Our services are operating on time.

On The Day Travel & Planning


Tickets & Travel

How often does the hovercraft run?
Where does the hovercraft go to?

The hovercraft service operates between Ryde, on the Isle of Wight, and Southsea, Portsmouth.

Ryde Hoverport is part of Ryde Transport Interchange where you can easily connect to Ryde Esplanade Railway Station (for onward connections on the Island Line rail to Shanklin) and Ryde Bus station for Southern Vectis bus services all around the Island. Please see our all-inclusive deals for Hovertravel tickets which include Island buses and rail travel.

Southsea Hoverport is next to Clarence Pier and is a short distance from Portsmouth City Centre. Hovertravel provides a Hoverbus service which connects with the Hovercraft at Southsea and conveniently takes passengers to and from Portsmouth Harbour, The Hard (including Gunwharf Quays), City Centre and Portsmouth & Southsea Train Stations.

Will I need to book or can I turn up at the terminal and pay on the day?

We advise pre-booking online, app or by phone. Only standard priced adult, child & senior day, period return & single tickets can be purchased in our terminal, all discounts must be booked online.


Please allow a minimum of 15 minutes to purchase your tickets before your flight is set to depart. 

My outward ticket is reserved for the 16:00 crossing. Can I travel on an earlier/later crossing?

If you are travelling outside of your booked time, you can amend your ticket via our Manage My Booking portal, this will guarantee you a seat on the flight you choose.

Alternatively you can arrive arrive within plenty of time and we will try to place you on the next craft available but if it is full, then you may have to wait until the next available crossing in our standby queue. 

Please note, a £5 fee per ticket, per change will incur for amendments. 

View our Manage My Booking Guide here

Is the return date on my ticket flexible?

Day Returns

You must return the same day you travel over on a day return ticket, if you need to return at a later date, please upgrade your ticket a period return via our call centre. The difference in fare will be charge. 


Period Returns 

The return date on our period return tickets are flexible for 90 days. If you'd like to amend the date to guarantee you a seat, please amend your ticket via our Manage My Booking portal. 


Please note, a £5 fee per ticket, per change will incur for amendments. 


View our Manage My Booking guide here.

Can I make an open return booking?

It is not possible to make an open return booking when purchasing your ticket. Our cashiers and the website will always require a date and time of possible travel when purchasing a period return. However, that return date and time is not fixed and you can return using that ticket at any time up to 90 days from the date of outward travel on the next available flight after your arrival.


If you'd like to amend the date to guarantee you a seat, please amend your ticket via our Manage My Booking portal. 


Please note, a £5 fee per ticket, per change will incur for amendments. 


View our Manage My Booking guide here.


I have made a booking online. How do I receive my hovercraft ticket?

After you have successfully made your booking online, an automated e-mail will be sent to the e-mail address specified by you. This will contain your 10-digit booking reference number, a barcode and the details of the journey you have requested.


Please bring this ticket along with you either printed or on your phone, to the terminal where it will be scanned at the boarding desk ready for you to board the craft, avoiding any queues for the cashiers at the terminal. Alternatively, keep a note of your 10 digit booking reference and bring it along to the terminal with you.

I have lost/not received my e-ticket. What can I do?

As long as you have your 10-digit booking reference number you can turn up at the terminal and re-print your ticket by visiting one of our cashiers. Please note that if you have booked a combination ticket to re-print at our cashiers office, you will incur a cost of £10.


If you have not received your e-ticket and do not have your booking reference number, please e-mail us at info@hovertravel.com, giving details of your name and the booking made, and we will resend your confirmation E-mail.


All your ticket purchased are logged on your Manage My Booking Portal. 


View our Manage My Booking guide here. 

By what time do I need to arrive at the terminal?

We advise passengers to arrive at least 10 minutes before their intended crossing, especially if tickets still need to be purchased. Customers must be at the boarding gate 5 minutes before departure time to ensure travel on that crossing.

How long does the crossing take?

The service takes approximately 10 minutes.

Is there anything I can not take on the hovercraft?

