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Rediff.com  » Business » Take your car on the Scotia Prince to Lanka!

Take your car on the Scotia Prince to Lanka!

Last updated on: July 8, 2011 12:58 IST

Take your car on the Scotia Prince to Lanka!

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Vijay Karthik in Chennai
Drive in your car or SUV on board a Colombo-bound ferry from Tuticorin and drive it out in the streets of that city - that's a new service for tourists to scenic Sri Lanka, courtesy a ferry service.

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Image: Scotia Prince Lounge.

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This drive-in, drive-out facility will be on offer for passengers on board "Scotia Prince", a service launched between the two-countries last month, Flemingo Liners General Manager V Ponnappa said.

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Image: Casino.

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Take your car on the Scotia Prince to Lanka!

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He said passengers owning a car or a Sports Utility Vehicle should obtain the mandatory "Carnet de Passage" document from Automobile Association of India (AAI), costing around Rs 5000.

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Image: Scotia Prince.

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"After reaching Sri Lanka, they have to obtain temporary registration from the local automobile association to go around the country on their own vehicle", he told PTI.

There are no restrictions on the type of car one could take to Sri Lanka, he said, adding, the vehicles need to be checked-in as registered baggage which can be claimed after arriving at the destination.

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Image: Scotia Prince dining room.

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Take your car on the Scotia Prince to Lanka!

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Two passengers from Australia had already availed the service after obtaining the certificate from the Australian Automobile Association, Ponnappa said.

"This is an exciting new feature for Indian travelers wishing to use their own vehicles. We are happy to add a new dimension in the travel itinerary and hope this will open up an entirely new category of clientele to Sri Lanka", he said.

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Image: Scotia Prince.

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Take your car on the Scotia Prince to Lanka!

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Ponnappa said passengers have to be AAI members to avail the facility for which a lifetime membership would cost Rs 4,412. The ship can totally accommodate about 200 cars.

He also said the cars would have to be inspected and a declaration made of tools in the vehicle. He said passengers who planned to stay for more than six months would have to obtain a bank guarantee.

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Image: Scotia Prince.

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Take your car on the Scotia Prince to Lanka!

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Flemingo Liners are the first company to get the license to operate the ferry service for a seven year period. The nine deck Scotia Prince can accommodate 1,044  passengers and take 300 tons of cargo. The journey will take 14 hours.

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Image: Scotia Prince.

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Take your car on the Scotia Prince to Lanka!

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Union Shipping Minister G K Vasan had flagged off the first ferry service between the two countries on June 13 from the V O Chidambaranar Port at Tuticorin, saying he hoped the service would give a fillip to tourism, trade and commerce and also strengthen cultural ties between the two nations.

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Image: A cafe onboard Scotia Prince.

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Legendary freedom fighter V O Chidambaranar had started the first Swadeshi Passenger Shipping Service in 1907 by launching M V Galilio and M V Lavo. However the service was stopped during British rule.

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Image: A cabin.

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In 2010, about 1.26 lakh Indian tourists visited Sri Lanka, while 2.39 lakh Sri Lankans visited India.


Image: Sri Lanka.

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