July 24, 2014

Tampa-Yucatan ferry update: Maybe next year?

Updated: The European debt crisis is being blamed for yet another delay. Guess where the operator is based. Yep, Europe.

Previously: Highly anticipated Tampa-Cancun ferry service will be launched sometime in the second half of this year, according to United Caribbean Lines. The vessels will have a 500-vehicle capacity, plus room for up to 2,000 passengers. Round-trip fare is $195, although it’s unclear how prices are broken down for pedestrians or per person.

Yucatan expats have heard this before, usually regarding a ferry route leading from Tampa to Progreso. East-coasters who want to haul household goods, not to mention the family car, would be thrilled to have a choice other than packing and shipping, or driving west and across the border.

Easier access to the peninsula would be good for the rental market as well. After all, a family traveling together on a ferry might like a rental house, no?

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  1. it would be fantastic if this ferry finally will happen. can;t wait. a lot of people are interested in this service. is it possible to bring pets?

  2. doug kay says:

    I think there are many people anxiously waiting for a ferry service to start including me but to blame the Europeans is ludicrous. Why can’t the world champions at everything afford one. The Yanks have probably made the process of landing and launching in Tampa so restrictive with body searches and the like the Europeans have given up.

    • Totally agree with you! It seems that the hold up is with the immigration authorities at the Port of Tampa. Is the USA trying its best to isolate themselves from the rest of the world? Take a lesson from Europe where people are able to travel thru and thru without so many limitations!

  3. scott burlin says:

    Although I am a few years from moving to Mexico, I think I would make the drive from Houston to Tampa to take the Tampa to Progresso ferry with all of my stuff just to avoid crossing the border in south Texas. I think the two day drive to Tampa would be worth it to take the ferry across the gulf rather than drive all the way to the Yucatan.

  4. Would love to see it. I came down in 2010 with a ford 150 van pulling a trailer. Took 3 days from Texas to Merida and my trailer needed $1200.00 in repairs because of poor roads. Not bad after Campeche but from border to Veracruz was killer. Got stopped and had to open trailer about every hundred kilometros. I will gladly sit in a line in progresso or tampa. It took 7 hours to cross in matamoros.

  5. I have been following this ongoing story for about a year. We would be a regular customer if and when this does materialize. It would be alot better for us to drive to Tampa with our fifth wheel and cross than have to drive all of the way from NH to Tulum. I would appreciate any follow up info when it becomes available. We are going to the Keys this winter to avoid the drive but would much rather go diving off the coast from Tulum, warmer and more fish to see and take pictures of.

  6. Is this for real? at last…!
    Like many other people I have been on the look out for news on the proposed ferry service from Tampa to Progreso and it is too bad that they decided against having the ferry arrive at Progreso, it would have brought jobs and money to the area! But I’ll settle for Cancun. I’ll be living in Merida by mid 2013 and I think that the ferry service is a great addition as well as an alternative to flying and driving across the border.

  7. We have been waiting for this ferry forever! What can we do to help the necessary progress?

  8. We are living and doing good in Texas and we know many Yucatan people like us more than willing to spend 500 dollars or more in a one way Florida to Yucatan trip
    We spend that amount several times just flying back home several times each year,

  9. Read somewhere that “the powers that be” had changed the route to Cancun instead of Progreso since the infrastructure in Cancun is already in place; now I am beginning to wonder if the holdup is at the Tampa end.
    I see nothing but benefits all around especially for the Yucatan area if this ferry bcames a reality,

  10. Robert Heath says:

    Not saying there are not some people that go to areas around Cancun, but the majority of the people who come here for months at a time come to Merida and the area around it. Cancun is mostly people on vacation for one or two weeks and they will not want to spend most of it driving and riding a ferry.

  11. Frances England says:

    Looking forward to using your service…we will be shipping 3 vehicles a trailer and a boat along along with 3 people. From Mexico to the States. Please let us know as soon as possible when your service will be available.
    Thank You

  12. Lyne Rivest says:

    Any news on when the ferry will start?

    Thanks Lyne in Canada

  13. I want to ship a suburban, travel trailer andpossibly a moving van. Where do I follow the progress to see if it matures to reality?

  14. Donald Elliott says:

    A big plus would be if this ship went Floridad-Cancun-Cuba and returned Cuba-Cancun-Florida. I think it would dramatically increase passengers that want to go to Cuba via another country.

  15. Federico Aguilar says:

    Looking forward to use your service. I will drive from Guatemala city Guatemala to Yucatan then take your vessel to Tampa, visit my family and go back the same way

  16. Paul Bussoli says:

    I have been hearing about this ferry service since 2007 and its the same each year there will be no service this year maybe next season blah, blah. blah, all it is, is talk ill believe it when I see it. We would use the service if it ever happens but with some reservations that maybe it will be in service in the spring when you want to return or maybe it wont, there is no sure way of knowing this all they do is talk.

    • Don Elliott says:

      I think they should seriously look at doing the link from Florida-Yucatan-Cuba/ Cuba-Yucatan-Florida to make this a reality. Many people want to go to Cuba but it is difficult through the USA, I would love to go RVing in Cuba. I am sure many US and Mexicans would like to be able to take a vehicle to cuba and drive around the island. Just expats alone would keep the Ferry full.

  17. Frustrating… That is what this topic has become!

  18. Abe Rodriguez says:

    I rent in Progreso every year. I would make a round trip every year with my car and I have lots of company that live in Michigan and Florida that would love the ferry option. I hope you can make this happen soon. In order to have my own car I have to do a 3900 mile one way trip from Michigan to Progreso. This ferry would be a dream come true.

  19. Fantastic! Please add me to the list….

  20. Ted Lindland says:

    I’ve been waiting for years now……

    • So, what happened to Progreso? It seems to me that there would be much more interest in Progreso since that’s where the major group of expats are that are currently either driving down or having to pay exorbitant rental car prices. Cancun is a “weeklong” destination for the most part where Merida/Progreso is often a long term destination. I guess I would be willing to go to Cancun and make the drive to Progreso if it came to that. I just need something other than that 3450 mile drive from Michigan to Progreso. Even on the “cuota” roads it’s still at least five days. Also, I kept receipts and found that I paid nearly 3,000 pesos in tolls on the way back this year; more than the fuel costs in Mexico.

  21. Rafael Somoza says:

    My family and I want to spend three months in St. Petersburg…and would be incredible to cross by ferry. We live in Cancun

    • Abe Rodriguez says:

      What happened to Tampa to Progreso? It seems to me that with all of the expat and snowbirds in the Merida area that it would be much more profitable than Cancun. The Cancun people are looking for short term vacations (one week) and at the price I would think that flying in and saving two days of travel would be much more desirable. I guess I’ll have to make the drive from Cancun to Progreso. That’s an OK option. Anything to keep from making the 3400 mile drive from Michigan.

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