The 87,000-odd residents of Labuan now have another choice of ferry ride to Sabah with the launching of the Labuan-Menumbok ferry service on Tuesday.
The service provides three trips daily, starting at 9am, then at 1.45pm and the last at 5.30pm. Each trip takes about one hour.
It is hoped that the ferry, named Duta Muhibbah 3 with a 110-passenger capacity, can help promote national integration and have a positive impact on the economy and tourism industry of Labuan and Menumbok.
Datuk Isli Siput, chairman of Isro Shippping, the ferry service operator, said his company recently received the landing rights from the Sabah goverment and had conducted trial runs for the ferry service.
"Our ferry service provides an alternative for the people of Labuan to visit Borneo via Menumbok," he said.
He said the residents of Labuan and visitors to the island had been depending on the two trips daily provided by Double Power Sdn Bhd which had three vessels -- Seri Labuan 5, Labuan Express 3 and Express Kinabalu, each with a 171-passenger capacity per trip.
Isli said since some years ago, his company had been operating the Labuan-Brunei-Labuan ferry service using two boats, Duta Muhibbah 2 and Ming Hai.