BC Ferries adds 167 extra sailings to revised holiday schedule

BC Ferries adds 167 extra sailings to revised holiday schedule
Graham Cox

BC Ferries is revising its schedule for the holiday season, featuring 167 extra sailings in an effort to help alleviate passenger congestion for customers sailing between the Lower Mainland, the Sunshine Coast and Vancouver Island.

In total, BC Ferries says it will be adding 167 extra sailings to make travel easier for customers between December 17 and January 3.

BC Ferries will be adding sailings to its major routes, including between Tsawwassen-Swartz Bay, Horseshoe Bay-Nanaimo and Horseshoe Bay-Sunshine Coast.

According to the ferry company, the most popular travel times before Christmas are between Dec. 20 and Dec. 23 for traffic Between the Tsawwassen and HorseShoe Bay terminals and Vancouver Island.

Following Christmas, Dec. 26 and Dec. 27 are the biggest travel days, historically, for traffic leaving Departure Bay, Swartz Bay and Langdale on the Sunshine Coast.

BC Ferries says that between December 17 and January 3, it will be adding:

  • Vancouver (Tsawwassen) – Victoria (Swartz Bay) – 128 added sailings (Dec 17-Jan 3)
  • Vancouver (Horseshoe Bay) – Nanaimo (Departure Bay) – 33 added sailings (Dec 19-28)
  • Vancouver (Horseshoe Bay) – Sunshine Coast (Langdale) – 6 added sailings (Dec 23-27)

Additional sailings will also be added from Tsawwassen to the Southern Gulf Islands.

In order to handle the holiday traffic, the ferry company suggests that customers book in advance in order to secure their spot on the sailing day and time of their choosing.

BC Ferries also recommends that people arrive early at the terminal, suggesting customers arrive 45-60 minutes ahead of their scheduled departures for vehicle traffic and 45 minutes before anticipated sailings for walk-on passengers.

The company reminds customers that anyone with travel flexibility should aim for sailing at off-peak times to avoid the rush and take advantage of Saver fares. Saver fares were put in place earlier this year and reduce the one-way sailing cost for vehicles to $49 between Metro Vancouver and Vancouver Island — including a free booking — and $39 return between Horseshoe Bay and Langdale.

For full schedule information, current conditions, bookings, and promotional offers, customers can visit bcferries.com. For the most up-to-date travel information, follow @BCFerries on Twitter.

Graham CoxGraham Cox

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