 min read

SHIPPING operator Aznar Shipping is expanding its reach in the Visayas Island, particularly in the province of Cebu by mounting a new route connecting Medellin, Cebu and Sta. Fe Bantayan Island.

Utilizing a passenger-only vessel, Aznar Water Taxi with a passenger capacity of 92, brings forth more tourism and business activities to these flourishing towns.

With daily schedules, the water taxi departs Medellin as early as 7 a.m. and Sta. Fe at 8 a.m while the last trip to Sta. Fe is at 3 p.m and to Medellin at 4 p.m.

The shipping firm also mounted a passenger and cargo vessel for the same route. Tourists who want to bring in their vehicles for a road trip to the neighboring island may do so as LCT Melrivic 1 can accommodate 120 passengers and has a cargo capacity of either 30 units of four-wheelers or seven units of 10-wheelers and two units of six-wheelers.

The vessel departs Medellin twice daily at 6:30 a.m and 10:30 am while it leaves Bantayan at 8:30 am and 4:30 pm.

This linkage is believed to support the logistics and supply chain of both towns with Medellin being known as one of the major producers of sugar and yellow corn and Bantayan Island being the egg basket of the province.

“Mounting this new route is in line with our company mission to discover and serve untapped and underserved markets. We also wanted to support the initiative of the Municipality of Medellin to diversify its economy rather mainly relying on the sugar industry for its source of income,” said Kyle Alexander Aznar, general manager.

This new route will serve as an alternative to the Hagnaya, San Remigio - Sta Fe, Bantayan route.

The Aznar Water Taxi has been fitted with brand new twin baudouin engines while LCT Melrivic 1 has been fitted with brand new twin Mitsubishi engines. These new engines will reduce travel time to 35 mins and one hour, respectively.

The port of Medellin can be convenient to travelers as it has a large parking area where travelers can leave their cars. There will also be Ceres bus trips from Cebu North Bus Terminal to Kawit, Medellin and vice versa.

Aznar Shipping currently has a fleet of 10 vessels and serves the following routes— Tabuelan - Escalante, Negros; Medellin - Sta Fe., Bantayan; Danao - Camotes; Danao - Isabel, Leyte; and Bogo - Palompon , Leyte.

Despite the economic headwinds brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic and other external factors such as the hike in fuel prices due to the Ukriane-Russia tension, the shipping firm remains optimistic of what lies ahead following the reopening of the economy after two years of varying stages of lockdowns.

“We believe that the effects of events such as the pandemic and the huge oil price hike due to the war in Ukraine and Russia are merely temporary and it is just a matter of weathering the storm,” said Aznar.

“In the 25 years of Aznar Shipping, we have time and time again weathered different crises. We are confident that these crises will pass and the situation will again normalize,” he added. (KOC)

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