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For Immediate Release
March 9, 2022

Two Island Class vessels to begin service on Nanaimo Harbour – Gabriola Island route

VICTORIA – BC Ferries is introducing two-ship service on the Nanaimo Harbour-Gabriola Island route effective April 12, 2022. Two new Island Class ships will replace the MV Quinsam to provide enhanced vehicle and passenger service to these communities.

One of the vessels will provide 18-hours of service with departure times from each terminal close to what is in place today to avoid disrupting established travel patterns. The second vessel will operate during the busiest 12-hour period of the day. This will result in a 49 per cent vehicle, and over 30 per cent passenger, capacity increase and doubling of sailing frequency between 6:20 am and 5:05 pm.

The new sailing schedules were developed in consultation with the community and the Gabriola Island Ferry Advisory Committee through a public engagement process carried out in March and April of 2021. Community feedback indicated the importance of the morning sailing times to support commuters and school children leaving Gabriola, and the schedule reflects this input with a new 7:05 am departure from Gabriola. The community also asked for easier loading and unloading of foot passengers. A separate foot passenger walkway has been constructed at the Nanaimo Harbour terminal to support this.

BC Ferries also recognizes the significant efforts of the local crew in bringing two-ship service to the route by participating in training, trials, and preparations for the new service, and wishes to thank them for their continued dedication.

Online schedules for this new, two-ship service will be updated soon on
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Media Contact:
BC Ferries, Media Relations
Victoria: (250) 978-1267

Customer Contact:
Victoria: (250) 410-1465
Toll-free: 1-888-BCFERRY (1-888-223-3779)

Schedule table attached


Nanaimo Harbour – Gabriola Island Schedule

Effective April 12, 2022

Depart Descanso Bay Depart Nanaimo Harbour
5:15 am * ! 5:45 am * !
6:20 am 6:35 am !
7:05 am # ! 6:55 am # !
7:35 am # 7:35 am #
8:10 am 8:10 am
8:45 am 8:45 am
9:20 am 9:20 am
9:55 am 9:55 am
10:30 am 10:30 am DC
11:05 am 11:05 am
11:40 am 11:40 am
12:55 pm 12:55 pm
1:30 pm 1:30 pm
2:15 pm 2:15 pm
2:50 pm 2:50 pm
3:25 pm 3:25 pm
4:00 pm 4:00 pm
4:35 pm 4:35 pm % !
5:05 pm % ! 5:05 pm
5:40 pm DC 6:15 pm
6:50 pm 7:30 pm
8:00 pm 9:10 pm
9:40 pm 10:05 pm ^
10:30 pm ^ 11:00 pm
* Except Saturday & Sunday
! Except December 25 & January 1
# Except Sunday
% Except Saturday
^ Except Wednesday
DC Dangerous Cargo customers only on Wednesdays
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