BC Ferries is offering tips for “smooth sailing” this Canada Day long weekend. (File Photo)

Reserve, ride-share, be prepared: Tips from BC Ferries for travelling this Canada Day long weekend

Tips from BC Ferries for smooth sailing this Canada Day long weekend

BC Ferries wants travellers to enjoy “smooth sailing” this Canada Day long weekend.

To make the transportation portion of your long weekend more enjoyable, BC Ferries is celebrating Canada’s birthday at major terminals. Face painting, bubble machines, mascots, kids music, magic and more will keep youngsters entertained during ferry waits, and the Stream of Dreams Murals Society will give them a chance to participate in public art. On Monday, July 1 the society will be at Swartz Bay terminal to help kids paint wooden fish to be installed along the terminal fences.

READ ALSO: BC Ferries has no plans to implement debit for vehicle ticket payments

But even though waits over the long weekend will offer more than terminal snacks, the ferry service company is giving the public tips for smooth travels via ferry over the busy weekend.

BC Ferries says the busiest times to sail are Thursday and Friday afternoon, as well as Saturday morning. Historically, the Monday and Tuesday after the long weekend sees another rush of people returning from Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast. “To avoid sailing waits, BC Ferries recommends you reserve, or travel at less busy times,” the company stated in a media release.

READ ALSO: Multiple sailing waits as BC Ferries deals with Easter Monday traffic

Other recommendations include:

  • Reserving in advance to secure a spot. Avoid the line ups and zoom past the last-minute sailors. Those who make reservations have zero sailing waits, even when multiple waits are reported. Reservations be made online at bcferries.com.
  • Get a deal by travelling at “off-peak times.” BC Ferries offers deals for travellers who opt for the early morning and late evening sailings. The “Sunrise and Sunset Savings” promotion offers deals on more than 1,600 sailings, with some discounted as low as $49 for standard passenger cars on select routes.
  • Move things along by being prepared. BC Ferries asks passengers to follow traffic control flaggers and have their booking reference number ready upon arrival.
  • Arrive early. For extra busy weekends, it’s recommended that passengers arrive 45-60 minutes prior to their scheduled departure. Walk-on travellers are asked to arrive 45 minutes ahead of time.
  • Ride-share! Car-pooling cuts down on the number of vehicles backing up the ferry terminal and parking lots. “BC Ferries encourages customers to car-pool or travel as a foot passenger. Vehicle deck space can fill up quickly and will be sold out at popular times.”
  • Use the travel-planning pages on bcferries.com to check for sailing waits. Those travelling without a reservation are pushed onto the next ferry once the first one is full.

    Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Shea Long roosts in the Shoot Out in the Telkwa Range. (SnoRiders, Houston/Shea Long photo)
Telkwa Range snowmobiling permit lottery opens

Application period is Oct. 20 to Nov. 20 for snowmobiliers and skiers to gain access to Starr Basin

The Dupras family has been regulars at the Babine River and have seen plentiful grizzlies over the years. (Jay Dupras photo/Lakes District News)
A family’s close encounter with a grizzly on Babine River bridge

Photo-enthusiasts let the bear access the bridge for photos putting others at risk

Stikine provincial election candidates (clockwise from top left): Nathan Cullen, NDP; Darcy Repen, Rural BC Party; Rod Taylor, Christian Heritage; and Gordon Sebastian, BC Liberals. (Black Press Composite Photo)
Nathan Cullen, right, looks on as Wet’suwet’en hereditary leader Chief Woos, also known as Frank Alec, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relation, Carolyn Bennett and B.C. Indigenous Relations Minister Scott Fraser address the media in Smithers, B.C., Sunday, March 1, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
10 Gitxsan hereditary chiefs call for BC NDP to remove Cullen as Stikine candidate

Ten Gitxsan hereditary chiefs have called for the firing of NDP candidate… Continue reading

FILE - Nathan Cullen speaks to media in Smithers, B.C., Friday, February 28, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Horgan, Cullen apologize for Stikine candidate’s comments about Haida candidate

Nathan Cullen had made insensitive comments about Roy Jones Jr. Cheexial

Actor Ryan Reynolds surprised a Shuswap family with a special birthday message to their son who was worried he’d be alone on his 9th birthday on Nov. 24. (Tiffanie Trudell/Facebook)
Ryan Reynolds text almost gives away Shuswap boy’s birthday surprise

Deadpool actor helps remind eight-year-old Canoe resident he’s not alone

Vancouver police reactivated the search for Jordan Naterer Thursday Oct. 22. Photo courtesy of VPD.
Mom of missing Manning Park hiker believes her son is waiting to come home

‘He’s going to come out of a helicopter and say ‘what took you so long?”

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Environment Minister George Heyman, Premier John Horgan and Energy Minister Michelle Mungall announce that B.C. Hydro is proceeding with construction of the Site C dam, Dec. 11, 2017. (Tom Fletcher/Black Press)
Site C actions, costs won’t be known until after B.C. election, Horgan says

Peace River diverted for construction of reinforced dam base

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

One of the squirrels who ended up having their tails amputated after getting them stuck together with tree sap. (Facebook/Wild ARC)
Squirrels recovering from tail amputation after sap situation near Victoria

BC SPCA Wild ARC says squirrels will be released back into wild, fifth sibling was euthanized

More and more electric cars are on the road, but one Chevy Bolt owner was shocked to see how much his BC Hydro bill skyrocketed once he started charging the vehicle. (Black Press file photo)
Lower Mainland man sees significant spike in BC Hydro bill after buying electrical vehicle

An increase should be expected, but Brian Chwiendacz experienced a 200-plus per cent hike

Most Read