Nova Star unable to sell tickets

8:34 AM, Mar 3, 2014   |    comments
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  • Photo: Nova Star Cruises

PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Tourism season is approaching and the new Portland-Nova Scotia ferry is scrambling to finish details. The Nova Star is supposed to provide ferry service May through November, but the company has yet to advertise or sell any tickets due to U.S. Federal Marine Commission regulations.

The U.S. requires cruise and ferry companies to have a reserve fund with sufficient money to refund tickets. Without this, the company cannot advertise or finalize ticket details. Nova Scotia has pledged millions to the project and has given enough money for the ferry company to have the two-million dollar reserve fund.

In addition to financial issues, the boat is still in Singapore. The large vessel is 4-years-old, but has never been in service. The boat can hold over 1200 passengers and will feature slots and gambling from the Century Casinos company.

The Portland waterfront manager said the ferry would be great for Portland's businesses. Nova Star said it hopes to start selling tickets on its website by the end of March.

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