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Cozumel waits on SCT to enforce new Winjet, Ultramar agreement

Cozumel, Q.R. — A new agreement that includes updated health measures for ferry travelers along the Playa del Carmen-Cozumel route have been made. The new agreement between Cozumel mayor Pedro Joaquín Delbouis and Alicia Ricalde Magaña, head of the Comprehensive Port Administration of Quintana Roo will include both Winjet and Ultramar.

During the meeting that included executives from Ultramar and Winjet as well as representatives of the Harbor Master’s Office, State Secretariat of Tourism, the Cozumel City Council and Apiqroo, a new agreement was made, however, the agreement needs to be put into effect by federal authorities.

Established are new ferry crossings every hour from Playa del Carmen to Cozumel from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. with additional crossings at peak times. These will include morning runs from Playa del Carmen and afternoon runs from Cozumel.

Both companies have agreed to ensure a minimum of 12 daily crossings with a maximum of 16 when required and a maximum passenger capacity of 80 percent.

New health protocols for the ferries include the disinfection of ferry boats every two hours. Ferry passengers will no longer be allowed to consume food or beverages while onboard, ensuring mouth masks remain on during the duration of the crossing.

Pedro Joaquin says the finalization of the agreement falls within the jurisdiction of the federal authorities, however, as a municipal authority, the request was submitted through the formal channel, the Secretaria de Comunicaciones and Transportes (SCT).

Joaquin said “we will continue to insist, requesting the presence of the federal maritime authority, which in this case would be the Harbor Master, the Directorate of Ports and Merchant Marine, which depends on the SCT of the Federal Government to address the issue, but until that federal permission is granted, this situation will unfortunately continue,” he said regarding the ongoing problems of delayed ferry crossings, overcrowding and lack of health protocols.

“Meanwhile, we will continue with personnel in the areas of our competence, in the Navega docks in Playa del Carmen and San Miguel in Cozumel, raising awareness and enforcing sanitary protocols, the use of the mask, healthy distance and use of disinfectant, to maintain the safety of both the community and visitors,” he said.