About Reservations

Commercial Vehicles and Vehicles Carrying Livestock

Commercial and Livestock Vehicle Services

Making Reservations

Guaranteeing Reservations, Payment of Fares

Before You Travel

When You Travel

For More Help...

I have a question that is not answered here. What should I do?

How does BC Ferries define 'Commercial Vehicle'?

A commercial vehicle is any vehicle with a Registered Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) of over 5,500 kg or 12,100 lb.

You can make your commercial vehicle reservation online for commercial vehicles up 9 feet wide. This includes the following vehicle types:

  • Commercial Vehicle (Registered 5,500 kg/GVW)
  • Semi
  • Semi A/B Train

To reserve vehicles over 9 feet wide, please contact our Customer Service Centre.

How does BC Ferries define 'Livestock'?

'Livestock', for the purposes of transportation of livestock on BC Ferries, is defined as large animals such as cattle, horses, sheep, swine, goats, mules, asses, game animals, llamas and alpacas. This definition also includes commercial quantities of live fish, shellfish, rabbits, rodents, birds of prey and poultry such as chickens, chicks, geese and turkeys. Commercial quantities of honey bees being transported one way from Vancouver Island to the Mainland are also defined as livestock.  

The definition of 'livestock' does not include household pets such as cats, dogs, parrots and other birds, mice, rats, gerbils, rabbits, fish, etc.

Livestock Vehicle:

  • Standard Vehicle Under 7Ft (2.13 m)
  • Standard Vehicle Over 7Ft (2.13 m)

Vehicle Length - if your vehicle (or vehicle and trailer combination) is over 20 feet long, you'll need to specify the exact length required.

At check in, your reservation will only be honoured for the specific sailing you reserve and is valid only for the type and length of vehicle specified. If your reserved vehicle length differs by more than 5 feet (1.5 metres) at check-in, your reservation will not be honoured.

To reserve vehicles over 9 feet wide, please contact our Customer Service Centre.

If the vehicle carrying Livestock does have a registered GVW of over 5,500 kg or 12,100 lb, please ensure you are reserving as a Commercial Vehicle. 


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How much does it cost to make online reservations for Commercial and Livestock Vehicles?
What credit cards are accepted to guaranteeing reservations?
How and when do I pay?

There is no additional cost or fee to book a reservation using this service, beyond the regular fares for each Commercial or Livestock vehicle and driver you reserve.  Our online reservation service automatically calculates these fares for you as you create each booking. Then, to confirm your reservation(s) you will be required to provide your credit card information to guarantee them.

'Guaranteeing' a reservation means that if for any reason you do not claim it at the terminal at least 30 minutes prior to the reserved sailing's scheduled departure time (and do not cancel it prior to the cancellation cut-off), you agree that BC Ferries will charge the applicable service fee to the guaranteeing credit card.

Guaranteeing does not pay the reservation. When you check in at the terminal, the reserved vehicle and driver fares (plus any additional passengers) are paid at that time. Please note that if your reservation is departing from Langdale to Horseshoe Bay, no payment of these fares is required, as this is part of the round trip fare that was collected on your last departure from Horseshoe Bay.

Accepted credit cards for guaranteeing are:

  • BC Ferries Commercial Travel Card (CTC)
  • BC Ferries Travel Card (TC)
  • Visa
  • MasterCard
  • American Express

When you are asked to provide your credit card information to guarantee each reservation, you may also check the 'Use to pay at check-in?' box to make the credit card automatically available to pay the reservation when the driver checks in at the terminal. The ticket agent will charge the reservation to this card whether or not it is presented at the ticket booth.

To view the vehicle and driver fares used to calculate your reservations, click here >>


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What are the vehicle weight limits at your major terminals?

BC Ferries' major terminal docks (berths) have the following maximum weight limits:

Terminal

Berths

Maximum Vehicle Weight (kg)

 Tsawwassen

1

56,500

2/3/4/5

63,500

 Swartz Bay

1/2/3/4

63,500

5

56,500

 Duke Point

1

63,500

 Horseshoe Bay

1/2/3

63,500

 Departure Bay

1/2/3

63,500

 Langdale

1/2

63,500


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Do I need to produce a weigh scale ticket?

All commercial vehicles may be required to produce a weigh scale ticket to prove that their weight is within the dock limit. Failure to do so when requested by terminal staff could result in refusal of passage.


What are the rules for carrying Dangerous Goods?

For complete guidelines on the transportation of dangerous goods, please see our Dangerous Goods Information for Commercial Vehicle Operators and Shippers page.


Are there any special considerations for livestock?

All vehicles carrying poultry (e.g. chickens/turkeys) and any older style, non self contained livestock vehicle are required to spread drop sheets around the vehicle, both at the terminal and on board the ferry. If weather conditions make it difficult to put down the drop sheets please express the need for assistance to the agent at check in.

