Last summer, I was impressed by the speed of the Norwegian hurtigbåt M/S Fjordprinsessa, operating near Tromsø, travelling so fast that travellers are not allowed on-deck and are recommended to remain seated and fasten their seatbelts. I don't recall the actual speed, but another of their boats does Tromsø – Harstad in 2h40m, a distance of around 160 km, meaning an average speed of 60 km/hour including one stop. Googling told me that the Fjord Cat on Kristiansand–Hirtshals does 45 knots or 83 km/hour, while the Shinas in Oman does 51 knots (94 km/hour), but I think those are maximum speeds and not average speeds. The Oman article claims "the world's fastest diesel-powered passenger ferry", but "fastest" can have several definitions, which leads me to my question:

What is the world's fastest point-to-point scheduled ferry route? By fastest in this context, I mean the distance divided by the time according to the timetable, similar to this Wikipedia table for trains.

  • There's several places around the world with hydrofoil ferries. There's a pair between Fukuoka Japan and Busan Korea. And a couple were used for the Batumi Georgia ↔ Sochi Russia route though I think they're not running right now due to Russia. I'm hunting for speed info ... Commented Oct 8, 2012 at 3:33
  • 1
    Passenger Hydrofoil list might be helpful here. Apparently there aren't that many types of these in operation.
    – vartec
    Commented Oct 8, 2012 at 8:54

7 Answers 7


In Oman, between Muscat and the exclave Musandam, operate the Shinas and the Hormuz.

As reported by The Week, the Shinas has a top speed of 96 km/hour, whereas the Hormuz has a top speed of 104 km/hour:

It’s not a speedboat and it’s definitely not an F1 superboat. Call it the bullet ferry or a super catamaran if you will, but whichever way you look at it, the Shinas is probably as fast as it gets on water in a passenger ferry anywhere in the world.


Hovertravel operates hovercraft from Southsea, Portsmouth to Ryde, Isle of Wight. One of the types of hovercraft they are using is BHC AP1-88, which has 50 knots (93km/h) top speed.


I remember that back in the day, some high speed boats were used to go from France to Corsica. I could find some archives about these boats{french} (now they are too expensive to run because of oil prices).

So it says that Nice-Calvi took 2h45 at a speed of 37 knots (70 km/h). Using Google Maps, the distance of current route is 208 km (which would mean the speed is 75km/h). So I suppose it means that the route is probably now longer but yeah, the average speed was at least 70km/h at that time.


The high-speed ferry operated by Buquebus travels between Buenos Aires, Argentina and Montevideo, Uruguay. It achieves a high speed of 58 knots (107 km/h) and a travel speed of 51 knots (95 km/h). https://www.ship-technology.com/projects/francisco-high-speed-ferry/

  • Around the world of ferries, this one is still known to be the fastest, however, I doubt it goes full speed often.
    – Jochem
    Commented Apr 18, 2023 at 12:40

Most answers here cite top speed, which isn't really what the OP has asked. So rewriting this we get

  1. The HSC Franciso between Montevideo and Buenos Aires has a scheduled trip time of 2h 15m and the distance is 203 km, which makes for an average speed of 90.2 km/h.

I coudn't find a time table for the Hormus, assuming that either it's not running anymore or is suspended due to Covid.


The Ekranoplan is probably the fastest ferry, managing well over 400 knots. http://www.travelcentre.com.au/travel/airshows/Russian/russia_ekranoplan.htm

I am not sure whether they have them as scheduled ferry trips any more or whether they are charter trips, but what a stupendous craft!

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    The one you mention was military craft (now defunct). Regarding ferries: "Other larger designs as ferries and heavy transports have been proposed, but have not been carried to fruition." (see: Wikipedia)
    – vartec
    Commented Oct 9, 2012 at 15:39
  • The smaller designs are the ones I was thinking of, although I would love to see the Caspian Sea Monster at full speed!
    – Rory Alsop
    Commented Oct 9, 2012 at 16:06

The HSC Fransico (a catamaran ferry) has a top speed of 58 knots (107 kmh), however I don't know if she does that in regular service. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Incat#Products

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