MV OCEANJET 15 had its maiden voyage from the newest and first “smart port” in Cebu, Pier 88, in the northern town of Liloan, to the Poro Port in the Camotes Islands, on Friday, May 26, 2023, a move that improves access to the islands and boosts their tourism and investment prospects.

Mv OceanJet 15, which can carry up to 350 passengers, left Pier 88 around 9 a.m.

The vessel returned from Poro Port around 1 p.m.

According to Pier 88’s social media page, the fare is P600 for the tourist class and P1,000 for the business class.

Super Shuttle Roro and Aznar Shipping will soon have their maiden voyage from the Liloan Port.

Super Shuttle Roro, which will start plying the Liloan-Poro route on Sunday, May 28, can accommodate two Ceres buses and vehicles.

“We will carry two units of Ceres bus to drop you on the main roads of Camotes, fare at P130, and Ceres bus will be coming from the North Bus Terminal located at SM Cebu City (which) bus leaves at 7 a.m. to catch our 9 a.m. departure,” Super Shuttle Roro posted on Monday, May 22.

Economy class fares for the Roro vessel will start at P360 for regular/adult, P290 for senior citizens, persons with disability and students, and P185 for children (3 to 11 years old).

Tourist class fares will start at P390 for regular/adult, P314 for senior citizens, persons with disability and students, and P200 for children (3 to 11 years old).

A total of P15 will be collected at the port for the terminal fee and environmental fee.

On Friday, Poro Mayor Edgar Rama and San Francisco Mayor Alfredo Arquillano Jr., both from the Camotes Islands, paid a courtesy call on Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia at the Capitol.

According to Sugbo News, the media arm of the Provincial Capitol, Rama and Arquillano welcomed the latest route that is expected to bring in more tourists and investors to the group of islands, which have been dubbed as “the next Bantayan.”

The Camotes Islands are composed of three major islands and a single minor inlet that are divided among the municipalities of San Francisco, Poro, Tudela and Pilar.

Official launch

Pier 88 will be officially launched on Saturday, May 27, and will soon cater to passengers going not only to Camotes but also to Cebu City, Mactan Island, Bohol and Leyte.

The inauguration will be attended by President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., Vice President Sara Duterte, Tourism Secretary Christina Frasco and Governor Garcia.

Last month, the Cebu Provincial Government pledged P1 million for each of the four local government units that comprise the Camotes Islands to help them further improve their tourism programs and initiatives.

Earlier this month, SunStar Cebu also reported that the Capitol is also working to widen the runway of the airport in San Francisco town to enable it to accommodate private and passenger planes that can seat 70 to 80 persons. The move is expected to boost tourist arrivals and improve the Camotes Islands’ economies as it will reduce the travel time between them and mainland Cebu.