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For Immediate Release
20-022
June 2, 2020

BC Ferries increases service to Southern Gulf Islands June 9

Service to return to seasonal service levels to respond to growing demand


VICTORIA – In collaboration with the Province, BC Ferries is increasing service on routes to the Southern Gulf Islands as of June 9, 2020 to match capacity with demand and better meet the needs of customers. This includes the re-opening of the Long Harbour terminal on Salt Spring Island.

Demand on the Southern Gulf Island routes continues to grow. Effective June 9, 2020, the Vancouver (Tsawwassen) – Salt Spring Island (Long Harbour) service will resume and the Victoria (Swartz Bay) – Southern Gulf Islands route will return to winter seasonal service levels. The routes will revert to the sailing times customers are used to seeing and are expected to alleviate the current demand pressures.

Bookings for the Tsawwassen – Long Harbour route June 9 onwards are now open. Existing bookings made by customers on the Tsawwassen – Southern Gulf Islands route between June 9 and June 23 will be cancelled and the reservation fee refunded as sailing times have changed. As routes are operating at 50 per cent passenger capacity as per Transport Canada regulations, these sailings have limited capacity. This route is 100 per cent reservable and only customers arriving with bookings including correctly identified passenger numbers are assured they will be accommodated on sailings. Please visit bcferries.com to view the full schedules.

The Mayne Queen is returning to service and will provide sailings along with the Queen of Cumberland for customers travelling between Swartz Bay, Saturna, Mayne, Galiano and Pender Islands. The full schedule details for these routes are available at bcferries.com.

BC Ferries’ priority is the health and safety of our customers and employees, and the company will strictly adhere to provincial and federal guidelines during this gradual resumption of service. The company continues to advise customers to avoid non-essential travel and is following the directives and guidance provided by the Province of B.C. and Transport Canada. Safety measures in place include limiting passenger capacity by 50 per cent to support physical distancing, allowing customers to remain in their vehicles during the sailing on all car decks, enhanced cleaning and screening of travellers.

These service level adjustments allow BC Ferries to recall some of its skilled employees to help restore this service. BC Ferries’ employees continue to show dedication to coastal ferry service and care for the communities they serve.

Under contract to the Province of British Columbia, BC Ferries is the service provider responsible for the delivery of safe, efficient and dependable ferry service along coastal British Columbia. BC Ferries continues to monitor traffic levels and work with the Province of British Columbia on service levels.

As this situation is rapidly evolving, BC Ferries encourages customers to monitor the
website for any additional changes to service. For full details on service changes and the measures
BC Ferries is taking in response to COVID-19, visit bcferries.com.
 
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Media Contact:
BC Ferries, Media Relations
Victoria: (250) 978-1267

Customer Contact:
Victoria: (250) 386-3431
Toll-free: 1-888-BCFERRY (1-888-223-3779)

British Columbia Ferry Services Inc., 500-1321 Blanshard Street, Victoria, BC V8W 0B7
Note to newsrooms: For urgent media inquiries off-hours, call our emergency pager at (250) 516-7211.