Other special needs, such as the opportunity to park in building lees to limit exposure to sun/wind or on a level parking area, may be expressed to the agent during check-in. Be aware that at many terminals there are no areas of shade, wind protection or level parking available.


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Are there any facilities for refrigerated vehicles?

A number of BC Ferries major vessels are equipped with electrical outlets.  Please contact Customer Service Centre (1-888-BC FERRY/1-888-223-3779).
for more details.


Are reservations necessary?

When you have important shipping deadlines to meet, reserving your trip allows you to take control of your schedule. Travel is also available on a 'first come, first served' basis.

Which routes are reservable using myBCFerries for Commercial and Livestock?

myBCFerries accepts return reservations for the following service areas and routes:

  • Metro Vancouver – Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast: 
    • Tsawwassen – Swartz Bay  (Vancouver - Victoria)
    • Tsawwassen – Duke Point  (Vancouver - Nanaimo)
    • Horseshoe Bay – Departure Bay  (Vancouver - Nanaimo)
    • Powell River – Comox (Westview – Little River)
    • Horseshoe Bay – Langdale (West Vancouver – Sunshine Coast)

(To reserve on our Tsawwassen - Gulf Islands or Northern routes, click here.)


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What type of vehicle can I reserve?   (More about Vehicle Types)

With myBCFerries you can reserve all commercial vehicles (registered over 5,500 kg or 12,100 lb GVW) up to and including 9 feet wide and 99 feet long.  This includes the following commercial vehicle types:

  • Commercial Vehicle (registered 5,500 kg/GVW)
  • Semi
  • Semi A/B Train

Livestock Vehicle Type - include:

  • Standard Vehicle Under 7Ft (2.13 m)
  • Standard Vehicle Over 7Ft (2.13 m)

To reserve vehicles over 9 feet wide or 99 feet long, special arrangements must be made at least 24 hours in advance by contacting our Customer Service Centre.  These vehicles require special consideration during loading, and might be affected by local terminal conditions such as ramp elevations and/or tide levels.

Measure your length from the front bumper of the vehicle to the rear including any overhang, rounded UP to the nearest foot.

At check in, your reservation will only be honoured for the specific sailing you reserve and is valid only for the type and length of vehicle specified. If your reserved vehicle length differs by more than 5 feet (1.5 metres) at check-in, your reservation will not be honoured.

How far in advance can I make a reservation?

Reservations can be made for any sailing from the moment it is created in our Reservations system — usually months in advance of its scheduled departure date — right up to 2 hours (120 minutes) prior to its scheduled departure time. Sailings are closed to reservations at this point in order to give the terminal enough time to manage traffic during busy periods.

If you select a departure date for which no sailings have yet been created in our Reservations system, you will receive a message to this effect and be asked to try again later.


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How many reservations can I make at one time?

Our online reservation service lets you create Tentative Bookings of up to 10 reservations, then confirm them together by providing a single credit card number to guarantee them (and optionally to indicate that the card is to be used for payment at check-in). If you need to use different credit cards, you will need to make separate bookings. 

Can I change or cancel my reservation once I've made it?

You can cancel each reservation right up to its allowed cancellation cut-off point of 30 minutes prior to the reserved sailing's scheduled departure time. To cancel a reservation, log into your MyBCFerries account and click on View Reservations near the top of the screen. Follow the on-screen prompts to cancel the reservation. 

You can also cancel or change your reservation by calling our Customer Service Centre.  

To change an existing reservation (e.g. vehicle length, departure/destination or sailing date/time), simply cancel the original booking and make a new one. Note that new reservations must be made up to 2 hours prior to the scheduled sailing time.


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Can I see reservations on-line that I have made by telephone, fax or other means?

Yes. After signing on to your MyBCFerries Account, click on My Reservations near the top of the screen. All future reservations, including those made by calling our Customer Service Centre, will appear.

I am travelling on a route that is not listed as reservable. What should I do?

On routes where reservations are not available, vehicles transporting livestock should notify the terminal in advance and be at the terminal at least 20 minutes prior to the schedule sailing time by calling the Customer Service Centre.

If I'm unable to use your website, who do I contact for reservations or cancellations?

Feel free to call our Customer Service Centre, which is open between 7 am and 8 pm weekdays and 8 am to 6 pm weekends Pacific Time.

The $25.00 service fee will not be applied for any cancellation made before 30 minutes prior to the reserved sailing's scheduled departure time.

For Tsawwassen - Duke Point travel, reservations made for the 5:15 am sailing may be redeemed (without service fee) for the final sailing on the evening prior.


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What does 'guaranteeing' a reservation mean?