These items can be extremely dangerous on a hovercraft. Carrying these substance may be an offence and may result in prosecution. If you are unsure of any item you are carrying please speak to a member of our staff in our Ryde or Southsea terminal before you fly with us.

Is the service often cancelled?

On average less than 2% of our total crossings are cancelled. Our operation is quite weather dependant due to the nature of the craft. High winds and swells in the Solent may stop operation of our service for safety reasons. 

What happens to my ticket if the service is cancelled?

Since the start of the COVID crisis in early 2020 we replaced our standard cancellation policy with a ticket acceptance scheme in conjunction with Wightlink. From 1st May 2021 we are now permanently signed up to the Solent Disruption Agreement which guarantees ticket acceptance for Hovertravel customers on Wightlink services in the event of cancellations caused by adverse weather, technical issues or industrial action.

If there is a cancellation we will either direct our customers to:

  • Wightlink’s FastCat (at Ryde Pier or Gunwharf Quays via our HoverBus for free)
  • Or
  • Wightlink’s car ferry (via a free dedicated HoverBus service from Ryde to Fishbourne Car Ferry or at Gunwharf Quays via our HoverBus for free)

    View our Weather Disruption Plan here

Where Hovertravel customers can use their tickets to travel on these services.

Our cancellation policy has been updated to reflect this ticket acceptance and no further compensation or vouchers can be claimed as we are providing alternative travel options if our services are cancelled.

Can I get through transport tickets?

For our combination tickets including onwards bus and rail travel on the Isle of Wight please see our Hover Rover Bus and Hover Rover Rail tickets.

For mainland rail & coach travel please request a ticket for the "Isle of Wight via Hovercraft". Your ticket will state either "Ryde Hoverport", "route via Hovertravel" or "Southsea Hoverport". If it does not then your ticket has been routed via Wightlink and is not available to be used on our service. You can also apply rail & coach card discount at the time of booking.

Please alight at Portsmouth and Southsea railway station and change onto our Hoverbus. This will take you directly to our Southsea terminal for no extra charge on production of your rail ticket.

When can a child travel unaccompanied?

Children under 7 years old must be accompanied by a person aged 13 or older. Children aged 7 to 12 years of age may travel as an unaccompanied minor on our hovercraft and children aged 13 years or older may also travel unaccompanied on our hovercraft. For more details please refer to our terms and conditions.

What ages is a child fare and do I have to pay for infants?

Child fares apply to children aged 5 to 15 years inclusive.


Infants and babies up to and including 4 years old travel for free, but do require to be included in your booking by selecting the 'Infant 0-4' passenger option when booking your ticket(s).


Proof of age will be asked at the Boarding Gate.


HoverCare - Assisted Travel

Is your craft wheelchair accessible?

Yes, the hovercraft are wheelchair accessible via a boarding ramp. Please note we can only carry 1 wheelchair per crossing, therefore we advise customers to pre-book HoverCare Assistance.


Please note we cannot carry large motorised scooters. The wheelchair user will be asked to stay in the wheelchair for the duration of the journey.


View our HoverCare Guide here

What levels of assistance do you require for your crossing?
  • I do need a wheelchair. I CAN walk up and down stairs/ramp but I can’t walk long distances unaided. I require assistance to get me through the terminal and to my boarding gate. I can make my own way onto the craft
  • I do need a wheelchair. I CANNOT walk up and down stairs/ramp or walk long distances but I can move about the cabin unaided. I require assistance to get me to and from the craft door
  • I do need a wheelchair. I CANNOT walk, stand or move about the cabin unaided and I need to be lifted into and out of my craft seat. I will be travelling with an adult companion who can look after my requirements
  • I am deaf
  • I am blind or significantly sight impaired
  • I do not need a wheelchair. I am travelling alone and I confirm I meet the criteria for travelling alone. I do need someone to help me get to and from the craft door
  • I do not need a wheelchair. I am travelling alone and I confirm I meet the criteria for travelling alone. I do need help getting through the terminal and to my departure gate. I can make my own way onto the craft

We provide the above levels of assistance. If you are unsure which assistance level suits your needs or to book assisted travel, please visit our HoverCare pages.

