SEATTLE – For the first time in seven years, annual ridership aboard Washington State Ferries declined in 2019, dropping by 800,000 customers – 3.2% – to 23.9 million. Severe winter weather, construction in and around ferry terminals and increased ferry and transit options, are considered the main reasons for the decrease.
Friday Harbor terminal February 2019
Washington State Ferries is receiving $1.5 million in federal funding to continue work on converting its largest vessels from diesel to hybrid-electric propulsion. This week, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration (MARAD) announced the grant, which will go towards converting one of the two Jumbo Mark II ferries used on the Seattle/Bainbridge route.
People driving vehicles onto vessels should plan for long wait times
SEATTLE – Oh, the weather outside is frightful, but a ferry ride is so delightful – especially for those who plan ahead, avoiding the busiest travel times Christmas week.
More than 700,000 people are expected aboard Washington State Ferries between Friday, Dec. 20 and Monday, Dec. 30. Drive-on customers should plan for long wait times as many travelers head to or from their holiday getaways. Delays may be longest on the Edmonds/Kingston route, where a smaller-than-normal vessel is in service.
Washington State Ferries will hold webinars at 9 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 7 and 6 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 10, for a brief presentation on highlights of 2019 and what’s next for implementation of the 2040 Long Range Plan.
By participating in the webinar, you’ll have the opportunity to ask questions and submit comments. To participate, please register in advance.
Visitors returning home from Friday Harbor after the long holiday weekend were in for an unpleasant surprise Sunday morning. Due to a software glitch, the 9:55 sailing from Friday Harbor to Anacortes was overbooked. According to Washington State Ferries staff, the reservation holders who were double booked were sent an alert.