The Buccoo Reef ferry will go into service from Friday, the Trinidad and Tobago Interisland Transportation Service said in a release on Wednesday morning.
The newest addition to the interisland fleet will sail from Monday-Friday at 8 am from the Port of Port of Spain and 4 pm from the Scarborough Port.
It will also sail on June 5 for the 8.30 and 4 pm sailings.
Chairman of the Port Authority Lyle Alexander confirmed that the US$73.5 million boat will replace the TT Spirit, which is expected to undergo routine maintenance from June 5 at the Caribbean Dockyard, Chaguaramas.
The Buccoo Reef is one in two catamarans constructed by Australian shipbuilders Incat and Austal.
The second ferry, the APT James, was built by Austal for US$72.9 million.
Unlike the APT James, which holds 926 passengers and 250 cars and travels at speeds of up to 37.5 knots, the Buccoo Reef is faster and has more passenger capacity.
The 112m-long vessel can hold 1,000 passengers, including 224 VIP seats, as well as 239 vehicles, and can travel at up to 45.3 knots.
Asked about a commissioning ceremony, Minister of Works and Transport Rohan Sinanan was unable to say if the government will host an event to mark the vessel’s maiden voyage to Tobago.
“We have covid19 and we try to minimise on anything. Right now I can’t tell you that there will be anything planned, because we are very restricted in what we have to do.”
Tobago House of Assembly Chief Secretary Ancil Dennis told Newsday this addition marks a complete revolution in the seabridge.
"Seabridge reliability is now here," said Dennis, who is also the Secretary for Division of Tourism, Culture and Transportation, adding, "Another shot in the arm for Tobago’s tourism sector and the economy generally.
"We are making drastic strides towards having all the systems in place to facilitate a more robust and successful tourism sector post-covid19. With two new fast ferries, a new airport terminal, improved properties and facilities through our grant programmes, important certifications from green key and blue flags, and our soon-to-be-launched islandwide customer service training programme, Tobago’s future is looking bright.
"In fact, TT's future is looking bright."