Do you offer discounts for disabled passengers?

Yes, please view the Concessionary & Patient Fare tab here


Bikes, Dogs & Luggage

Can I take my bike on the craft and do I have to pay?

You may take your bicycle on the hovercraft with the exception of the 06:30 & 07:00 from Southsea Monday - Friday and 08:00 Saturdays, they will be stored in the our luggage/freight compartment on the inside of our craft. Due to space restrictions, bikes may not be booked on the craft; it is a first come, first served basis.

There is no extra charge for bicycles.

Bikes must be checked in by 5 minutes prior to departure. 



Do you allow dogs and is there any extra charge?

Yes, dogs may travel with you but must be kept on a lead and must not travel on the passenger seats of the craft. There is no extra fare for dogs. Please note that there will be a penalty fare if the dog fouls on the craft, pad or terminal. 

Do you have left luggage facilities at your terminals?

Sorry, but we do not offer any left luggage facilities at either of our terminals

Is there a luggage limit on the hovercraft and do you charge for excess baggage?

Our luggage limit is 30 kilos per passenger. Any baggage in excess of 30 kilos will be carried subject to load and may have to be carried as freight at the applicable freight tariff.

What happens if the Hoverbus is late and I miss my booked crossing?

On the rare occasion that due to high volumes of traffic in Portsmouth, our Hoverbus may not meet its connecting Hovercraft service. In the event of this your ticket will be valid for the next available crossing.



Do you offer Island Resident discounts?

Hovertravel's Blue Card entitles Island Residents to over 30% discount on our Day Return fares & over 10% off Adult Period Returns, from Ryde to Southsea plus throughout the year we'll email you additional special offers! 


Sign up for free here.

Are there any discounts for students or teachers?

Hovertravel do offer student & teacher discounts. Full information can be found on the HoverAcademic tab here.

Are there any senior citizen fares?

Hovertravel offer senior citizen singles, day returns & period returns for customers 60+. 

You may also use your local bus pass on the Hoverbus for free travel 


Find out more

Are there any discounts for groups or large parties?

For groups of 8 or more we offer discounted group rates. Please fill out the Group Booking form.


Please be aware that we cannot split these travel tickets; you are required to travel as a group.


Car & Coach Parking and Taxis

Can I take my car on the hovercraft?

The hovercraft is a passenger craft and does not carry vehicles. There are large council run car parks outside both terminals. Find Out More


Are there car parks close to the Hoverport in either Ryde or Southsea?

Yes, there are council run car parks next to both Ryde and Southsea Hoverports. Both car parks have CCTV operating. 

How much does it cost to park in the car park?
Is there Coach Parking at the Terminal?

Both Ryde and Southsea Terminal are highly accessible for coaches with transfer points directly outside and convenient parking for coaches close by.

Are there taxi ranks at the hoverports?

A taxi rank is available outside Ryde Hoverport. If there are no taxis available, a taxi rank is accessible across the bridge. In Southsea, there is only a collection point available, therefore you will need to pre-book.


General Questions

Are there toilets onboard?

There are no toilets onboard the craft but there are toilet facilities at both terminals.

Do I need my passport?

You do not need your passport to travel to the Isle of Wight.

What is your smoking policy?

All our craft and terminal buildings are designated non smoking areas. This includes the use of e-cigarettes.

Do you charge any fuel surcharge on your tickets?

Hovertravel Ltd sets its prices for travel many months in advance, based on a fuel purchase rate linked to the price of oil. If the cost of fuel increases it will be necessary to add a surcharge to all current rates as advertised, this will be for all new travel purchases. Please see our terms and conditions for the surcharge rates.

Can I purchase Gift Vouchers for the hovercraft?

Currently gift vouchers and not available but they will be available in 2024.


Hover Fast Freight

Can I send packages across?

Yes, through our Hover Fast Freight service. 

Do you offer a delivery/collection service?

We don't offer a delivery service, all freight brought over by us must be collected from the receiving terminal.