All reservations are guaranteed with a BC Ferries Commercial Travel Card (CTC) or Travel Card (TC), or with Visa, MasterCard or American Express. This is necessary in order to confirm the reservations.

'Guaranteeing' a reservation means that if for any reason you do not claim it at the terminal at least 30 minutes prior to the reserved sailing's scheduled departure time (and do not cancel it prior to the cancellation cut-off), you agree that BC Ferries will charge the applicable service fee to the guaranteeing credit card.

Guaranteeing does not pay the reservation. When you check in at the terminal, the reserved vehicle and driver fares (plus any additional passengers) are paid at that time. Please note that if your reservation is departing from Langdale to Horseshoe Bay, no payment of these fares is required, as this is part of the round trip fare that was collected on your last departure from Horseshoe Bay.

What is the 'Use to pay at check-in?' option for?

When myBCFerries asks you to provide your credit card information to guarantee each reservation, you may also check the 'Use to pay at check-in?' box. With this option, the card does not have to be presented at the ticket booth for payment, as the ticket agent automatically has access to the reservation's credit card information.

THIS IS ONLY VALID FOR THE TIME THAT YOU RESERVED.

To make any change to an existing reservation (e.g. to vehicle length, departure/destination or sailing date/time), you can cancel and re-reserve it on myBCFerries or call the Customer Service Centre at 1-888-223-3779 open weekdays from 7 am to 8 pm and weekends from 8 am to 6 pm (Pacific Time). Such changes can only be made up to two hours prior to the scheduled departure time.


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Can I change the 'Use to pay at check-in?' option for a reservation after I've made it?

Yes. You must cancel and re-book the reservation to change it. For further details please see Can I change or cancel my reservation once I've made it?

What if my sailing is cancelled?

Scheduled sailings may need to be cancelled from time to time as a result of heavy weather conditions, mechanical difficulties or other unforeseen circumstances.

We will make every effort to accommodate you on the next available sailing.

The Service Fee will not apply to a scheduled sailing that is cancelled by BC Ferries.

If you check-in for your reservation and the sailing is cancelled, we will make every effort to load you on the next available sailing. Customers with a reservation on the next scheduled departure will be loaded in advance of customers from the cancelled sailing. If we are unable to load you on the next available sailing, travel will revert to a first-come, first-served basis. If you choose not to travel, your fares will be fully refunded.
If your sailing is cancelled before you check-in, your reservation will be cancelled, your reservation fee will be refunded, and travel will revert to a first-come, first-served basis.


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Can I find out about sailing waits and cancellations before I travel?

Yes. Check our Current Conditions pages for up to date information from our major terminals. You can also open a MyBCFerries account and subscribe to automatically receive email notifications of any changes or cancellations. Or contact our Customer Service Centre at 1-888-223-3779.


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How do I claim my reservation?

To claim a reservation at the ticket booth, please have your Reservation Number available. The best source of this and other information is any one of the printable reservation confirmation documents you will have received during the online reservation process. (See also "Will printing details of my reservation(s) help at check-in?" below.) 

Remember, you must claim your reservation at the ticket booth at least 30 minutes prior to your reserved sailing's scheduled departure time


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Will printing details of my reservation(s) help at check-in?

A printout of reservations made online will be very helpful at check-in because it contains everything our ticket agents need to know to honour your reservation.

We recommend that you print the Reservation Confirmation page which is displayed when you successfully confirm your online reservation(s).  Or, you may print the e-mail message you received at this time (IF you specified your current e-mail address when providing your credit card information).

If, when you made reservations, you did not print the Reservation Confirmation page or receive an e-mail for printing, log into your MyBCFerries account and click on View Reservations. Then look for your specific reservation and click the Print button. Carry the printout with you to the terminal and present to our ticket agent at check-in.

When do I have to check in at the terminal?

Reservation check-in opens 60 minutes prior to departure. Reservation check-in must occur 30 minutes prior to scheduled departure. If not checked in by this time, your reservation will not be honoured and travel will revert to a first-come, first-served basis.

When will I receive my boarding pass?

Your boarding pass will be issued when you claim your reservation at the terminal, and have paid the vehicle, driver and any passenger fares.


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What if there's a line-up outside the terminal?

When you arrive at the terminal, let our traffic control people know that you have a reservation. You will then be directed to the appropriate check-in area.

What is a 'service fee'?

A $25.00 service fee will be applied, to the card provided at the time of booking, if you:
• arrive after the reservation check-in has closed, 30 minutes prior to the scheduled departure; • do not check-in for your reservation; • have not cancelled your reservation more than 30 minutes prior to the scheduled departure.

I have a question that is not answered here. What should I do?

Phone our Customer Service Centre (1-888-BC FERRY/1-888-223-3779).

You can also e-mail your questions or comments to customerservice@bcferries.com

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